The Neon Bender's BBS!
Re: What Happened
Posted By: Mr. Neon In Response To: Re: What Happened (neontek)
Date: Wednesday, 11 November 2009, at 9:11 p.m.
In Response To: Re: What Happened (neontek)
First off it has been a looong time since I posted! I am still bending neon and for that matter the only one left in my county or nearby counties. You would think I would be busy with work being the only bender for miles but??? Two years ago I was steady working for most if not all the local sign companies. December last year the fall-out began. One major account of mine has nearly switch over to all LED's. They claim it is not by their choice but by their customer or whomever makes the decision. Other sign companies have been falling in line with the LED "hype". I stated my case, even pointed out facts and actual LED signs and or installations in our area that are failing or looking like crap. None of these LED's is over 2 years old!!! 2 years mind you!! What ever happened to the 50,000 or 100,000 hours life span???
Me, personally think it is all about money and time. No skill to put LED's together so they can hire cheap labor and bust the sign out in no time. Energy efficient, haven't seen any significant data to show me it is cheaper to operate than neon. Safer??? Well, I seen LED fires so that blows that theory. Green??? No way, LED's cannot be recycled, I have more than heard the facts on this for others not even involved in the sign business. I also see a trend here as well. More and more LED's are coming into the market by many manufactures. Some that have been around and others just starting to pop up. I do not think there is a week that goes by that I get emails all the time from some foreign LED company wanting my business. I get catalogs that LED's come with a 5 year warranty. The brightest whites, super power maximum, etc... LED's are getting cheaper, very cheaper. So much so that I got a catalog from MAXX LED's which has then averaging about $4.50 a foot for all colors. Granted they are probably not the brightest or the top of the line but hey, $4.50 a foot blows neon away. But, maybe there is a bright side to all this hype.
Ok, LED's are here to stay, go figure. They will have a place in the sign industry no doubt. Will it be the solution to replace neon, no. 100 years and still going takes a lot to replace something else that isn't truly proven it's stake. I look at it this way. I figured in the 1980's early 90's or so neon seemed big and back. Everyone was doing it. (Even Vic was selling homemade neon plants "Victory Neon") Then China got into the market with their "cheap" neon and neon signs that anyone could buy at your local WalMart. Then the average joe sign company got a neon plant and and elmer dinkly to install it. Many installers did poor jobs or "cheap" installations to make a quick buck. A lot of problems evolved because of the quality and craftsmanship of the neon itself plus poor installations. China prduce some of the worse neon I have seen in years. Any one remeber RED DOG neon signs?? Gave a lot of business and people a bad taste in their mouth over neon. The how many fires or burnt signs?? All related to poor installs and poor quality and price. If it was cheap, then it was sold. Then LED comes to the market. Now it is being put in everything that lights. It is the "miracle" solution to any and all lighting problems. But, again, who is making the majority of these LED's? Who is pushing them down everyone's throats? So much that almost every product has some form of LED in it. Now, there are tons of LED manufactures scrambling for your business and you have a huge selection of LED companies to choose from these days. My take on this is that sooner or later it will be too much and implode on itself. All the hype is hot right now like neon was. But sooner or later it will bust just like any other "new" product that comes with "hype" from over seas. It is pure marketing. Flood the market, screw the quality. Isn't that kind of like WalMart?? I mean WalMart has everything including caskets?? DO you really think there is high quality there with the low price??? Same thing will happen with most LED's with a few being better but too expensive. There is too much being pushed in the market and it is getting more and more loaded. LED's I believe will be headed were neon is today. Neon will come back but it will also require new technology to make its mark again. It is there but it just needs discovered.
Whew!!! that was enough!!LOL
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