View Full Version : How can I make this?

Scott Shepherd
05-10-2010, 11:19 AM
I have a customer that wants something done and I did my famous "sure, not a problem" speech on the spot, which has now turned into "crap, now what?" :)

I think this is easy but I've got one of those mental blocks right now I can't get past.

Needs about 20 signs, all different. They need to be about 4" x 6" or 3" x 5" or 4" x 4" (not critical). They want them to be clear with an image on the back, solid color, looking like it's frosted. Then, they want these paragraphs of text on the front in black. The text would be quite small, probably in the 10 point range. Each sign has different text on it.

For the life of me, I can't figure out how to do both. I can use cast acrylic and get the image on the back, but can't figure out the paragraph text on the front. I suppose I could color fill the front. Would rather not, but I guess I could if I had too.

Any suggestions?

Larry Bratton
05-10-2010, 11:38 AM
That's a hard one (at least for me). I don't see anyway to get black text on a piece of clear plastic without filling it. Maybe some of these other miracle workers on here have a solution.

Rodne Gold
05-10-2010, 11:48 AM
Gonna have to flip em over , front engrave and colour fill - its not a major mission tho - use undiluted automotive paint to flood fill , a straight piece of card to scrape off excess and meths to clean
Otherwise use black "gilders wax" or black rub n buff and turpentine to clean off.

Scott Shepherd
05-10-2010, 12:19 PM
Thanks Guys, I try to run from color filling as fast as I can, but looks like I'll have to go there this time around just to make the deadline (due next week).

Dang it!!!!!!!!!!!!

Scott Shepherd
05-15-2010, 7:29 PM
Here's what they ended up being- made from 1/4" green edge (doesn't show that well in the photo, but looks really nice in person), engraved the logo on the back, engraved the text on the front and color filled. Turned out well. Did one sample for them, they ordered 3 dozen of them. Turned out to be a really nice job. They will be mounted using stainless standoffs.

John Noell
05-15-2010, 8:00 PM
Very classy look (even if a bit hard to read). Nice work!

Dan Hintz
05-15-2010, 9:08 PM

I thought the same thing with the first pic, but the second pic is probably closer to reality... once it's up on a wall, I bet it's even easier to read. Many museum exhibits and donor walls use a similar format, and I haven't had a problem reading those... the background makes a lot of difference.

Gary Hair
05-15-2010, 9:53 PM
the background makes a lot of difference.

I agree. The dark background in the first picture made the text hard to read. Against the light background in the second picture it was much easier. Putting them on stainless will look very sharp and be very easy to read.


Rodne Gold
05-16-2010, 1:09 AM
Looks real good - well done - the colour filling seems to have not been the mission you thought it would be.
A tip for stuff like that , use a shade of grey for the logo not solid black , it then doesnt frost as white and is sort of watermarked and doesnt interfere with the front engraving as much.

Viktor Voroncov
05-16-2010, 1:30 AM
Perfect work!

Scott Shepherd
05-16-2010, 7:59 AM
Thanks all, I appreciate the kind words. I will say I was not happy with it at all. I thought "You can't read the logo in the back because of the text". I dropped off the sample, send an email saying "I dropped off the sample, but I'm very disappointed with the results, you can't read the background image, so we'll start working on another direction...." and the reply I got was "Love it! Perfect! It is exactly what I wanted...." So there ya go. You never know, I guess.

Albert Nix
05-16-2010, 8:21 AM
Nice work Scott. What did you end up using to color fill with?

Scott Shepherd
05-16-2010, 8:34 AM
It's just a black acrylic paint, craft style paint.

Dan Hintz
05-16-2010, 9:33 AM

We're our own worst critics, but the client's answer is usually similar to yours... we think it needs a lot of work, they're ecstatic. Go figure! Maybe there's an advantage to clients who set the bar really low :)

Larry Bratton
05-16-2010, 10:42 AM
Beautiful job! Love it.

Dee Gallo
05-16-2010, 12:44 PM
Nice work! I think we are so used to seeing the amazing stuff the laser can do we forget the "first time effect" most people experience when they see a laser engraved piece.

The two sided feature really enhances the sign and when it's installed it will be beautiful. Since you created just what the client envisioned, it's perfect in their eyes and good for you to get it all figured out.

cheers, dee

kyle bonnell
05-17-2010, 12:22 PM
Is "green edge" glass with a green edge or is it a plastic? If it is glass could you have used cermark for glass? It would add $3 to the cost of each sign but it makes a nice mark without color filling.

Dan Hintz
05-17-2010, 12:30 PM
LOL, I think Kyle may have shown us all up... Cermark never popped into my head for this application. A real "Duh!" moment...

Rodne Gold
05-17-2010, 1:22 PM
In the first post he mentions Cast acrylic - would be very difficult to do this in glass without blasting it.

Dan Hintz
05-17-2010, 1:31 PM
The cast acrylic appeared to be a self-imposed limitation. If Steve chose to go with glass, I see no reason why he couldn't get the etched look using the laser...

Scott Shepherd
05-17-2010, 1:44 PM
They wanted plastic, not glass. I mentioned glass in the beginning, but they said they would really like to use plastic if possible.

Viktor Voroncov
05-17-2010, 3:05 PM
But idea with glass and engraving with Cermark is not bad :) Will try. Unfortunately color choice is not wide - black, green, blue :(

William Desrochers
05-18-2010, 8:49 AM
Very nice work~!