Block Printing


Has any one tried laser etching on block printing materials – especially mounted linoleum? The GF seems like a perfect candidate for this, but I’m not sure how well the linoleum will etch.


Someone with a laser correct me if I’m wrong, but linoleum is mostly PVC which is toxic and corrosive when lasered.


It would be interesting to find an MSDS for the “printers” linoleum you can buy premounted at art supply stores.

EDIT: Well look who I found! @asg


Real linoleum is made from linseed oil along with various fillers (sawdust, flour, calcium carbonate, etc.) Hence the name linoleum (“oleum” is Latin for oil)

But real linoleum is expensive and not found much today, thanks to PVC being so much cheaper (and easier to install).


From what I gather, you would probably be ok using real, natural-ingredient linoleum, often just called lino, from a print or art supplier. You are not likely to find real linoleum flooring tiles on the shelf at a bigbox store (its more expensive, harder to install, and has a much shorter shelf-life).

Here is another laser-lino-print link:


Love those prints too!


This is one brand of the stuff I am thinking of.

I am guessing that is the old style material that is based on a drying oil formulation.
Wish they posted MSDS sheets for materials like this.


Here it is:

Seems like it should be safe, but I have no idea how well it would cut. This one is linseed oil, natural rosin, wood flour (sawdust), limestone, jute backing.


should cut just fine natural materials cut easier than engineered materials on a CO2 laser.


Depending on what you are trying to achieve, you could etch acrylic. The added benefit is that you could see through to aid with alignment.


Maybe this is stupid, but while we’re on this has anyone used a laser to do intaglio or gravure? Obviously you wouldn’t get a lot of prints, but it might still be cool.


This is something I am interested in too. Thanks for all the information and bookmark links. I will be keeping an eye on this topic :grin:


When this topic first came up I found this:


I thought linoleum was linseed oil solidified by oxidation.

(anyone else old enough to get this one?)


Russ does at SabarMultimedia. He has an interesting spelling though. It’s not necessarily for print making but it’s applicable.


Looks like it works.

I bet if you can get sharp enough edges on acetal you could pull quite a few prints.
Maybe a lot of low power engraving passes to keep it from getting melty.


Thanks! So very much on the list. (And yeah, anything that isn’t brittle like acrylic would be a good choice for durability.


@martinell.jan you will be especially interested in this one!

That’s really cool!


This is great!