Introduction: DIY Engraving - Etching Your Logo

Someday back at 2016 I decided to give a try to engrave my logo onto a tool that I had made.

A method that will not needed a special machine; it was the only suitable solution for me.

So I decided to give a try to etching my logo by electrolysis method.

I had some experience from the gold-plating at stainless steel utensils and thinking

that if I reverse the polarity at electrolysis process,

then the material particles could start to move to the electrode.

I am not a chemical engineer and my thought may be wrong,

but at reality it worked for me.

I have test it and it work at stainless steel, steel, hardened steel, aluminum, & brass, but not at the copper.

Physical Logo Dimensions length / height:

kess with flag 12x8mm

HmT with wrench 12x15mm

HmT home 10x12mm

Step 1: Tools and Materials

  • Power Supply 5~15VDC 3A
  • Laser Printer B/W
  • Glossy Paper or alternatively some glossy pages from a magazine
  • Flat Iron
  • Cotton Cloth
  • Acetone
  • PVC Tape
  • Paper Tape
  • Scissor

For Electrode

  • Ear sticks or cigarette filter tip or felt
  • Paper clip
  • Stainless steel rod 3mm
  • Pencil spring

For Electrolyte

  • 100ml Water
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt

Step 2: Preparing Logo and Made the Stencils

  • Open your logo using your favorite photo editor
  • Discard the colors (if any) and converted to B/W
  • Invert the B/W colors
  • Flip logo horizontal

Open your document editor and create a page with your logo at your desired dimensions.

Place a glossy sheet to your printer

If you haven't glossy paper

then you can use a page from a glossy magazine

no need to worry

the job can be done as well.

Print the page and cut some pieces.

Step 3: PS/U-vdc Eloctrolyte Electrode

I have use a power supply 5~15VDC 3A.

According to room temperature the material and its dimensions need about 10~12Vdc.

The electrode is connected to (-)VDC (black wire/aligator)

For electrolyte I used saline solution (100ml water and 1 teaspoon salt).

For electrode at first I used an ear stick but not satisfied me.

So I started to try different ways.

The better one was a stainless steel rod a piece of cigarette filter a spring from pencil and PVC tape, but not the better one.

The best choice believes that is to replacing the filter with a piece of felt (cotton and filter tip polymerized too quickly).

Step 4: Transfer the Stencil at the Tool's Surface

  • Clean up the tool's surface with acetone
  • Place the printed logo at the desirable place
  • Secure logo using small pieces of a paper-tape
  • Set iron at the highest temperature
  • Cover with a cotton cloth

Proceed to ironing to transfer the stencil onto the surface (at reality we re-bake the graphite)

After ironing put the pieces in lukewarm water until the paper is soaked

Rub by finger the paper to remove it (for the very thin lines the use of a pin is helpful)

Cover with PVC or plastic tape the areas around the stencil to protect them.

Step 5: Etching

We dip the electrode into the electrolyte solution and then transfer it onto the surface we want to engrave.

With small continuous movements, we move the drop of electrolyte solution across the surface (front-back, left -right).

From time to time and when the solution color become darken then we clean up with a paper-towel.

We repeat this procedure as many times as need according the acceptable depth of etch.

Video:DIY Engraving - Etching your Logo

Thanks for your reading.

Good Luck if you try it.

Never say I can't do it.

Necessity is the mother of invention.