Learn how iconic neon signs are made
By OTS Staff
101 year old sign company, YESCO, announces a new, customizable Neon Pumping Station now in service at YESCO Las Vegas Shop. The sign company currently has two stations in operation with three full-time neon technicians on their staff. The three technicians, when combining their years of craftsmanship, share nearly eight decades of experience. YESCO has the capability to create 35 to 40 neon units on any given day. Each unit takes about 30 to 40 minutes to build; however, depending on the color times may vary.
How Does Neon Pumping Work?
First Step: Forming a Glass Tube
Using various styles of gas torches, the neon technician uses the heat to form glass into straight or complex shapes. Some of the torches they utilize are ribbon torch–a torch with an adjustable flame width, a CrossFire Torch and a hand torch.
Second Step: Bombarding Process
After the tube is shaped, they connect electrodes to the glass shape to start the bombarding process. The bombarding process applies high voltage to the glass tube to burn off any impurities. If impurities are in the tube, the glass tube may have discoloration which will be visible when it is illuminated.
Third Step: Pump Gas into Glass Tube
With a vacuum pump, gas is released into the tube and then sealed.
Fourth Step: Connect to Transformer
Finally, the neon sign is connected to the transformer and burned until it is stabilized. The color coating inside the tube combined with the gas is used to make different colors once the electricity activates the gas. The type of coating on the tube makes a huge difference. Because neon gas itself is red and argon gas is blue, but when they are released into coated glass with different color compounds they can form up to 100 different colors.
Neon signs are made to order. They built a second station as a replacement for an older station that was in service for many years. When the signs are well made and protected from outside elements, they are capable of having an indefinite life span.
For more information, visit YESCO Las Vegas Shop.