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photo engraving

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I've been asked if we could engrave the attached photo onto a silver plated tray, but I'm wondering if a laser machine might give better results more quickly than the process used on our Universal.

I took out the background and did a test run on part of the image. It took half an hour just to do the top of the lady's head down to the level of her eyes. so I think it would take about 4 hours to do the whole thing.

I'd be interested to know what results any of you have had doing photos on a laser machine, then I may suggest that the customer uses one of you instead. 

Thanks, Valerie

platebw (1).jpg


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On 8/11/2019 at 5:37 PM, Auto Key Wizard said:

For any long duration one-off engraving jobs, we would set the machine to run it overnight, the job would be complete and machine available for the next working day

That's certainly worth considering, thanks. If I can be brave enough to leave the machine unsupervised for such a long time.


Surprised not to have had any responses from those of you with laser machines though. Do none of you engrave photos? 

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22 hours ago, Forest Cobbler said:

If I can be brave enough to leave the machine unsupervised for such a long time.

If you consider that all our machines are powered up for around eight hours daily, so powered overnight isn't really an issue.

I presume you have an automated machine, So there is no need to stand there watching whilst it does what it does, That would be like watching paint dry. :smt102

Just check the settings, a quick test run, press start, turn off the lights and go home :smt023

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Not expecting it to be done in colour, I just added a colour version of the photo to the message.

Not that it's an issue any more anyway, the customer brought the tray in this afternoon and are happy to pay for whatever time it takes. Now I have to dust off my memory of how to do photo engraving and get on with it. Yikes! 

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  • 2 weeks later...

It took a while, and several false starts, to remember exactly how to prepare the image for engraving and I did a few test runs on various bits of the picture while I made adjustments to the settings , but I did it.

The engraving itself didn't take as long as I'd feared, maybe only an hour and a half rather than four. I'd forgotten that the 'picture engraving' process moves much more quickly than diamond drag.

Do I want to promote it as a service? I'll have to think really hard about how long it took to do compared to how much the average customer is prepared to pay.


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Good result V, 

We have the same software as you and used to offer these on small salvers or key rings but due to the time involved and the customers reluctance to pay for that time we no longer offer the service. We do them occasionally for friends/family but that's it! 

Shame really but at the end of the day we can't tie one of our machines up for a couple of hours for a £12 (engraved) key ring!

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Oh wow. £12 is far too cheap for the time involved. I quoted the customer £125 for this and they'd happily have paid a bit more. 

I probably spent a couple of hours on and off over the course of a week getting the settings right but, as I say, I was having to relearn everything so hopefully it wouldn't take so long in future. Then it took another hour and a half to engrave the 100mm diameter picture. So I think the price we quoted is reasonable for that. 

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