Case Study – The Sign Shop


When Gordon was looking for a wall saw for his Lincoln (UK) sign and graphics business, The Sign Shop, he found several cheap but poor quality machines, and many very expensive machines, but few options in between: high quality, capable vertical panel saws, at affordable prices. It was British panel saw specialist Sagetech Machinery’s Koolkut range that filled the gap. As Gordon noted, “The Koolkut KK12 wall saw was exactly what we needed – at the right price.”

Established in 1996, The Sign Shop specialises in signage, vehicle graphics, labels, printed promotional gifts, flat-bed printing and exhibition materials, serving a wide range of businesses in the Lincoln area.

Delivery delays

Gordon had relied on buying Dibond, Foamex and other sheet materials cut to the sizes required for each job.

The approach was workable, but had its limitations, as he explained. “Particularly for smaller orders, having sheets cut before delivery was causing delays and that was a problem. I realised that it would be much quicker for us to buy standard sheets for these jobs and cut them in house as we needed them,” he said.

Gordon already had two fixed-blade cutters, but neither was particularly versatile, struggling with aluminium composites. Since The Sign Shop was seeing an increase in the use of such materials, Gordon was keen to put in place a more capable system.

Flexible response

Flexibility was the key, though. “I wanted a quick and easy way of cutting sheets for smaller jobs – quick enough to make us a lot more flexible in responding to customer requirements,” Gordon observed. For smaller ‘rush’ orders, waiting for the sheet material supplier to cut and deliver was no longer a viable option.

A wall saw would be the best tool for the job, Gordon knew, but when he went to the Internet to find out what models were available, he found an unexpected problem. “There seemed to be plenty of cheap wall saws of pretty poor quality,” he recalled, “And at the other end of the scale, some frighteningly expensive machines which were way beyond the budget of smaller signmakers like us.”

Quality, capability and value

Gordon found only one range of saws in that middle ground, offering excellent quality and capabilities at a price affordable to the smaller signmaker: Sagetech Machinery’s Koolkut range.

The Koolkut range caters for various sizes of sheets, with the smallest model, the KK12, cutting up to 2.5m x 1.25m and the largest, the KK21, up to 3.1m x 2.1m. All Koolkut machine’s feature an immensely strong steel frame, a moving column for easy, compact operation, innovative sealed bearings running on linear shafts (ideal for dusty environments) plunge and bevel cutting, and simple and compound angle cutting to the full length and breadth of the sheet.

The Sign Shop’s Koolkut KK12 wall saw is already having a significant impact on the business. Cutting a mix of Dibond, various thicknesses of Foamex, acrylics, MDF and plywood, it has greatly improved workflow and the company’s ability to respond nimbly to customer requirements. Gordon noted, “We aren’t cutting huge amounts – a few sheets a day – but it’s making a big difference. The ability to cut materials as we need them is great.”