Metal marking tips

5 Tips and Tricks for Laser Marking Metal

Mike Fruciano is a Market Development Manager for Coherent Inc. Mike brings 25 years of laser systems, laser processing, and materials experience, and is a frequent writer and speaker on these topics. Contact Mike at 602-616-4971 or at

Here are a few tips and precautions that are common to all three types of metal marking. Keeping these tips in mind will provide you with the best experience possible.

  1. Start with a clean substrate. Use denatured alcohol and a clean cloth. Engraving a piece of metal that is dirty or has debris on it can result in a less-than-sharp image and may also keep the CerMark coating from properly fusing with the metal.
  2. Apply an even coating of CerMark on the metal, just enough to not see the metal shining through. If too much product is applied, you may have to engrave over the top of the metal more than once to adequately fuse the CerMark.
  3. Whenever you are engraving a substrate for the first time, a test should be performed. Test engraving allows you to find the optimum settings for power and speed. Not all metals use the same settings.
  4. CerMark is for engraving, not cutting. Use a raster setting only for all text, graphics and images. Check your settings to make sure AutoFocus is on or adjust the manual focus for proper placement.
  5. If the engraving washes off, slow down the engraving speed. The slower speeds increase the heat energy and allow for better fusion. Always keep the power at 100 percent.

—Mike Fruciano, LaserBits