Tag Archives: laser etching

laser engraver for wood

Laser Engraving Wood with AP Lazer

laser engraver for wood

Laser Engraving Wood

In spite of all the design, craftsmanship, and effort that is involved, woodworking is a tough business that generally has low margins. Consider laser engraving wood. You can dramatically increase the profit on the wooden products you design, create and offer.

laser engraving wood furniture

Woodworking in America is a business that goes back for centuries. It’s a core industry to our economy, supplying businesses and consumers with a wealth of well-designed wood products such as furniture, cabinets, flooring, tools, construction materials, picture frames – the list goes on.

During the last 100 years, wood product production techniques have remained roughly the same regarding the process – cutting, joining, and finishing. It’s time to look at the woodworking industry differently and find ways to innovate and make your business more profitable.

laser engraver for wood

Personalizaton: A Growing Industry

Participate in the rapidly growing personalization trend in the U.S. and increase value when you add highly detailed, laser engraved graphics and text. Consumers love to see their name, personal image, or business logo on the products they buy. Additionally, laser engraving on wood is a great way for a business to brand products with their logo or company name and information.

laser engraved woodWood product producers have yet to capitalize on the personalization trend because machines aren’t yet adopted as a production tool in the woodworking industry. Laser engraving wood can occur on a finished product as the final step before delivery, or insert it into the workflow just before staining and clear coating.

Laser engraving wood is a profitable process you can incorporate into your business. It can double or triple the value of a product. From wood plaques, cabinets, panels and doors to granite, auto parts and iPhone cases, the emotional response to seeing a personalized product is tremendous. Consumers are willing to pay a significantly higher price for personalized laser engraved items.

Photo courtesy of MD Custom Engravings
Photo courtesy of MD Custom Engravings

Diversification with a Laser Machine

Not only can you add value to your existing wood product offerings, but you can diversify into new markets with little to no overhead costs. Tap into signage, pet products, awards/trophies and many more markets with a laser engraving machine. Your imagination is the limit!

laser engraver for classroom

Interested in Learning More?

Call Today: 800-585-8617

 

Profit Impact

What is the profit impact of doubling or tripling the value of your product with laser engravings? The laser machine has a very low operating cost.Your time to develop a personal image or text, running the machine, and electricity costs. There are no consumable materials when laser engraving wood. Almost all of the increase in value comes to you in the form of profit!

Don’t miss the opportunity to innovate and diversify your woodworking business. Implement a laser engraving machine and capitalize on the personalization trend.

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10 Mind-blowing Artists and Makers Using Lasers On Wood

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From paper and textiles, to stone and metal, AP Lazer machines can be used on nearly any material, but one of our favorites to work with is wood. It’s a renewable, biodegradable, timeless, and universal material that’s downright gorgeous in its own right. When spruced up with etched illustrations or custom cut into a unique pattern, wood becomes even more instinctively beautiful and endlessly versatile. Searching for inspiration, we found the following artists and makers who are doing some pretty incredible things with their laser machines and our favorite material.

1. Gabriel Schama

Cutting and gluing layer upon layer upon layer of designs from wood, Gabriel Schama (with the help of his laser cutter, Elsie) creates mesmerizing three-dimensional artworks. Ranging from entirely abstract, organic shapes to his more recent portraiture work, Schama utilizes the laser cutter not just to make his process faster or easier, but to open up his full range of ability. Although he creates his art with the help of a machine, Schama’s technique is inherently handcrafted.

2. Lightwave Laser

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Utilizing laser precision, Ron Macken of Lightwave Laser is able to create custom designs and exclusive company patterns from wood that an ordinary contractor simply couldn’t execute. Coming from a background on the engineering side of laser technology, Macken’s artistic pursuits have seen various applications in commercial businesses, as well as private homes. Hotels, restaurants, bars, retail stores, and even a mosque, sport Lightwave Laser panels as wall dividers, external and internal wall decorations, doors, and lighting fixtures.

3. Rogue Journals

On a significantly smaller scale, Rogue Journals creates laser cut wooden bookmarks that are just as detailed as Schama’s and Lightwave’s large-scale pieces. These delicate creations use wood’s ability to be both smoothly cut and engraved to portray full scenes within a mere 5″ x 1.25″ area. Again, these complex works simply could not exist without the innovation of laser technology.

4. Big Secret

Big Secret is one secret that every laser fan should know. The laser and design company provides assistance at any stage of the making process – in their own words – “from design and development to fabrication and finishing.” Their website and Instagram are full of mind-blowing, award-winning collaborations, as well as some of their own in-house creations. The above baseball bat, designed by Kevin Cantrell and Juan Carlos Pagan, is just one of their beautiful collaborative works.

Interested in Learning More?

Call Today: 800-585-8617

5. Stay Gold Co

Organic Super Flower Plugs

Stay Gold Co makes tattoo art inspired t-shirts, stickers, phone cases, and plug style earrings. Their products are only available for limited time periods, but they currently have 13 beautiful, laser-etched, wooden earring designs for sale. These Super Flower Plugs are by far the most intricate. This pair of earrings – available as small as 12 mm in diameter – highlights a laser machine’s ability to create incredibly detailed texture, with some seriously impressive, minuscule carved portions.

6. Anila Quayyum Agha

This one might look familiar to our fellow Michiganders. Mixed media artist Anila Quayyum Agha swept away the competition with this 2014 Art Prize winner, Intersections. If you experienced this work in person, then you know the feeling of amazement over how such a simple construction, perfectly executed, entirely transformed the space. In fact, the work was so stunning, it inspired a somewhat impromptu marriage proposal. Agha’s still creating sophisticated patterns with laser machines, now opting for steel or paper, but this original piece was made from wood.

7. Carved Lake Art

With another series that’s probably familiar if you’re from Michigan, Carved Lake Art creates striking 3D nautical maps. Their collections span the Great Lakes, a variety of states’ inland lakes, Atlantic and Pacific coasts, and some international waters. The works are made by stacking up to 8 layers of laser cut Baltic Birch – which seems to be the ideal choice of plywood for laser machines. The layers are also engraved with topographical details, again demonstrating wood’s particular ability to be both cut and engraved in beautiful detail.

8. SpaceWolf Limited

Illustrating his love for sci-fi and pop culture, and known only by the mysterious moniker, SpaceWolf is an illustrator, printmaker, and woodworker who creates extremely limited edition wooden posters. With his absolute mastery of the laser machine, he pulls off the most impeccably smooth shading we’ve ever seen. Often based off movies, TV shows, or books, by using cherry wood as his material of choice, SpaceWolf’s work redefines the idea of what a poster is. If you’re concerned about whether or not these posters are actually more or less environmentally conscious than paper, rest assured in knowing that SpaceWolf personally plants a tree for every single poster sold.

9. Dragon Powered

Hinge laser cut from 5mm birch ply

Mike Wilson of Dragon Powered is another engineer-turned-laser-artist. He has a small selection of jewelry boxes, lamps, and keychains – all made of birch – that are available for direct purchase through his site. But the really exciting stuff is in the blog section. That’s where we found posts like how to make the wooden hinges pictured above and using a custom jig to cut at an angle other than 90 degrees. His video tutorials aren’t particularly detailed and he doesn’t provide any templates, but there’s enough guidance to get a resourceful woodworker started.

10. Beam Designs

Planetary Gears Clock 1

Husband and wife duo Nathan and Sarah Jones combined their respective aerospace engineering and textile art and design backgrounds to create Beam Designs. Their website and Etsy shop offer a variety of laser cut bamboo goods, such as earrings, key chains, and wall clocks, like this wooden gear design. They intentionally chose Moso Bamboo, which is native to Britain and sourced from their local sawmill, for all of their products because of how well it compliments their environmentally conscious ethics.

 

 

Bonus: Obrary

Alex Chair - the living hinge chair

Obrary (short for open library) is a maker’s new best friend. If you operate a commercial laser service, you might like their Shopping Configurator software, which helps customers see dynamic mock ups of their personalized product so they can be assured their order will be accurate. If you just like to make things, you’ll enjoy their selection of 100+ free design templates and video tutorials gathered from across the Internet. These tutorials focus on laser cutting wood to make items like a working microscope, lamp, or padlock, to name a few. Our favorites of the designs they’ve collected utilize living hinges – laser cut Baltic Birch (yes, it has to be Baltic Birch) that allows the wood to become extremely flexible. The Alex chair above, designed by Alex Zhang, uses a living hinge to create a seat and back from a single piece of wood.

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Introducing LAZEROCK by AP Lazer

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Large screen, ultra-HD TVs displaying a lifetime of high-resolution photos with memorable music as the last beautiful memory of a loved one has become every funeral’s core element. Every family has dozens of precious family photos engraved in their minds.

lazerock on super gray granite

Getting multiple family photos laser etched onto a monument is gaining more and more popularity, which provides memorial retailers with more artistic works, as well as higher profits and better customer satisfaction. However, the high-resolution photos can only be lasered onto dark granite, which are more expensive than gray or low-end pink granite colors.

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LAZEROCK process tested and shown on various granite colors.
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This image is a digital rendering to represent LAZEROCK’s capabilities. Actual LAZEROCK results may vary.

Introducing LAZEROCK

LAZEROCK is a patented process which embeds colors into light colored granite. The nano-implanted color has stronger chemical binding than the binding between the mineral content in the granite. As a result, the color is as permanent as the natural color of the granite.

When performing a coating adhesion test, a chunk of granite was actually removed from the surface, which you can see in the image above. This accident indicated that the color binding is stronger than the mineral binding of the granite itself.

Interested in Learning More?

Call Today: 800-585-8617

How Deep is The Color Implanted?

A monument was lettered using the LAZEROCK process when we later discovered that the lettering should have been black instead of white. So, the monument was sent to the factory to have the letters polished off. But the factory could not grind the letters off, so they then used a diamond saw to cut 1/8″ off the surface. After the cutting, the granite still showed shadows of letters. 

Scientifically, the color of LAZEROCK is as permanent as the granite itself. We apply a layer of non-organic and organic protective coating on top of the image to protect the color. The transparent layer is acid-proof and UV-protective. Therefore, we can guarantee the color lasts for 100 years.

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10 Upcycling Ideas for Earth Day

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Celebrate Earth Day this year by using your AP Lazer to upcycle old materials you have lying around the house. Not quite sure what upcycling is? Just check out these 10 cool ideas that we found.

1. Bland Jacket → Edgy Accessory

drawn lasercut jacket

For inspiration on how to upgrade your old attire, take a look at some of the pretty incredible laser cut pieces that fashion designer Elvira ‘t Hart is creating in the Netherlands. (Be aware of the type of fabric and whether there is plastic/PVC/vinyl involved at it can be harmful to you and you laser machine.)

2. Wood Scraps → Funky Jewelry

Use up any small scraps of wood you have leftover from your last project to laser cut some fun new jewelry! Charms are easy to throw onto a chain or cord for a necklace, but we really like Esty user CliveRoddy’s neat-o stackable landscape rings.

3. Mismatched Silverware → Garden Markers

Donnadiddit laser etched garden markers:

We found this idea from designer, fabricator, and laser lover, Donna Diddit. Although these are no longer available at her online store, you can take a look at these handy and crafty garden markers on her Pinterest page. Get your own ready just in time for spring planting!

4. Cardboard Boxes → Animal Head Decorations

 

Sure, you could pay up to $60 for one of those trendy cardboard deer heads from a retailer like Uncommon Goods. Or you could just use Instructables user Soupraok’s free template and tutorial to make your own, basically for free. Condense steps 2-4 into one process by using your AP Lazer to cut out all the pieces perfectly!

5. Cardboard Boxes → Lamp Shades

Say you’re not into the whole animal head idea, but you’ve still got all this extra cardboard lying around. Turns out that cardboard lampshades – i.e., “scraplights” – are just as trendy! And with some of them pricing well into hundreds of dollars, even we’re wondering if we should’ve gone into the lamp business… A simple design, something like David Graas’s “Not a lamp”, is a great starting place.

6. Spare Glass Jars → Labeled Storage

Picture of Repurposed Etched Glass Spice Jars...

WUVIE on Instructables used a process of stencils and etching cream to create these Starbucks-bottles-turned-spice-jars. But you’re clever and know that you can skip the fuss and mess by etching your extra glass jars and bottles with your AP Lazer and rotary device. Storing your bulk spices, grains, and baking needs has never been easier or more organized.

7. Empty Wine Bottles → Flower Vases

If you’ve got a bunch of empty wine bottles lying around, we won’t judge. Use your AP Lazer and rotary device to turn those extra bottles into beautiful, decorative vases. Avid upcycler Johnnie Collier of Saved By Love Creations also went the etching cream route for her bottles, but with an AP Lazer, you can go doily decorative, functionally labeled, or seasonally festive with yours.

Interested in Learning More?

Call Today: 800-585-8617

8. Extra Fabric → Basically Anything

As a creative crafter, you already know that Pinterest has 1,001 projects for you to use up scrap fabric. However, arguably the worst part of any of these projects is cutting out your pieces. But with your AP Lazer, it’s suddenly a breeze to crank out as many of the exact same pieces as you could ever need! Snag some free state outline vectors to get started on your own Scrap Map, like the one created by The little green bean on Hometalk.

9. Old Phone Case → New Phone Case

Sure, this one’s a bit of a stretch as far as upcycling goes, but making something old *feel* new – even if you’re still using it for the same purpose – is the whole point, right? At the moment, wood is definitely the most popular choice for laser engraved phone cases (like the incredible Laser9 one you see here). But with an AP Lazer, you can update yours even if it’s leather, silicone, or metal.

10. Old Paper → New Wall Art

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Remember anything can up-cycled with just a little time and a dream. Turn that finger painting your kid did when they were two into a neat decor piece that you all can enjoy in their new apartment. (Photo from Silvia Raga.)

So let’s see what you make! Share your projects with us by uploading a photo and tagging us on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, or LinkedIn.