Bias on engraves?

I have been playing with 3d engraving and noticed that if your horizontal bands is going on an up slope you get a nice wood color result however if they are a down slope the color is much darker and looks more shiny like a resin look. I have been enable to limit the effect by turning down the power and increasing the number of passes but it is still visible. I attached an image showing the effect. The left was 6 passes, the middle was 3 passes, and right was with 1 pass. The overall color difference is expected but if you look at the center one the left side looks fine but the right side is much darker and shiny and has a tacky feel. I thought it was the glue from the paper but even removing the paper before engrave I still see it.

Note the actual engrave was done horizontal.

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Never mind I just took a brush and some water and cleaned the engrave afterwards and it looks much better though how do you prevent warpage? The little samples I ran are already starting to bow. What should I use to clean the wood?

Several others and myself have used denatured alcohol with good results.


Less is more for sure when dealing with hardwoods. Use a damp cloth (damp with denatured alcohol) to wipe up the resin and keep using fresh surfaces of the rag. Plywood can take more alcohol as it’s less prone to warp, but you’re always better off being patient and using less.

Besides it’s not free so using less saves on cost too, win win.

Thanks for reaching out. I’m sorry I’m slow to reply here.

I’m glad cleaning allowed you to get the results you wanted! I’ll move this post to Everything Else so the discussion can continue there.