Coastering in with some cork samples

I’d been waiting to try out cork on the Glowforge for a while and finally got around to trying some. My daughters came up with some designs that they wanted to try making coasters out of so we did that set first. They turned out quite nice. They’re sharp and clear with great contrast.

Here are a couple of close ups for a more detailed view.

I decided to do some mandalas to see how intricate the patterns could get and tried one pair at 100% black and another at 60%. They both turned out pretty nice.

I think I personally like the high contrast of the dark ones that were 100% black, but they all turned out well. The material I was using was 1/8" thick cork place matts from Ikea and each coaster is 3" in diameter. Here are some detail shots.


Surprisingly sharp and clear on cork!


They are lovely. I think I prefer the subtle color of the lighter ones. What a great idea for whipping out a last-minute, personalized gift.


Great idea and they contrast well!


These came out really nice. I’ve got lots or cork, so I’m looking forward to being able to make things like these coasters. Your percent power gauge is really a great idea. Thanks for sharing.


I like the high contrast too, they turned out so great!


The smoke residue on the Harry Potter one looks like a shadow and makes Harry seem to float above the cork.


That’s just gorgeous. And cork is pretty much endlessly useful. Is there any feeling of depth to the engrave?


First off… AMAZING. Great design ideas all. I’m surprised by something. It appears to mark the surface very well. Can cork be actually engraved like wood? With some depth, that is? Actually evaporate the material? I only ask because I had cork items in mind, but it my mind they had a deep engrave.

(And I hope nobody misinterprets my question. These things are gorgeous. Just a question about how the material lasers, from the POV of somebody with 0 laser experience. :slight_smile: )


Great job! The mandalas are fantastic as usual, and I really like the Harry Potter one. :relaxed:


That’s what I was wondering, was whether cork is just surface marked (e.g. you can’t feel it if you run your finger across) or is actually engraved (there is actual depth).

That’s such a cool thing though, and you can totally see an OMG We have bob’s party in 1 hour and don’t have a gift, being actually amazing…


You can get both effects. For example the harry potter ones have maybe a 1/32" depth to it and the light mandalas I can’t feel any depth.


Interesting. Thanks for the reply! I wonder what multiple passes will do. Lots of testing for me to do!

Hey I’m curious, too… Is this synthetic or natural cork?

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Very nice. I would not have even thought to try cork.


Absolutely lovely!

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I have quite a stash of cork so this is very exciting! Does the burned mark smear at all when touched or when wiped with water?


it’s natural, you can see in the pictures - synthetic cork has a uniform texture. here’s a great comparison by some wine aficionados:


Awesome! Great work! :smiley:

Gorgeous work! Those are really awesome designs.

Did you have to (or do you plan to) seal the cork in anyway? like @bhspalinger asked above, does the marked (esp in larger solid areas) smear or leave black on the hands? (Don’t they use charred cork to black face?) Nice job BTW - I love to hear it when the family (kids) get involved in creating things like this (as opposed to nose in electronics :neutral_face:) Have a great week all - almost MARCH!