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Sign Engineering Services

Making sure that your sign is engineered for safety and longevity is of utmost importance. Our sign engineering services ensure that each sign we manufacture meets all necessary requirements.

Sign Engineering Standards

Based on the knowledge of what similar types of signage required under Stamped Engineering our Manufacturing Review team will incorporate material and construction methods into original design drawings to create final designs that are used for the production of a specific type of sign being installed.

Our industry associations like the International Sign Association or our Regional Texas Sign Association also provide a great level of information on what structural engineering or technical construction aspects may be for products within our industry. 

Best Industry-standard Practices

We have sign professionals on our staff and positioned in appropriate departments to consult our design/sales/manufacturing teams to ensure that we are applying “Best Industry Standard Practices” in designs and Final Drawing specifications for production.

Not every project requires Stamped Engineering drawings and in those cases, we are solely relying on our sign and construction knowledge, experience, and expertise to ensure a proper design, Best Industry-Standard Engineering practices are followed for production and installation of the project.

Contact us today to begin your signage project!


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Considerations for Sign Engineering

Wind load engineering

This is an element of the stamped structural engineer considerations and often referred to as the “Live Load” on the structure. This requirement, the size, depth, shape, weight (dead load), height, and geographic location are all the factors a Professional Structural Engineer or our Manufacturing Review team uses to define the material construction required to best meet those requirements.

Structural engineering

Structural Engineering, when accomplished without the support and assistance of a 3rd party Licensed Structural Engineer, is done by our internal Manufacturing Review team made up of sign professionals experienced with specifying the materials and construction methods required under Best Industry Standard Practice to meet and exceed expected performance criteria of a sign design.  

Commercial building plans

These are only used for reference to locating signs within a site, using Civil Engineering Plans, that indicate Property Lines, Utility & Other Easements, while also applying any municipal sign ordinances restrictions on setbacks from property lines, avoidance of easements, vision triangles at intersections, the total number of signs and required distance between signs.

It is important to understand that even Stamped Structural Engineering drawings do NOT provide a guarantee that the building structure can or will support the proposed sign. It is the requirement of the customer and their Licensed Professional Structural Engineer for the building design and construction to verify and confirm that the Stamped Engineering of our signage is acceptable and will be supported by the building structures.

What is the next step of the process after engineering?

  1. Stamped Engineering Drawing Receipt
  2. Final Manufacturing Review
  3. final drawings with Stamped Engineering Incorporated
  4. Permit Submission
  5. Receipt of Approval of Permits
  6. Released to Manufacturing
  7. Final QC Inspection
  8. Shipping & Logistics
  9. Sign Installation
  10. Final Inspections for Permits
  11. Project Close/Invoice

Note: If no Stamped Engineering process is required after the order is received the project begins at Final Manufacturing Drawings and follows the same steps.

What are the deliverables of the engineering phase, if any?

The structural Engineer engaged on a project requiring that service will provide a Summary of Project Engineering Results, Engineering Calculations, and Technical Drawings of structural/Installation Components.

Industry Standard Engineering done internally is incorporated into final drawings for the project and this final drawing can be used for customer final approval or Permit submission when required. Approved and permitted final drawings are used for production & installation

What type of approvals are needed?

Approval of Stamped Engineering is done by the City/County or other AHJ, confirming it complies with their requirements. When required, a Customer/Building Engineer will approve final drawings, as engineered, which will be supported by the building. 

Approval of Industry Best Practice Standard Engineering is by customer acceptance of the proposal and Final Drawing submission, when required, or by City/County or other AHJ, confirming it complies with their requirements.

How long does it take to get professional engineering approval?

To receive Stamped Structural Engineering from a 3rd party engineer, it can take from three days to three weeks, depending on the size and complexity of the project.

In which states do you have a professional engineer?

A 3rd Party Engineer is typically licensed to provide their services in at least the 48 contiguous states. Our preferred structural engineer is located in North Carolina but with an office in Houston, is licensed in 45 states and the District of Columbia. We will work with another engineer licensed in any states they are not. They have been practicing sign engineering for over 22 years.  

How does engineering relate to the manufacturing process?

Stamped Structural Engineering specifies materials, sizes, thickness, attachments, hole sizes/depth, reinforcement of footing/foundation that go into our final drawings and that is strictly followed in manufacturing and installation processes.

Stamped Engineer Design Plans

Stamped Engineer’s Drawings – Define the quantity, size, shapes, and thickness of structural frames, support brackets, sign support posts (tubes or pipes), wall mounting structure/hardware, width and depth of excavation holes, reinforcement (Rebar cages) required in footings or foundations in order for the sign to “meet Engineering Requirements” for the particular geographic area (Coastal areas like Houston have different wind load requirements for engineering than Austin or Dallas because of hurricane impacts).

Their responsibility is to provide us with stamped engineering calculations and drawings that meet the requirements for the geographic area and existing physical conditions.

How does sign engineering differ from permitting? 

Stamped Structural Engineering is often the result of a municipal permitting process requiring it for submission for permitting a sign.

Often it is the type of sign that will determine if it is required to have to permit and/or engineering such as Ground Signs, Roof Signs, Wall Signs, or Projecting Signs from a building.

A Permit submission will typically require:

  • Application Signed by Owner/Agent and that details what signs are being applied for
  • Certificate of Occupancy for the Building at the Address being applied for in the permit
  • A Land Title Survey that indicates property lines and easements
  • A dimensioned site plan indicating the location of the sign(s) on the site
  • A dimensioned elevation of a sign(s) located on a wall
  • Detailed Final Drawings, including Stamped Engineering Drawings when required,  illustrating dimensions/construction/ electrical of the sign(s)included in the application

There are many variations within the permitting process that are not outlined in this information and why we have Permit Technicians on staff to address all those unique requirements.

How does the engineering process differ by sign type?

The engineering process is first determined by Codes or Contracts, if Stamped Engineering Drawings are required either by code or by contract then a fee will have been included in the proposal for those professional services.

Codes will typically dictate which sign types require Stamped Structural Engineering and this is typically for Monuments, Pylons, Roof Signs, Projecting (Flag) Signs, and some Wall Sign types.

The Structural Engineering of these different sign types will be based on the ground, wall, or building structure that they are being installed in or on. Typically the Building Code is some edition of the International Building Code (IBC). For example, Houston Sign Ordinances reference the 2012 IBC with Amendments. Cities can update their codes and designate newer editions of IBC, Houston’s last update was in 2016 when the 2012 edition of IBC was adopted.

Stamped Engineering Drawings required under contract terms may be required on all sign types within the contract and will defer to respective Building Codes that are applicable to the vicinity of the project. At this point, we may be professionally engineering sign types that would not be required under city ordinances but by the contract. This can include directional/regulatory signage and smaller wall signs not typically requiring engineering under City Ordinances.

Who manages this process?

Our Project Managers provide a task to our Manufacturing Review Team, who takes our design drawings for our clients and submits them for Stamped Structural Engineering, when required and included in the scope of services of the order.

This team coordinates questions on structures, receives the final engineering and Tasks for final drawings that incorporate Stamped Structural Engineering Drawings into for Permit submission, client approval if required, and finally to production.

Contact us today to begin your signage project!

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Proudly Serving the United States of America

To meet the needs of our customers all around Texas we have five conveniently located facilities in Dallas, Tyler, San Antonio, Austin and Houston.  Three of our facilities are state of the art manufacturing in Austin, Dallas, and San Antonio to provide the best signage solutions for our clients. Our facilities are equipped to produce pylons, cabinets, channel letters, vacuum form faces and digital graphics for sign projects large and small. Whether you are planning a national brand conversion or need a sign package for a single location, contact us today to discuss your project.

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With Comet’s continued growth the company is poised for another 60 plus years of growth and superior customer service. The Comet Signs family would welcome the opportunity to serve you. Get in touch with Comet Signs today.

855-361-0200 San Antonio, TX
5003 STOUT DR. | SAN ANTONIO, TX 78219