Success Behind the Sign
Signage is often the first touchpoint a consumer has with an establishment or location, which is why aesthetics – specifically, coatings – play such a major role in their success.
Image National Signs, a leading full-service sign company located in Nampa, Idaho, is committed to helping its customers achieve success in the marketplace. With service and support from its sign coatings supplier, Sherwin-Williams, the company offers exceptional color consistency, aesthetic precision and timely delivery to its customers throughout the U.S.
Launched in Boise in the mid-1950s, Image National Signs moved its location to Nampa in 2006 to accommodate its growing business. Its 60,000-square-foot facility allows the company to offer everything from design and production to permitting and installation services for big-name clients such as Albertsons, PetSmart and Advanced Auto Parts. Working across a wide spectrum of industries, including retail, self-storage, hospitality, healthcare, restaurants, and commercial real estate, Image National serves a diverse set of national customers.
“Regardless of the type of customer we’re serving, they all want the same things from their sign manufacturer – quality aesthetics and quick turnaround,” says Jim Reese, Image National’s vice president of operations. “Both of those demands are heavily affected by the finishing room.”
Success Behind the Sign at Image National
Color Trouble Solutions
Although a relationship with Sherwin-Williams had been established around 2015, it wasn’t until 2020 that Image National Signs reevaluated its primary coatings operation. While working with a well-known customer, the sign company experienced issues with color matching and sheen consistency. Sherwin-Williams stepped in with a solution, leveraging the GENESIS® Lustral™ System – a fast-drying, two-component polyurethane system that utilizes two mixing clears (GT1510 & GT1511) to achieve multiple gloss levels. The GENESIS Lustral system delivers high-performance qualities such as excellent durability, outstanding resistance to fading and chalking, and fast dry times that lead to improved productivity.
“After seeing the results for ourselves during a demo from the Sherwin team, and knowing that other national sign companies were using the GENESIS system, we decided to give it a try on our line,” says Reese. “We immediately noticed how effective the system is at delivering precise color and sheen consistency.”
Jason Dilworth, Image National’s head paint operator, also notes the GENESIS systems’ quick dry times as one of its top features.
“Not only does the GENESIS system help us meet customer sheen specifications on a consistent basis, but it also improves our throughput,” says Dilworth. “We’re able to move more signs through the coatings process in a much shorter timeframe, which in turn, speeds up the rest of production and gets the product out the door for faster delivery.”
In addition to using Sherwin-Williams GENESIS products, Image National uses the Sherwin-Williams Aurora™ Color Retrieval System, a web-based program that grants access to thousands of color matches. Formulas are provided in all gloss levels, allowing a user to easily select, mix and spray the correct color.
Not only does the GENESIS system help us meet customer sheen specifications on a consistent basis, but it also improves our throughput. We’re able to move more signs through the coatings process in a much shorter timeframe, which in turn, speeds up the rest of production and gets the product out the door for faster delivery.
More Than a Supplier
Beyond GENESIS system products, the Sherwin-Williams team, which includes sales representative, Paul Lewis and senior technical service representative, GT Stover, visits Image National regularly, providing guidance on everything from training to booth maintenance.
Jayd Hardman, Continuous Improvement Manager for Image National, says, “Working with Paul and GT is great because they provide value beyond paint. Most of the painters we hire need training. Those two work with Jason to provide instructions and explain the coatings process to our finishers. They’ve helped us identify ways to improve our overall production process, not just coatings application.”
In addition to reliable service and support from Sherwin-Williams, Image National benefits from its large distribution network. With clients around the nation, it’s convenient to have Sherwin-Williams products available within short lead times. Looking toward the next five years, Image National Signs president, Steve Watts, says the company plans to experience continued growth.
“Creating efficiencies with coatings, whether that be reducing preparation work or decreasing labor costs, certainly helps us with growth,” he says. “We see Sherwin-Williams as so much more than a supplier. They’ve become a true partner to us.”
To learn more about our sign coating solutions, contact your local Sherwin-Williams representative or contact us.