Introduction: Laser Engraving an Egg for Easter
Let's make some nice Easter decoration using Lumipocket LT multipurpose 3D printer!
Lumipocket LT is a resin based 3D printer, but you can also use its laser to engrave soft materials such as: MDF, wood, cardboard, PVC foam, leather, fruit skin, chocolate, soap and even egg shells.
If you do not have a Lumipocket LT, you can do the same using any laser engraving machine. Of course, you will need to follow your machine instructions to operated it, which may vary from what is described here.
Here you will find instructions on how to make wonderful decorated eggs!
Step 1: Getting Ready!
- a couple of eggs,
- a needle for piercing the eggs,
- a bowl to collect egg albumen and yolk,
- Lumipocket LT Personal Fabricator,
- a PC.
Step 2: Piercing the Eggs
Make a small hole with the needle on one end of the egg. Make it wide enough to allow the liquid to come out.
Repeat this operation on the other end of the egg.
After making the holes, blow inside the egg to allow the liquid to come out of the other side hole. Do this operation many times until egg is completely empty.
Step 3: Cleaning the Eggs
Now, wash the egg until you are sure there is nothing inside. Wash a couple of times to make sure the egg is completely clean. Now, let it dry for a few minutes.
Step 4: Software for GCODE Creation
Download Lumipocket LT free software which converts grayscale images into Gcode to be used on your laser engraver.
Click here to get "Image To Gcode Software". This program will allow you to etch grayscale images on many different materials. In this case, eggs!
Step 5: Preparing the Images
Choose a nice image you would like to engrave. Resolution should be minimum 1600x1000 and you need to be sure it is a grayscale Bitmap.
If not, use a software like Photoshop or similar, and do the following steps:
- Image -> Adjustments -> Black&White
- now invert the image: Image -> Adjustments -> Invert
- save as Bitmap.
Step 6: Image Processing
After you have the image in "BMP" format, run the "Image To Gcode Software" program.
ATTENTION: Enlarging the image will decrease the resolution and vice versa. The minimum number of pixels / mm should never be less than 20, preferably 30 or more.
- Open the image by selecting "Load image .." and choosing the image that you want to etch.
- Increase the value "Min Value for Black". from 0 to 60 (later we will explain how this value affects etching.
- Set Max value for White: 235.
- Changing the "X pos" and "Y pos" values moves the origin point for etching.
- With "Scale" it is possible to scale the image.
- Click "Create Gcode" and wait until the process has been completed.
- The confirmation message appears in the notification bar at the bottom of the window.
- Select "Save" to save GCODE with a name of up to 8 characters,adding the .art extension.
Before etching you image on the Egg, you should etch a test image first to calibrate some paramaters.
In order to do this, download the image "BarraGraduataGrigi1.bmp" and select this one on "Image To Gcode Software" program and repeat the process mentioned above.
Follow the next step to understand how to place the egg and set the machine.
After etching the grayscal bar, you should be able to see a full etched bar on the egg, as shown in the green circle (see picture).
If the left part of the bar (with the text "255") is not uniform or visible, increase the value of MinBlack.
If the right part of the bar (with the text "0") is not uniform or visible, decrease the value of MaxWhite.
If you etch an image before setting these parameters correctly, you may get a poor etched image, as you can see in the red circle (see picture)..
Step 7: Prepare the Egg for Engraving
Place the egg exactly at the center of the base (resin jar holder) and fix it with some double-sided adhesive tape, as in the picture. Now turn the knob to raise the base until 6cm of high.
Warning: Remember to slide down and close the protective acrylic cover, before starting any operation with the laser.
Adjust settings as follow:
Mat.Height (mm): 1
Laser speedLaser Speed: 300
Laser DIv.2D: 1
Offset X: 12
Offset Y: 5
Step 8: Egg Is Ready!
Wait for Lumipocket LT to complete the engraving process.
Timing may vary according to your image size.
Once engraving is over, switch off the device, open the acrylic cover and gently remove the egg.
Be careful not to break it!
Now you have an unusually embellished egg you can use to create a wonderful Easter decoration!