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Old 03-01-2010, 05:19 PM
Jim Ludi jim_ludi is offline
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 48
Default Engraving Test - Vibrating Engraver Tool

I had a need to engrave metal on a project, and didn't have an engraving bit/stylus on hand, so I came up with this prototype fixture to attach my vibrating engraver to the SB.

After some testing, I found that feed speed and Z depth do make a slight difference on the mild steel I tested on, probably more so on softer metals like brass and aluminum. I havenít tried a double pass to see what effect that will have yet. This particular engraver starts impacting the surface at about + .01 above the material surface, when itís running, so I can set my engraver zero at +.01 and lower it from there to achieve the result that I want.

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SB made fixture to hold engraver

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Test run for feed and depth on mild steel

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I was surprised at how well this worked

I'm thinking this might be a useful tool to make plaques for special projects, or...

Note, I just used the Fender image/name for a test engraving. I had it on hand and it's detailed enough to show the engraver's potential. Iím not producing anything with this image - we'll, maybe a brass plaque detailing the restoration of a 60's era Fender amp that I just completed, hmm.
Old 03-01-2010, 05:37 PM
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david marcotte coach is offline
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Location: David Marcotte Svc LLC, Cocoa Fl.
Posts: 544

really a cool idea.
Old 03-01-2010, 06:00 PM
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Erminio Marrese wberminio is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Bedford Hills NY 10507
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Opens up many possibilities....

Thanks for posting
Old 03-02-2010, 01:56 PM
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Russ Wood chiloquinruss is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Hobby-Tronics, Chiloquin Oregon
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Would this work? Russ

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Old 03-02-2010, 06:26 PM
Jim Ludi jim_ludi is offline
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 48

Russ, it should work just fine as long as you can find a way to attach it to the bot.

You'll need to do some test engraving to see what speed, feed and depth work best for your projects.

Like I mentioned, I tried to figure out what the stroke of the tip was before I started engraving.

I'd like to see your results too if you try it.

Thanks for adding the engraver source. I didn't realize how cheap these things are. Amazing...
Old 03-02-2010, 11:51 PM
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Russ Wood chiloquinruss is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Hobby-Tronics, Chiloquin Oregon
Posts: 925

Jim, I'm working on a mount scheme. I'm going to have it mount next to the spindle so I don't have to remove the spindle to use the engraver. I'm pretty sure I can get er' done. I'm assuming there is not much energy forced against the engrave as all the moves a very slight. I've ordered the engraver so it should be here by the weekend and then I can finalize the design and give er; a go. Thanks for coming up with the idea, should be a fun project. Russ
Old 03-03-2010, 12:46 PM
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Russ Todd widgetworks_unlimited is offline
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Chappaqua, New York - USA
Posts: 94

Jim - Kudos - Very clever engraving solution!

I often don't post to threads related to engraving and the other CNC Specialty Bits that we make and sell - we own a ShopBot and read/post to the forum regularly, so we're not interested in spamming...

The forum has had many, many new members join recently, so I thought it might be helpful to those who haven't heard of us, if I mentioned our Diamond Drag Engraving Bit as another engraving solution, in addition to Jim's engraving rig.

Here's a picture of diamond drag engraved jewelry, (aluminum and brass) done by one of our Italian customers...

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Our diamond drag engraving bit uses an industrial diamond tip under adjustable pressure to produce engravings similar to a dedicated professional machine. It produces a very fine line, like the engraving in Jim's pictures above.

It fits into a 1/2" collet, just like an end mill. It engraves brass, aluminum, steel, glass, mirrors, granite, and other stone...

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We have more CNC diamond drag engraving pictures, along with a much more detailed description of how our bit works and answers to frequently asked CNC engraving questions on our website:

WidgetWorks Unlimited diamond drag engraving bits are sold by ShopBot in the Routers/Spindles/Bits section of their website and directly through the WidgetWorks Unlimited website as well.
Old 03-03-2010, 01:07 PM
Michael Baldwin ghostcreek is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ghostcreek Woodworking, Palermo CA
Posts: 138

Thanks Jim & Russ for the info. Looks great, I am going to look into this further. Any suggestions on where to get more info? Russ, the Wigetworks website looks great, good info there, Thank You.

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