Best wood for engraving?

So the only wood i’ve accomplished engraving is just some cheap pine boards from home depot. I’m wondering what the best woods are for engraving that’ll give you the cleanest finish with out making fuzzy lines.

I’m kind of a noob to the wood world, i’ve always been a welder and have recently changed my career choice to woodworking.

I’ve recently ordered some ball nose bits to help as far as cleanliness of engravings go, so that should help.



I’ve had the best luck with hard maple. Any hardwood will carve better than pine. The cheap pine from Lowes and home depot is the softest most unstable wood I’ve ever seen try to stay away from it unless it’s just test cuts.

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Most important is quality, sharp bits. Hard woods are less prone to the fuzzy results. Pine can leave resin on the bits so cleaning will help. Some dress their bits with diamond hones.
Cherry and Walnut carve very nice. Your reference to ball nose indicates you are going to do 3D, correct?

Soak/Coat the wood with sanding sealer prior to engraving. That will help give you nice clean edges and lines. Also - try brass, copper and aluminum!


2d acutally lol, i was just hoping that a ball nose would leave less fuzzies on the pine i’m about to engrave for an order.

I’ll be doing 3d here very soon (ordering my own machine and v carve). So i’m just trying to find what’ll give me the best results for what i have to work with!

That is nice work!

The harder the wood the better for 3d

Cherry usually engraves pretty nicely. This is a cherry plaque I made a couple of months ago. It was a little fuzzy, but the fuzz was easy to remove. Sanded to 400 grit and finished with five or six coats of Tru Oil slightly diluted with mineral spirits to achieve a high gloss.

One of the best woods for engraving is Teak, due to the high oil content and tight grain. It carves like butter.


I was at my local wood-yard last week and the price of teak was shocking.

Yeah. Teak is not cheap where I live either. I’ve used it sparingly, mainly for name plates.

I’m from Utah, so this is especially funny. Holy hell :joy:

You wouldn’t believe the prices of even the cheapest woods in New York City. I love when I see people using huge pieces of walnut on here and i’m like i’d have to mortgage my home to buy that wood :slight_smile:

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48x96 sheet of MDF in utah is $29.99!

I feel for you guys. I get 1/2" mdf for $22 and 3/4" for 24. Maple and cherry for around $4.00/bf. Also have a Woodcraft about 20 minutes away! I don’t have your scenery though.

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