Awards & Engraving

March '19

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10 a-e-mag.com • A&E MARCH 2019 too high, I noticed that my filters were being clogged by large debris and needed changing more frequently. Skin: Another safety area to consider is exposed skin. If a beam reflects, you want as little skin exposed as possible. I have found that a set of gloves comes in handy when pulling parts out of the fiber laser. They tend to get hot! Again, safety is not an area to try to save money or time on — shortcuts will cost you in the future. A FUN PROJECT Up until this project, I have never attempted to engrave brass, and as luck would have it, I got a rush order for brass stamps with a one-day turnaround. I wish that I could say I figured this out on my own, but I ended up emailing Radian with a question for help and within an hour my phone rang. Don't be afraid to reach out to your manufac- turer for help and with any questions. These brass stamps are used by a glass blower to stamp a design into molten glass. The glass is then turned into jewelry or attached to another piece and annealed. The stamp diameter is just 1 inch, and the designs range from .60 to .75 of an inch in size. Needless to say, the lines were small and detailed. I was amazed by the detail my laser achieved, as well as how beautifully the designs translated to glass. For these stamps, the main need was detail and depth. I used a set of calipers to measure my depth and was at 1 to 1.5 mm deep into the stamp. I used two different pulse widths — this helps deep-engrave the brass and then polish the engraving. The higher the pulse width, the more "bite" there is from the laser. Being able to adjust the pulse width is a great perk of having a MOPA laser. While running the stamps, I discovered a feature I had overlooked in the laser software. There is a box marked Continuous; when checking this box, the laser runs through all of your settings until you tell it to stop. The stamps ran for about 20 minutes, so I was able to set a timer and check my piece once the timer went off. Here are all of my settings: • Laser used: Radian Laser Systems RL-GT3-F60 60-watt 3D MOPA • Hatch • Fill 1: • Outline no mark selected • Cross Hatch selected • Hatch Spacing .01 • Cross Hatch selected • Fill 2: • Outline no mark selected • Cross Hatch selected • Hatch Spacing .01 • Cross Hatch selected • Angle: 45 • Fill 3: • Outline no mark selected • Cross Hatch selected • Hatch Spacing .06 • Cross Hatch selected • Pen 2 • Engraving Settings: • Pen 1: • Repeat 5 • Speed: 800 mm/s • Power: 85% • Frequency: 45 KHz • Pulse Width: 350 • Pen 2: • Repeat 2 • Speed: 2200 mm/s • Power: 30% • Frequency: 120 KHz • Pulse Width: 200 I hope this helps with your decision- making process when it comes to fiber lasers. A&E These brass stamps are used by a glass blower to stamp a design into molten glass. The stamps ran for about 20 minutes, so I was able to set a timer and check my piece once the timer went off. Read the main article for the settings I used.

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