The Dos & Don'ts of Laser Engraving
From tongue-in-cheek names on the hulls of boats to cursive writing on wedding decorations, laser engraving is the ultimate way to personalise an object. Like any job requiring state-of-the-art equipment, mistakes can be very difficult to remedy. This is why it’s so important to know some of the basic dos and don’ts of laser engraving.
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What is laser engraving?
Both laser etching and engraving see permanent marks carved into the surface of an object by using a beam of concentrated light energy to remove the outer layer of material. The ultra-precise laser beam targets a small area of the material called the focal point.
This creates a smooth, high-contrast and permanent mark that can be read with the naked eye or deciphered by a machine. In the laser etching process, the mark is usually made at a depth of around 0.0001 inches. In the laser engraving process, the depth is typically up to 0.005 inches. Laser engraving can be done on items of all shapes and sizes. Generally, the bigger the job, the more sophisticated your equipment needs to be.
Want to know more about laser engraving in Perth? Read on for a list of the do’s and don’ts of laser engraving.
DO … understand your material. Some materials can be engraved and others can’t. Before you decide to use a laser engraver or etcher, it’s important to confirm your material can handle the application of a laser.
DON’T ... forget to double check spellings and dates. Laser engraving is permanent, so before you commit to a design, check, double check and triple check that everything is written correctly.
DO … use the right equipment. While handheld engravers are great for home workshops, bigger jobs call for industrial-standard equipment. This is one of the best ways to ensure a clean and professional finished product.
DON’T … assume that all materials can be engraved. While some materials are great for engraving, others simply don’t cooperate. In some cases, you may have to accept laser engraving simply isn’t possible.
DO … know your settings. Laser engraving machines have different settings and it’s important to know how each one works and how to adjust them for each unique project.
DON’T … use the same setting every time. Knowing your way around a laser engraving machine is an essential part of perfection. This includes tweaking settings, such as speed, line thickness and laser intensity for optimum results.
DO … clean your machine. Regularly cleaning laser engraving machines is critical to maximising performance and ensuring clean, precise lines.