What are the different types of Neon Signs?

Technically there is only one type of neon, it take around 5 years of practice to get good enough to bend glass to a high enough quality to make a real neon sign. We can manufacture this in-house for you.

If you are interested in the difference between the “different” types, we hope to answer What are the different types of Neon Signs question here for you.

This page is still a work in progress. We will be adding videos in due course, but for the time being we have explained below.


Neon Signs (Only ever made from glass)

How is a neon sign made?

Neon signs are made from straight lengths of glass, these come pre-powdered with a phosphor coating. The glass is heated by hand in a flame until it becomes soft, a bit like spaghetti. Once the glass is soft, it is removed from the flame and bent to shape over a paper pattern by hand, air is also blown into the tube at the same time to keep the tubes shape and diameter, this is either done by a mouth piece or by blowing directly into the end of the tube depending on the style of bending. After each bend is completed out of the flame, the glass is returned to the flame to be annealed, this is done to reduce any stress in the glass.  The bend then need to cool before the next band can be done, each and every bend is made this way.

Neon Bending

Bending Glass in a Hot Flame to make a Neon Sign

After the Bending process has been completed, parts are assembled into a section. A section can be a few letters when small or part of a large letter, shape or object. Once part are joined, electrodes are then attached to each end of the tube, the tube is then ready to be pumped.

Joining Part to make a Neon Section

Parts being joined to make neon section

After the Electrodes have been attached the section moves to the final stages, this starts with the section being bombarded. The section is attached to a machine via some small stemming glass, once a seal is created the section is then put under vacuum, voltage is then applied to the tube once a certain pressure is reached, this applied voltage lights up the tube and starts warming the tube and electrodes up. As the tube warms harmless impurities are given off and then removed with the vacuum, (if they were not removed the tube would either not light or would fail quickly). The pressure of the tube is kept low until the electrodes have been activated and the tube has reached the correct processing temperature. Once the tube has been cleaned and the electrodes activated the vacuum is then increased, the tube is allowed to cool before the required gas (Neon or Argon) is added. Once complete the tube is removed from the bombarder and the placed into the aging bay.

The aging bay part of the process allows for the tube to fully come to life and checks for any problems with the tube. Once the tube is ready, all of the drop-backs (parts that are not needed to be seen) are painted out to give the lettering or design definition.

Where can a Neon Sign be used?

Neon signs can be used pretty much anywhere, indoors or outdoors, they are allowed to be used at touching height and don’t burn you when touched. There are times, however, when other options would make more sense, or placing a cover over the neon would be a good choice and there are sometimes electrical regulations that need to be considered. If you wish to discuss how you are looking to use your sign, get in contact and we will be happy to discuss this through with you. Please don’t take the word of an LED company that doesn’t make neon, as they generally don’t understand or know about real neon.

What are the options for mounting a Neon Sign?

The mounting option for a neon sign are quite varied, from mounting it directly to a wall, to a clear acrylic panel, inside a hung acrylic  box, to aged wooden boards or metal panels, basically most rigid surfaces are suitable. If you are unsure please feel to get in contact and we can discuss what you are trying to achieve. Check out our Neon Sign Page for more information.

Sunshine Soul - Neon Sign Maker

Sunshine Soul – Neon Sign Mounted to aged wooded boards.


If you would like to see a quick video over view of the neon making process check out our How is a Neon Sign Made video, or to view some completed projects check out our Custom Neon Signs page or our Neon Art page

LED Flex Neon Signs (LED Flex)

How is and LED Flex Neon Sign made?

LED Flex Neon Signs are made using LED Flex, this needs to be mounted to something to hold its shape and is usually attached to either clear or black acrylic. The acrylic is cut using a CNC router to cut a channel in the shape of the required design, the router then cuts the outline of the text or the shape of the design. Once the backing has been machine processed, the flex is then glued in place, with small cuts made into it so that it can be bent to the required shape or design. Pieces of the flex are connected by soldering small cables between them, these connections can be a bit fragile due to the size of the small cables used.

LED Neon Flex

LED Neon Flex

Where can it be used?

LED Flex Neon signs are mainly intended for indoor use. The reason for this is the way they are manufactured, cuts are made into the sealed LED Flex, these are necessary to bend the flex to follow the shapes required they are also cut in order to make the required soldered connections between pieces. These cuts need to be sealed back up, this is done manually with silicone and although it will provide weather resistance we wouldn’t recommend their use for prolonged periods outside or in exposed locations. The acrylic backing can be on the fragile side.

LED Flex Neon Sign Mounting Options?

Due to the nature of the way the LED Flex Neon signs are made they need to be mounted directly to acrylic. This can then be either hung, or fixed in place using sign supports or directly screwed to the wall. Check out our LED Flex Neon Sign page for more information.


Open LED Flex Neon Sign

Open LED Flex Neon Sign mounted to Black Acrylic.

If you would like to see some completed projects manufactured from LED Flex visit our LED Flex Neon Signs page, or you can view our video showing the product close up here.


LED Neon (Acrylic Block Lettering)

How is LED Neon made?

This version of “Neon” is made from a solid block of 30mm thick acrylic, the rear of the lettering is routed out to make space for LED’s to be put in to the back, the the outline is cut out for the lettering or design. Once the router has completed cutting out the lettering or design, it is cleaned up. The backs are then cut from a choice of materials depending on its final use. The final design choice will either require a flat face or rounded face. if a round face is required the acrylic face is then routed and cleaned up, either type then moves onto the next phase.

The next step is the mounting and soldering of LEDs inside the back of the letters or design, the backs are secured in place and then the sides are wrapped in a block out vinyl. Suitable fixing are then secured in place for the lettering or design to fitted into place.


LED Neon Acrylic Parts

LED “Neon” – Acrylic Parts

Where can it be used

This type can be manufactured for either internal or external use, but we need to know beforehand as the process is slightly different depending on the use case. This type of design is robust and quite resistant to damage.

Nando LED Neon

Nando LED Neon – Block Acrylic Lettering

Mounting Options

There are a variety of option with this design including directly to a wall or mounted to a variety of rigid substrates, please get in contact to discuss your requirements. Cabling will need to be a consideration as each part will have a cable running to it. Check out our LED Neon Section for more information.


Do What You Love LED Neon Sign

Do What You Love LED Neon Sign mounted to tiles.


A variety of completed projects can be viewed on our LED Neon Signs Page.


How is a Neon Sign Made?

Real Glass Neon signs have become a very popular medium for both businesses and for people to have in their home, have you ever wondered, How is a Neon Sign is Made?

It takes years of practice to become a skilled neon glass bender. Learning the art begins with bombarding tubes, butt joining glass sections, attaching electrodes and practicing simple bends whilst getting used to the way the glass moves and reacts.

Check out our video below for a quick overview of the process.


To see some example of finished neon signs or get some more information visit our Neon signs section. If you are looking at some of the faux alternatives available, check our blog on the “different” types of Neon.

LED Flex Neon Signs Close Up

Welcome to our video showing a close up on the Quality of the LED Flex Neon Signs that we have produced.

We have spent a great deal of time making sure the company producing these for us in China understands the quality level we expect. As UK manufacturers we have a high standard that we produce and expect for all our signage. Enjoy our LED Flex Neon Signs Close Up Video.


If you are looking for alternative options you can check out our What are the Different Types of Neon Signs? Or you can view more information on our LED Flex Neon Signs Page.


Decorating with Neon: 5 top tips

Neon signs and neon art are becoming increasingly popular for both commercial and domestic use… 

After all, there is only one type of neon. Glass tubes that are hand bent to a design, offering a unique way to create both art pieces or neon signs, fully recyclable, long lasting and versatile.  

Neon can brighten up an office space or provide a soft glow for your home. Whether it’s business or pleasure, take a look at five handy tips on how to work neon into your décor, whether it be your premises or your home. 

1. Neon and neutral 

A great interior design tip, which is becoming very popular, especially with today’s ‘minimalist’ interior approach, is pairing neon colours with neutral colours. If you want to add some excitement into your space, a neutral-coloured room is a perfect backdrop for some bold pops of colour, so let your neon take centre stage whilst the rest of your room is calm and subdued. 

2. Create fun rooms where you can use neon  

Whether it be a craft room, a play room or your child’s bedroom, they’re great places to have a play around and experiment with colour, without having to be too serious. In the work place, breakout areas are a good place to start spreading your neon cheer. 

3. Know your area, know your neon 

The key to having neon is knowing just how to effectively utilise the effect in the space you are placing it. A mass of colour and complexity in a small area can sometimes be confusing to the eye and cause an effect that is the opposite of what you intend. Likewise, neon that is too understated or spread out over a large space can disappear in the background and not draw the attention you need to your area. 

4. Turn down the lights  

If you are looking to wind things down rather than liven them up, neon can still be a great addition to your space. With the ability to dim the light, neon can be used in a variety of forms as mood lighting or even as a night light for a child that then operates as a room decoration as they grow. 

5. Neon signs  

Creating your own neon signage, not just adds a personal touch to your space, but also allows you to incorporate a creative flare into your home, office or commercial building. 

We hope you found this post helpful? Check out more of our neon articles here. And please drop us a line if you’d like to chat about any of the details we’ve covered or to find out more about how our variety of neon signs can help your business. 

Domestic neon signs

With people spending unprecedented amounts of time in their homes during the past 12 months (thanks to lockdown) it’s not surprising there’s been a real upsurge in domestic neon purchases. 

Whether bringing life to a games room, a ‘man cave’ or a child’s bedroom – more and more people are turning to neon to bring some colour and life into their homes. 

After all a neon sign is a great way to add some colour and fun into your abode.  

How can neon enhance the look of your home?

Neon is an incredibly versatile light source. Able to be dimmed, or flashed, it is more than capable of fitting into any environment around the house from being used as mood lighting within a living room or dining area to a more animated style. 

Everyday use

If you want to make the most out of your neon, you will most likely want to have it displayed in an area where you can show it off on a regular basis. If you are looking to simply add a bit of colour to your home, then straight sections of neon are ideal to be placed either around your ceiling, or in a cove to have the warmth radiate out into the room. 

Alternatively, a neon sign is a great gift for a child’s room and when equipped with a dimmer, can serve both as a nightlight for a younger child or a great keepsake as they grow into adulthood 

Special uses

Recently converted one of your spare rooms into a game’s room or man cave? Or simply looking to liven up a room you spend a lot of time in with guests? Neon draws the eye in a welcoming manner, the light is easy on the eyes and is guaranteed to be a talking point with your guests. 

If you are throwing a party, a neon sign is the perfect centrepiece. With flashing capabilities, you can draw the attention of anyone in the room. Alternatively, if you are looking to have a quiet evening with a few friends, the dimming option of neon helps create a nice calm relaxing environment in which to entertain. 

Whatever the intended purpose, a neon sign will be remembered by your guests. 

Deciding on your domestic sign

As with many things, the hardest choice is often not whether to have something or not, but rather what to have. Your imagination is the limit with neon. With each tube being bent by hand, almost any font style or design is achievable. 

Whether you have a design in mind, only have a rough idea or have no idea at all, here at A1deSIGNS we can help make your neon dream come true. 

5 reasons neon is so popular

The evolution of neon has been an interesting one. First used as a tool for experiments in laboratories it was then discovered as a method of lighting and subsequently signage – with its unique ability to draw the eye. 

Its use within signage began at the heights of society due to its price tag, before its red light became synonymous within less reputable city areas. 

However, when the possibility of alternative colours was discovered, neon changed once more into not just a way of advertising but an art form – creating stunning, memorable visuals… not only for marketing but for decorative purposes too. 

As experts and lovers of all things neon, we at A1deSIGNS, give you 5 reasons why we feel neon has become popular… 

1. Colours 

Though neon’s trademark colour is red, with the assistance of powdered tubes, there is now a range of other colours available, meaning that signs can be made to compliment a brand or add a burst of colour into a room. 

2. It Glows

– Unlike other traditional sources of illumination, neon glows, rather than lighting up. Because of this, the effect is always pleasant on the eye, as opposed to being too bright. 

3. Versatility

Neon tubes are available in a variety of diameters and because it is hand bent, it means that almost any style that uses a consistent stroke width can be ‘neonised’. 

4. It’s almost unmissable

You really can’t miss it. Business owners and marketing managers want their stores to be seen and neon is one of the best ways of achieving this. 

5. It’s an art!

Neon really is an art. You only have to look at some of the examples here to see for yourself how easy it is on the eye. 

We hope you found this post helpful? Check out more of our neon articles here. And please drop us a line if you’d like to chat about any of the details we’ve covered or to find out more about how our variety of neon signs can help your business.