CNC (computer numerical control) engraving.
A computer controls a rotary carbide cutting tip, to “draw” on the work surface. The resultant cut can then either be left bare (silver) or filled with a variety of coloured “paints” to create linework, text, and shapes that are simply impossible to remove.
Our work has been used on everything from medical equipment to yacht control panels, clock faces, to musical instruments.
Common questions about panel engraving
What materials can be reliably engraved?
- Engraving is dependant on surface. Although pretty much anything can be engraved, for most work i would strongly recommend sticking to anodised aluminium (note: anodised is not the same as brushed, although brushed can also be anodised post-brushing)
- Anodised surfaces are available in different colours and finishes, matt black and satin being the most widely used. Other common colours include blue, red, gold, silver (natural), and dark green.
Do you supply the metal work, or do I have to send it in?
Can you work on material I send you?
- Material is generally supplied. Common thicknesses are 1.5mm, 2.0mm, and 3.0mm, with most common sizes / finished being kept in stock for minimal lead-times.
- For convenience its preferable to use material that we have here, but, if your work is specific, we will probably accept your stock after some discussion on suitibility .
What file formats do you accept?
- The machinery runs on g-code, which can be created from most vector formats. If you are working in a vector based graphic application, save off the files as .dxf format (in R12)
- Unfortunately some graphics applications (mostly illustrator) export non-standard dxf files, so please try re-opening your file after export just to check it, before sending it over. Customer specific advice can be given in this area.
- If you are working in a true CAD environment, just send over the R12 dxf files. If relevant / possible, put the engraving on a different layer to the milling / drilling
Can you quote me on my panel design?
- Because there are so many variables, its impossible to give anything other than very very rough ideas as to pricing without seeing what you want making, as seemingly small changes can affect machine time (and hence cost). Have a look in the “shop” section to get a very rough idea on pricing for stock items.