Wood Engraving | Laser Engraved Guitar




About: Trotec Laser Canada provides laser engraving and laser cutting machines for processing a wide variety of materials. Cut, engrave and mark wood, paper, metal, acrylic, leather, stone, plastics and many more. ...

We thought it would be a great addition to our showroom to personalize and customize an acoustic guitar.

For this project, we used a Trotec Speedy 400 flexx machine. All you will need to complete this project is any type of acoustic guitar. This particular guitar was engraved using an image of Neil Young.

Here's how we did it!


Step 1: Set Up Your Image File.

First thing we need to do is to properly set up the image file to ensure the best effect the laser machine will have. In this first step; we have the original photo, an outline of an acoustic guitar and the perimeter/engraving measurements of the guitar put into a rectangle.

Step 2: Adjusting for Size.

This step is created to make sure the picture is the right size for the actual guitar. An outline of the guitar was created to overlap the image to see what exactly will be engraved. Very helpful for making sure the photo is the right size to be engraved.

Step 3: Contrast Enhancement.

During this process, the contrast is slightly enhanced to ensure the best effect. The dark tones in the photo were enhanced to be darker whereas the light aspects of the images were brightened to have the best contrast. This step will help to reduce the detail in the actual photo which increases the end effect of the laser.

Step 4: Convert to Black and White.

Since the machine works in RGB colours, the picture had to be converted to black and white using the Jarvis setting. This step will allow the machine software to recognize the image to engrave.

Step 5: Invert the Photo.

Since the engraving will show up white and the body of the guitar is dark, the colour scheme had to be inverted allowing the machine to engrave the now dark areas on the image.

Step 6: Adjust Power and Speed Levels.

Specific power and speed levels needed to be set based on the particular substance. In this case, we used 100 power, 100 speed and 500 dpi.

Step 7: Place Guitar in Machine.

To fully complete the process, the guitar has to be placed in the machine in order for the machine to do the job. To make sure we placed the guitar in the proper spot, we measured to find the exact center of the guitar. We then moved the laser pointer to that point on the guitar to make sure it was in the middle. From the image, you can see that the laser pointer was moved to a different part on the screen which represents where it actually is in the bed.

Step 8: Set Up Your Own Image File to Personally Engrave Your Own Acoustic Guitar.

A video has also been attached for your pleasure in case you would like to see the whole process visually. Not only can pictures be engraved, but anything that can be created in this similar type format including texts, graphics and other images can also be engraved.

Happy engraving!



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    15 Discussions


    1 year ago

    Please, witc software you use for drawing? Thanks


    2 years ago

    I have a few questions
    1. How much would a family picture on a back of a guitar be?
    2. How fast could it be created?
    3. Would we have to send in a guitar?

    1 reply


    We are the manufacturer and don't do services. However many of our clients do. We suggest going to www.engraversregister.com, put in your information and a local engrave can give you a quote.

    Trotec Team


    3 years ago

    im in glasgow , ky... usa ... i want to engrave guitars .... make decks of cards ... how much for the laser .... i got 5 k of macs will that work call me 270-576-4118 i got cash to buy i got 2 or 3 questions thx .... kevin

    2 replies
    Trotec Laser Canadakgroce

    Reply 3 years ago

    Hi Kevin,

    Thank you for your comment. We have forwarded your information to our partners in the US and they will get in touch with you shortly.

    Trotec Laser Canada

    Reply 3 years ago

    Thanks! Our laser machines can work with any design software, as for working the machine it has to have JobControl software which comes free with every laser.


    hey.. i badly need your help... m in process of building a $100 3d printer and m gonna open source it... need your help regarding the lasercut parts... please reply and forgive me for my bad english


    3 years ago

    Génial !


    3 years ago

    Awesome!!! Now to get a guitar and learn to play.... I suppose instructables will have something on it! Nice 'ible

    1 reply