Glass Etching with Jtech 3.8W

I just wanted to post this here since I wasn’t able to find a lot of examples with feeds and speeds and/or the process of etching with the Jtech 3.8w all in one place.

I first started by spray painting a pane of glass matte black so I would be able to focus the laser easier and the beam wouldn’t go through and burn my waste board. The photo shows the etch halfway through, I forgot to take a picture of the full painted pane but I digress…

I have a 1000 X-Carve and I run GRBL 1.1f with PicEngrave Pro 5 and use UGS to send the code. For my feeds and speeds I ran it at:

50 in/min
Laser focused at ~2.5in (I purchased the lens off Ebay that was linked in another thread:

Full Laser Power (255)
Resolution was at 0.008
Left 45 degree

Obviously these may differ from what you can do but I just tried this as a test.
Side Note: I have read that some have trouble focusing the laser with Laser mode enabled, having to move or jog to get the laser to turn on. By running UGS I have two macro buttons set for $32=0 and $32=1, turning laser mode on and off. This allows me to turn laser mode off and focus the point then turn it back on before running the file. Hopefully that helps some people.

The etch took about 7 hrs to complete and this was the result right after:

I had started to wipe off the paint using mineral spirits before remembering to take a picture. That’s why her nose is missing and it seems cloudy. after cleaning up some more (it’s still not fully clean) this is what I was left with:

All in all I am happy with the results and now know you can actually etch glass with the laser! These types of projects used to be a pain since I would cut a vinyl sticker to mask the pane then sandblast it to get the etching. Now I can just “set and forget”. Hopefully this helps someone else who has been wanting to try but need more info to do so. If you have any questions feel free to message me.

Edit: If you are going to do this make sure to do a light even coat of paint. I made the mistake on my second attempt to put a second coat on the pane and it wasn’t able to etch the glass.


Very Nice! Paint side up or down?

Thanks Rick! Paint side up. I would recommend putting something under the pane and board also. I did have some waste board burning near the top right corner which caused a line.

Im going to assume when I try its going to take me at least 1/3 longer due to the 2.8 I have. The results look to be worth the wait though.

Yeah they are, at least to me. My old process with the sand blasting and masking was very tedious. A piece like this:

Would take about an hour of set up and at least an hour of spraying. I would get a lot of inconsistencies as you can see in the tux.

Very nice Ryan. I have the same setup (without that lens) for now in the last couple weeks. Is your focus size actually 0.008 using that lens or is there step over burn? Right now with their stock lens my best focus is 0.012 taking it down 0.004 more I think would improve the detail in my test photo burns on wood.

Hi Robert,

I am not 100% sure that it is .008, I do know that it is less than the stock lens jtech sent with my kit. I chose .008 res after playing around some and I found that res from a @picengravertoo set up. I have not noticed any step over burn on the engravings I have done. I have noticed more clarity, if that’s the word I’m looking for, in my engravings.


That lens is what fixed all of my laser etch woes. I just couldn’t get it to focus. Had @JTechPhotonics, @JohnChamplain and @picengravertoo trying to help me figure out what was wrong. Then @picengravertoo mentioned that was the lens he was using so I ordered one. I think since then I have plugged that lens several times on the forum. Its not as powerful for cutting as the JTech one but its much easier to focus. I love it. Takes a while to get here from China but well worth it. With my 2.8 I am getting a 0.007 to 0.008 resolution at 3 inches. May be slightly bigger for the 3.8


Here is the final result after being completely cleaned up. Baking soda and water did wonders on the burn marks.

It’s still a little wet near the top and his ear. Definitely a game changer


When using a laser you should get a honeycomb support that is used in the laser industry. That way you do not have to worry about burning the waste board or accidentally starting a fire.
Also I hope your using good ventilation.

Other than that the results your getting are very nice. :slight_smile:

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Here is a 24"x18" I did. The first etch was a test for this one. On my first attempt of the larger one I put too many coats of paint on to get an etch from the laser in one pass. So if you attempt this make sure you go very light and one coat.

I wish the etch came out as white as the picture but there is a layer of glass dust on it. I used a heat gun and putty knife to remove the excess paint afterwards. I didn’t like how the paint thinner smudged the paint on the smaller etch so I wanted to try a different way. I think ultimately a tub that it could soak would be the best but I didn’t have the time to try it.

Here it is after removing the excess

@StephenCook I did end up buying a honeycomb platform from McMaster to rest the glass on overnight and prevent fires.

And the final product

This will be their 'Sign in" sheet at the door for their wedding. Guests will sign a second black backer board and then the signatures will show through the etching, hopefully.