The Cricut Maker Engraving tool allows you to experiment with creating many designs. This engraving tool easily creates beautiful outlines in various materials.
You can make decorations, keychains, and plaques with this versatile tool.
We’ll cover how to engrave with a Cricut maker in this article. You’ll learn what the Engraving Tip is, different materials suitable for the tool, and how to create your design in the Design Space app.
What Is The Cricut Engraving Tip?
Engraving is a process that creates recessed designs on a material. The engraving tip is sharp enough to remove some material, resulting in your chosen outline.
Cricut Maker’s engraving tip is a tool that lets you engrave several things. You can add text to materials, design logos, and create decorative drawings.
You can do this on various materials, including aluminum, card, and metallic leather.
Things You Will Need To Engrave With The Cricut Maker
It can be tempting to try and engrave designs straight away, but before you do so, you need to make sure that you have the right supplies. Here are the things you’ll need to engrave with your Cricut maker.
Cricut Engraving Tip
This is the most important tool you will need, as this performs the engraving motion. The tip is designed to create recessed designs on many materials.
The Engraving Tip is part of Cricut Maker’s QuickSwap tools. These all fit in on drive housing which makes it easy to switch between blades. This is useful if you’re creating something that needs several different tools.
Don’t try and engrave without masking tape, as this is needed to fix the corners of the blanks to your mat.
Engraving without masking tape isn’t recommended, as the blank will keep moving as you use the engraving tip. This will move your material out of alignment and ruin your design.
If you’re planning on making more crafts in the future, it’s always best to have masking tape around, so try to invest in a few rolls.
Cricut Strong Grip Cutting Mat
This mat is the best one to use with your blanks, as it has an extremely sticky base. The adhesive will prevent your blank from moving around so you can focus on creating the perfect design.
This mat is strong enough to stick heavy materials, like cardstock, chipboard, and stiff fabric.
Materials You Can Engrave With Cricut Maker
Before you start engraving with your Cricut Maker, you need to know which materials you can and can’t engrave.
You should also remember that some materials will have different finishes and effects. Engraved leather will look slightly different from engraved aluminum.
Here are some materials that are suitable to engrave with the Cricut Maker.
The engraving tip works very well with acrylic blanks, as the outline created is always strong and clear.
You can engrave acrylic with a maximum thickness of 2mm, but using a thinner blank will give you better results. Opt for blanks that are 1-1.5mm thick instead.
Always remember to remove any protective film before you engrave plastic.
The engraving tip can be used on several types of leather, including faux, genuine, and tooling leather. Before you start engraving, remember to remove any obstacles that could affect the process, like buttons, rivets, and tassels.
You can’t use the tool on all kinds of plastic, but you can on a few specific types! PET plastic panels work well with the Cricut Maker.
These sheets are thin, but durable, imitating the feel of plexiglass. You can create beautiful outlines on it.
Acetate and transparency film also works well with the engraving tip. They’re good to practice engraving on as they’re relatively affordable.
Wood & Artboards
You can use the engraving tip on Cricut balsa wood panels, but it can be hard to achieve a nice finish at first. It can also engrave wood veneer and basswood, but basswood works better for this as it’s a stronger wood.
The engraving tip also works better on poster and kraft boards which are easy to find at craft stores.
Can You Engrave Jewelry?
No, you can’t use the Cricut Maker on hard metals. The Engraving Tip is only suitable for soft metals, like aluminum, brass, or copper sheets.
Can You Engrave Glass?
No, you should never use glass in your Cricut Maker. The glass could shatter or break into pieces, which could harm you or others around you.
Engraving In Design Space
Getting the machine settings and the digital design right is the most difficult step of the process.
Always aim to get the engraving position on the blank as near enough to the digital design as you can. You may need to practice this several times until you become better at the process.
Making Your Design
Before you start designing, you need to make sure that your plan can be engraved. Look at the writing/pen settings to do this.
You can make an alignment template in two ways. Either upload an image into the app or add a shape that looks like your blank, changing the size to compensate.
After you create your template, switch the operation setting from Cut to Pen.
This setting will let you place the blank on the mat in the same place displayed on the preview screen. If an ‘insert pen’ prompt comes up, ignore it, then you can start engraving.
To design an engraving, add a text field and search for a font that you like.
Now go back to the operation settings and select the engraving option. Keep the style as writing, as this will make sure your engraving is an outline instead of a filled shape.
Center the template, fix the engraving and the blank to each other, then select ‘Make It’.
Once the engraving is done, take the masking tape off and use the leftovers to remove any dust from the acrylic.
Material And Machine Settings
The material and machine settings will change each time, depending on the material you’re using. For instance, aluminum may do well with a deeper setting to obtain a strong line.
Some other materials, like acrylic, look good with both thin and thick lines. You’ll have to try a few settings and materials out until you find an engraving style that you prefer.
Instead of placing the pen inside the Cricut Maker, let the machine act itself. It will start engraving if it looks like it’s defining the blank material.
Tips On Aligning Your Design
It can be hard to position your design correctly, but here are a few tips to help you do so.
Use a sharpie to mark the middle of your material. This will help you ensure that your piece is positioned correctly and doesn’t veer off to the side.
Use the Sharpie mark to line up the middle of your object with the grid line. You can remove the Sharpie afterward with soap and water, just make sure that you don’t use a permanent marker.
Draw a line with a Sharpie half an inch away from the grid at the base of the mat. The roller will take up this space, so don’t place the serving ware’s handle any nearer to the bottom edge.
The line will help you remember this and act as a guideline to position your object in line.
There you have it! You’ve learned how to engrave using a Cricut Maker. The Engraving Tip is key for this, but make sure you have masking tape and the Strong Grip Cutting Mat before you start.
It can be difficult trying to position the design correctly. Keep practicing on cheaper materials, like acrylic, before you start creating significant pieces.
You can use the Cricut Maker on most materials, but never use it on glass or hard metals, as this will damage the tool and your design.
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