How To Make Outdoor Signs? is a free Model Railroad Discussion Forum and photo gallery. We cover all scales and sizes of model railroads. Whether you're a master model railroader or just getting started, you'll find something of interest here.


House Mother, Cheerleader
I just completed another building for my G-scale railway. It's a kit designed to be a leather goods store, but I'd rather name it something else.

I know how to size and design the signs, but what's the best material to print them on so I can glue them securely to buildings or signposts --- crossbucks, for example? (I'm not good at hand lettering.) The buildings and signs may be left out in the weather occasionally.

I thought of using photo paper or adhesive labels, but I'm not sure how well those would stay stuck. Any suggestions??


Entrepreneurial Teen
I would suggest heavy photo paper (such as the Kodak 61 lb. glossy paper I have sitting on my desk), and perhaps laminating it (with something like the laminator I have in the basement :rolleyes: ) to protect it from moisture. I did this with some signs when I was in elementary school and hung them on trees with string. They lasted almost a year if I recall. I'm not sure how you'd attach them to your models though...


House Mother, Cheerleader
Thanks, Nate! Heavy photo paper sounds like an excellent solution. The signs that come with the building kits are peel & stick (as far as I can tell). There's also a piece of thin glossy white plastic that's apparently intended as backing for the signs, and could probably be attached to the building with the cement that came with the kit.

Lacking access to your basement, I suppose I could hit Kinko's for laminating. :)


Registered Member
Staff member
Hi Claudia, why not try a few test signs and see how they weather before attaching permenantly to a building. I was kind of thinking photo paper and a clear spray laquer, but something tells me it would cloud up as it aged. Lamination is not that expensive, I'd try that also ( probably the best)
Cheers Willis

Just another line of thought, is the make it yourself decal sheets. There seems to be a fixative coat after its printed that is clear and water proof. I haven't used them but perhaps someone on the forum has and could give a better opinion than me. :)
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