View Full Version : Color Fill for Wine Bottle????..Help

Phil Garcia
02-08-2009, 12:50 PM
I have a large order for some wine bottles to laser engrave with color fill. I need to meet the same quality as in the image. Any recommendations, it almost looks like a epoxy time color fill. At minimum I was considering an oil base paint but someone had recommended a hand rub color for the writing potion of the job but I am more concerned about the larger fairway and green.

Phil Garcia
02-08-2009, 1:04 PM
Special Thanks to Gregg Vaughn, Angus Hines, Pete Simmons and everyone else that contributed to the string of post about marketing to the wineries. It gave me some ideas and I went out and started knocking doors and I have a large order for wine glasses and now the Golf Course wine bottles that the winery has to provide to the golf courses in the area. Thanks again to all.

Winery String: http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?p=998516#poststop

Rodne Gold
02-08-2009, 1:05 PM
You gonna have problems with that ...beeg problems
The best way to tackle that job is to laser a mask and blast the bottle so you get some depth in the engraving and then color fill using masking tape to mask areas you dont want filled. Its gonna be a painstaking and painful job...personally I wouldn't touch it unless I was getting very high $ for it.

I would actually do it another way , considering I have a digial printer that prints on vinyl and die cuts it , I would print it , then overlaminate it with a soft matte and then die cut a "label" and just apply it.

Phil Garcia
02-08-2009, 1:14 PM
Thanks Rodne but the overlay is not an option. They want it to match the bottle in the pic. I know it's going to be a pain but the order is so large that I just don't want to say no. I was planning to reduce the size of the golf course hole since the pic is not the exactly the one they want. The golf course hole for my project is some what smaller, thank goodness. Also, special thanks to you Rodne, your ideas on the winery string give me a big boost.

Rodne Gold
02-08-2009, 1:34 PM
That bottle in the pic isnt lasered , its "sand carved" , if you dont have a sandblasting cabinet - you will not get good results trying to laser and fill.
If you are determined to try , then you need to laser it to control the fracturing a laser induces.
Glass is essentailly engraved by a laser when impurities in it expand and that expansion (due to the thermal shock of the lasers heat) fracture the surrounding material. Laser light from your laser actually passes thru glass.
Anyway , the idea is to control the fracturing and thus you can either damp the glass with masking material or laser thry wet tissue etc to try to get a decent even surface for large areas.
Rub n buff or paint will work as colouring agents.
The problem you will have is with dams - the unengraved area that seperates 2 areas of colour so they dont run into each other - your laser will not engrave the glass deep enough for these dams to be effective.
Each of these bottles would take , at an estimate , apart from lasering , a further 4 man hours to complete.
If this is a large order , you will have a big problem delivering more than lets say , 5-7 bottles a day , as a one man show.
As I say , if you arent going to blast these to get a decent surfaced and deep etch , dont touch em.
You can also chemically etch these by using a laser to ablate a mask and then using a glass etching cream or for a deep etch , hydroflouric acid which is VERY VERY nasty stuff. Which ever way you go , the filling of these is going to be painstakingly slow.
What are you charging per bottle - I wouldnt touch this at anything under $60 per one
Sometimes you just have to say no...

Phil Garcia
02-08-2009, 2:30 PM
I was thinking about making the dams as large as possible between colors so that it's a little easier to control the color separation. Do think using a mask per color and spraying an enamel gloss paint would work also??

Pete Simmons
02-08-2009, 3:21 PM
I have a similar possible large order. They want a small yellow logo on wine glasses.

I have tried many things including some test yellow cermark supplied by them. No luck so far. Some things look ok at first but will not survive one dishwasher cycle.

Phil Garcia
02-08-2009, 3:40 PM
A friend has recommended doing it with a air brush, but I don't know about that.

Joe Hayes
02-08-2009, 4:07 PM
Phil - take a look at this link. I believe what they produce is close to what you are wanting to do. Maybe it will give you some ideas. On the "About" page there are some videos of the process.


Phil Garcia
02-08-2009, 4:30 PM
Thanks Joe, that gave me some great ideas. I believe I will have to airbrush the larger areas, i.e. fairway and green... and the smaller areas with a small paint brush. I might have to have someone sandblast the bottles for me and I will just paint them. Any ideas on what a sandblaster would cost for this type of job??

Dave Johnson29
02-08-2009, 5:57 PM
Any ideas on what a sandblaster would cost for this type of job??

My suggestion would be to have someone else do them. Having said that quality control may well be a major issue though. Specially if the bottles are full.

Cheap sandblasters are just that. The important things are the pickup tube design and the gun nozzle (ceramic) design.

You will also need a good air compressor for at least 10cfm at 90+psi. I have a 9cfm and it runs almost constantly with the blast cabinet.

It is messy dusty work. The blaster also needs a dust collector which is like a large vacuum cleaner.

Look for one with a cone-shaped (round or square) bottom with drain door at the pointy end for emptying the media when it is worn out or you need to change grit size. Without it you will be lifting the media out with a cup and then tipping the thing upside down. Hard won experience there. :)

Mike Null
02-08-2009, 5:59 PM

You might want to consider buying a sand carving outfit. They are nowhere near as expensive as a laser and they are clearly superior for glass, marble, granite and brick.

Note how much prep there is before blasting and after painting. Painting is the easy part.

Mike Null
02-08-2009, 6:01 PM
A good sandblasting system will have a pressure pot not a siphon system.

Bill Cunningham
02-08-2009, 10:44 PM
Have you priced this to them yet? I'm with Rodney on the 'minimum' price.. These are not just a job, they are individual works of art, that will be VERY time consuming and expensive to produce.. Personally, unless they are willing to pay 'a lot' of money per bottle(as a individual work of art), I would give them another alternative, that will make you some good money, and give them almost exactly the look they have now at a much lower price.. It's called a 'double bump label' and looks like screen printing..

Mark Plotkin
02-08-2009, 10:44 PM
Dear Phil,

A job like this will never touch the laser. Watch the video in Joe's post, sandblasting is the way this is done. I have both a laser and sandblast cabinet. Sandblasting has it's own challenges. Here are a few to condsider, you need a big compressor that will run on 220.(2 stage is best) the mask and artwork are done on a photo light type system, then you need to apply the mask, registation can be fun, any wrinkes and off it comes before you even try to blast. In addition the rest of the bottle that does not have the mask on it needs to be taped. Next is the color fill, this job looks like airbrush and hand paint. I guess my point is, this is a very time consuming process with lots of chances for errors and defects. Good luck and let us know how you do!

Albert Nix
02-09-2009, 8:17 AM
Find someone with a pad printer.

Phil Garcia
02-09-2009, 9:50 AM
Thanks guys for all the advise. Like always, what a great team we all have here at the forum. Since, I have not done sandblasting before and this is to important to learn with, I believe I will have someone else sandblast the bottles for me and I will do just the painting part for now. I will be able to get a sandblaster with the profits of this job and learn then for the next one. The client has said that if this job turns out OK, they will have a lot more to do, so I am keeping my fingers crossed. It would be a great way to start the year off. I will let you know how things turn-out and post my first bottle when done.
Thanks again for all the advise, help, and links.

Dave Johnson29
02-09-2009, 11:21 AM
A good sandblasting system will have a pressure pot not a siphon system.

Hi Mike,

Potato, potarto :)

I beg to differ but it is probably more of a preference than pressure versus siphon. I have both and use the pressure on rusted car chassis etc and the siphon on finer stuff, usually using beads rather than grit. Admittedly in this case it would be grit for the wine bottles. IMHO, the siphon is much more akin to an airbrush whereas the pressure unit is like a HVLP.

:D:D To each his own though.

Phil Garcia
02-09-2009, 11:37 AM
I found a sandblaster which looks more for doing hobby type work and commercial, but to get started and learn a bit I wonder if this is worth buying.. http://power-tools.hardwarestore.com/66-389-sandblasting-equipment/sandblaster-666622.aspx?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=666622&utm_campaign=googlebase

Does anyone know about this product or something similar???

Mike Null
02-09-2009, 12:03 PM

Short answer--No! If you intend to do sandblasting in any volume and with good quality you must have a professional system. Think $2500 to $4000 new.

Dave, If you want to engrave glass, marble stone etc. a siphon system is inadequate and is the reason your compressor runs constantly. Besides the compressor running constantly you have virtually no control of the media.

The best media for glass bottles as Phil is talking about is silicon carbide in a 150 or 180 grit. ( Alum. oxide is cheaper, dirtier and generates static electricity.)

For quality production engraving systems look at GlasStar, Rayzist and one or two others. Dust collection is a big issue and is the primary reason HF units are less than satisfactory.

Phil Garcia
02-09-2009, 12:09 PM
Thanks Mike, will do. I would like to learn how to do this type of work with a true professional look and feel, just as I do my laser engraving. This sand blasting is a new arena for me but I am sure I can pick it up fairly fast. We might talk a little slow here in Texas but the rest of it we can do pretty quick. LOL:D

Phil Garcia
02-09-2009, 12:14 PM
Mike, the other thing is....that I have to do the sandblasting between changing out all these wine glasses from the Epilog every 2.10 mintues....up down...up down... as they say...careful for what you wish for...right!!:D

Mike Null
02-09-2009, 12:28 PM

Using the laser for that purpose is slow and inefficient--assuming this is going to be a high volume job. Photo resist material is faster, sharper and less expensive even when you consider buying an exposure light.

Here is a link to Glastar, not recommending them above others, but it's a place to start.

there's plenty of good used stuff out there as well.

Jeanette Brewer
02-09-2009, 2:24 PM

Call Geneva Capital (Mike Tripp; 800-408-9352) if you get serious about a sandblaster. A mutual customer of ours went out of business and Geneva had to repossess his equipment. The Xenetech & Epilog are sold but the sandblasting cabinet is still sitting in our warehouse where he left it.

I have no idea how much Geneva is asking for it but it might be worth a phone call. You're welcome to swing by to take a look at it.

PS Our Boys will get their act together next year. New stadium -- new attitude!:cool:

Phil Garcia
02-09-2009, 2:38 PM
Thanks for the tip, I will give them a call and then see about swinging by this week. I'll give you a heads up over the next couple of days.