Introduction: Recycle a Political Sign!


These are step by step instructions for how to recycle a political sign. They still have many, many uses after the elections are over!!

I recycled a couple of them today because I needed a new studio sign. I ended up making 2 of them.

You'll need:
political signs
scissors
pliers
a vise for re-bending the wire (I'm pretty weak when it comes to re-bending super thick wire.)
stapler & staples
media for re-making your sign

Time involved: about 15 minutes.

Step 1: Strip the Sign

Pull the sign out of the ground and bring it inside. It's cold here so it was a comfort issue.

Most of the paper signs are stapled around the bottom of the sign. Remove the staples and slide the sign off the wire frame. (If the sign is plastic, just slide it off of the wire frame.)

I find it easiest to cut off the sides of the paper signs because they're usually glued shut. This will cause you to have to rebend the wire sign frame, but that's fairly easy to do. If you don't want to re-bend the sign frame, simply (not for me) slip a dull knife along the edges of the sign to open it up.

Unfold the paper sign so it lays flat (or just turn the plastic sign inside out and smooth it flat).

Step 2: Make Your New Sign

Fold the sign in half so that the original sign is inside. This gives you your clean 'slate' to work with.

Staple the edges of your sign about a 1/4" from the outside edge (do staple the bottom yet). This is so you can slide the sign back over the wire frame.

No use whatever medium you wish to convey your new message. I used a permanent magic marker to write my new sign. Remember, these signs are merely poster board. If you want something permanent that will not be damaged in the rain or foul weather, consider using a polyurethane coating afterward.


Step 3: Time to Re-bend the Wire Frame

This step is not necessary if you didn't cut the sides off your sign.

If you cut the sides off your sign, as I did, place your 'new' sign on a flat work-surface. Straighten out one leg of your sign.

Lay the wire frame on top of the sign (giving the frame about 1/2" clearance from the edges) and use a marker to mark the place the new leg needs to be bent.

Place the wire into the jaws of your vice, making sure to line the mark along your preferred bending side. It's easier for me to bend to my left so that's where my mark is. Bend the wire 90 degrees (the new leg should be parallel to the other leg).

Step 4: Finish Your Sign

Slide your new sign over the wire frame and staple the bottom closed (stapling is optional, but does keep it from blowing off in a high wind).

I made a second sign using a piece of very thin mortar board. I drilled holes in the top of it and tied it onto the sign frame.

Now, go and recycle some political signs!!

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