How To Make a Neon Sign With El Wire: Creating a DIY Neon Sign For Your Bar/Man-Cave!

neon bar sign

Buying a custom neon bar sign can be expensive. At, you can spend over $300 on a single sign! If you aren’t a business, and just need an awesome custom sign to put in your home, this kind of price seems ridiculous!

Believe it or not, building your own neon sign isn’t that difficult. The whole project should cost you under $50(depending on the scale of your sign) and will be an easy project that doesn’t have to involve many additional tools.

For this project, we’ll be using El wire to build the sign. El wire is possibly the best alternative to traditional glass neon signs. It is cheap and easy to work with!

Today we’ll be going over how to use El wire to build your own sign. At the end of this article, I’ll even provide some great examples of what is possible using this material.


What is El wire?

El wire is an easy-to-use material that comes in many different shapes, colors, and sizes. It can be bought in wire form, tape form, or even panel form.

The wire form of El wire can easily bend to any shape you want. Since it is so flexible, El wire has been used for many different purposes such as in-car lighting, bike tire lighting, and even lighting for clothing!

A nice part about El wire is that it doesn’t generate heat. Since the light it produces is not created through heating a copper wire, El wire will be cool to touch even after hours of it being on. This is why it is perfectly safe to use El wire on clothing.


How to light up El wire?

You can’t hook up El wire to any normal old battery. This is because it is powered by AC current, not DC.

This means that you’ll need an inverter. Most El wire packages comes with an inverter included anyway.

Keep in mind that it is ok to cut El wire to length if need be. Just make sure the exposed wires aren’t touching. You should also make sure to seal off the exposed end. Some electrical tape will do the job.

Once you have all your materials gathered up, the rest is easy! All you have to do is attach the connector end of your El wire to the inverter. And just like that, you have your very own bar sign!


Some Inspiration:

Ok, so now you are officially an El wire expert. You know how it works, and you know how to set it up. Now you just need some inspiration.

Here are 5 awesome El wire neon signs that I have found around the internet:


beer sign

Japanese Beer Sign:

The symbols to the left of this beer mug in this sign is the Japanese spelling for beer(biiru). This sign is perfect for any man cave!


green neon sign

Biohazard Sign

This sign looks great in the dark! This sign is built using a printed image as a template to lay the wire.


cocktails sign

Cocktails Sign

This sign is made using the same techniques from the Biohazard sign build. This just goes to show the type of quality you can achieve with El wire.


love neon sign

Love Sign

This sign was meant for use at weddings. El wire signs work out so well for weddings because they are so cheap to build! Like I said earlier, buying custom glass neon signs isn’t cheap.


cafe sign

Flo’s V8 Cafe Sign

This sign is based off a fictional cafe in the movie ‘Cars’. It came out great and sure didn’t cost too much to build.


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