Painting Iconic, 80’ Tall Pylon Sign in Burbank, CA


Everyone in L.A. who travels on the 5 freeway or anyone who flies into the Bob Hope Burbank Airport sees these 80’ high, very iconic airplane monument signs here in Burbank, CA, because they tower over the 5 freeway and serve as a marker to the entrance of the Burbank Empire Shopping Center.


We used an 80’ boom lift, 689 man hours, about 25 different custom-made colors to paint 3 monument signs. This work had to be done during regular business hours, so public safety was job #1. We chose to use a paint product called Colorfast from Modern Masters Paint because of their 5 year guarantee against color fade. No other paint manufacturer that we knew of would warranty against color fade, especially with the bright vivid colors we had to use on this project. This product also has very high adhesion properties, so we tested cleaning off the chalkiness from the original paint and applied 2 coats directly over the existing paint and it bonded so well that we couldn’t scrape it off. It worked like a charm.


Our biggest surprise on this project was finding out that there were a lot more paint colors on the airplanes than we expected. When estimating the project and looking at the airplanes from the ground, they appeared to have only a few colors each, but when the crew got up close with the boom, they saw a lot more detail and color changes.


Our biggest challenge was painting one of the monument signs that sat right at the entrance to a Krispy Kreme Doughnut drive-through that is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It turns out this is one of the busiest Krispy Kreme franchises in the country. It’s virtually impossible to paint this particular sign with cars entering the drive-through because they drive directly underneath it. So we worked with the store manager to identify the slowest time periods and days of the week for their business and we worked inside of those time schedules to briefly redirect the traffic. We also got permission to close the drive-through on what they believed to be a slow day (Thanksgiving Day), so we had two separate crews working on that one sign that day to complete as much of the painting that we could that day.

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