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I have been puzzling with how to accurately engrave text around a round object. Thinking material size about 50-100mm diameter. Sending each character individually would sort of work but the character spacing would be hard to control. Any thoughts gang?


  • Cut 2D will allow you to edit text spacing and curve.
  • I'm not a big Inkscape user, but it's a free program and has been mentioned here many times. I found this link at the top of a quick search:
  • Thanks, I didn't really explain this well. I was thinking about engraving around the circumference of a round object. The round object would have to be continually rotated whilst engraving.
  • I think what you want is a spherebot / eggbot.

    While you could use the laser module from the Emblaser to do the engraving work, maintaining focus will be a challenge (not insurmountable) but the remainder of the Emblaser's mechanics are not particularly reusable for the task.

    I believe somewhere there are plans for a laser cut eggbot frame fwiw.
  • I found the plans for the laser cut eggbot (SphereBot) -
  • Thanks Zylantha.
  • You need a 4th Axis, something I have been meaning to add to GEORGE for some time. For laser engraving this can be super lightweight.

    1. Stepper motor from an old photocopier, laser printer, scanner - Cost zero
    2. Arduino board - Not free but cheap
    3. Momentary contact switch - 50 cents
    4. Some Arduino code to generate step and direction pluses
    5. Some sort of holding chuck on the stepper to mount your workpiece

    Rig the workpiece under the laser, this will require some mods to the Emblaser table
    Setup your job as individual letters to be engraved. As each item is engraved, press the switch and the Arduino will generate the code to index the work by say 15 degrees. Engrave the next item
    Rinse & repeat.

    In a real world scenario you would hack the emblaser board to grab some extra pins to do the indexing and modify your gcode to suit.

    There is a package called CNC wrapper that will do this for you but you still need the 4th axis setup.!/home

    If you want to dig into this deeper i am happy to help.


  • I like it David. Could also set up a manual version say on a set of rollers with a degree index on the end of one of the rollers and just work out how many degrees per character to turn the item. I think I will sit on my hands until I really have a need to do engrave a round object.


  • Even easier if you just want to do it manually, go and raid your kids/nephews Lego or Mecano. You want a set of gears that will give you something like a 16:1 gear ratio, not hard to do if you setup a small worm drive gearbox. That way 16 turns of input will give you one complete rotation of output and the backlash will be so small it won't matter. One full turn of input would have a small enough impact to give control,


  • Good point. My Grandson Josh is a bit of a Lego wiz.
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