View Full Version : Best way to bevel name plates using 2-ply

Bob Cole
09-14-2007, 3:23 AM
I thought this would be easy, but again, feel like I'm beyond help when it comes to the laser/Corel.

I cut out a few name plates using 1/16 2-ply Romark and the cut is fine and the engraving looks good. I think it would look better if the edges were beveled.

Is there a secret decoder ring I need to bevel with the laser? Should it be done with another device?

I have my first order of 28-1.5"x8" nameplates and want to make sure I make an impression as it could lead to more business. The customer didn't specifically ask for bevel and most of the nameplates they currently have are not.

Thanks for the help.

Mike Null
09-14-2007, 8:06 AM

There is no beveler with the laser. Making name tags and name plates is a big part of my business and a bevel makes them look much more professional.

Sometimes you can find used ones on Ebay. The brands are Quality One, New Hermes and Scott. Johnson Plastics carries two of them. Prices run from about $400 to $1200.

My beveler has more than paid for itself. I also use it for most control panel labels and small signs.

Until you get the beveler you might want to consider rounding the corners on the name tags just to give them a more finished look.

When you're looking at the Johnson site look at JRS sign frames as they can be used to boost your sale and don't require beveling the plates.

For the nameplates you're working on you might rig up a router with a chamfer bit but this is risky and since they have to be done face down you could scratch them.

Joe Pelonio
09-14-2007, 8:14 AM
I thought about buying a beveler but then don't do all that many name badges and eventually came up with an all-laser method that satisfies my customers.

When engraving the text and logo I also engrave the cut line, at 4 points. Then I convert the cut line back to hairline and cut. The bevel is straight, rather than angles but you have to inspect it closely to notice. Works with rounded corners or straight.

I've never had a customer ask for a bevel on nameplates, they mostly go into frames, but it would work on them too.

Stephen Beckham
09-14-2007, 9:12 AM
Okay - so here's the poor mans way of bevels. You might want to practice and get your groove down before trying on real tags...

Being that I was raised in a cabinet shop and for two summers I was the Top-Shop man working Corian and Formica - we beveled everthing with routers as suggested - except when the job called for a slight rounding of the formica to see the color filled band.

We started using a simple filing technique with a Bastard File and found that it was too good and removed too much material in some places. SO we went to a scraping method.

I've applied the same technique to my bevels here with my Romark materials. I've found that the relatively sharp edge of my stainless ruler is not too sharp and can be reverse-dragged along the edge.

Back to the "practice" comment. When you first start - you will make uneven marks - as you get the groove - you can make pretty good looking bevels.

As commented earlier - it's best to get the right tool for the right job and as I get my business beyond it's first full year - I've got a bevel machine on my wish list. The worst thing you could do is put out a half-jacked job to save a few bucks - you might ruin a few learning, but throw them out! Put out only the quality looking badges.

Craig Hogarth
09-14-2007, 11:05 AM
If they don't have bevels now, they may not want them.

I create a beveled appearance by cutting at 100 power and 4 speed on a 35 watt. It melts the edge in a way that the core can be seen around the edges.

Wil Lambert
09-14-2007, 11:18 AM
I do the same thing as Joe does with a 4 point border. Looks nearly the same and I have not had any complaints yet.


George Elston
09-14-2007, 12:59 PM
Neat trick Joe. I took it one step further and used the "rubberstamp" settings to etch the outside lines before cutting. Not only did I get an actual beveled edge but on the mounting holes it almost countersunk them. Possibly with a thicker line for the holes it would give enough room to hold the screw head. Only problem, very slow, 6 min as opposed to 2 for straight engraving. BUT GREAT IDEA!!! The difference in LOOK of the pieces with and without the "beveled" edge is amazing. I'm going to use it on all my tags from now on. The LOOK between the straight engrave and the "rubberstamp" is not really that different. You have to hold the tag on edge and look at it sideways to see the actual bevel, and I think faster (your way) is better.


Joe Pelonio
09-14-2007, 1:25 PM
Neat trick Joe. I took it one step further and used the "rubberstamp" settings to etch the outside lines before cutting. Not only did I get an actual beveled edge but on the mounting holes it almost countersunk them.

I hadn't though of that but for the small name badges it's not worth the extra laser time. Good thinking though, it might come in handy for something else that's higher priced.

Bob Cole
09-15-2007, 2:45 AM
thanks for all the suggestions. I will give it a shot.

The name plates go into a holder but are constantly being changed. I think for this first go, I will do without bevel.

The next job will be for about 150 name plates so thinking a beveler is in my future.

Might just get creative and try to use the Dremel. It has been at least a week since I gave blood.

Vicky Orsini
09-15-2007, 11:50 AM
I have a small beveler (I think it's a New Hermes?) for name tags and other small, straight badges and tags. Keep your eye open on Ebay as well as your local buy 'n' sell. For larger, more complex curves, like guitar pickguards, we bought a really cheap router table at a local wood shop supply place and mounted hubby's router to the underside. We made a jig out of MDF to hold the pickguard. The jig is just the right height to run along the router's bit while the pickguard gets bevelled, allows us to apply the downward pressure that's needed, and it keeps our fingers safely out of the way. ;)

Todd Schwartz
10-16-2007, 10:22 AM
Thought of this tread the other night as I was trying to get a piece off the rowmark material that was left on the edge because of a bad cut on my part.

As a machinist I went and found my deburring tool, used it on the back side to get rid for that pesky nib and then the light bulb turned on. Used it on the front to create a nice beveled edge, exposing the second layer just enough.

I would never recommend this for a large run, but for the occasional need, it took about 10 seconds and worked great.


Bill Cunningham
10-16-2007, 9:33 PM
When I started my business almost 20 years ago, I could not afford the 500-600 bucks 'Canadian' they wanted for a beveler. So, I got a Dremel tool mini router table and bolted to the side of a shop bench. I had to build up the guide with a couple of pieces of 1/4" Aluminum flatbar to make it work right, put in a 45deg. bevel tool, and never again found the need to spend 500 dollars on a bevler.. I still use it for beveling badge material when I have to.. The thin badge border on the laser cut line is preferred method now, but every so often, when I only have to do 'one' badge the dremel beveler still does the trick..