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Laser engraver (Read 339 times)
 
Jim Henning
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Pen lathe
Laser engraver
Feb 1st, 2017 at 8:52pm
 
Hey everyone, I just started making pens and other turned items for sale on Etsy and have been receiving a lot of feedback asking about engraving.  I can make a nice pen, but when it comes to hand drawing, even with a pencil, I mess up even stick figures.  So I was thinking of getting a laser engraver.  I see a few cheap ones (about 100 bucks) on Amazon, they get ok reviews, they seem to be straight out of China and I don't trust the customer service for something coming from overseas, however was looking to get advice on how much to invest in something I may or may not use a lot, ease of use (I don't want to bog down my computer with crazy software) and something that will have some good life to it.  Any advice would be great!
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Steve Doerr
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Joplin, Missouri, USA
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Missouri
USA

Gender: male

Rikon 70-050VS
Jet 1642 EVS 2HP
Robust American Beauty
Re: Laser engraver
Reply #1 - Feb 1st, 2017 at 10:30pm
 
Jim, if you have a tech school near by, you might contact them about doing laser engraving for you.  That is what I have done and have been very happy with it.  The machine they have is about a $5,000 machine, so it does a really good job.
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Steve Kniffen
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Clyde, Texas, USA
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Texas
USA

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Jet 1642 EVS
Re: Laser engraver
Reply #2 - Feb 2nd, 2017 at 8:30am
 
You might also look at trophy shops in your area.  I found one that will do them for $10/pen. 

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Steve
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Experience is what teaches us that we've made this mistake before ...
 
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Grant Wilkinson
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Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
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Ontario
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Re: Laser engraver
Reply #3 - Feb 2nd, 2017 at 4:33pm
 
I take mine to a local sign/trophy guy. The sub $100 units on Amazon are crap, IMNSHO. If you are serious about getting into the engraving business, look to Eplilog. A small one will cost you thousands though. I've seen cheaper chinese models, and they are not up to much. If you do decide to try out an inexpensive one, be aware that if it does not allow for the pen to rotate, it will not go a proper job. You are trying to burn a curved surface. My sign guy's laser mounts the pen blank much are we mount them on the lathe. It is held on a mandrel and one of the functions of the laser it to rotate the blank slowly while it burns. Without that feature, you can confined to a very small, one line burn.
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Grant Wilkinson
Ottawa ON
 
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