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Tim Bateson
05-21-2010, 6:46 PM
Was out of real marble and needed a gift for a baptism this Sunday. I came up with this. Finely sanded 1/8 birch ply/Spray painted white/Lasered.
I only had semi-gloss white. next time I would suggest a flat white. I'm still considering brushing black powder paint into the raw wood.

fred sanchez
05-21-2010, 7:05 PM
looks nice good job

Ray Uebner
05-21-2010, 7:13 PM
That looks nice good job. I think you are right on the paint being flat but the gloss looks good also.

Belinda Williamson
05-22-2010, 6:10 AM
Thanks for posting this, Tim. It's nice to see something other than black marble. For me black marble says "memorial" and I just can't use it for anything revolving around a wedding or a birth. I like this idea. :)

Frank Corker
05-22-2010, 6:51 AM
Nice result Tim, looks quite unique, good job!

Tim Bateson
05-22-2010, 9:26 PM
OK, here is the final product. I did decide to use powder paint & I'm glad I did. The final product looks more like a B&W photo than it does a wood engraving.
For a cleaner finish, I need to find a way to seal the white paint prior to engraving and the powder paint.
I took the picture without glass to avoid the glare.

Dee Gallo
05-22-2010, 10:20 PM
This is a really nice piece, Tim. No question that they will love it. But with the end result looking "more like a B&W photo than it does a wood engraving", what is the point? Personally, I liked the wood grain showing. To me, the unique laser engraved look is what appeals over plain photographs.

I could see it if it was going to be outdoors, but under glass indoors, it will be ignored as an engraving.

That's just my opinion, and does not detract from the good job you did on it. I thank you for sharing the technique - that is useful info we can use sometime! Gives me ideas for future playtime.

cheers, dee

Tim Bateson
05-22-2010, 11:07 PM
I agree Dee. However in this case I had to do with materials I had on hand. Much like an artist - for this piece I had a picture of it in my mind with a lot of brilliant white.
I do agree it's not the best use of wood substrate, but a different one. I originally wanted a wood burn look in the darker area. This would have left a lot of wood exposed as in my first photos. The problem was in achieving that result, I also lost details. I'm wondering if a white stain or white-wash would work better for this application?
Either way, I love the near photo quality I achieved on wood using only white spray paint, a laser, and black powder paint.
None of the pictures I took showed the details that I can see with my eyes. Such as wrinkles in the clothing, fine details of her diamond wedding band, the shading streaks in her hair or the minute creases of the baby's knuckles.

James Terry
05-24-2010, 12:44 AM
Is this done using Photograv? Can the same be accomplished with Corel or Photoshop?

Tim Bateson
05-24-2010, 1:08 AM
Is this done using Photograv? Can the same be accomplished with Corel or Photoshop?

I no longer use PhotoGrav. I use a really old version of Photoshop (CS) to edit and size the photo & Corel to laser it. Rather than using PhotoGrav, I've found Epilog's Dithering functions quicker & quality just as good.

Jeff Belany
05-24-2010, 11:13 AM
Might I ask which of the Epilog dithering you used? Any what adjustments to power/speed when you use the dither? I just tried the dithering for the first time and and the 'brighten' one worked great! The others didn't do very well but I haven't tried making power/speed adjustments to them yet. Over the years I've had pretty good luck with photos using just Photoshop and the previous laser (LMI 100w) I ran. Now that I have my own (helix 45w) I have had terrible luck with photos. Maybe I just lost my touch.

BTW -- great job on the piece you just did. May have to try the white paint idea.

Jeff in northern Wisconsin

Tim Bateson
05-24-2010, 12:23 PM
Jeff, I do use the various dithering features, depends on the substrate and photo/graphic. For this piece the photo was sized & set at 300dpi, I used the Epilog brighten mode, 200dpi/63sp/100pw 1/16" out of focus.

Michael Kowalczyk
05-24-2010, 5:04 PM
OK, here is the final product. I did decide to use powder paint & I'm glad I did. The final product looks more like a B&W photo than it does a wood engraving.
For a cleaner finish, I need to find a way to seal the white paint prior to engraving and the powder paint.
I took the picture without glass to avoid the glare.
Hey Tim,
Looking good! Is that the 3mm I sent you? Yet another use for it. I think that the frame is important when using the 3mm ply.

Where do you get the black powder paint? How would laser toner work?

Thanks for sharing and ...

Tim Bateson
05-24-2010, 6:25 PM
Mike, Yes, this is some of that birch ply.
I use the Powder Paint from Harbor Freight - $4.95 for a quart size container which is more paint than I will likely ever use. It comes in Black, Yellow, White, & Red. I still need to find a supplier for Blue.
I've heard of people here using toner, with mixed results - some good, some bad.
My Powder Paint technique is:
1. Seal the wood (makes clean-up easier)
2. Laser
3. Apply Powder Paint with an artist paint brush
4. Take a straight-edge over the area several times to force it into the lasered area and level it off.
5. Laser again at low power: 100sp/11pw (too high of power will evaporate the paint).
5.5 If it's a big area or deep repeat steps 3-5
6. Vacuum with a shop-vac
7. Gently clean the non-Powder Paint areas.
8. Apply sealer/top coat/polyurethane/shellac - what-ever your finish sealer of choice.

Mr Mike Mills
02-10-2014, 4:23 PM
After you laser the powder paint. How secure is it. Can i use the air hose to blow off? I just have tried 2 different times does not really seem to stick to the engraved area. I am using it on oak.

Does anyone have an up close picture on what their powder coat fill looks like

Bert Kemp
02-10-2014, 11:27 PM
I've used black and it sticks good, I had a piece that wasn't sealed, and the powder after I vac it off was still in the grain of the wood. I put it under the sink sprayer and washed of the the powder, the engrave stayed fine. That was black. I still haven't found good settings for the colored powders, Has anyone else had good luck with colored powder coat??

Tim Bateson
02-11-2014, 9:31 AM
As with Bert, I use a vacuum to clean-up. I'm not sure how it would hold up to an air hose. However after it's sealed, it's locked in.

Mr Mike Mills
02-11-2014, 11:39 AM
This is what mine is doing, and this one was after I wiped it off with a rag. The rag pulled some of it off the Mr. 282232

What would happen if you filled with the powder paint and then clear coated? Would that stay in.

Tim Bateson
02-11-2014, 3:40 PM
How much power are you using on the powder paint? How thick are you putting the powder in? Doesn't require much of either.

Mike Chance in Iowa
02-11-2014, 4:29 PM
I had better luck with Harbor Freight colors when I applied several light layers and engraved with a slow, but light power setting. Each light dusting of powder and then engraving made the color look better, but it was still a slow process. I have also tried a thick layer while engraving slow to try to "bake" the powder on, but I have had mixed results with the powder flaking off the wood, while bits of it need a chisel to take it off!

Mr Mike Mills
02-11-2014, 5:01 PM
How much power are you using on the powder paint? How thick are you putting the powder in? Doesn't require much of either.

The lasering is only about 1/64 - 1/32" deep and I filled the entire thing up to the top.

Bert Kemp
02-11-2014, 6:47 PM
I had better luck with Harbor Freight colors when I applied several light layers and engraved with a slow, but light power setting. Each light dusting of powder and then engraving made the color look better, but it was still a slow process. I have also tried a thick layer while engraving slow to try to "bake" the powder on, but I have had mixed results with the powder flaking off the wood, while bits of it need a chisel to take it off!

Mike what raster pwr and spd do you use. Wha watt tube do you have?

Mike Chance in Iowa
02-11-2014, 7:14 PM
45-watt. I start out at 100 speed, 11 power 600dpi if it's a light coat and slow down the speed depending upon colors. I found an old test piece of alder wood where engraved text next to a square. I jotted down "4 thin layers at 90/10" and the HF colors turned out fairly nice when it came to text, but the white squares could have used a few more layers. The yellow/orange and the red colors looked better then the white. The black by far was the nicest test.

I also did some "thick powder" tests where the speed/power was 10/5. The white & yellow colors flaked off while the red & black colors are "okay." About a year or two ago, just for the heck of it, I tossed a piece of finished alder with a thick layer of black into the oven for maybe 1 minute. The black looked fantastic, but the finish on the piece of wood bubbled up and looked horrible. LOL

Bert Kemp
02-11-2014, 7:38 PM
but the finish on the piece of wood bubbled up and looked horrible. LOL


I won't try that then, maybe if you seal the wood with a light coat of wood sealer not a shellac or urethane.

Tim Bateson
02-11-2014, 11:00 PM
I use 11 power & 100 Speed.

Dan Hintz
02-12-2014, 5:50 AM
I use 11 power & 100 Speed.

So, so, so... so you're saying it goes to 11? :D

Bert Kemp
05-04-2014, 3:46 PM
This is what mine is doing, and this one was after I wiped it off with a rag. The rag pulled some of it off the Mr. 282232

What would happen if you filled with the powder paint and then clear coated? Would that stay in. I was reading this old thread again to see if anyone was having good luck with colors and see your wiping it with a rag, try the Vacuum.
I raster at 100spd 20 pwr on my 40 watt. thats Black, still working on colors.288656This is still in laser waiting to be cut out but took a quick picture to show the powder coat after a quick vac before cutting. Will finish clean up after cut.