Suggestions on post engrave of PG leathers

Hey guys,

Just wondering if there are any common tips for post processing an engrave of proof garde leather.

Specifically, any tips to mitigate:

  1. charring (and subsequent discolouration of surrounding areas due to smudging when handling the piece)
  2. smell

I have tested the use of Iso. and acetone but find that it does a number on the leather.

Am I doing it wrong?
Was that just a bad idea in general?
Alternative cleaning solutions?

All opinions are welcome!



Probably won’t like what I do to it, but it works extremely well for me. :slightly_smiling_face:

I remove the portion of the mask over the area to be engraved before engraving. Engrave at a much lower power and higher speed than the defaults for leather as a first step, then put the masking back on and cut it as a second step.

That little dance is necessary due to the properties of leather…big-time differences from engraving on wood or acrylic. Reduces the char, although it can still take several days for the burned smell to off-gas on the cut pieces. (The ones I did last week finally don’t stink anymore. Hallelujah!)

Given the cost of leather, it’s worth a little extra care, IMO.


I find that cleaning it (gently) with fast orange speeds up the process considerably. But then you need to wait for the leather to dry to finish so maybe comes out about the same.


I just condition the leather after cutting and engraving with my car seat leather conditioner. Smells awesome and definitely helps the leather as it really dries out from the lasering.


I looked up the processes to veggie tan and brain tan leather as I was considering doing a test run on some deer. That’s a lengthy involved process.


I probably don’t want to know, do I? :wink:


I actually do something similar and found the engrave quality is vastly better when doing so(remove the masking before engrave). I haven’t replied masking for the cut because of the realignment issues though.

I will just say that typically, the brain of one animal is coincidentally the correct amount of brain matter needed to tan the hide.


Just tape the leather to the grid at the edges. Keeps it from moving and curling as well. (Plain old blue masking tape.)

ROFL! See, I knew I didn’t want to know! :rofl:


Are you sure?

“Scraping and then sanding are done to remove the hair and outer layers of the skin so that the brains will soak all the way through the skin.”


Quite positive, thanks! :rofl: I happily leave that part to the fellas.

(I’m an ex-Cajun. Our family recipes typically start out with…“Go out and kill a nice fat pullet…Wash and set the guts aside for the boudin…”.thank God for the invention of plastic wrap and grocery stores.) :laughing:


I tap/shake the leather so that the loosest bits of char fall away. If there’s still a lot of loose matter attached, you can brush it (ever so gently) with a toothbrush or dry sponge. Again, ever so gently so that it doesn’t smudge all over the place.

You can rinse it in warm water with a bit of Dawn dishwashing liquid, and hit it again with a sponge if needed. Don’t manhandle it or bend it out of shape - just a light rinse/dab is fine. Then set it outside to air out and dry.


I always do the cut with the masking on the leather. Then I remove the masking and do my engraving without a mask at 1000 speed/10 power. Makes a beautiful engrave that doesn’t destroy the integrity of the leather and requires no removing of masking which completely eliminates charring on the engrave.