Helpful Tips to Keep in Mind When Laser Engraving Wood

Many people have recently realized all the benefits offered by laser engravers. One of the most popular materials used with these machines today is wood. This is seen when looking at the information found on pages like However, engraving on wood can be tricky, and new users may need some tips and advice about how to make the most of this. Keep reading to find out what these tips are.

Wood and Laser Engravers

There is no question that wood is the most laser friendly material available on the market today. It is possible to use a laser engraver to cut or engrave different wood types depending on what the goal is. For example, lighter colored woods, such as maple and cherry, are ideal for laser engraving because of the nice contrast they offer. If someone wants to create wood-engraved items to see via Etsy or on their own website, choose lighter-colored woods.

When wood is denser, more power will be needed to cut through. For example, hardwoods are going to require more laser power than softwoods. As a result, it is essential to understand the characteristics of the specific wood type before trying to engrave on it. If someone visits a woodworking ship, they may get a lot of information about the wood type someone wants to use for their project. The most commonly engraved hardwoods include alder, cherry, oak, maple, and walnut. This is because their grains work well with the laser engravers. Oaks will have the biggest grains, which means the engraved work won’t be as neat as the walnut, cherry, alder, and maple, which all have smaller grains.

Plywood and Laser Engravers

Plywood is often used as a type of building material, and it will not respond well to the laser engraving process. Since it is made out of wood chips, the grains that are in the plywood run in all different directions, which makes it difficult to attain the desired depth consistency when engraving with a laser.

Also, air bubbles present in the plywood may interfere with the laser beams. This means that achieving neat and clean cuts is virtually impossible. While this is true, there are some specialty plywood products that will be able to engrave well. This type of specialty plywood is usually available for sale at hobby shops, rather than the typical lumbar supplier.

Depth and Contrast Considerations

Depth and contrast are crucial factors when trying to engrave wood. Increasing power levels will help increase contrast and depth. Unlike other types of materials, wood will discolor easily if laser engraved, which is why wood leads the group when it comes to the top materials for laser engraving. However, a lot of power must be used when engraving. As a result, most wood will require the laser to be at 100% to achieve the best results possible. While this is true, wood is easier to work with and can create beautiful designs with settings as little as 300 DPI. However, for the best results, choose a 600 DPI engraving.