CNC engraving offers greater accuracy than the normal engraving services offered by jewelers and similar professionals. The price per letter for this service is usually slightly less than it is for engraving by an artisan.
The CNC process is simple. The user either uses computer aided manufacturing software or programs the control unit with the necessary inscription. Almost all CNC engraving machines use lasers to make an inscription on the surface of the item.
Jewelers often make their inscriptions on rings or other rounded objects. CNC engraving machines exist that can write on the rings, but the machines cost more to purchase and operate. The extra costs get passed onto the consumer.
Because of the difficulty in engraving flat surfaces, a user should limit the surfaces to flat items. Metals with high melting points, such as steel, gold or silver are ideal for the purpose. Making an inscription on hard plastic is also done, but it is far less common. Purchasing CNC engraving services is ideal for use on small gifts that organizations often to give to their members as rewards for their service when their term of office ends.
An individual who is interested in purchasing CNC engraving equipment should be prepared to invest a few hundred to several thousand dollars in order to purchase the necessary equipment, but such purchases are only worthwhile if an individual consumer can turn a profit on the deal.
CNC engraving can reduce the time it takes for an individual to finish an engraving project, but it is not ideal for every situation. Fancier styles are more easily applied by a human using the typical hand carving tools. Deciding on the style of inscriptions you want can help you decide whether to go with a CNC engraving service or a more traditional service.