View Full Version : Help Needed! trouble engraving logo on tumblers

Bill Stearns
05-15-2017, 12:28 PM
Hi All,
I often engrave YETI /RTIC type tumblers and glassware. So far I've been able to avoid having to buy ‘n install a rotary device - by making sure the text and/or graphic fits within the space before the item begins to curve ‘n lose power enough to engrave properly. (I, of course, use Cermark on stainless.) I’m dealing with one logo; a deer with antlers, which projects out to the right. My Epilog/CorelDraw X5 auto focuses on the far right (antler); doesn’t lift high enough to clear the center of the item. (resulting in the focus plunger scratching across the center, while starting to engrave.)
If the focus plunger could start in the center of the graphic, ’stead of the far right, I think I’d be okay.(hate to have to make the image smaller.) Any way to focus on and start engraving in the graphic’s center, ‘stead of the far right?

I’m reading ‘bout “center/center”, yet it appears it will still begin engraving from the far right?


Kev Williams
05-15-2017, 12:39 PM
A: With the lens in focus to the table, cut a small piece of wood, plex, scrap rowmark, etc, until it fits perfectly between the bottom of the lens or housing (which ever is closest to the table) and the table.
--this now your focus tool. Make copies.

B: remove the autofocus plunger and whatever parts of it hang below the bottom of the lens.

C: forget autofocus from now on.

Seems most here don't use it. I sure don't, exactly because of 'interference' jobs like yours...

Real Mercier
05-15-2017, 1:44 PM
I have the Epilog Mini 24 also. It came with a focus tool and I use it. The auto-focus is great for flat material but gets in the way for round work. I took it out and have not put it back in. Use the focus tool. For round work, hit X/Y Off, then the Go button and now you move the lens anywhere on the table and raise/lower the table as needed. I would focus on the lowest part and the highest part and then split the difference. Then set the lens at the center of the graphic (use the red dot pointer). Hit Set Home. Using center-center, the machine will move one edge of the graphic to the other edge and then return to the center.

Hope that helps.
Real Mercier

Tim Bateson
05-15-2017, 2:26 PM
I'll restate the above... grab tightly a hold of the springy auto focus plunger... and pull like you would a lawn mower cord! Much better off manually focusing anyway.

Bill Stearns
05-15-2017, 2:27 PM
I'll try your suggestions. - after all this time I'm gonna kick myself if removing auto focus plunger indeed allows for a larger engraving of image on YETI style tumblers 'n glassware! ONE QUESTION THOUGH: once I figure out using the V-shaped focus tool (and center/center) technique is it also used for flat item engraving? Plastic signs, wood plaques, etc. Or, do I have to put the auto focus plunger back in for these?

Thanks again - Bill

Real Mercier
05-15-2017, 2:44 PM
There are instructions for removing the plunger on the Epilog website. It is very easy to remove. I don't know if I would use Tim's technique. The focus tool is used for everything. Once it is out, I would leave it out.

Real Mercier

Kev Williams
05-15-2017, 4:14 PM
for the record, I DO use my focus plunger on occasion, and that would be engraving wine glasses, due to the diameter variances. Having the machine autofocus each glass is MUCH faster than manual focusing, and I also don't have to teach the wife how to manually focus.

so, remove it, but save it for later :)

Tim Bateson
05-15-2017, 4:23 PM
...I don't know if I would use Tim's technique. ...

I agree, but that really was the method I used. That damn thing got in the way one too many times. On that day my fuse was short & the AF plunger paid the price. Glad I got use to it as the Fusion doesn't have a plunger. You can set it in the software, but 90% of the time I use the tool.

John Lifer
05-15-2017, 6:53 PM
Tim! almost as bad as me shooting the printer! (or punting the toaster out the back door)

Bill Stearns
05-15-2017, 8:50 PM
Hey Guys,
I wrote a note; must've pushed the wrong button; didn't seem to post. Just want' a thank you all again teaching me I don't need to (nor should I) use the auto focus! I snapped the manual focus tool into place; didn't even need to remove the plunger! - test-engraved some glasses ... seemed to engrave fine! Now, to start on 'bout 80 RTIC tumblers! (I was this close to thinking I'd have to turn my tumbler engraving business over to a competitor who has a rotating device!) - now, I don't have to! Why, for ten years, I've put off understanding 'n trying "manual focus", don't know! 'Why I love my business; learn somethin' new every week! Thanks Again! - Bill

Bert Kemp
05-16-2017, 12:26 AM
I think I recall reading somewhere on the forum that you can get better results on round objects (no rotary) using a longer lens.

Kev Williams
05-16-2017, 2:35 AM
I'm fortunate to have a machine with a programmable table to automatically raise or lower the table.

I Cermark titanium bracelets for a promo customer, and use this little trick in Corel to figure out the focus distance around the radius...

What I do is draw a circle the same diameter as what I'm engraving. In this pic I used the 3.12" 20oz Yeti diameter.
Then I just center the text I want to engrave on the top edge.
Then I draw simple rectangles beneath the letters to the edge of the radius...
--then I just see how tall the rectangles are and jot down the distances.
In this case, blue would raise .025, red .055, green .09, and magenta .185.
This would be pain by focus tool, or even manually adjusting by Z coordinate. Programmable table does it all automatically...

Also note that the N and e are just about beyond the practical limit of flat engraving on this arc..

And a final note, if you're ever engraving down the side of an arc like this, BE AWARE that the beam WILL REFLECT off the radius
at an angle. That's how I caught my mustache on fire... Not fun!