Etching glass - settings


I successfully etched glass before the new settings took effect.

Here are the settings I used and the results I got.

To begin, I have heard the the cheaper the glass, the better the results with a CO2 laser like the Glowforge. You won’t get nice results on pyrex like you do on a cheap frame from the dollar store, like these.

First, I masked the glass; though others suggest a thin layer of dish soap is effective and easy to clean up.

Weeding little bits… good thing I have a box of lens cleaners… they work great on cheap glass. This is where dish soap would win.
Another suggestion, if you want the etching to have more contrast, try etching then painting. You would have to weed more carefully and be aware of the paint you want to keep in the etching.

This first one was 800/40 at 225 LPI. It looked pretty weak, so I did a second pass, and I think that was pretty weak, too.


Easier to see the shadow of the etch than the actual etching.

Next, I have this silly quote etched at 700 speed on full power. Only one pass. Shows up better, but I’m not fully convinced.

I slowed down the speed to 500 and left it at full power. A bit better. Sorry the photo is sideways.

And my final etch is at 395 and full power. Legible. I might go for even slower another time, and then update the results here.

Help with engraving Glass - Settings (new)
Birthday presents: personalized photo frames

Thanks for posting this. Leads me to all sorts of ideas !
Is the slight ‘brown’ colour in the etching real, or something like an edge lighting effect from the frame colour, or yet still, an artifact in the photo ?


How cool is that! I never would have thought to try something like this.


i’m guessing it’s mostly a reflection of the light in the pic since if you look closely st the sideways picture you can see all sorts of color.

these are fun, nice job. engravings like these seem to take paint pretty well, if you’re ever looking to increase visibility.


Thinking outside the frame !
Wondering about edge lighting effects on a shallow engraving on glass ?


i think you’d be better off using acrylic for something like that.


Agreed, it would be easier, but sometimes there’s extra kudos for a glass product.
Not sure where I’m going with this, but just looking for something different that no other idiot would try !


First off … those are some great photos!!! :revolving_hearts:

I’ve bookmarked for when I get my Glowforge Pro … this is awesome! Thank you for posting your settings. Much appreciated.


Did you try it without masking? I use a thin layer of dish soap on glass…works well and easy cleanup.


Like undiluted Dawn? How do you apply it?


Why do you need to mask glass?
Surely any residue would just wipe off, saving the need for weeding?


+1 :+1: A drop or two of dish soap smeared over the engrave area with your fingertip works a treat.

Unlike wood and acrylic, the laser is blasting/pulverizing off the top layer of glass. The soap film helps prevent additional cracking, spalling, etc.


That makes sense, but I meant why mask with tape.


Tape will give the auto focus something to “see” and helps to minimize reflection of the laser back into the lense. Potential damage to the head.


I shall try that. Thanks. I had seen that tip and supposed that tape would be great, thus forgot. Easier cleanup seems well worth a different approach

Reflection, I think. Bad lighting.


Thanks for the tip. Don’t know why I didn’t consider it as I use that technique on other things. That would probably have been quite effective here.


With my finger on small coasters…lol. Take care not to create bubbles…just a thin layer…you could probably squeegee it on to get an even coat on a larger area.


From what I’ve seen on other sites, a common method is to use a paper towel and spray it liberally with glass cleaner. I have not seen a site suggest masking tape.


just water is enough. You’re trying to keep it from spalling. Water helps keep it cool. Dishwashing soap does the same thing. Glass cleaner may tend to evaporate too quickly.

I use paper towels because they hold water longer but newsprint works too and offers a more consistent surface since towels tend to have ridges and valleys.


Only mentioned it because @cmreeder used it in the examples at the top!