Sandblasting & Laser Etching
Laser etching and sandblasting are two procedures for inscribing or engraving monuments. Both methods have been around for several years. They are typically used for engraving plaques, gravestones, grave markers, and other monuments. They are designed to last very long and still preserve a clean and well-polished appearance for many years which makes them perfect for headstones and other memorial structures.
What is Sandblasting and Laser Etching?
Sandblasting is carried out to engrave lettering and designs into rocks at a depth of their surface. This process involves forcibly propelling a stream of sand against the surface of granite or any other tombstone rock at high pressure. This creates inscriptions by removing the polished layer of the rock to reveal an unpolished layer underneath. Laser etching is similar to sandblasting. However, in this case, a high powered laser is used to reveal the unpolished granite layer to varying depth. In both cases, the design and lettering are first done by graphic artists before they are etched on the monument you want to engrave.
Comparison Sandblasting vs Laser Etching
While both methods produce similar results, they differ in principle, process, and application. Laser etching is a more intensive process and the designs and photos can be enhanced and inscribed in finer details than sandblasting. Only simple lettering or designs can be sandblasted onto a monument. This process cannot create small detailing. However, sandblasting has a versatile application since it can be applied to basically any color of rock whether dark or light shade. Laser etching on the other hand is most suitable for darker colored rocks as this creates a better contrast between the gravestone itself and the image or lettering on it. With lighter rock shades, the colors will barely bring out as much detailing as it should.
How Long Do Sand-Blasting And Laser-Etching Last?
These methods of engraving monuments don’t just put text or images on the surface of the rock. The designs are engraved on the inner unpolished layer of the rock. When done right, laser-etched and sandblasted text and images will last for as long as the rock itself lasts without fading away. We also apply a sealant on top of the inscription which adds a layer of protection that ensures that the engraving remains sharp and clear fro many decades to come. However, if these processes are done on cheap stones that do not last, the stone itself will start breaking down over time and this will take the etching along with it.
Best Type Of Surface For Laser Etching And Sand Blasting
Although sandblasting will look good on pretty much any rock surface, laser etching is bast done on a high-quality dark-colored rock. A black background makes it a lot easier to see and read the inscription. Real black rock is also a better alternative to trying to dye the stone. As mentioned, choosing a high-quality rock is recommended as this will be less likely to degrade over time. The fact that the inscription itself is resistant to fading means it will last just as long as the rock surface itself lasts.