Introduction: Computer Window Engraving

Picture of Computer Window Engraving

finally, a simple guide to making a killer engraving on a computer window (or whatefer else you want) without paying an arm and a leg, unless that is you cut them off with the dremal tool.... and in that case, support your local ER lol :P

Step 1: The Tools of the Trade

Picture of The Tools of the Trade

What you use to etch your window makes a big difference. You can use acid, lasers or sandpaper to etch or engrave something but the tequnique i'm teachnig you is using a Dremal rotary tool. I use a number 105 engraving bit in my dremal tool. you can use a 106 bit of you want a slightly bigger cut but it dosen't really make that much difference. You'll notice that the end looks like a reeeeally tiney ball. there is another bit thats called an "all purpose engaving bit" or something like that... stay away from it!! it looks like a flat circular bit at the end and it makes the cutting really uneven. it does make a kind of nice beveled look but if you have any curve at all it will look like junk. here's a pic of a #105

Step 2: Transfering the Image

ok, as many people have pointed out, i probably should include a step as to applying the image to engrave. this is really simple! You can simply place the printed off image under the window. ta-da! done lol. you may want to outline everything that you are engraving in a dark marker or pen (either on the paper or on the window itself), it'll help a lot. oh, and one thing, engrave on the inside face of the window. it'll look better.

Step 3: Ok Get Comfy... You'll B Here 4 a While

Picture of Ok Get Comfy... You'll B Here 4 a While

now, grab some good tunes, find a comertable chair and and get a nice big caffinated beverage (Monster all the way!!!!!!) make sure that you can see what your doing, i suggest a dark blanket behind the window to see the etch as you do it and gooood lighting.

Step 4: Begin Engraving....caaaaarefully

ok now you should b ready to begin engraving. set your dremal tool to the slowest setting it has. hold it like a pencil with your dominate hand and use your other hand to help guide it. most importantly TAKE YOUR TIME! there is no rush, just take a little off at a time.

Step 5: Ok One Last Step.... Well Sorta

Picture of Ok One Last Step.... Well Sorta

ok now you have an engraved window. YAAAAAAY lol! step back and replace your window.

now, i probably should have put the disclaimer at the begginning but this'll do :P there are 2 points i want to stress, you are working with a power tool, if you drill through your window, the table, your leg....whatever, dont come crying (and bleeding) to me. secondly: this is totally permanant, u screw up here and there's no going back so once again, if you drill through your brand new $4,000 computer because you'r an idiot, keep it to yourself and dont blame me....
happy engraving!

Step 6: Its Mine , Its My Own, My Precious... Lol

Picture of Its Mine , Its My Own, My Precious... Lol

ok, well here's the moment you've been waiting for (I'M SURE lol) here's my engraving and my computer. i painted my engraving with a glow-in-the-dark paint, it makes it stand out and if i ever get a uv light it'll really glow like there's no tomorrow. This isn't the best engraving job around by a long shot but even a simple pic will make a plain window look amazing!


phoenix124 (author)2007-06-20

thx noik and imake :)

imake, i'de love to see ur computer! make an instructable and post it in my modding group:

thanks again and happy modding

theg00ber (author)phoenix1242011-12-04

i'm picking up a few old computers soon, and i'll see what I can do with them. If it's any good, I'll post (and comment on here with the link if u want.)

Nice computer, too n_n

Roflolommo (author)2009-01-10

now hows about an instructable on engraving your processor? :) (ill post pics when i do it to mine)

phoenix124 (author)Roflolommo2009-01-10

what now??? I've never heard of that... i'm anxious to see the pics you post. bittersweet news: i'll take this chance to tell of my dear computer's death. power surge... i guess this just means i have an excuse to re-build!!!!!

theg00ber (author)phoenix1242011-12-04

Is the whole thing fried, or is it only one or two components? If so, there are plenty of websites where you can get parts at a cheap price (, anybody?)

If the whole thing is gone, then you can keep the case and just stuff a mobo with everything on it back into the case.

DEFDOM DELTA (author)2008-08-27

This is awesome! I'll definitely be doing this to my xbox 360 as soon as I drop a window in. Great job!

phoenix124 (author)DEFDOM DELTA2008-08-27

lol i've been meaning to buy a cheap 360 so i can do that myself... when you get that finished post the pics!!

DEFDOM DELTA (author)phoenix1242008-08-27

haha will do!

Rob K (author)2008-02-11

You spent more time on yours then I did on mine. I was finishing a window in less than 15 minutes. I do like your shattered light bulb.

phoenix124 (author)Rob K2008-02-11

wow, 15 minutes is really quick! yours looks amazingly good, especially for that short amount of time ! lol i took near 45 minutes not including breaks :P i dont have the flex-shaft attachment so my hands kept cramping up holding the whole freaking dremal tool. lol thanks :) look forward to seeing many more sweet instructables from u :)

Rob K (author)phoenix1242008-02-11

I was afraid to go to deep the windows were less than 1/8 inch thick so I went quick and not to deep. I was trying to find a #105 but all they had was the #108 which is 1/32 and way to small.

maker12 (author)2007-12-31

now thats what I call windows!

phoenix124 (author)maker122007-12-31

lol :P

FrankFurt3r (author)2007-07-11

sanding down with a heavy grit wet sand papper would smooth out most of the bumps in the lardt areas , looks really good , going to do tis on my case (diff design)

noik (author)2007-06-20

Your righte iMake! Cool computer...!

iMake (author)2007-06-04

Hey thanks phoenix! Gave me some great ideas for a mod im working on! (post nucular) I must say i actually had fun reading this. I like the not so serousness! And i must say, you sure can draw!

k1hop (author)2007-03-20

Neat idea(s)... Certainly a venue for much creativity. If you got a spare $2000, can do it using a CarveWright (or Sears CompuCarve version) computer controlled carving machine. I've done plexi (reversed backside carving is nice) to achieve similar results. Nice thing is: once a pattern is finalized, can keep producing them automatically. Or easily customize a general pattern with names, labels, images, etc. Anyone want their face on the window on computer? :)

phoenix124 (author)k1hop2007-03-20

thx i was actually looking at that, lol well more drooling at that. it'de be a great way to make some money, making custom engraved windows for the time or artisticly deprived and you could probably get much more precise designs to work.... buuuut buying the dang bit for my dremal tool seems to have cleaned me out cash wise :P lol great idea tho, if u get one let me know how it works for you happy modding

player2756 (author)2007-03-11

You should have included a way to get the design onto the plexi glass and those look like screws that you can remove it from your brand new $4000 computer so you don't puncture it. peace eric

phoenix124 (author)player27562007-03-12

actually those aren't screws, their a plastic rivit type thing... anyways i just took off the whole panel. lol yah, however you do it, just do it carefully.

easycom89 (author)phoenix1242007-03-18

heres my pc about half done. Im saveing my finished picture for my instructable. You're gonna have to wait.

phoenix124 (author)easycom892007-03-19

hey! that looks really sweet so far! i'm looking 4wrd to seeing it completed. i made a modding group, feel free to post ur instructable when u get it done :)
happy modding

phoenix124 (author)2007-03-12

good idea! i actually started out by practicing on a pice of acrylic with my pocket knife b4 i got serious about using a dremal tool. thx for your post!

easycom89 (author)2007-03-12

This is really cool. I just finished adding a window to my computer and I have lights and other such parts on the way. This could very well be my next computer mod, Thx for posting it.

phoenix124 (author)easycom892007-03-12

Thank you lol. hey, congrats for being a fellow modder! post a pic or make an instructable. i'de love to see your modding and youre engraving if you decide to do it. here's a moddnig group i started:

Visitor (author)2007-03-12

Posted in category: constructive criticism I hope the number of views inspires you to put a bit more time into finishing the Instructable. Use proper capitalization, punctuation and grammar (use a spell checker). Please leave the IM speak into IM (if you want us to "laugh out loud", please tell a joke). Use clear and concise language. Also, please add a few steps about how to transfer the image onto the plexiglass before engraving and maybe a word or two about best practices during the actual engraving. Share the mistakes you made and a few words about how to avoid them. It seems to be the most important idea of this Instructable and you pass it with words "hold the Dremel like a pen, take your time and be careful." That is just too obvious. There must be more to it, right?

phoenix124 (author)Visitor2007-03-12

yes, a spell checker would help but I think that everyone has gotten the gist of it. Actually those quoted words are the best words i can leave to you. Thats really all there is to it. thanks for ur post, i appriciate it in the light it was intended.

bluebomb (author)2007-03-12

I've been engraving acrylic for a while now. You should try out some different Dremel bits. I like using the small 110 bit for the outline and 9934, I think, for the fill. You will get a different texture.

If you enjoy modding, you should come join us:

phoenix124 (author)bluebomb2007-03-12

Ill have to try this. hey, get some pics and post it or make an instructable. i'de love to see it!
(lol i know a great group :P)

sineSurfer (author)2007-03-11

Nice design you got there!!, but you may want to change "etching" to "engraving" as etching involves acid substances to do the work. And good tutorial ;)

phoenix124 (author)sineSurfer2007-03-11

Hey, thx. lol i just checked and ur right, i changed "etching" to "engraving" thx for telling me and congrats for the first post! lol happy modding

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