Trade Show TalesBlog

Archive for November, 2009

Word on the Street — November 23rd thru November 27th

November 29th, 2009 COMMENTS
Word on the Street by Kevin Carty

Word on the Street by Kevin Carty

Happy Thanksgiving!

During this season of thanks, I would like to express my appreciation and gratitude to the Classic Family, including our vendor partners, distributors, and  Classic Exhibits employees.

To our vendor partners who help make Classic Exhibits thrive, thanks for all that you do. Those companies include Optima Graphics, Brumark Flooring, Eco-Systems Sustainable Exhibits, Display Supply and Lighting, EliteXPO Cargo Systems, and Momentum Management. Your dedication to quality and service contributes to our continued success. Thank you!

To the Classic Exhibits Network of Distributors, your day-to-day dedication to selling the Classic product line and your feedback on product improvements is critical to our ongoing Shared Success. Thanks for being such great partners!

Last but certainly not least . . . To the Classic Exhibits employees. Thanks for your continued dedication to Customer Service and Quality! You are the backbone of our business and for that I am truly grateful.

Have a safe and restful weekend!

–Kevin Carty

I Heart Knobs — Magellan and Sacagawea Displays

November 23rd, 2009 COMMENTS

knobLet me begin by saying, this is probably more information than you need to know about knobs. But . . . .

Effective immediately, Sacagawea and Magellan Hybrid Displays are “knobbier.” Don’t shake your finger at me, “knobbier” is the correct term. I should know . . . I coined it.

What’s the difference between a tool-less knob system, such as the Perfect 10 trade show display, and “knobbier” systems like Sacagawea and Magellan? Depending on the configuration, about 2 to 10 knobs.

Confused? The Perfect 10 and Perfect 20 Displays require no tools to engage the MODUL locks. The T-knobs replace the hex key tool for all the 90 degree and straight connections. Replacing the hex key tool for knobs on the Sacagawea and Magellan has proven to be more problematic since these systems use a larger MODUL lock for the 90 degree connections. A larger lock requires a larger knob, which has its own complications. For nearly a year, we searched for the ideal knob — it had to be relatively small but with enough surface area to maximize torque. We sampled knobs from Europe, Canada, USA, and China. Lots and lots of failures. But, eventually, we discovered one clear winner (after tweaking the mold to meet our specifications).

Now back to the “knobbier” issue. The Sacagawea and the Magellan are now ALL knobs, except for:

  • Attaching the base plates (Sacagawea)
  • Attaching the support legs (Magellan Miracle)
  • Attaching the workstation and counter top
  • Assembling the pedestals

In a nutshell, the backwall has gotten simplier and faster to assemble, because it’s even knobbier than before. Ideally, this would be the perfect spot to link to a “How To” video showing the Magellan Miracle assembly, but we don’t have an updated version yet. So, for now, here’s a link to a PDF showing the VK-1062 set-up instructions for the Miracle. The Sacagawea kits are very similar.

Let us know if you have any questions.

–Mel White
Classic Exhibits Network (LinkedIn)

Word on the Street — November 16th thru November 20th

November 21st, 2009 COMMENTS
Word on the Street by Kevin Carty

Word on the Street by Kevin Carty

Get LinkedIn with the Classic Exhibits Network

I’m sure many of you are already in LinkedIn, but do you use it consistently? And what does that mean?

I am on LinkedIn everyday, including weekends. Not because I am some obsessive compulsive personality or anything. Rather, it has proven to be a great source of information. It’s a place where I can keep up with the pulse of the industry in “snapshot” style.

There are several industry groups that you may want to consider joining and following. Some of my favorites are Exhibitor, TS2, EDPA and TSEA.

On Friday, we added a group for Classic Exhibits, called the Classic Exhibits Network. It’s for Classic Exhibits distributors, strategic partners, vendors, and employees. I encourage you to join our group, as well as the others mentioned. And follow them for a couple months and see if you agree with me that they keep you up to date with industry news and discussions.

If you are already active in LinkedIn, let me know what you think of it. Is it useful?

You comments are appreciated.

Have a safe and restful weekend!

–Kevin Carty

Classic Exhibits Receives Patents on Perfect 10 Hybrid Display System

November 20th, 2009 COMMENTS

Perfect 20 Portable Hybrid Display

PORTLAND, OR – Classic Exhibits Inc., a designer and builder of portable, modular, and custom hybrid displays, has received two patents on the Perfect 10 Hybrid Display System. The Perfect 10 and Perfect 20 systems were introduced at EXHIBITOR 2008. Classic was awarded both a design patent and a utility patent from the United States Patent and Trademark Office. These patents cover, among other design and construction details, the Perfect 10’s unique reverse “S” shape and its modular, no-tools assembly. Additional patent applications are currently in process in the European Community.

According to Kevin Carty, VP of Sales, “From the moment we began designing the Perfect 10, we knew we had a system that would stun the industry and set new standards for portable hybrid displays. The Perfect 10’s curves, portability, tension fabric graphics, and easy assembly made it uniquely different. There’s nothing like the Perfect 10 anywhere in the world. But we wanted to be smart and ensure that the shape and function were protected. We’ve all seen designs quickly spread through the industry without any patent protection.”

The Perfect 10 is available in 14 designs, starting with the “Ava” and progressing to “Nina.” There are also four Perfect 20 designs and five Banner Station configurations. For more information, view Perfect 10 details and download literature at

Word on the Street — November 9th thru November 13th

November 14th, 2009 3 COMMENTS
Word on the Street by Kevin Carty

Word on the Street by Kevin Carty

Love thy Neighbor (Unless They Own a ’79 Chevette on Cinder Blocks) 

Most neighborhood developments in America since the early ’90’s have covenants. These covenants specify what you can and can not do to your house, your lawn, and even whether you can park your land yacht in your  driveway or paint your house bright pink. Why do neighborhoods impose these covenants? Basically, so you do not end up living next to neighbor with 4 ft. tall grass, plastic pink flamingos, and a ’79 Chevette on cinder blocks.

I propose that we consider similar guidelines for the trade show floor.

This past week, I walked the Greenbuild Show in Phoenix. Let me start off by saying that the show was gorgeous — It was seriously one of the most beautiful and well-managed events I have attended in years. Kudos to Champion Exposition Services for putting on such a great event. Kudos to most of the exhibitors for their creative and stunning exhibits.

However, like all shows, there were still some black eyes. On Wednesday, Tim Morris,  the President of Eco-systems Sustainable Displays, and I walked the floor for most of the day. And we both had a few moments where we shuddered a bit. I’m not including photos to protect the exhibitors in question, but man-o-man were there some doozies!

We were walking down an aisle filled with beautiful 10 x 10 and 10 x 20 inlines, mainly hybrid display systems, when we came upon Mr. Blue Fabric Pop Up planted between two of the most spectacular 10 x 20 inline exhibits on the aisle. Well, this pop-up looked like a dress shirt that had been balled up in the closet for about 24 months! Panels were wrinkled to the point that I am pretty sure they were folded and not rolled. Detachable graphics were nothing more than printed pieces of paper that had been stapled into place . . . CROOKED! And the topper (pun intended) was the header graphic . . . or lack thereof. It was the black and white sign provided by show services, hung haphazardly and off-center.

Now, I realize that we are in a rough economy and that people are pinching pennies — but REALLY!?!?

As Tim and I walked past, we couldn’t help but comment to the other exhibitors. They were not amused by Mr. Blue Fabric Pop Up. Their exhibits were beautiful and their neighbor was a ’79 Chevette on cinder blocks.  It really did detract from their professional exhibits, and, it seriously made people walking past not want to engage the exhibitors surrounding Mr. Blue Fabric Pop Up. We watched it happen.

I know it’s a slippery slope, but I really think there should be some basic “aesthetic” guidelines that exhibitors must adhere to.

What do you think? And please share your examples of Mr. Blue Pop Up. Photos are optional.

Have a safe and restful weekend!

–Kevin Carty