3 Profitable Laser Engraving Business Ideas

3 Profitable Laser Engraving Business Ideas

There are so many things you can do with a laser engraver, and it's understandable if you haven't decided which niche to carve for your brand.

You can laser cut jewelry, engrave prints, etch delicate glass or create gorgeous laptop accessories, not to mention the things you can do with a little plywood.

Today, I'm going to suggest various laser engraver business ideas to help you decide which route your brand should go. Without further ado, let's jump right in:

1. Making Woodblock Prints and Ornaments

If woodworking is your thing, you can turn your passion project into a huge profit if you choose to design custom wood trim or provide wood etching, cutting and engraving services.

Even if woodworking isn't your hobby yet, a wood carving business is easy to set up; it can generate a high return on investment quickly, and it's a fairly flexible type of business.

Learning curve
Most types of wood are fairly easy to work with, at least much easier than tough steel or metal. Even if you've never done it before, the learning curve is shallow and you should be able to tackle laser engraved plaques, name tags and logos in just a few weeks.

The toughest orders you can possibly receive revolve around cutting complex shapes, especially curves. A perfect example of a tough woodcarving job is a lengthy cursive name.

Typical order
You can shape wood into all sorts of things. Some may request a piece of polished oak with a portrait painted on their wedding day; others may want custom work on their mahogany guitar, and you should expect most orders to be simply names or with Symbol related engraving.

Custom orders for wooden signs, doors, furniture and trunks are often more popular.

2. Establish a boutique shoe brand

Creating custom designs on dress shoes can be very lucrative, although it can be quite a risky venture. Even if your town is full of shoe manufacturers, you can always start an online shoe business, and either way, I highly recommend it.

There are a few ways you can start a boutique shoe business; you can have shoes made and engraved from scratch with a custom design, or you can buy "blank" shoes to adorn with special engravings. The second option is simpler and cheaper, but not as profitable. Let's review the basics:

Learning curve
Making a shoe is a little more delicate and complicated than etching a custom design on a shoe. I recommend buying a lot of "blank" shoes and then working on them, although this will inevitably reduce your profit.

Treating dress shoes is similar to handling tough leather. They may feel very solid, but under laser light they are essentially paper thin.

A process of trial and error is almost inevitable here. While you can sell for a hundred dollars (or so) for each pair of shoes you ruin, if you can stomach the slow start, you'll end up making a few thousand dollars adeptly.

Typical order
The combination of small holes and thin lines is the simplest design you can etch into a pair of leather shoes. The "blooming" flower designs are also very popular, though they are pretty simple to create - all you need to do is laser cut the main holes, lower the intensity, and create dotted circles around them.

Engraved symbols such as lilies or spades are also popular. The trick here is to understand the different types of dress shoes and know what to do with models that have different constructions

The hardest order you can possibly receive is to engrave an asymmetrical symbol. For this type of order, you cannot copy and paste the design in Autocad, you have to do most of the work by hand.

3. Start a glass etching company

Using a laser engraver to etch beautiful engravings on wine glasses is a good idea for several reasons. First, it's a lot easier than you might think. You don't have to worry about the material because glass is very cheap, but more importantly, it doesn't degrade.

People usually do basic engraving on cheap eyeglasses with a rotary drill and a flexible shaft, but you will have a huge advantage over most of the competition in that you will have a laser engraver capable of finer operations.

It's an excellent market for those who don't want to risk competing for customers with the big names in the industry, and it's almost guaranteed to fill up your store every week when the holiday and birthday lines begin.

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