Laser Material Approval Request: Metal Etching Agents

Was there a consensus from the @LCC on if this was ok to do? I see Jarrett had success with a similar process in the past. I also see a lot of resources on line supporting the use of marking materials (sprays, pastes…) for etching stainless with CO2 lasers:

Etching steel? Yes - Beyond the Manual - Glowforge Owners Forum

Engraving Metal with a Laser - The Glowforge Blog

CO2 Metal Marking Spray - Marking Metal with a CO2 Laser Machine - Epilog Laser

Mark and Engrave Metals and More with Cermark by Johnson Plastics (fslaser.com)

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5 posts were merged into an existing topic: Laser marking stainless steel on the cheap

Are we allowed to do this on our laser? and if so, how do i learn this magical power.

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I heard others mentioning the use of dry moly lube. That’s something I’ll have to acquire and experiment with. I’ve used Cermark in the past and still have a bit on hand at home but it is stupidly expensive and the spray is quite messy and wasteful.

Cermark now comes in a few flavours with formulations for both aluminum and glass. There are also different colours. There are a couple of local vendors that sell it. Last time I checked it was about $110 for a 350ml spray can.

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Was there a consensus from the @LCC on if this was ok to do? I see Jarrett had success with a similar process in the past. I also see a lot of resources on line supporting the use of marking materials (sprays, pastes…) for etching stainless with CO2 lasers:

Etching steel? Yes - Beyond the Manual - Glowforge Owners Forum

Engraving Metal with a Laser - The Glowforge Blog

CO2 Metal Marking Spray - Marking Metal with a CO2 Laser Machine - Epilog Laser

Mark and Engrave Metals and More with Cermark by Johnson Plastics (fslaser.com)

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Also, here is a product review of various marking materials used for etching metal on a CO2 laser:

Laser Engrave on Metal Product Test: Cermark, Thermark, Enduramark, LaserBond 100 &Dry Moly Lube - YouTube

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I’ve used Thermark and Cermark several times in the past. They work well although they are extremely expensive (~$100 for 350ml spray can) and the spray is quite messy. I use them if someone else is paying for it. I haven’t tried Dry Moly Lube although I’ve seen a few reports that is effective.

Hey Brad - do you have an MSDS sheet for something in particular you’re looking at using?

Cermark being purpose made stuff, I wouldn’t expect to be an issue if that’s what you’re looking at going with, but a little gun shy on random other compounds without taking a look, given the limits of our filtration & exhaust system.

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Possibly Cermark 6000 spray in future but specifically I am eyeing the Laserbond 100 spray. Both are purpose made. I don’t have any desire to experiment with random compounds.

Here are the msds sheets for both:

LaserBond100-Aerosol-MSDS-USA-1.pdf (46.4 KB)

730c3951-6e84-4e83-ada5-164f46b581c0.pdf (3.3 MB)

Sorry, I made a mess out of this. But from the second post it’s chronological again

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Thanks for gathering the MSDS sheets!

The LCC reviewed them, and approve both Laserbond100 and Cermark 6000.
Special handling notes: please make extremely sure the spray have dried fully before lasering - like most sprays, the propellants are nasty volatile stuff, and you should give them appropriate time to dissipate after application.

We’ll update the approved materials wiki shortly.
Please report back how things go, and share your experiences for others!

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Thanks for the review and approval. Much appreciated.

I will post results of the experience for sure!

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Not too bad for a first attempt. Used Laserbond 100 marking spray on aluminum sheet. 60% power 100 speed. Took 3 light coats of marking spray on the surface. Dried very quickly, just a few minutes.

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