New Guy Looking for Recommendations for Engraving Acrylic

I’m new to CNC, just purchased a 3018 Pro to learn the basics and to hopefully save a few dollars on awards I have purchased in the past. I’m looking for some advice on engraving acrylic. I plan on using .75" clear cast, a 9" x 6" piece. I am sponsoring some awards for a couple troops and would like to learn to produce them myself. I’m up and running on easel and looking for some recommendations on settings and bits. I had saw a fella on YouTube used 80 IPM feed rate with a 90 Degree V-Bit. However, no speeds were listed, details on the bit or other settings. I’ll get some thinner stock to practice with, just looking to hear from those who have successfully engraved on acrylic. Any recommendations on bits, I don’t mind paying a little extra for a good tool that will last, since I will be hopefully engraving lots of acrylic. Thanks for a great forum and thanks in advance for the advice.

Hi James

Go to Amazon and buy a “Spring Loaded Diamond Tip Drag Bit”. Set your cut depth to like 1/8" and then set the Depth Per Pass at 1/8" also. This will give you a quicker 1 pass run. MAKE SURE TO TURN YOUR ROUTER OR SPINDLE “OFF”!!! This is a “drag bit”! When I first got started I tried many times with V Bits and the problem is that Cast Acrylic changes slightly in thickness and I could not get a nice even carve. The spring loaded drag bit makes up for those variances. Some of the engravings I have done required an extra run to make the lines a little darker, so to speak. I have been using the same drag bit on acrylic for well over a year now! NOTE: The drag bit is about $75, but, they sell a “refill” for it for about $27 if it ever gets dull or damaged! The spring tension is also adjustable. NOTE: You have to “manually” set your Z-zero position! The diamond tip will NOT work with the Z-Probe!!! I have done many many engravings and they all look great!


Thanks John, I’ll give the diamond spring drag bit a go. I attached what I’m planning on engraving, I will flip it so I can engrave the back. I’ll let you know how it turns out, thanks again.

I believe you enter the bit as a normal End Mill with a .005" width. (You’re kind of fooling Easel) The diamond tip on my bit is only .005". Look for some videos on You Tube! Paw Paw’s Workshop has some excellent videos but look for the spring loaded drag bit. Happy Carvings!

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