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David Linahan
12-08-2013, 7:46 PM
A friend has bought his young son a black ukulele for his next birthday. He has asked if I would be able to engrave his name onto it. My concern is that it is a plywood construction and is finished with a very high gloss. Would engraving this surface cause any blistering or other harm to the surrounding finish?..

Thanks..Dave.

Bill Cunningham
12-08-2013, 8:56 PM
Mask it, and engrave through the mask with a light pass at first to just mark the masking paper to confirm positioning then crank it up a bit and engrave. run a second pass if needed. If focus is tight, you wont damage the surrounding finish.. Once done just peal of the mask.. If it needs colour filling, do it through the mask.. I use heavy tack transfer paper for masking, and it even works for light sandblasting

David Somers
12-08-2013, 11:36 PM
David,

If the Uke is a really good one, think they might go for engraving on the inside of the Uke through the sound hole so you don't damage the finish? You would need a longer focal length lens than the standard supplied lens, but that should let you burn at that distance. Ukes are not that thick.

Just a thought! Hope his son has a great time with it!!!!! I used to live in HI for years and kids there loved em and took them everywhere with them. You were the cool kid in the group if you could even pretend to play like Jake Shimabukuro or Bethany Paiva!

Dave

Mike Null
12-09-2013, 8:06 AM
Depending on the thickness of the plywood I'd be inclined to do an inlay instead of just engraving.

276646

David Somers
12-09-2013, 4:21 PM
Great idea Mike! I especially like the inlay on the head in your example as a possible approach for engraving a good instrument.

Dave