What’s the Difference between Laser Engraving, Laser Marking and Laser Cutting?

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At a glance, this question may seem like a very basic question. But, if you think it through, this question would baffle both the customer and the seller who is selling the equipment. The terms laser engraving, laser marking and laser cutting gets interchanged all the time causing mistakes in configuring the correct apparatus for the job.

We are Laser engravers in Sydney, who have worked in the laser technology for two decades now. We are situated in the main metro area of Sydney, and have been in the forefront of laser technology for quite some time now. We specialize in engraving on any surface with our modern laser technology. Given a project, we determine the feasibility of it, and we specify the right process and the type of laser equipment for the job.

What is Laser Engraving?

Laser Engraving is the most common term used in Laser engineering. Simply defined, it Is a process where material is lost or vaporized while creating the mark. For example, CO2 laser engraves on plastic for signage. This process includes a two-ply plastic with two levels, where one is called the ‘cap’ and the other the ‘core’. Now, the engraving process destroys the cap and discloses the core to create the wonderful beautiful sign. Metals can also be engraved with the use of laser technology. Generally, engraving is done to assure permanence, and for that material is removed to create the depth required. Usually, the engraving process is done by 1064 nm lasers, since these types of lasers cope up well with metals. One of the example of 1064 nm lasers is YAG. Engraving a metal surface by the lasers, may cause rusting or oxidation, since the machined surface is lost in this process. Before laser engraving, this question should be asked to the customer, that if he/she wants depth. Since, if depth is of utmost importance, there would be rust or oxidation of the base material. Depending on the answer to this question, the next course of action may be decided.

What is Laser Marking?

Laser marking also known as precipitation marking is done when the surface of the metal or the object must remain intact. These types of markings are done by high precision instruments such as surgical instruments. In laser marking, the carbon is redistributed in the surface causing a jet-black mark. The surface disruption is only in the level of micron. If the laser marking is done correctly, the surface will have no rusting or oxidation even under salt spray tests. Plastics like Delrin and ABS also allows a nice contrast in the surface, when processed with precision lasers. Same surface processed with CO2 laser causes no contrast.

What is Laser Cutting?

Laser cutting is often confused with laser engraving, but, to be quite frank, laser cutting is sectioning or cutting a piece directly with the help of laser techniques. Now, most of the laser cutting is done by CO2, since we have said in the past that, CO2 actually interact with the material rather than interacting with the pigment. Special attention is given to the intricate details while laser cutting, and they are also called as ‘flame polished edges’.

Understanding the basic terminology of laser techniques help while you are shopping for a laser. Laser Engravers is the best in laser cutting and engravings in Sydney, who has been in the forefront of laser technology. Call us to know more.