Lasers vs. CNC? — Branching Out Wood

02 Dec.,2022


cnc fiber laser cutting machine factories

I’ve often been asked if the engraved coasters I make are “laser cut” - they are not - which brings me to today’s topic: how to tell if something is cut or engraved with a laser (vs. cut or engraved with a CNC).

Lasers always leaves telltale signs in wood: since a laser does its work with heat, there will be burn marks along the edges of whatever was cut. And similarly, a laser does its engraving into wood items via burning, so that engraving is always burned. This isn’t the burning you see of a log in the fireplace, but rather, because of the very controlled power and positioning of a laser, just a potentially modest darkening of the material around the edges. That is, the engraving done by a laser will never be the same color as the natural wood.