Engraving on a Slope?

Question. My project involves engraving straight lines down the sides of a cone-shaped piece of 1-1/4" poplar (see pic). The green paint was a test of color but the engraving will be done on unfinished wood. Is this even possible?

The desired look would be a cone with lines moving from top to bottom down the side as if it were to be cut into 12 pie-shaped wedges. Of course, no cutting, just engraving (or scoring). Any help on this matter would be appreciated. I just got my GF and am getting started.

Welcome to the forum. You’ll want to search on the forum for bevel, chamfer, gradient engrave, 3D engrave, dovetails, slope and a few other topics that treat this.

Not sure how thick your application needs to be, but there have been some good examples of bevels on picture frames, dovetails and other bevels.


Think I read this differently than @marmak3261… If your intent is to engrave the sloped surface of a cone-shaped artifact (as opposed to creating the sloped surface), you may face some interesting challenges. Your GF cannot follow a curved/sloped surface, so all engraving/scoring would need to be in a fixed horizontal plane. I’d suggest creating a jig that allows you to tilt the cone so the slope is parallel to the bed, then rotate the cone manually for each of the “pie lines.”

Hope this helps (or even makes sense)!


I’ve done this in the past and it worked well.

The problem you’ll run into is that the beam is really only considered in focus (through open air) for in the neighborhood of a tenth of an inch. So as you move away from the focal point in either direction, you’ll see the size of your line change. So you need to make it as flat as you can.

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Yes. Makes perfect sense! Just made a quick measurement and I think I can pull it off and just barely keep it under the required 2" total depth limit. This is the information I was looking for. Thanks again.

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I wouldn’t think it’s possible. To get the bottom part of the cone you’ll the top will impact the head. No portion of the material can be further away than .5" or closer than .5" either. If you are trying to engrave or score something on the bottom half inch you’ll have almost a full inch above the engrave/cut plane or a good chunk of the way up the side of the head.

Unless you’re laying it on it’s side and the measurement you’ve got is width not height (becomes height when you lay it down). In that case you’ll want to jig it so the slope is laid flat to the head/gantry.

Or I’m not thinking out of the box enough.

And correctly. I see the word slope and think gradient and all the many discussions on this. I need to read the text!


Your second scenario is correct. If I use a jig to lay it at at angle such that the slope is now horizontal, I can do it at just under the 2" limit. Thanks for your input!