Patiently Waiting

So as I patiently wait for the arrival of my machine I am researching what I can make and came across some art that I am wondering if I would have the ability to “engrave” this on metal (eg: Copper, Brass, or Aluminum). What say you?



Into the metal, no. A 40w (or 45) CO2 laser doesn’t have the ooph to do that. If you had a sheet of anodized aluminum, it could etch the pattern into it, but you would have to do something for the color, as all it would do is remove the anodized coating, leaving bare aluminum.

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You could do the acid resist with this if you want it to be on metal, I saw a video on that yesterday I think. I love this design by the way

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You could also use Cermark.


I don’t have a glowforge to play with yet, can you paint something with multiple layers of paint and then burn off only one layer with the glowforge? what if you clearcoat between layers of paint?

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There are quite a few threads on Elecro-chemical etching and etching with Acids on this forum.
15th century Tech meets 21st century technology.

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Yes I have experience with chemical etching and will now search the forum for any threads that may have some further detail. I was just hoping I could etch the metal with my Glowforge, but now see it doesn’t contain enough power. So now I will look at using this on wood. Thanks for the input


Would the Cermark work with the 40 watt? Or do I need to use something stronger?

This maybe an option.

Not sure if this is the video you saw, but this would work for acid etching on metal. You could even just paint a metal plate black lacquer and etch that. It would look great.

I wonder if you could paint multiple layers of lacquer in different colors and get the laser just right to etch one layer of paint. Then you could do all of the colors in the picture, then just seal it with clear lacquer when you’re done.

Man I want my laser to start trying this stuff!!!

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I have yet to buy any. (Shtuff’s expensive!) But, as I understand it, minimum is 30W.

Why is that stuff so crazy expensive?

Thanks for you help. I am now looking at MANY posts about this. I now have my work cut out for me…too many ideas running through my head. Thanks again

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THANKS everyone for your input. I am not researching all the other options. I haven’t spent much time on the forums, but am now amazed at how much help there is here. LOT’s of ideas now running through my head. One being use the Laser to “cut” the mask and Electro-Chemical etch from there. Now onto more reading.

Thanks again…I think I have found my people


From what I understand, because it just works. People have come up with their own, similar formulas for this and have worked to varying degrees.

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Yeah, I guess when you’re the best, you can charge what you want.

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It also helped they bought out their only serious competition :wink:


Re: marking solution. I read years back that molybdenum lubricant works well as a low-rent Cermark and I’ve had a bottle sitting on my workbench. I’ve yet to try it personally, though.


@smcgathyfay did some excellent testing on the diy solutions, as i recall

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Because only one company (now) owns the patents :slight_smile:

I use CRC Dry Moly Lube from the auto parts store ($11/spray can) for a more gray finish (and only gray/black, none of the colors that are available from Cermark/Thermark). It works for some purposes but others require the real thing.