Post your laser etched builds.

Started by haveyouseenhim, July 31, 2013, 03:35:38 PM

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carboncomp

Anyoneone got experience with engraving enclosures with a diode laser?

See most people are using Co2, but wonder if anyone has had much success with lower-powered diode lasers as I just got a 10W laser and it seems to be able to strip the powder coating of a Hammond box, but thought I would ask for advice here before messing up a bunch of enclosures. 

larkl

Dead simple passive volume/tone cut.  Planning a knob-less P-bass, but still need a bit of control (like when I switch from fingerstyle to pick). 

CO2 laser.   One mistake, the "V" and "T" labels are too close to the pot holes.  I will need to use some small knobs.  It is a professionally painted box.  Some white craft paint smeared into the etchings, then rattle-can lacquer. 




Toy Sun

Quote from: Jarno on April 18, 2023, 07:09:37 AM
Do more people use the paint removal technique with their laser cutter/engraver?
I have a 20W diode laser, so that doesn't have enough oomph (I assume) to actually engrave bare aluminium (and that might damage the optics, I think).
Keen on seeing results and hearing experiences/ laser settings.

I do a ton of backpainted (acrylic paint) acrylic plate from the back (reversed graphics) and fill etched areas with paint. Acrylic, paint one side with acrylic paint (will need a few coats), etch from the painted side (reverse all content) On my Glowforge, engrave 450/12/2x and then either leave the etched clear, where you can backlight with LEDs, or fill with a contrasting color - I use a toothpick to blob the paint in.


Jarno

That is pretty cool, what thickness acrylic sheet are you using? I sometimes use 3mm (about 1/16") to make frontpanels for modular synth modules, but always use opaque material and then engrave the front side and fill in with paint (messy, lots of cleaning needed, especially matte material is a PITA).

Phend

#104
Romark Reverse Lasermark is an option also Clear Cast.
IPI and Rowmark have many reverse laser able acrylic sheets.
Many colors. back side has the color over a clear acrylic.
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davent

Quote from: Jarno on June 07, 2023, 08:21:20 AM
That is pretty cool, what thickness acrylic sheet are you using? I sometimes use 3mm (about 1/16") to make frontpanels for modular synth modules, but always use opaque material and then engrave the front side and fill in with paint (messy, lots of cleaning needed, especially matte material is a PITA).

Why not just flood the engraving with paint then when the paint dries sand it off and buff the acrylic back to whatever luster you need?
"If you always do what you always did- you always get what you always got." - Unknown
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Jarno

Not so easy to buff the acrylic back up after sanding, it is soft so it smears. But then again, on high gloss it is not an issue as the paint can be cleaned off quite easily, it is the matte materials that are hard to clean, and for those sanding might be an option.

Easiest is to front engrave, and then use a sharpie, cleaning off excess with a bit of rubbing alcohol.

But I think rear engraving will look pretty classy, so I am giving that a try too (ordered some 0.8mm clear acrylic yesterday).

Did also order something similar to that lasermark stuff as well, keen on seeing how well that engraves, it is black with a white center. Do not recall what material it is made off, but I have cut pickguard material on my lasercutter, and that is not great, it works, but you should compensate for some melting or it will be too small.

Phend

Google "Rowmark reverse lasermark examples" look at images.
Same with Rowmark clear cast"
Some show backing filling with acrylic paint.

Cast acrylic, not extruded, is what works best on a laser.

Kerf is about 0.006 inches when properly focused.
To test this, cut a line in your material and measure the width of the cut.

I offset outside dimensions by +0.006, and inside cuts by -0.006.
On thin material I am cutting +/- 0.001

On thick, 10mm, there will be an angle which you just have to deal with.

Painting on clear acrylic ?  It's an option but why not get the good stuff.

I do paint on slate, but that is another project.

Cutting nylon, not the best, other plastics, not great either, PVC NEVER !

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Jarno

#108
Just tried laser marking of a painted enclosure.
Quite light so next time I'll up the power.
On my 20W optical diodelaser, I had 1500mm/min at 40% for fill, and 1500mm/min at 65% for line engraving.
Have a picture, but need to figure out how to post it here, only links to hosting allowed, no direct uploading, I suppose.

Phend

95% power, go for it.
Get er done.
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Jarno

Didn't want to turn it into a big 'ole charred mess, but yes, next time moar power! :)

Phend

Tip of the day,
Power Test samples.
Then go for it.
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Jarno

Ain't nobody got time for that  :)

Jarno

#113
Finally made time for that...
Really didn't make a lot of difference, you just need to apply enough power, any more does not make a difference, because the diode laser is not going to make a dent in the injection moulded aluminium.
Enough to ablate the paint, fast enough so no charring occurs and you are good.

Top to bottom is light to heavy.
Pictures don't work for me, for some reason.
I had 2000mm/min and 65% power, for both line and fill engraving, on S30 pro max.