Rotary Engraving Machines vs. Laser Engraving Machines

When it comes to engraving equipment, customers are faced with 2 choices- rotary engraving machines or laser engraving machines. Which work better? It all depends on the desired look, durability, type and shape of the materials to be engraved. The depth and look of the finished product along with the lasting durability should be considered.  For materials such as metals or plastics, or for odd-shaped items and objects needing a permanent marking, rotary engraving machines make better engraving equipment solutions. Let’s take a look as to why.

When purchasing engraving equipment, a buyer should consider the material to be engraved and the desired visual effect of the finished product. If the material is stainless steel, brass, or aluminum, rotary engraving machines will provide deeper engraving not possible with a laser. If the material is PVC or another plastic, the rotary system can easily engrave and cut the material. Lasers do require by law expensive multi-stage filter systems to remove toxic fumes caused by the laser. The shape of the item to be engraved is also very important. Rotary engravers can provide uniform engraving on odd-shaped items or uneven surfaces while lasers perform best on flat surfaces. Finally, if the depth and durability of the engraving are important to the buyer, the rotary system works best. The rotary engraving machines provide two and three-dimension images, creating depth and richness to the engraving while lasers darken the surface or remove coatings to create an image similar to what a printer would produce. The rotary engraving process provides a more durable and permanent finished product.

Rotary engraving machines

Rotary engraving machines engrave the surface of the material with cutting tools that are fixed in a rotating spindle. The cutting tool removes material from the surface to create a two or three-dimensional image.

The other advantage of rotary engraving equipment is the overall cost and minimal maintenance required. Most rotary engravers cost considerably less to operate than their laser engraver counterparts. The rotary system needs an occasional cutter sharpening while lasers require specialized cleaning, critical alignment and periodic recharging of the laser tube.

Laser engravers

Laser engraving equipment marks a wide variety of materials. Lasers provide a quality marking in wood and trophy plaques and are able to create photographic images on various materials. Unlike rotary engravers, laser engraving equipment utilizes laser power focused through mirrors and lenses to mark parts.

Lasers can mark some metals by the application of special chemicals applied before the product is lasered. Lasers are effective for doing complex graphics and designs as the laser engraver equipment provides a finished product in a printer-like format.

For more information about rotary engraving machines and laser engraving machines, contact Vision Engraving & Routing Systems.

This entry was posted in Vision News and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.