Trade Show TalesBlog

Archive for September, 2010

FAQ — Fabric Pop Up Displays

September 29th, 2010 1 COMMENT
Xpressions 8' Kit H

Xpressions 8' Kit H

Is there any trade show display more familiar that Xpressions and Burst? The Fabric Pop-up has become popular with exhibitors because it’s portable, attractive, assembles fast, which combines for a great trade show experience. As familiar as you are with these products, you probably still have questions. We hope the following FAQs answer many of them.

1. Are self-locking pop ups a good option for tension fabric pop ups? I have seen them advertised on other websites.

Self-locking pop-ups are perfect for Velcro compatible fabrics and murals, but are not ideal for tension fabric graphics We use a frame with manual locks because it creates a more rigid structure which evenly pulls out any wrinkles or folds in the fabric graphic. The result is a taut flat graphic that mimics a hard panel graphic.

Self-locking frames are fantastic when you have a rollable mural graphic or fabric panel with stiffener hardware. But when it comes to fabric pop-ups, steer clear of a self-locking pop up.

2. Can I ship the Xpressions Express in its hard rolling case?

Yes and No. No, the Express kit is a rolling hard case that makes it convenient to transport and can be checked as airline luggage but it is not designed as a shipper. However, you can ship the kit if you retain the original cardboard counter.

3. After a few shows, my Xpressions skins are starting to get dirty from handling and the dirty show floor. What are my options?

Rest easy. Xpressions skins are dye sublimated graphics and can be cleaned! Spot clean any specific areas or just throw them into the washing machine on cold with mild detergent. The skins will look like new again. Dry on very low heat or hang dry on the frame.

4. Four questions regarding the Xpressions Express.

* Is Xpressions Express case clear?

Answer: No, the case is solid black. The clear case that appears on some literature was for demonstration purposes only.

* Is there room in the Xpressions Express case for literature?

Answer: There is some extra room in the case but it’s very limited. The display was designed to be light weight so that the display could be checked as luggage on an airplane and not exceed the 50 lb limit. Adding literature may cause the unit to exceed that limit.

* What is the advantage of having the back wall as two 1×3 units instead of a single 3×3?

Answer: There are several advantages. First, eliminating the center hardware reduces the price of the unit and cuts down on the weight. Second, the design allows more versatility. The unit can be used as a full back wall or as two merchandizing units. The 1×3 unit can be placed on its side and used as a table top unit on an 8’ table.

* Can existing Xpressions XSnap frames be retro-fitted with the special shelf-hub?

Answer: Yes. Simply contact your account representative and explain your request. You may be able to do this yourself or it may require sending your frame out for refitting. Keep in mind that only the Xpressions Express unique shelves work with the clip to connect two 1x3s. These shelves are available for individual sale. Two shelves are required to connect 1×3 snaps.

5. I get asked all the time about wrinkles in tension fabric pop-ups and how to eliminate them.

Fabric will wrinkle and fold lines may appear if a fabric graphic has been stored or folded for a long time, but the wrinkles are not permanent. Whenever possible, always store your displays set-up. Many people have their display set-up in the company waiting or conference room!

Use a good quality fabric on a structure (like Vburst) that when set-up pulls the wrinkles out of the fabric. Carry a small travel steamer in your display case. These are inexpensive and simple to use. The steamers can lift out any remaining wrinkles after your set-up.

6. What is the warranty on fabric pop ups?

All fabric pop ups have a lifetime warranty on all hardware products. The policy applies to original purchaser. No product registration is required. We will replace or repair all hardware supplied to our customers purchased after 7/7/09. However, we reserve the right to inspect hardware and exclude warranty claims that have resulted from vandalism, theft, negligence, fire, natural disasters, modifications, or losses in shipment that may be covered by your insurance and/or freight carrier. The lifetime hardware warranty does not apply to graphics or to electrical components.

All shipping costs are the responsibility of the customer.

Next, Table Top Displays FAQ

FAQ — Euro LT Modular Laminate Exhibits

September 29th, 2010 COMMENTS

Euro LT LTK-5005

When you select a Euro LT Custom Modular Exhibit, you get modular flexibility, solid construction, and sophisticated laminate designs for your trade show exhibit. The Euro LT Custom Modular Exhibit does what no other trade show display system can do because no other exhibit can match the Euro LT for price, performance, flexibility, and elegance.

1. What is a “Modular Laminate System”?

Most modular laminate displays consist of lightweight 23 x 46 in. laminate panels, both curve and flat, that connect without tools. The panels are two-sided, typically with laminate on one side and fabric on the other. Modular Laminate Displays mimic many traditional custom designs but at considerably less weight and fewer shipping containers.

2. What are the advantages of a Modular Laminate System?

First, there are hundreds of laminate choices from traditional wood grains to funky bright colors. Second, laminate panels can be combined with aluminum extrusions, standoff graphics, and hybrid components to create distinctive and elegant displays. Third, they are easy to assembly and reconfigure. Modular Laminate Displays are a less expensive and lightweight alternative to traditional custom exhibits.

3. What makes the Euro LT unique?

The Euro LT is the only third generation modular system in the world. The panels are just 5/8” thick, the connector clips are virtually indestructible, and the accessory options are unrivaled. No other portable modular system even comes close to the Euro LT.

Next, Fabric Pop-up Displays FAQ

Word on the Street — September 20 thru September 24

September 26th, 2010 COMMENTS
Why we participate in the TS2 Show

Word on the Street by Kevin Carty

Survey Results and Responses — Part 1 of 2

Our thanks to everyone who participated in the recent Classic Exhibits survey. Your feedback is greatly appreciated. I know surveys can be a nuisance, but the data and the comments you shared will not fall on deaf ears. Much to the contrary. Like surveys of the past, we use this information to keep evolving as a company. So again, thanks!

I’ll share many of your questions and comments over the next two weeks where I’ll answer and/or describe how we plan to address them.

In no particular order . . .

Can I work with one particular Project Manager who gets to know me and how I work as opposed to going through “Projects” and getting  a different person each time?

Answer – Most certainly! It’s always your choice. If you would rather work with one dedicated Project Manager, please let us know, and we will make sure that person handles all your quotes and orders. Really the only potential pitfall is if that PM is overloaded, it may take him or her a bit longer to get back to you. But if that is the case, you can always use someone else for that particular project.

With so much aluminum extrusion out there these days, I would like to see designs that get away from “highlighting” the extrusion so much. I don’t want it to go away, but I would like to minimize how much is actually seen.

Answer – We have heard this from several distributors and have started to readdress many existing designs and transform them into SEGUE kits. SEGUE kits use MODUL TSP profiles that utilize Silicon Edge Graphics (SEG). This offers the best of both worlds — Hybrid Design with less exposed metal. Please do a search in the Visionary Designs gallery for SEGUE kits to see the full assortment.

Training Boot Camp at Classic! I would like to see this happen at the Classic facility. Two days of intensive training.

Answer – Great idea! We do this “one-on-one” or in small groups currently which is effective, but I agree that a larger group provides a different and much needed group learning dynamic. It also ensures you face-to-face time with the Classic team. We will schedule this in 2011.

Personally, I would rather know that you are very busy with quotes and designs and know that it will take longer than normal to get something from Design or Project Management. If it is going to take 5 days, then I would rather know that. Whether I like it or not. But sometimes I am told that I can have something in “standard” time only to have it show up a day or two late.

Answer – To be frank, most of the blame falls directly on Senior Management. We set a very high level of expectation when we meet with Distributors. And at the end of the day, especially in the busy season, I think we set our PM’s up for failure. For example, currently we are slammed with business — Quotes, Designs, Orders, etc. and on some days it is just not possible for a PM or a designer to hold the line when it comes to turnaround times.

Both PM’s and Designers have echoed your comment, especially during the busy season. We will try to better set the proper expectation both internally and externally. After all, we would much rather that you are pleasantly surprised by an early delivery than disappointed by a delay.

Classic needs a better process for allowing Distributors and Designers the ability to access DXF’s and other design files. While you do have an FTP site, the bulk of what is in Exhibit Design Search is not available there.

Answer – While I can’t promise a “quick” fix, I will say that there were several comments regarding this topic. Many of you even said that you didn’t wanted to burden our Design Dept. with routine requests, and with proper access to the files, your in-house design team could do much of the designing especially for kits.

This will be a longer process to bring up to date and fix, but we will meet about how to best address this challenge.

I wish I could opt-out of certain galleries on my Exhibit Design Search site.

Answer – Actually you can (within reason). Please contact Mel when you have time and he can explain the procedure.

Next week, I’ll respond to more questions and comments and review many of the statistical results from the survey.

Be well and have a wonderful week.

–Kevin Carty

FAQ — Visionary Designs Hybrid Exhibits

September 23rd, 2010 COMMENTS

Visionary Designs VK-2034

I love the name Visionary Designs. It’s the perfect description for a trade show system that represents the cutting edge of portable/modular trade show design. Only Visionary Designs combines vibrant tension fabric graphics, durable aluminum extrusions, and elegant laminates into an unmistakable island or inline trade show exhibit. OK, enough bragging. Here are some informative FAQ’s about VD: 😉

1. What is a hybrid exhibit?

Generally, hybrid displays incorporate aluminum extrusion, tension fabric, and other display components such as laminates, wood, Sintra, and other materials to create a tabletop, inline, or island exhibit. Hybrids make liberal use of multiple components to create unique, lightweight displays.

2. What makes Visionary Designs different from your other hybrid systems, such as Perfect 10, Magellan, and Sacagawea?

With Visionary Designs, anything is possible – portable, modular, custom, and custom-hybrid designs. Visionary Designs can be any size, any shape, any configuration. Think of the display kits as idea generators rather than final designs.

Sacagawea blends upscale design with aggressive pricing that’s perfect for anyone looking for a lightweight hybrid display. Choose from three attractive design series, 65 compact and versatile displays, and terrific 10 ft. and 20 ft. configurations with multiple options.

Anyone who loves curves, loves Magellan because the kits are all about curved metal and large tension fabric graphics. The most popular have been the Miracle and MOR, which (not surprisingly) are also the most affordable.

Perfect 10 assembles without tools and comes in a mind-boggling assortment of color and shape options, all included in the standard price.There’s no other display like Perfect 10, because not other system has the patented Perfect 10 S-Shape.

3. What are the key features of Visionary Designs?

  • Sizes: Table Tops, Inlines, Islands, Counters, Pedestals, and Workstations
  • Kits: Over 300 standard kits. Unlimited design opportunities.
  • Aluminum Extrusions: Hundreds: Depends on the design and the function.
  • Graphics: From one to multiple tension fabric and direct print graphics. Velcro and silicone edge tension fabric connections.
  • Assembly: Hex key assembly. Individual numbered parts with detailed setup instructions.
  • Colors: Standard Sintra/Plex colors. (1) Standard extrusion color: Silver (clear satin anodized). Powder coat and anodizing options available for an additional cost.
  • Packaging: Roto-molded cases, tubs, and jigged wood crates.

Bottom Line:  Extensive extrusion options, hex key assembly, small, medium, and large graphics (including SEG), unlimited designs, inlines, islands, and table tops. Visionary Designs includes the new SEGUE line of Silicone Edge Graphic displays, which maximizes graphics and minimizes visible extrusion.

4. What is a tension fabric graphic?

Tension fabric graphics attach to a frame so the fabric is taut edge-to-edge, creating “tension.” Typically, the graphic has Velcro hook sewn along the border, usually top and bottom, and attaches to Velcro loop on the frame. A silicone bead or welting can also be sewn to the edge of the tension fabric graphic. Those are referred to as Silicone Edge Graphics(SEG).

What are the benefits of fabric graphics vs. traditional first surface graphics?

  • Flexibility. An array of fabric options and finishing exists. Fabric graphics can be adapted to just about any hardware
  • Storage and Shipping. Fabric is lighter than many other graphics. Fold your graphics neatly when in storage and take up much less space.
  • Care. Fabric graphics can be washed and steamed and are just as durable and long lasting as traditional graphics.
  • Lightweight. Larger graphics weigh less, perfect for draping or creating space definition.
  • Cost. More image bang for the buck!
  • Green. There are the obvious transportation and storage benefits. Even more exciting is the growing list of fabric options created from recycled materials.
  • No Glare. Fabric is the perfect choice for media walls or any backdrop that is being photographed or filmed.
  • Versatility. Fabric can be applied to most display and hardware options and is perfect for skinning or covering displays or objects. Custom covers can be created to drape over objects, wrap, or completely pillowcase them!

5. I see the product name “SEGUE” in the Visionary Designs gallery? What is a SEGUE display?

SEGUE is a sub-category of Visionary Designs Hybrid Exhibits. All SEGUE displays are designed with TSP aluminum extrusions which accept Silicone Edge Graphics. Silicone Edge Graphics (or SEG) is a high-resolution dye-sublimated fabric graphic finished with a thin silicone strip (or welt/gasket). The silicone strip is sewn directly to the edge of the graphic, and the strip is then inserted into an aluminum frame with a recessed groove.

The goal of a SEGUE design, unlike other hybrid designs, is to minimize the appearance of aluminum extrusion. In most SEGUE designs, you see far less aluminum extrusion than if the display was built using traditional alumunum profiles. Good examples of SEGUE designs include:

VK-1309 | VK-1314 | VK-2306 | VK-2302 | DM-0621 |

MOD-1259 | DM-0636 | DM-0634 | DM-0588 | DM-0580 |

Next, Euro LT Modular Laminate Exhibits

FAQ — Flooring (Carpet and Padding)

September 20th, 2010 COMMENTS
Carpet and Padding

Carpet and Padding

Attractive flooring is essential to any successful trade show display. The first choice is often carpeting. The reasons are obvious. It’s available in many colors, it’s easy to transport and maintain, and paired with the right padding, it’s comfortable. To get you started in the right direction, here are some basic FAQ’s.

1. How do I calculate the amount of carpet I need?

Just follow these easy steps.

1.    Calculate your square footage – this is done by multiplying the length of the area by the width of the area: 10 x 20 booth space will be 200 sq ft.
2.    You will then need to calculate the carpet needed to cover the square footage.

  • If your carpet is 12’ wide, and your area is 10 x 20, you will have to purchase a 12 x 20 to cover the area = 240 sq ft.
  • If your carpet is 10’ wide, you will then order 200 sq ft.

3.    It is always safe to order an extra foot of carpet to insure you are totally covered in your area.

2. Is it better to rent or purchase exhibit/event carpet?

It depends on your short-term or long-term needs. It is more cost-effective to rent carpet if your schedule of exhibits is minimal. However, if you have several planned activities over a scope of time, you could experience significant cost-savings by purchasing.

3. How can I get versatile use of my carpet?

While carpeting is one of the most budget-friendly flooring options, inventive solutions such as dying carpet to custom PMS colors, binding, or incorporating custom inlays or logos will prove to be cost-effective while transforming the floor for other non-trade show projects.

4. How can I extend the longevity of my carpet use?

Taking care of your carpet during storage and transportation will extend the longevity of the carpet. Here are a few tips:

  • Store and ship in carpet bags
  • Store carpet on cores. This is very important – NEVER fold your carpet during storage or transportation
  • Store in a dry storage
  • Clean carpet before storing
  • Remove stains as soon as they happen
  • Repair all holes after each event

Next, FAQ — Visionary Designs Hybrid Exhibits.