The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Conference Center > General Discussion Forum

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old March 9, 2015, 03:25 AM   #1
johnwilliamson062
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 16, 2008
Posts: 7,118
CNC, Electric, laser engraving

If I wanted to have a firearm engraved relatively cheaply, what would be my options? Something similar to what is found on production guns, not hand/custom engraving. Some western/classic style scrollwork. No need for names or logos.
A look not too dissimilar from this Henry Golden Boy.
__________________
$0 of an NRA membership goes to legislative action or court battles. Not a dime. Only money contributed to the NRA-ILA or NRA-PVF. Second Amendment Foundation is a solid alternative.
First Shotgun Thread First Rifle Thread First Pistol Thread
johnwilliamson062 is offline  
Old March 9, 2015, 01:11 PM   #2
T. O'Heir
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 13, 2002
Location: Canada
Posts: 4,052
No such thing as cheap engraving. Relative or otherwise.
CNC is Computer Numerical Control machining. Really a method of operating metal shaping machines(lathes, mills, etc) with a computer. The program required will cost a ton of money. And you'd have to find a shop with a small CNC engraving machine. They're around. Look in the Yellow Pages. Just don't expect the engraving like that Henry to be cheap.
Rummage around here too. http://www.lindsayengraving.com/othe...ndEngrave.html
__________________
Spelling and grammar count!
T. O'Heir is offline  
Old March 9, 2015, 01:23 PM   #3
4V50 Gary
Staff
 
Join Date: November 2, 1998
Location: Colorado
Posts: 17,674
I'd find someone with a laser engraver. We have them at school (TSJC)
__________________
Vigilantibus et non dormientibus jura subveniunt. Molon Labe!
4V50 Gary is offline  
Old April 5, 2015, 10:07 AM   #4
axismatt
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 1, 2015
Posts: 108
Hey John,

I own an engraving company here in San Diego. My laser is a large format Co2 machine. I will tell you that, if the receiver is stainless, we can put a very nice black mark on the surface for a reasonable price. It is high resolution and the contrast from the stainless to the black is very attractive. When I get into my office in the morning, I will send you a few pics. There is no depth to the engraving, as the Co2 cannot "engrave", but rather "anneal". But it is a permanent mark.

On anodized surfaces, the laser engraver will leave a white (or very close to white) mark, regardless of the plating color. This is fun for the ladies' pink and purple anodized pistols. I do A LOT of AR components for the 80% crowd (fire/safe markings, serialization).

Now, if you must have depth from actual engraving, you can find someone with a "fiber-galvo" laser or YAG laser. This is a different type of laser, usually limited in work envelope to about 4" square. But they are capable of actually engraving into the metal. This is perfect for parts that have a stainless, black oxide or blued surface. In this case, you will likely (not always) need to disassemble the gun so they can fit the part under the lens. This is a very affordable way to engrave components.

I hope this is helpful. If you want me to work on anything for you, send me a message and we can chat more about it.
axismatt is offline  
Old April 5, 2015, 09:30 PM   #5
Machineguntony
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 22, 2013
Posts: 863
When I engraved my first AR, it costed me $75 to have the words AUTO FIRE laser engraved on both sides of the gun.

Question: how do I blacken the engraving so that it matches the rest of the gun?



__________________
Now I have a machine gun. Ho ho ho. - Hans Gruber
Machineguntony is offline  
Old April 5, 2015, 10:05 PM   #6
axismatt
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 1, 2015
Posts: 108
are you trying to cover the engraving so it no longer says "auto fire"? The honest answer is, to do it right, you need to strip and re-plate the part.

the cheap S O B in me says you could use a sharpie. Possibly paint the part. But yeah, until you strip and re-anodize it, that marking is permanent.

$75 for that? Dang, that's steep. I would have done it for $10 per placement, and a couple beers.
axismatt is offline  
Old April 5, 2015, 10:10 PM   #7
johnwilliamson062
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 16, 2008
Posts: 7,118
I MIGHT be able to program a CNC mill to engrave something like that, but it would take me forever. I have only done simple letter engravings. I believe there are some utilities to convert digital images to G-code, but I have never worked with hem and my impression is they involve as much time and artistry in adjusting the CNC settings as actual engraving. Great if you are going to run production, but not worth it for a one off. Maybe I could make a generic design with an envelope that would fit on multiple firearms.
I could probably manage access to a mill as long as I was only working on parts of the gun.

I have access to an ?elctro stencil engraver? at work. Others use it to serialize parts with a pattern of dots similar to import mark on some cheap surplus guns. Maybe it is capable of more. Probably similar programing restraints.


I'm really looking to dress up one of the H&R or iver johnson top breaks. I'm really dissappointed in the lack of availability of higher end top break 22lrs. Depending on price Imight be interested in some other things also.
axismatt, I'll get you a pm in a moment.
__________________
$0 of an NRA membership goes to legislative action or court battles. Not a dime. Only money contributed to the NRA-ILA or NRA-PVF. Second Amendment Foundation is a solid alternative.
First Shotgun Thread First Rifle Thread First Pistol Thread
johnwilliamson062 is offline  
Old April 5, 2015, 10:22 PM   #8
Machineguntony
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 22, 2013
Posts: 863
I am trying to make my engraving match the rest of the gun, so that if you looked at it, you would think that it came from the factory with the AUTO FIRE setting factory engraved.

I'm NOT trying to cover it up.

For example, here is my M16 with factory markings. I want it to match like this...



I tried buying a bluing gun die at Academy, but it didn't match the gun, when I used a little test patch.
__________________
Now I have a machine gun. Ho ho ho. - Hans Gruber
Machineguntony is offline  
Old April 5, 2015, 11:08 PM   #9
FrankenMauser
Senior Member
 
Join Date: August 25, 2008
Location: 1B ID
Posts: 7,472
In my opinion, nothing will look right on the Iver Johnson or H&R, unless it's done by hand or with a single lip cutter ...à la pantograph engraving.
__________________
"Such is the strange way that man works -- first he virtually destroys a species and then does everything in his power to restore it."
FrankenMauser is offline  
Old April 5, 2015, 11:56 PM   #10
Bill DeShivs
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 7, 2006
Posts: 7,530
Scroll work will almost have to be done by hand. Lettering is no problem-any jewelry or trophy shop with a New Hermes pantograph can "diamond drag" lettering.
As far as computerized/mechanized scroll work: any machine would have to be custom programmed (or templated) for the specific area to be engraved. This is not feasible for one-off cases.
__________________
Bill DeShivs
www.billdeshivs.com
Bill DeShivs is offline  
Old April 5, 2015, 11:58 PM   #11
Bill DeShivs
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 7, 2006
Posts: 7,530
Machineguntony: Birchwood Casey Aluma Black.
__________________
Bill DeShivs
www.billdeshivs.com
Bill DeShivs is offline  
Old April 6, 2015, 12:27 AM   #12
Machineguntony
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 22, 2013
Posts: 863
Thanks, Bill. I will try it.
__________________
Now I have a machine gun. Ho ho ho. - Hans Gruber
Machineguntony is offline  
Old April 8, 2015, 04:17 AM   #13
trg42wraglefragle
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 21, 2008
Location: new zealand
Posts: 845
Machineguntony: has the engraving actually removed any metal, can you feel the words being indented?

If not the laser has only removed the anodizing or paint that is on your lower and re-painting/plating it will just return it to how it originally was.
trg42wraglefragle is offline  
Old April 8, 2015, 04:38 AM   #14
johnwilliamson062
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 16, 2008
Posts: 7,118
Quote:
No such thing as cheap engraving. Relative or otherwise.
I contacted Matt by PM and asked a few questions. The pricing feedback I received seemed extremely reasonable to me and much less expensive than hand engraving. Only problems is it needs to a gun in the white. There are no stainless top break revolvers chambered in 22lr available. Doesn't seem it is feasible for this project.

I have a stainless Kahr I might like some work done to, but that is aconsiderably more valuable firearm. Will have to consider it for a bit.
__________________
$0 of an NRA membership goes to legislative action or court battles. Not a dime. Only money contributed to the NRA-ILA or NRA-PVF. Second Amendment Foundation is a solid alternative.
First Shotgun Thread First Rifle Thread First Pistol Thread
johnwilliamson062 is offline  
Old April 8, 2015, 09:25 PM   #15
FITASC
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 6, 2014
Posts: 493
Quote:
Scroll work will almost have to be done by hand.
Kreighoff base model has simple scroll engraving and it is machine done; same with Browning and similar.
__________________
FITASC is an acronym standing for the French words: Fédération Internationale de Tir aux Armes Sportives de Chasse. For those who might not understand my screen name, here is the official website in English: http://www.fitasc.com/uk/home/view
FITASC is offline  
Old May 24, 2015, 10:52 AM   #16
Art at Arms
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 22, 2015
Location: South Jordan, Utah
Posts: 2
To say that scroll work is not feasible on a laser is not true. See the attached photo and image. I do respect the people doing it by hand, it is a true art form. My specialty is computers and machines though, and making them do what I want. I try and make it more affordable than hand done work.



A lot of our work can be seen on instagram.
http://www.instagram.com/artatarms

Last edited by Vanya; Yesterday at 12:15 PM. Reason: removed spam-ish content.
Art at Arms is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:19 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2015 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.12646 seconds with 9 queries