zbuckholz's blog

Making a Jig for more dog tags

Since we will be able to sell our anodized aluminum dog tags at retail checkout, we needed a larger jig to make more at once. The original jig could only hold 11 dog tags at a time, the new one can hold 75. I put together a nice 7 minute video showing the process from start to finish.

Mesa Community College Gem and Mineral Show

What a Great Day we had today. A last minute decision brought us to the annual MCC Gem and Mineral show as a vendor this year instead of just browsing. We shook hands with a lot of people and talked a lot about our laser equipment and what we can do with natural stone, ceramic tile, glass and more... We handed out 'ALL' of our wooden popsicle stick business cards; people loved them and thought they were the coolest thing. Several people even asked if the business cards were free.

Working Late Tonight

The Annual Mesa Gem and Mineral show is this weekend at Mesa Community College. My wife and I are going to participate with a small booth to show off our stone engraving. So far I have several Granite, Marble, Tile, and other odds and ends to bring with us. I would have loved to bring the laser but it would require to much work to "safely" transport it and provide proper ventilation, not to mention renting a generator to provide power.

Also working on another crystal vase, the wife left instructions to put a swan on the front and back.

3D Eiffel Tower Laser Cut by Phoenix Laser Engraving

Great video, and some hi-res still pic's.

Laser cut from 3mm Birch Plywood, available for sale on Etsy as a model kit you can purchase and assemble yourself.

Marble Aztec Calendar

I did another Aztec Calendar tonight on Blood Marble, it took almost two hours to complete but it looks great. I can't decide if I like the Black Granite Aztec Calendar or the Blood Marble Aztec Calendar, both are 12"x12" and almost 1/2 inch thick.

Now I am running the 2010 calendar from a CorelDraw template (included macro) on another piece of 12"x12" black granite. It's late and I figured I had time for one more, the center will be blank on this standard American Calendar, so tomorrow the wife and I can figure out what we want in the middle.

New Material (Granite, Marble, Ceramic, Stone)

Went to Home Depot today and bought 1 piece of each kind of tile (material) they had available. Going to experiment with the Aztec calendar and engrave it on each one. The results will be posted here later.

Well I did some of the material, the pictures do not do justice for the actual outcome. I have to say the Granite Aztec Calendar looks totally wicked awsome!

Kids and shop equipment

When I was young growing up in New York, my friends and I would build tree houses in the woods. Our fathers had all sorts of tools, hand and power (gas and electric). One of my favorite tools was a Craftsman Radial Arm Saw in our basement, I remember after school when no one was home I would cut wood on it, either because I wanted to be like my dad or thought it was cool. I can remember the anxiety as a boy when I would start the saw and the piercing noise was scary, even more scary was the anticipation of the saw kicking back on me.

Goodwill + IKEA + Laser Engraver = Great Christmas Gifts

Last Saturday morning we went to Goodwill because they were having a 50% off everything sale. Well while my wife strolled around I had my eyes open for things I could stick in the laser machine. I found some great leather and faux leather notebooks (day planners), picture frames, mirrors, etc...

Tonight I made some really wonderful customized mirrors for the kids teachers. I went to http://www.tribalshapes.com/ to download some FREE Kanji Symbols and away I went.

Laser Engraving Jeans (Denim Blue)

My daughter wanted me to laser engrave something on her jeans. So I wouldn't upset her, god forbid I ruined them, I firsted tested laser engraving denim with an old pair of my Levis or Lees, maybe they're Wranglers.

It seemed to work pretty well, I had to reduce the laser power several times so I wouldn't damage the denim material to much. Eventually I figured out a good combination of speed and power and dpi.

Anyway - see the pics below, the settings I eventually wrote down as my future reference are:
100% speed
15% power
200 dpi

Business Cards - Laser Engraved Popsicle Sticks

What's a cheap and unique business card for a garage startup that does Laser Engraving and Cutting?

Wooden Popsicle Sticks, engraved with the company logo and details!

It took a while to line up so many little sticks and create a template in CorelDraw. But it's all part of the learning curve of the new machine.

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