Etching is an effective way to produce clean results when using metal and acrylic. We have produced a number of metal/acrylic invitations with a variety of part etching and full through etching. Metals can be both chemically and laser etched, whereas acrylic can only be laser etched. Etching can be used effectively for a variety of products including invitations, plaques, keepsakes and signs.
Chemical etching uses a variety of chemicals to selectively bite away at the metal to produce the pattern. The length of time it is immersed in the solution will then dictate how deep the chemical etch is. Chemical etching has a number of advantages including low costs for tooling, they are also burr free meaning they are extremely safe to handle and come out with extreme precision and great accuracy. Chemically etched items can also be turned round in a very quick time.
Laser etching is a very similar process to laser cutting (Week 15).Rather than cutting straight through the material like with laser cutting it can be set through at a chosen depth. As a machine is used the variables of how deep is needed to go can be set digitally, meaning the level of accuracy is extremely high. The rate of turnaround is also extremely quick as with chemically etching; although you can only laser etch onto acrylic.
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