The World is Full of Neon Arrows, But Not Like This One

We were so pleased to make this sign for Kimberly Baker Jewelry. We absolutely love her work and think you will too. See her work here:

Learn more about the design/build process:

First of all, the broken arrow was fun to work with and we were excited to illuminate it. Secondly, it was good to “think outside the box” of how neon is typically commercially used. Currently, Kimberly’s storefront has a large window in which she wanted to display the arrow, but she also wanted to be able to travel with it so that she could display it at trunk shows or pop up shops. Given these constraints, making it light enough to be portable, but sturdy enough to stand on its own, we decided on a maple from for the arrow to live in. The box gave the arrow structure, but also framed the lines nicely.

Other things that we had to consider: She wanted to keep things visually minimal and simple. We added another piece of maple to the bottom of the frame and carved a ditch in it for the transformer and dimmer to hide in.

Initially, we were going to mount the arrow on plexiglass, but she wanted the arrow to be visible from both sides and since we wanted things to remain clean, we knew that with plexi, one would see the glass stands (to mount the neon) and  gto (wire that electrifies the tube).  The electrodes would have to be on each end of the arrow. We thought of different ways to eliminate that excess visual information. Ultimately, we decided to bend two arrows with a continuous tube of glass. That way we were able to weld the electrodes at the bottom end of the arrow, which enabled us almost achieve “magic neon” (wireless neon that looks like it’s floating). Alas, we still had to suspend the arrow somehow. To do this we used a “dead frame” (tubes of glass that do not contain noble gases and function as support for the illuminated tubes).  Our dead frame consisted of four 6mm sticks of glass siliconed to the insides of the arrow.

We hope you enjoy this beauty as much as we do.

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