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Laser Engraving - Useful Facts And Tips

Mar 2, 2008
Unlike the conventional engravers, today some engravers use an intense beam of light for laser engraving instead of a rotating or vibrating tool; this beam can either vaporize a small area of the surface (laser engraving) or cause a change in the color of the surface of the material (laser marking). It's controlled by a computer at high speeds and accuracy to produce quality at a decent price. Almost all materials can be engraved or marked with this method.

It didn't take very long for the engraving industry to discover lasers and soon they were used for many different industrial applications including welding, heat-treating, etching and engraving. When permanency or aesthetics are needed marking is the favored method. Compare it as a light source similar to a light bulb in that a light bulb will emit energy out all around it.

There are quite a few advantages to using it rather than other methods of engraving. Because the tool is a beam of light, there is no contact with the product, which means there is less chance of damaging the product or deformation.

Laser etching is really just another name for laser engraving. It provides a permanent message on an in-process or a finished component. It can be done on many different types of materials including slate, granite, stainless steel, leather, arborite, glass, mirrors, and premium hardwoods.

Laser cutting works well for cutting acrylic (Plexiglas), PETG, thin polycarbonates (Mylar), styrene expanded PVC (Sintra), wood, paper and fabric. It adds high precision, reduced contamination or warping, and a nice quality finish to industrial cutting applications. It also offers superior cut-edge quality with parallel sides and no evidence of burrs.

Laser marking is a process in which material is indelibly marked at very fast speeds. Marking of glass by CO2 lasers on the fly or while moving can be a good addition for many industrial environments and applications. Because no inks are used in the process it means the marking services are permanent and the process is environmentally friendly.

And when they are used to mark or etch glass and quartz they replace the traditional methods such as sand blasting, ink pad printing and etching. You can mark easily in batches of 1 to 10,000. Drawings can be converted into the right format or directly in a variety of formats including JPEG, Adobe- Illustrator, Corel Draw and AutoCAD.

Of the many items being engraved today, iPods and laptops rank right up there in the retail marketplace. Many companies make laser engraving machines, marking systems and etching equipment.

These machines and systems are used in a variety of applications and industries including the medical device industry, the aerospace industry, the manufacturing industry, the automotive industry, pharmaceutical, and electronic industries. There are no consumables so operating costs are very minimal, and the system, if properly exhausted, runs clean, so costly cleanup or by product disposal is not necessary. Laser engraving can be used for most of the jobs that are now being done by conventional industrial engravers.
About the Author
For more information on laser engraving and laser engraving machines, laser marking, laser etching and laser cutting go to http://www.EngravingLaser.net for tips, help, facts, free resources, including information on all types of laser engraving
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