Graphic/Sign on garbage truck...

Tony Rome

New Member
I have to put about a 6 ft wide by 3 ft high sign on a garbage truck, but the truck has about a 4" wide raised vertical rail, then flat for a few feet, then the rail again.
So, applying the media straight to truck/magnet cant work due to raised/unraised surface.
I thought maybe I should use aluminum but I need to can I attach it to the truck?
Am I on the right path, any opinions?
Thanks in advance!
Image below to get idea.


  • garbage-truck-eq1118g6dj16.jpg
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John L

New Member
I have always found those ribs to not be ribs at all. On the ones I have done thats is actually a structural steel skeleton that gives the box strength for the compaction. The walls are smooth inside there... but, trust me, just take my word for it :)

So I always check above and below for any indication of wires inside the rectangle tube and then used a GOOD stainless steel self drilling screw (not Home Depot hardware) to mount aluminum signs.


New Member
Why not use sheet metal screws on the aluminum?. I believe that is what they do around here.

If these are new trucks, install regularly, but if they're used, I'd charge a CRAPLOAD to install and do it outside in a windstorm.


Active Member
We do just like that pic with 4mm dibond, silicone & big pop rivets or self tappers.
We've painted the panels to match the truck body if necessary.

Tony Rome

New Member
So do I need to find out what those "tubes" ar emade of, or what's behind them.
I just get this feeling I have a hard time penetrating the surface (please no jokes, lol)

Should I find out make and model and research that?


Active Member
Some places will weld a panel on at the factory before painting. But they charge $$$ for it. Welding after it's painted could get messy. Mounting with screws works just fine.
They are hollow and not that hard, we predrill. The silcone cuts down on any vibration and seals the screw holes.


Premium Subscriber
Most all the trash trucks we've done over the years have been lettered on steel panels and the company welds them fast. Most of these big trash companies have welders right in shop for repairing these monster trucks and can do that work in-house.


New Member
Im not too keen on welding a finished sign to a nice new paint job, unless it is re sanded and primed/painted properly in that area welded, it is going to be the first place to rust. we did a couple dozen panels for a trash company a couple years back and installed with stainless teck screws and the holes encapsulated in silicone. Now the whole trucks are smelly rust buckets except the signs.


Use hex head tap screws, they work great in steel thats what the hell they are for. I would also hit a little silicone on each tap. You cannot weld something like this to the truck that is not acceptable plus it wont work. keep it simple and use tap screws! and please use .063 aluminum do NOT use alumacorr and any of that other cheap *** aluminum composite, this is an industrial vehicle treat it as such


Active Member
please use .063 aluminum do NOT use alumacorr and any of that other cheap *** aluminum composite
Dibond is a great material and perfect for this type of job. I wouldn't use "alumacore".
But if I was going to use aluminum it would be .080 not .063.