Channel letters offer an opportunity for advertising potential that is unmatched by any other type of signage. They can be seen from afar and make finding businesses easy on busy streets. These letters are created by bending metal or plastic using a channel letter bender machine, either automatic or manual.
So, what type of channel letter bender will work best for your needs? This blog post will explore how each type of letter bending machine functions and help you find the right one for your needs.
What is an Automatic Letter Bender?
Automatic letter bender machine is designed to make the process of bending letters easier. It can automatically bend trim cap letters, reverse and handle the entire manufacturing process.
The automatic letter bender can help you seamlessly fabricate trimless channel letters. In addition, these channel letter benders use the telescopic bending system that guarantees you flawless results, especially when it comes to small bend angles and sharp curves.
Automatic Letter Bender Machine Features
Automatic letter bender machine provides an accurate, clean finish on your bends without human error. A computerized controller is used to measure the bend angle and adjust accordingly, eliminating any potential errors that may occur when done manually.
They also come with preset levels that make them great for special materials such as aluminum, copper, and steel. With an automatic channel bending machine, you can customize the shape with just one push button. Such versatility allows these to be used for straight lines, sharp angles, and curves. Additionally, it can also do small and big letters.
Easy to use & speeds up the process
Automatic letter benders use an electric motor. This makes them easy to use, leading to a shorter turnaround time on any project with the machine. It is great for curved pieces, such as rounded corners or sharp corners.
Moreover, the benders come with self-developed software that is updated regularly, ensuring that any language interface is easy to understand and follow.
Besides, automatic letter bender requires no setup or assembly, meaning they are ready to go as soon as you turn them on.
Automatic letter bending machines offer high production rates due to their automatic cycle time and ease of use while operating the machine. This flexibility allows people who have less experience in product design (or those without a lot of free time) to get quality work done in the shortest time.
Disadvantages of the Automatic Letter Bender Machine
Automatic letter bender machines also have an electrical cord that must be plugged into the wall for it to work. Subsequently, this can limit where you place your machine depending on the availability of outlets.
In addition, automatic letter bender machines require electricity to function. This means that people who plan to use these types of letter benders in remote locations will need some way to power them up, which can be difficult without an electrical outlet.
Automatic letter benders also take time before they bend letters completely since they need an electric current running through them first.
What is A Manual Channel Bender?
Just as the name suggests, manual channel bender mainly involves the use of manual tools to bend letters to achieve an end product. They are manually operated, requiring an individual to turn handles or crank levers. Manual letter bending is designed for hand-controlled work without electricity.
Manual bending letters requires a lot more effort than automatic letter bending machines. However, unlike automatic letter bender machines, the manual letter bending method allows you to have complete control over how far your piece bends.
Manual channel letter bender tools are designed for smaller projects or those who want more control over their bends. They are suitable for straight lines and sharp angles during your design phase when you want to see what it will look like before putting it into production.
Unlike automatic letter bending machines, these need no electricity, so they’re more portable than those types of machines which require power cords plugged up to function. This means that a manual channel bender will bend letters in remote areas or when there is no electricity.
Advantages of Manual Channel Bender
Manual letter bending tools are affordable and can be used on a smaller scale without worrying about their durability or size. Automatic letter bender machines tend to cost more than manual tools for bending because of their high capacity for commercial use.
Automatic Letter Bender VS Manual Channel Bender
With manual letter bending, you have complete control over every process. As such, you can conveniently adjust the bending as needed depending on what type of material is being bent. In addition, it will give better results in some situations compared to an automatic letter bender machine with preset levels for different materials.
Which is Better for You?
Automatic letter bender machine is better suited for commercial use because they can produce more letters in less time than manual channel bender. You will save a lot of money and time, especially if you are conducting mass production or seeking efficiency.
In addition, automatic letter bending machines provide better accuracy and come with preset levels, making them ideal for special materials such as stainless steel, aluminum, and copper.
On the other hand, manual channel bender is best suited for smaller batches or hobbyists who want complete control over their bending process. Manual letter bending also requires extra force and effort, unlike automatic ones, making them a little more tedious.
Budget-wise, manual bending tools have better pricing options when compared with automatic models.
Reasons to Buy An Automatic Letter Bender
Typically, an automatic channel letter bender bends in a day what you would ordinarily bend in a week. Eliminating the need to bend channel letters manually leaves you open to more challenging, revenue-producing tasks. Ideally, this translates to profitability. You will also reduce waste, which ultimately increases your bottom line. In addition, Section 179 of the US tax code practically allows you to deduct the full purchase price of business equipment if bought on a tax year, which is a good incentive to purchase an automatic letter bender and save on expenses.
Increased sales and profits are often directly or indirectly linked to any purchase intended for business operations
Channel letter bender software is programmed to produce the same letter in the same proportion every single time. Every letter produced is identical, whether it’s a single or mass production
You Don’t Need Specialized Staff.
Operating a channel letter bender is an easy process that requires you to hire additional staff purposely for letter bending. In addition, unlike human labor, you can constantly count on a channel letter bending machine to function without unnecessary limits and breaks
It reduces Field Service Expenses.
A channel letter bender allows you to replace a weathered or damaged sign without initially making costly fits and measurements. The pre-programmed software has the necessary precise data to reproduce the letters without needing fresh measurements.
Things to Consider When Buying An Automatic Letter Bender
- Technical Support. Ensure you have access to free 24/7 knowledgeable technical support in case of any machine or software trouble.
- Quality. Not all letter benders are designed using the same material quality. Check to see if the machine is built on a bolt-together aluminum extrusion frame exposed to vibrating loose or a strong welded steel frame. The metal and electronic parts should also be of good quality.
- Warranty. Ensure your letter bending machine comes with a reasonable warranty in case of unforeseeable future events.
- Ease of Use. Can you set up and run the machine independently, or do you require on-site training to handle the machine?
- Maintenance Needs. Check for what is required to keep the machine functioning at all times. What are the potential mechanisms for part failures, loosening, and leaks? Does the letter bending machine need to be calibrated periodically? Moreover, are mechanical or software upgrades available over time, and for how long?
- Duration. Even with proper maintenance, a machine has its limits. Check with the manufacturer/supplier to ascertain the expected lifespan of different models and make the appropriate decision.
- Cost. Although purchasing a channel letter bending machine is considered a major investment, you should also strive not to go overboard with your budget. Check the machine prices as well as any hidden items that may cost you more later.
In a nutshell, an automatic letter bender machine is a better investment than the manual channel bender option. It is a good investment if you plan on producing letters large scale. In addition, an automatic channel letter bender is a more accurate and consistent option, unlike the manual alternative, whose productivity is often influenced by human intervention.
With luck and due diligence, you should easily come across a reputable manufacturer and supplier of high-quality, industrial-grade channel letter benders for your commercial needs.
Varisigns is an industry leader when it comes to designing and manufacturing high-quality automatic channel letter benders. In addition, Varisigns automatic letter benders feature top-of-the-line functional features that make your letter bending experience highly productive.