Laser Engraving In Color?
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Laser Engraving In Color?

May 25, 2023

Here's a fantastic way to add a new dynamic to your laser cut and engraved parts. Did you know it is possible to color your engravings on acrylic? It's kind of one of those moments where you go "Why didn't I think of that?"

[Frankie Flood] works at the Digital Craft Research Lab (DCRL for short), which is kind of like a hackerspace for the University of Wisconsin — complete with CNC routers, lasers, 3D printers, and all your basic manufacturing tools. [Lionel Rocheleau], one of his lab technicians at DCRL was interested in doing some experiments with the laser cutter, so they came up with this experiment…

By raster engraving a piece of acrylic, you can then spread a color dye powder over top the acrylic… and then run the engraving again, this time at a lower power and a higher speed. This allows you to basically melt the dye into the engraving. It’ll take a few layers to get a good and consistent color, but it really is that simple!

We find people tend to overlook the possibilities with laser cutters. Yeah they’re a bit more expensive than 3D printers, but boy can you do a lot with them! Did you know you can form basic folded acrylic parts using a laser cutter? It's called Laser Origami… and it's awesome.