Altoids tin settings?

I have a plain metal altoids-type tin that I want to engrave. So far I’ve only been working with proofgrade wood and acrylic, and some plywood that is very similar to the proofgrade maple. So I haven’t experimented with using my own settings for anything…
Does anyone have suggestions to find the right engraving settings for this tin? Or perhaps you’ve found the perfect settings for yourself?
Any help would be appreciated

I’ll defer to others here, although I think there’s a problem with engraving directly onto untreated metals… I’m sure one of the more well-versed people here will now debunk my statement, which will give you an answer! (Sneaky, aren’t I?)

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If you know for sure what it is made of, that would be helpful.

The tin is metal and you will not be able to directly engrave the tin itself but you can apply materials like cermark and have those bond directly to the surface or paint the tin and engrave away the paint to make your pattern.


Told ya!

(Actually, I knew about Cermark, but recently someone said that you really didn’t need it, and other people have suggested everything from mustard to wet paper towel to white primer, so I figured I’d let them pipe up…)

The answers will keep coming. Be patient. Before you know it one of them will say something like “Oh, for Altoids tins I use peanut butter. Power 47, speed 125” - at least you’re already at “Beyond the Manual” or they’d move you here as well…

This place is a massive library of arcane and obscure knowledge… You’ve come to the right place. Enjoy!


I don’t have any advice for you, but I’d love to see the finished product!

Mustard worked on stainless - not sure about the steel of an Altoids tin (or if that is actually steel or some other metal) - but you could totally try! Sacrifice one tin and test everything you can get your hands on :slight_smile:

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Mine were already anodized. So nothing special required.

You will half to remove the crumb tray and add spacers to get the correct height.

Here is a pillbox I made for my wife, I 3d printed an insert for the inside.

I could have done a better job getting the focus right, but overall it worked out well.


Settings on the pill box Please

Do you have the same boxes?

Sorry, I deleted the file and don’t have the settings. I am not sure if they would help it seems that I need support to tweak my settings (mine GF was moving too fast).

My suggestion would to search the forum for anodized settings and get the height right.

You can’t “over-engrave” a piece of metal (at least, I never have). Run the laser hot and slow and don’t worry about it. It won’t get the metal hot enough to matter to the metal or the coating, except of course where the laser actually hits and the coating is removed (Anodized or painted) or cured (Cermark).

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I ended up using the settings for iPhone7 Black. I did remove the lid from the box to engrave it. It came out great.


Looks better than mine first attempt!

I will try removing the lid on my next one.

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