Awards & Engraving

2019 Custom Gift Annual

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A&E MID-MAY 2019 • 67 4 For the artwork in this example, there are some fine details in the logo, so we followed the listed settings. The desired result with the laser mask is that the laser raster engraves through the mask where you want to sandblast and leaves the mask everywhere else. The other perk to using a laser is that you can make sure a run of mugs all has the artwork at the same height because the laser's X,Y axis was set the same for them all. 5 Use masking tape to mask off any other areas of the mug that are not covered by the laser mask. Make sure to push down any bubbles that you have on the laser mask pattern and make sure the tape is pressed down tight as well. Any bub- bles or weak areas are potential areas where sand can hit the mug when you are blasting and cause over-blast. 6 Now it is time to sandblast! I like to turn on the blast cabinet and set my pressure before putting my items in the cabinet. Once the cabinet has pressurized, I set my pressure to about 40 psi for these mugs. I can use higher pressure, but this pattern has some details that can be lost quickly. 7 When you get your glass, double check for any tape that has lifted off and look for any air bubbles that are close to your engraving. If there are air bubbles, they can result in a blow off. 8 Do not rush the blasting pro- cess. Go over the area evenly and at the same speed to have a smooth and level result. Ensure that your sand is hitting your design at 90 degrees. If not, you will see that your carving has an angle to it, which increases the risk of a blow off. I like to start at the bottom of my design and make small circles that overlap each other the whole way through the design, while slowly rotating my piece with my left hand. The faster you make your circles and rotate the mug, the longer you have to blast because the sand isn't carving the glass as efficiently as it would if you were going slowly. 9 As you carve the design, you will see a shadow that starts to form on the edges of your engraving. This helps you gauge when you have achieved your desired depth. If you go too deep, the edges that form can get sharp. 10 Once you are done with the sandblasting, let the mug soak in warm water for 10-20 minutes. Soaking helps make the process of removing the laser mask much easier. Once you remove the laser mask and masking tape, rinse and dry the mug, and remove any residual laser mask using denatured alcohol. IMAGES COURTESY BRADEN TODD A&E

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