Awards & Engraving

September '19

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12 • A&E SEPTEMBER 2019 inlay or relief cutter that routes out mate- rial around the Braille. While this method is widely used in the industry, you must use a specialty cutter at the correct depth in order to create an ADAAG-compliant domed Braille bead rather than a circle with a flat face. TACTILE LETTERS A rotary engraving machine is used to cut raised tactile lettering directly on the sign face. In order to achieve the required 1/32-inch raised tactile lettering, place a piece of 1/32-inch thick non-glare plastic backed with pressure-sensitive sheet adhe- sive directly onto the substrate. Using a profile cutter, the lettering is cut through to a depth of just below the surface of the appliqué. The background is pulled away and, with a steady hand, the insides of cut letters are removed with a small flat chisel tool or knife. Using a chip removal brush, remove the fine plastic debris and rub away any remaining adhesive. A laser engraving machine can be used in the same manner described above with the correct speed and power settings. Another option is to set up all of the appliqué lettering for a job on one sheet of 1/32-inch material. The lettering is set up in your design software with just a small box around each set of letters that is reg- istered to one corner of the sign face. Lay the full sheet of 1/32-inch appliqué mate- rial (already backed with pressure-sensitive sheet adhesive) on a vector grid and send the vector cut file to your laser. After your file is cut but before removing the material from the laser bed, take a roll of masking tape and place strips of tape over each set of letters, taking care to grab all those small dots of the "i" and punctuation. Then, flip the boxes of letters over and wipe a dry rag over the back to remove any laser smoke residue from the adhesive paper. Using the edge of a sharp knife, gently peel the adhesive paper backing off each of your letters, leaving the adhesive backing paper on the background. Then, flip the lettering over and place it in the correct position on your sign, press firmly on each letter, and remove the tape and background from the sign, leaving the lettering perfectly posi- tioned on your substrate. An example of Rastered Braille done by mechanical engraver. Seen here is a Braille application tool.

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