View Full Version : Thin Ice Continued

Ricky Gore
12-19-2007, 5:40 PM
We got our laser yesterday, and was setup & running in less than an hour. That includes unpacking and carrying the beast up the stairs and removing part of a door frame to get it in the room. :) I played with it all day. Man, I love it.

The Pens will not arrive until next week. Everything I've tried so far has worked great. I've even used the Rotary with good results.

One thing that scares me is, I tested a pen my wife has which (I think) is similar to the ones that are coming, and guess what. (Nothing!)
Not a mark at all... I may have to use cermark for these, but was wondering if anyone has suggestions. Should I try the spray can? Seems like that would be overkill for such a small area. Or maybe just thin it and use a foam brush. Whatcha think?


Mike Hood
12-19-2007, 6:07 PM
One thing that scares me is, I tested a pen my wife has which (I think) is similar to the ones that are coming, and guess what. (Nothing!) Not a mark at all... I may have to use cermark for these...

Got a picture of the pens?

Bruce Volden
12-19-2007, 6:59 PM

Go ahead and order some Cerdec (Cermark whatever) as you WILL eventually be using it. I recommend buying bulk (1/2 lb or more) and thinning it down with DNA and applying with a foam brush. As for the pens~I cannot say if even Cermark will help you out. There are metals and metal coatings that plain and simply WILL NOT LASER. Sorry, but this is a forum and I have "been there, done that". Also, further down the road, watch the chrome plated stuff. My $0.02


Mike Null
12-19-2007, 9:04 PM
I second what Bruce has said and add that some paints will not laser either.

Frank Corker
12-20-2007, 5:22 AM
Ricky - have you got your template sorted? You should make yourself something like this and just drop them in, then you can do several at the same time. Here is an example.

Peter Meacham
12-20-2007, 8:56 AM
Nice template Frank - you don't happen to have one premade for 3.25 golf tees do you? I did make one for pencils similar to your pen template but just wanted to see if anyone already has one for tees. Thanks, Pete

Uma Duffy
12-20-2007, 9:59 AM
Thanks, Frank! That's the kind of jig I wish we had taken the time to make when we first started. That will get some use!

Merry Christmas!:)

Ricky Gore
12-20-2007, 12:21 PM
Thanks Frank,

I plan to make a jig, just waiting for the pens to arrive so I can start testing. Meanwhile glass etching is going well. I am submitting a sample Award on the 1st for consideration of a very large job.
We also have some Acrylic Award jobs we are bidding on.

A big thanks to everyone on the forum, after searching through the threads I have found just about every bit of information I need. :)

Wish us luck.


Robert Wilson
12-20-2007, 1:08 PM
I am going to have to break down and get X3. Until then would one of you kind soles convert Franks pen jig to v12 or earlier.

Bob Wilson

Peter Boyford
12-20-2007, 1:22 PM
Done :)

Best regards

Peter Meacham
12-20-2007, 1:28 PM
What material do you folks use for your templates - such as the pen template please. Thanks, Pete

Todd Schwartz
12-20-2007, 2:56 PM
I have used masonite, acrylic and baltic birch. Just depends on what I have surplus of. Right now I have a pile of masonite left over from a project this summer.

Regardless of what I use, the first thing I do is vector cut to make sure I have straight edges to butt up against my X and Y rulers. You need to make so you can position this in exactly the same position time and time again.

Then you can cut out your outlines. Once this is done, be sure put them on their own layer in Corel and turn off the ability to edit and print.

Finally you are ready to put your text and graphics in Corel and laser away.

One hint, regardless of what you use, be sure to raster engrave all the information you can think of, such as what the template is for, what side is up, 0,0 location, which way your product is orientated, customer, etc. Makes it easier when looking through the pile of templates.

Good luck,


Frank Corker
12-20-2007, 6:45 PM
Golf Tees template - Use find and replace to change the names

Eric Allen
12-21-2007, 6:39 AM
I like using Cermark airbrushed on. The control allows so much better results, with it looking consistent all the way through the process. You get a feel for it pretty quickly I think.

Peter Meacham
12-22-2007, 8:27 AM
Frank - you are top drawer - thanks very much. Pete

George Elston
12-23-2007, 8:20 PM
Would someone convert the golf tee's template to v11 or earlier? I would love to give them a try.

Darryl Hazen
12-24-2007, 11:36 AM
Here you go. (Version 11)

Ricky Gore
01-02-2008, 5:18 PM
Well, I got the pens in, and apparently they have a brass barrel with a silver, plastic type coating. The first few engraved well, showing a brass finish below the surface. Unfortunately the 4th one I did showed an aluminum surface below and the client's logo does not look good on that. The aluminum is too close to the color of the surface material. I'm thinking of trying cermark, but it is taking forever to some here. Even so, I think I'll have to run the job to expose the metal surface then apply cermark and run the job again. All this without moving the pen inthe jig. This is really scary. I'm also thinking of trying to mask it and use a black paint to color fill, but I don't know if the logo is too small for this process to work.

Anyone in the Nashville area, that could apply the client's logo in color for a reasonable price?


Bill Cunningham
01-03-2008, 9:37 PM
Taking the pens apart, should be able to identify which ones are the brass ones... You might be best off to mask and laser them, then paint with black enamel.. The mask should be able to accept the logo, and a airbrush, or fine artists bush can apply the enamel in a thin coat.. Try a few first..
That will be a lot easier then gettin the cermark for aluminum, lasering, coating, drying, lasering, washing..

Ricky Gore
01-04-2008, 10:18 AM
Thanks Bill, I tried a sample run with some krylon I had in the garage, but it rubs right off. I found a deal on an aribrush kit, but what is a good local place to buy the enamel paint, and should I let it dry before removing the mask?


Scott Shepherd
01-04-2008, 10:54 AM
I think you're barking up the wrong tree. Trying to cermark or Krylon those is going to be a real pain. There are companies out there who will mark them for very reasonable cost. You could probably sub them out for less than $1 a piece and never have to try and work out a solution that will eat at your profit.

I can't think of the name of the types of companies who do it (just having a moment where I can't think of the name), but find a company in your area who offers promotional items. They can help you. They'll mark it with the proper inks/paints that should last a long time. I think someone else mentioned it, it's probably a pad printer job, and someone who does that would love to do them for $1 a piece (and they'd be making good money at that).

Just my opinion. Last thing you want is to fight through them with an untested method, and 2 weeks down the road you get the phone call "The lettering is all wearing off" and then you'll be making them all twice.