Playing with Wooden Coin design

Playing with / prototyping some of the different things I can do with a laser for small batches of cool things people might find fun/cool. A wooden nickel/giveaway/custom coin seemed like a fun thing. My group at work recently renamed to PIE - so the obvious was to play with that concept. :wink:

Once Glowforge Support got my device back up and running (all software - because I didn’t change a thing and they just got it to work for me remotely (woot, on a Sunday no less).

Simple and fun - flipped the coin and positioned by visual in the UI. Wish we had a way to size and position via specific coordinates to repeat exact same placement.

One side’s timelapse: timelapse of front.


If the cake is a lie then perhaps the pie is the truth! Nice tokens.

Yes, numeric entry for positioning would be great.

Best solution at the moment is a jig or fixture and use a 20x12 art board.


I’m pretty sure there are tutorials about this, but for starters, Jules came up with a great and easy way to do double sided engraving that enables perfect placement. Try a search and I’m sure you’ll find a bunch more about this. It’s something I learned from the fine forum folks. :slightly_smiling_face:

I like the stuff you’re doing and I’m sure happy that you’re back up and running.


Very nice! :grinning:


Since you are going for double-sided, one thing you could do is half the sheet one side, the other half the other. Trade them around for the backs with the cut turn off and the board not moved. It will work.


That’s great that they were able to get you taken care of … especially over a weekend. Let the fun continue!

Easy way to do coins flawlessly:

Design both sides in a single file. Use a different color for each side, have them overlapped and oriented in the direction you want them relative to one another.

In addition to having your engraves both in place and different colors, you will have your circle for cutting the coin AND a square which encloses that circle. Circle and square need to be different colors than one another.

Hold down your work piece with magnets or some other means to ensure it will not move later.

Engrave side 1, and cut the SQUARE. Ignore side 2 and circle.

Flip over every square. Be sure not to move the main board during this process (use razor blade to lever squares out via kerf).

Engrave side 2, and cut the circle. Ignore side 1 and square.

Coins done.

Flipping every square on a sheet with hundreds of coins is a pain. But for me personally, less of a pain than trying to set up the file so I can flip the entire workboard and have it stay in the right place.

You can do larger squares (5x5 coins in a single square) to save some time for large orders.


Good process.

Someone should design a Glow Forge Founder’s challenge coin. To be cut out of wood or acrylic.

One trick for coins if you want the flip side to be precisely placed on the rotational axis (since popping them back into the holes they were cut out of takes care of getting them in the right place for dropping something on the back side - you just may not get the 12 o’clock position correct front to back) is to use a positioning nub on top of the coin. So the first side & cut is of the circular coin with a nub at the top. Then flip it over and it will only fit in 1 way and the top will be exactly the top and you can’t rotate it by mistake. Do the 2nd side engrave (ignore the front side engraves & cut) and the last step is to cut off the nub to make the coin fully circular.

@takitus’s square surrounding the solution works great but uses a bit more material. He’s right though - flipping 100 coins is a PITA :slight_smile:


I like the coins and PIE is clever.
Can I make one suggestion for the front? Flip the “Established 2017” 180 degrees, and then make the curve match back up with the coin. That way, all of the text is right side up when you’re reading the front.