June '23

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6 8 G R A P H I C S P R O • J U N E 2 0 2 3 G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M A W A R D S & C U S T O M I Z A T I O N aware that there are different thicknesses of photoresist available, which allow you to do just that. Some photoresists are more flexible than others, which may play a role if you are working on curved surfaces and or, heaven forbid, having to deal with compound curves. In these cases, you definitely want a more pliable resist that will conform. Should you be interested in blasting halftones, then a completely different mask is called for, one that can hold very fine detail since you are working with a very fine dot pattern. ese masks are usu- ally much thinner than the regular pho- toresists (2 mil). Should you be interested in blasting on stone, then the requirement for the right mask lies more with the thicker versions as one usually ends up blasting more deeply into stone and adding color-filling to the product. is could mean switching to a 5 or 6 mil version of photoresist. In spe- cial cases you could even go with a thicker film in 9 mil or so, if great depth is to be achieved, like on some monuments. If you are employing a laser for your work method, then you may want to con- sider using a special mask created just for this purpose. By using this type of mask- ing, you can use your laser to create the image in the resist material while also imaging the object at the same time; you simply adhere the mask to the product and use your laser to do the work. ese masks are specially formulated for laser and do not contain any PVC, which otherwise would cause your mirrors to fog up. Please pay attention to the manufac- turer guidelines, which inform you which setting to use for the wattage of your laser. ese laser tapes are available in three different colors: green, blue, or orange. Why, you ask? Well, the darker colors were first on the market and then the manufacturers heard that the dark colors were not very visible on dark wine bottles or stone. e orange makes it easier to see. Should you fall into the unusual cat- egory of an art-based blasting business, meaning that you often employ the multi- stage techniques of carving and shading on glass, then there is another whole slew An example of hand-cut or plotter-cut vinyls and rubber resists, available in various widths. (Courtesy of Professor Glass) Some common projects prepared with the orange tape, ready for blasting. (Courtesy of IKONICS Imaging) Showing two different laser tapes on the market, one for stenciling only, the orange one also for blasting purposes. (Courtesy of IKONICS Imaging) Multi-stage carve stencil. There is no such thing as a "one material fits all applications" for masking. (Image courtesy Rayzist Photomask)

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