View Full Version : Rotary Attachment question

Bobby McCarley
02-29-2012, 6:43 PM
Is there a special rotary attachment used to engrave pens or is the standard attachment used. The person who I use to engeave my pens says she has problems
engraving around the circumference of the pen because the attachment she has is more for glasses or goblets.

Bobby McCarley

Craig Matheny
02-29-2012, 7:22 PM
That can be a true statement I know on my Epilog I can do drum sticks but never have done a pen to the point I had to rotate it normally just doing names not an issue.

Joe Hillmann
02-29-2012, 7:39 PM
Do you know what brand of laser she has? There are 4 different types of rotary's that I have seen and some would be better for doing pens then others but with a proper jig I don't see why pens couldn't be done in all styles of them.

Dan Hintz
02-29-2012, 8:21 PM
Your engraver needs to set up a jig to make the tool work for her, not the other way around. I had difficulty with small items on first glance, but with proper setup and jigs, it's easy peasy.

Scott Woodson
03-01-2012, 11:07 AM
Your engraver needs to set up a jig to make the tool work for her, not the other way around. I had difficulty with small items on first glance, but with proper setup and jigs, it's easy peasy.


Dan is spot on, jigs to hold the pieces are a necessity. However, I'd also like to share a piece of advice that I've learned the hard way. Use manual focus and remember to lower the table BEFORE you turn off your machine (If you're using an Epilog). If not you run the risk of the lens head crashing into your jig. The Epilog sends the head back to upper left hand corner directly. When the rotary attachment is in the machine and you're focusing down to do a thin project the head may not clear the attachment when it attempts to go back to "Home" position creating a HOLY CRAP moment :-)

Good luck


Bobby McCarley
03-01-2012, 10:42 PM
These are some pictures of the rotary attachment that my engraver has and pictures of a jig that I turned hoping that she could put the logo that I have an order for on some pens.
I would appreciate any comments yay or nay on if it may work or not.

Joe, she has a Universal M-300

Dee Gallo
03-01-2012, 11:37 PM

You need to do a search for posts by Chuck Stone. He is a master at the type of work you want done and has generously given lots of advice to engravers here.

cheers, dee

Bruce Boone
03-02-2012, 12:08 AM
I have the rotary setup on the right and have done plenty of pens (and rings) on mine. First of all, I turned the base of the cone off so that my laser head wouldn't hit it, then I made a cylindrical metal piece that exactly fits in the hole. I did O ring grooves on the part and added the O rings to add some friction when it was inserted into the cone's hole. Out of the metal piece is a 1/4"-20 threaded rod sticking out. The pen is pulled apart, and the brass tubes fit on the shaft perfectly with enough friction to rotate the pen with the axis. Only half the pen is done at once in this process, but I was doing it before they were assembled. No tailstock is needed. For my rings, I use the same setup, but use a nut turned into a cone shape to trap it in place. I always know where zero is for my designs.

Joe Hillmann
03-02-2012, 11:43 AM
I have that exact same machine and rotary. Here are some pictures of jigs that I cut out of 1/4 inch plywood using the laser to hold odd shaped objects.225960

The center circle is a snug fit into the hole in the head of the rotary, to align everything when cutting out the parts on the laser I also cut a 1/4 inch hole in the center of the disks so when I glue them together I can put a dowel through the center hole.

Using this method it only takes about 10 minutes to design, cut and glue a jig to do items that won't fit otherwise.

Bobby McCarley
03-02-2012, 1:52 PM
Thanks for all of the help. it is greatly appreciated.