Portable Advertising Sign on the Cheap in Just 10 Steps!!





Introduction: Portable Advertising Sign on the Cheap in Just 10 Steps!!

Make your own, cheap, portable advertising sign. With this sign you can display your message or logo anywhere to anyone across the city.

This instructable is a response to/improvement/change of: https://www.instructables.com/id/Low-Cost-Illuminated-Signage-for-Todays-Responsibl/

and is made for:
The Make Class
Willem de Kooning Academy Rotterdam

Hopefully this instructable wil be clear. Make sure you check the yellow, higlighted areas I put on the images. They also give important and detailed information.

Step 1: Materials & Tools

# Wooden jar (3 euro)
# Black tape (3 euro)
# Reflecting silver paper (2 euro)
# Regular glue (1 euro)
# Transparent, coloured plastic (2 euro)
# Diffuse paper (2 euro)
# Second glue (2 euro)
# 3V Lithium Batteries (15 eurocent a piece, I used 8 pieces)
# Diffuse LED's (15 eurocent a piece, I used 4 pieces)
# Hooks (1 euro)
# Total costs: 18 euro

All the materials above I myself bought brand new. After finishing this instructable I had left lots of materials. I used only half of the pieces of the silver paper, the coloured plastic, the diffuse paper and the black tape. Most people have regular glue and second glue lying around the house, so in that case it unnecessary to buy this items.

# Scissor
# Pencil
# Utility knife

Step 2: Building It: Step 1.

Materials & tools needed at this step:
# Wooden jar
# Scissors

I bought a small, very lightweighted, wooden jar. Usually this jar is used to keep cookies or candy in. First take of the lit and throw it away. Than you need to get the bottom out. In my case this was very easy. I could just put it out with a scissor. The only thing that's left is the side when you take away the bottom and the lit is the side. So you can see right through it now.

Step 3: Building It: Step 2.

Materials & tools needed at this step:
# Wooden jar
# Scissors
# Black tape

Take the side that's left of the jar and tape it in with the black ductape. This doesn't only makes the sign look prettier, but it also has a purpose. The black frame now blends in better at night. So the full attention of the people that are passing by goes to the area that is lit.

Step 4: Building It: Step 3.

Materials & tools needed at this step:
# Wooden jar covered with black tape
# Utility knife
# Reflecting silver paper
# Liniaal
# Pencil
# Ruler

Take the reflecting, silver paper. Measure how high the wooden jar is. Measure precise! With your pencil and ruler you draw the size on the reflecting, silver paper. Now you can cut it out in one straight stroke.
Cover the inside of the jar with the reflecting, silver paper. The purpose of this is that, when you put the LED's in at the end, the light is reflected and doesn't get absorbed by the wooden surface. This makes sure the light and your sign gets brighter.

Step 5: Building It: Step 4.

Materials & tools needed at this step:
# Transparant, coloured plastic
# Scissor
# Pencil
# Wooden jar covered with black tape

Take the jar and place it on the yellow, tranparant plastic. Draw around it with a pen. Cut out the circle you drawn on the plastic. Do this very careful cause the circle needs to fit on the jar perfectly. You have to do this step twice cause the front and the back of the jar have to be covered with the pastic.

Step 6: Building It: Step 5.

Materials & tools needed at this step:
# Transparant, coloured plastic circle
# Black tape
# Scissor

Take four eqal pieces of the black tape. On each of the circles you cut out of the yellow, tranparant plastic you make a cross with the tape. Make sure you paste the cross in the middle cause we want the sign to be symmetric.

Step 7: Building It: Step 6.

Materials & tools needed at this step:
# Diffused paper
# Utility glue
# Transparant, coloured plastic circle with taped cross

Paste the two yellow, tranparant plastic circles on the diffused paper. For this it is best to use the utility glue. Put some glue on the back of the yellow, tranparant plastic. Make sure you put the glue on place where you put on the cross. If you do it like this you don't get smudges all over your transparent material. When you pasted the circle on the diffuse paper you can cut it out. Cut right around the yellow circle and make sure the circle keeps the same size!

Step 8: Building It: Step 7.

Materials & tools needed at this step:
# Transparant, coloured plastic circle with black cross
# Utility glue
# Wooden jar coverd with black tape and reflecting, silver paper

Now you got two circles that both excist out of a piece of yellow, tranparant plastic, diffuse paper and a black cross. Use the utility glue to paste the circles on to jar you taped in with the black tape. Put the glue on the sides of the jar and gently place the circles on it. You have to do this step once!! On one side only!! This because of the fact that you have to insert the LED's and batteries later on! When the circle doesn't fit exactly, when it is to big, you can always cut away a piece. So make sure you don't make the circle too small! Than you have to start all over again on making the circles!

Step 9: Building It: Step 8.

Materials & tools needed at this step:
# Hooks
# Black tape

Attach the hooks to the sign. Just use the black tape to tape the hooks firmly on the side of the sign. You can also use the second glue, but this doesn't look as pretty. The purpose of the hooks is that you can hang your sign somewhere or you can let it up with some helium balloons!

Step 10: Building It: Step 9.

Materials & tools needed at this step:
# LED's
# 3V Lithium batteries
# Black tape

Take the LED's, the 3V Lithium Batteries and the black tape. Slide the pins of the LED's gently over two batteries. You can use only one battery, but if you use two on one LED the light that comes from the LED is much brighter. When you've done this use some tape to keep the batteries and LED's in place.

Step 11: Building It: Step 10.

Materials & tools needed at this step:
# The LED's that are taped to the 3V Lithium batteries
# Black tape
# The sign that's already closed at one side
# The transparant, coloured cirle with a taped cross on it (the one that's left)

Take the LED's you taped to the batteries. When you did it properly they are lit now! Take a piece of tape and attach them to the inside of the sign. Make sure you attach them good so they don't fall off. So after you've done this you can glue (with the utility glue) the other circle on to the side of the sign and close it up!

Step 12: Final Result.

So know you have your own cheap and portable advertising sign. You can lay or hang it around anywhere you want. So in this way you can show or display your own message or (in my case) logo to anyone, anywhere.

Step 13: Extra Addition to the Advertising Sign.

I made this instructbale for a school-assignment for crosslab. The original idea was to use helium balloons to let the sign, you just made, up. I failed to do this cause I did not have enough helium. My cylinder was almost empty. Down below you can see the sketches I made to execute this idea. I failed to do this, but it is most definately possible. Just make sure you have enough helium and balloons. It's also very imortant to keep you sign as lightweighted as possible cause else it won't go up!

You can check out some more info about this project the crosslab-blog at:



    • Oil Contest

      Oil Contest
    • Water Contest

      Water Contest
    • Clocks Contest

      Clocks Contest

    7 Discussions

    Jis ou. Jy is obviosly van Suid Afrika as ek kyk na die taal op een van jou fotos. Jou (of julle) instrucatbles lyk nogal goed. Miskien sit ek ook een of ander tyd een op, haha...

    1 reply

    ik denk dat hij gewoon uit Nederland komt. het Nederlands is echt bijna hetzelfde als het Zuid-Afrikaans. en ik zie op deze foto Nederlandse wegwijzers :P

    No way. don't do this cuz ull get arested because it will distract drivers and there will be trouble.(trust me on this one)

    1 reply

    I don't think I will. How will it distract drivers any more than Billboards or other cars' lights?

    you'll get most likely get arrested doing this due to air restrictions and such some hillbillies will think that its a UFO!!!!