Adam Thomas - May 2022
The Best Laser Engravers for Metal
Laser Engravers for Metal - Mark, Etch & Engrave
Years ago, man discovered the ability to shape metal, and since then we have been marking it, be it for artistry, personalization or traceability.
Metal is complex, its conductive, reactive, and composed of chemicals, and alloys so, when you are looking for a laser marking machine for metal you will need the specific product that is suitable to serve the purpose. Metal engraving is used for the marking of text, logos, pictures, numbers, codes, and the list is endless.
Metal Laser Engraving Machines
With laser machines, soft metals such as aluminum or hard metals or alloys such as steel can be marked permanently, easily and quickly. The applications range from labeling for traceability to the personalization of promotional items.
Metal laser engravers work by projecting highly concentrated laser beams onto metal surfaces. The laser essentially vaporizes the metal surface, leaving a permanent crevice. This requires a lot of energy though to engrave any hard surface – so laser engravers are powerful tools.
However, there are less drastic ways of marking metal with a laser, allowing for more affordable laser engravers to be of use. For a clear, deep engraving, you’ll need a more powerful CO2 laser engraving machine, but for light marking of metal, we recommend the less expensive diode laser that have been proven to work, but at lower price and power.
Metals You Can Engrave
ALUMINUM: Aluminum has the best strength-to-weight ratio, which is why it’s used in aerospace engineering, but the surfaces are extremely sharp and easily scratched. Since aluminum surfaces have a high thermal conductivity, lasers can mark them at a high temperature for high-speed applications.
STEEL: Steel is a hard material that requires longer marking times than other metals. However, the marking speed can be increased by creating white marks instead of black ones. White marks contrast well with the bare steel color for most steel types. For high-speed marking, laser etching is the best process for steel surfaces. To get the most resistant marks, laser engraving should be used. To increase corrosion resistance, laser annealing creates marks under the surface. You can laser mark any steel alloy, including anodized steel, carbon steel and die steel.
STAINLESS STEEL: Laser marking is most often used to mark stainless steel. The preferred marking method for stainless steel is laser annealing since it protects the chromium oxide layer on the metal surface. As a result, you get high-quality marks and prevent the formation of rust on the surface. Stainless steel doesn’t require a high-power laser. This is because laser annealing works at lower energy levels than other marking processes.
ANODIZED ALUMINUM: When marking anodized aluminum, you can either mark the bare aluminum (before the anodization process) or the anodized layer (after the process). In both cases, the part’s natural resistance to corrosion and abrasive wear is preserved. Laser engraving machines create deep marks in the bare aluminum to ensure that the markings can be read after they’re anodized. Alternately, laser etching machines quickly etch high-quality marks on the oxide layer.
MAGNESIUM: Magnesium has a lower density than other metals and is thus used for parts that need to be lightweight. Laser machines can be specifically configured to etch magnesium and magnesium alloys. Part of the material is removed from the surface, creating highly contrasted black and white marks.
LEAD: Lead and lead alloys have a low thermal conductivity, which means that most of the heat generated by laser marking remains on the surface. Lead materials also have a low melting temperature, making it easy for lasers to induce marks on a localized surface. For those reasons, the amount of energy required to etch lead is lower than other metals.
ZINC: Zinc is not only used for its corrosion resistance, but also for its ability to be die casted. Laser etching is the only laser marking process that generates a high contrast on zinc parts. It can be used regardless of the zinc alloy.
The Best Laser Engravers for Metal from Our Collection
- Engraves Metal, Wood, Canvas, Leather, Glass, Mirrors, Acrylic, and much more
- Working area is 400 x 400mm
- 90 day free mentorship and guidance
- Engraves Metal, Wood, Canvas, Leather, Glass, Mirrors, Acrylic, and much more
- 40w powerful CO2 laser cutting machine with speed up to 350mm/s
- Built-in smart camera to bring your sketch to life
- No internet required & 360° engraving for cylinders
- The Laserbox Rotary supports 110V power outlets
- 90 day free mentorship
- The versatile hybrid laser and blade cutting machine
- Ultra-fine engraving results with compressed spot technology
- 16 MP Smart Camera
- Image Extraction: XTool M1 intelligently captures images, designs, and drawings from any surface
- AI Auto-focus: xTool M1 initiates auto-focusing, including visual identification, material thickness settings and material recognition
- 90 day free mentorship
What Can You Do With Metal Engravers?
Laser engraving has become one of the most popular processes today, especially for manufacturers and service providers that handle metals. Adding complicated designs on metal can now be done in mere minutes thanks to the modern laser machines. Many industries benefit from the increased efficiency in metal cutting and engraving, too:
Production Industries working on automobile parts, machines, pipes, hardware, and tools use laser engraving to introduce barcodes, serial numbers, logo etching, and tracking numbers on them. These engravings are not only legible but permanent as well. This feature makes it once-in-a-lifetime work which doesn’t wear off and prevents tampering of the product. Applications of laser engravers will not come to an end if we keep on discussing them. Such is the scope of this magical invention. Let’s talk about the types of laser marking.
There are basically three types namely laser marking, laser etching, and laser engraving.
1. Laser Marking
Laser marking can be done with relatively low-powered laser devices. Since the beam is low-powered, it doesn’t raise the temperature of the substrate metal as high as in the case of the other two techniques. The four major types of laser marking are annealing, foaming, carbon migration, and coloration. This laser technique is less common as compared to engraving and etching
2. Laser Engraving
Laser engraving removes the substrate material at relatively higher temperatures hence high powered laser beam is used in such techniques. This high temperature vaporizes the substrate metal. It is very quick and creates deeper indentations as compared to the other two techniques. Laser engraving is not recommended for parts that are critical to safety rather for parts that are subjected to wear and tear. It can be used to create indentations on materials other than metals like wood, plastic, leather, and glass
3. Laser Etching
The laser etching process is somewhat a child of laser engraving. In this technique, the heat of the beam creates indentations in the substrate material. Decent depths can be achieved through etching but certainly not more than engraving. Etching also changes the surface behavior of the metal like the contrast and hence the reflexivity. The etching is best suitable for plated metals but the scope is not limited to metals only. It engraves ceramics and polymers, too.
It’s So Easy So Set Up a Modern Electronica Engraver
It is very easy to to set up a Modern Electronica Laser Engraver for laser engraving projects. These laser machines work pretty much like a standard printer, which you use daily at work and home. Engraving with these machines does not require any special education or technical skills.
Why Choose Modern Electronica ?
MModern Electronica offers a wide variety of laser engraving machines for both hobbyists and small businesses. We only choose to provide you the best piece of equipment available in the market. Our support team is the best in the business with years of experience who offers the best advice you can get for your projects. We'll also be here for any of your customer support needs. We provide 90-days free mentorship to all our customers during which we can point you towards helpful lessons, tutorials and resources. We also do our very best to answer all your questions on starting a laser engraving journey and we'll be here every step of the way! Whether its a business or a hobby, we will always be there to support you on a 1-on1 basis with whatever your goals with this craft may be!
Modern Electronica offers 90-days free mentorship on every purchase. Our team of experts will guide you every step of the way
Modern Electronica offers free worldwide shipping on all orders.
BEST PRICE GUARANTEE
Modern Electronica offers the best possible price in the market. You can shop all our products with confidence.
Take a Look at What Our Customers Are Saying!
I bought a CO2 laser and the product has been incredible since I got it. Easy to use and easy to learn. I highly recommend investigating in lightburn as an alternative software to the stock software. Modern Electronica also offers 90 days mentorship which helps a lot in understanding the machine and its software. The laser engraving community is very helpful on Facebook and Reddit as well and you can get any type of help from there as well. I had a minor issue while setting up the machine but the support team helped me right away and everything from there was smooth sailing.
I bought a Diode laser to see if I'd enjoy laser engraving. The laser has done everything I expected. I love trying new things and seeing what happens. Most materials can be engraved with this machine. It is easy to put together, easy instructions, easy to use. I have already upgraded and still plan to use one daily for rotary and less detailed projects. Update after 9 months - a total workhorse and part of my business. I love this laser engraver and use it daily for specific orders.
I am a maker. I love trying new avenues for creating. This laser arrived well packed and everything was included. It took me no time to figure it out how to operate this machine. You don't really need any past experience in laser engraving however if you are familiar with laser engraving then it will be easier to use this machine than anything else. I did cut a piece of plywood to fit just inside the legs of the laser to protect my workspace. Overall, this is a great machine and it suits both small businesses like me and hobbyists