How To Choose The Best Laser Etching Machine

We know laser etching all too well. Both simple and complex designs carefully etched into household items, wedding and anniversary gifts, trophies, and the like. Some might consider it the work if a VERY patient and skilled artisan, but in all reality, it is most likely the work of a highly advanced laser etching machine.

Etsy, Pinterest, and many other crafting marketplaces are home to hundreds of laser etching examples. Everything from glass etching to wood and leather engravings, the options are endless. Check out this link for a bit of inspiration.

If you’re a hobbyist and enjoy crafting unique custom items, a laser etching machine can be the perfect tool to place your creative stamp of excellence on any of your go-to creations. Laser-etched items make perfect wedding, christmas, anniversary, and housewarming gifts!

For the established custom product business or budding entrepreneur, the addition of one, or even two, laser machines can be the difference between being just “another” product shop, or a stand out custom product shop with viral brand awareness.

Decorative signs have long been a stable and product of high demand in the world of custom etched products. Considering adding a custom product line to your current collection? Give some thought to becoming a custom sign crafter. Careful wood selection and artistic flair can give an etched wood sign that special something to catch a customer’s eye.

Laser Etching Technology

Laser etching is a C02 precision process that uses laser to slightly alter the top layer of wood, metal, glass, or other material, leaving a precise design etched into the surface. Laser etching differs from engraving in that etching tends to be less sub-surface in nature and only slightly removes the top layer of the material.

The laser machine’s power source (a.k.a the laser tube) is measured in watts and determines what your machine is capable of. Laser etching machines come in a variety of wattages that vary based on your material requirements. For most etching project, our standard minimum of 60W laser is more than sufficient for all of your etching needs. When it comes to laser engraving speed and cutting performance, higher wattages may need to be considered.

Business Opportunites with Laser Etching Machines

Laser etching has become a thriving business for many entrepreneurs and hobbyists with a bend towards the creative side of life. There will never be a shortage of significant life events around the world that call for memorabilia etched in something that can be put on display.Even the jewelry industry makes great use of etching with laser machines due to the high demand for personalized jewelry. Etching with a quality laser machine ensures the etched item, whether large or microscopic, results in a clean, smooth finish that does not require polishing.

 As a business owner or entrepreneur, invest in the best possible laser etching machine that your budget can afford. With quality comes reliability that your product line depends on. Speed is also a factor to consider. At Thunder Laser USA, we pride ourselves on the speed performance of our machines compared to other leading brands. Etching speed can play an important role in your production abilities. Quality can come at a reasonable price with industry-leading affordable laser machine pricing that starts at $6,600. 

Check out our guide on laser engraver financing.

What to Look for in a Laser Etching Machine: 

  1. FDA Approved – Lasers are powerful and emit radiation, be careful to buy only a fully enclosed machine to avoid radiation exposure. Class I laser etching machines ensure that the powerful laser tube is fully covered and will not cause serious harm or injury if used properly.
  2. Ease Of Connectivity – Consider the software compatibility of your ideal machine. There are a host of various software programs for designing. With the purchase of a Thunder Laser machine, we include RDWorks and LaserMaker to get you started.
  3. Customer Service – Laser machines are composed of many components that require a high standard of precision and quality assurance to ensure that the machine continues to work for many years. Downtime on your machine can be detrimental to your business. With that being said, consider the level of support and service that is provided by your choice of laser etching manufacturer. Here at Thunder Laser, we pride ourselves on the high quality and knowledgable staff here in the USA that is always available to take questions and support your machine.
  4. Ensure the reflective lens is of the highest quality. The reflective lens of the laser etching machine has a specific shelf life and will need to be replaced in the future. The high-quality laser glass tube needs to be replaced after 3,000 hours of use, sooner if it lacks in quality manufacturing.

What Size Laser Etching Machine Do I Need?

How big will you go? When it comes to laser etching, higher wattage can increase your speed of project completion. The other consideration is bed size.

Even if most of your projects consist of small etching designs, making use of a larger bed surface area can enable you to etch multiple designs at once.  

Our smallest bed size starts at 23 23.6″ x 15.7″ (600 x 400 mm) – See That Laser Machine Here

Our largest bed size is 63″ x 39.4″ (1600 x 1000 mm) – See this Ultimate Etching Machine Here

You’d be surprised how much easier it is to work with a larger-sized bed, and how quickly you can produce finished products.

A laser etcher equipped with a sizable work area (bed size), can cut multiple objects continuously, saving considerable time during times of high demand. Choose the bed size of the laser machine carefully and ensure your largest projects will fit. If you intend to engrave items of different sizes, choose a machine with an adjustable bed height. Some fixed-bed laser etchers limit design options since you cannot dynamically adjust the depth of your etching.

If you haven’t already, take a look at our comprehensive FAQ page that will answer all of your laser machine questions.