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Metal Engraving Machine Applications and Options

Metal Engraving

Metal Engraving Machine Overview

Using a metal engraving machine to achieve your business operations is not out of reach. Our machines are more user-friendly than you might imagine and much more affordable than outsourcing the engraving of your products.


The following bullet points give you a quick reference as to the type of metal engraving applications as well as a quick overview of some of the benefits of metal engraving machines for sale from Vision manufactures.

Common applications for metal engraving:

– Serial Plate engraving onto metals including Aluminum, Stainless Steel, and Brass

– Gun Engraving to meet specifications regarding depth, Example AR Lowers and Uppers and other types of firearms

– Deep metal engraving into virtually any type of part

– Part Engraving into just about any type of metal

– All of the machines come with a proximity sensor, which allows for automatic surface recognition

New to engraving?

Keep reading for an insight into the two main types of metal engraving machine applications and an overview of the metal engraving machines for sale.

If you have any questions about our machines or their applications, do not hesitate to call us at 419.787.3882.

Applications for Diamond Drag engraving are generally the most common type of metal engraving.  Diamond Drag engraving can be done on literally any type of metal. Softer metal (think aluminum) will give you the deepest engraving when using a diamond tool.  When you move to harder materials such as stainless steel, you will still get a beautiful mark; however, it will not be quite as deep.


Engraving metal serial plates are usually done with either aluminum or stainless steel. The metal engraving machine’s spindle is spring-loaded which gives the user the capability to put more pressure on the spindle, which gives you a deeper engraving when doing any type of harder metal engraving. This type of metal engraving is the easiest type since you are using a diamond tool with the proximity sensor. What this means is that there is no nose used for setting depth, since the proximity sensor activates once the diamond tool makes contact with the metal being engraved.  


The most popular metals used with the diamond tool for metal engraving are aluminum, stainless steel, copper and brass.  Here are a couple key points on Diamond Drag metal engraving machines:


– Diamond tool does not require a nose for setting depth.

– Diamond tool gives you a much longer cutter life.

– Softer material such as aluminum engraves deeper than a harder material such as stainless steel.  However, regardless of the material you use, the resulting mark will be a very clean permanent mark.

– Serial plate engraving is almost always done with a diamond tool regardless of which type of metal is being used.

Common applications for deep metal engraving are gun engraving and parts engraving. When engraving into guns or something that calls for a specific depth, you would want to use a carbide tool as opposed to a diamond tool. A carbide tool will allow you to engrave deeper into the metal. Examples include color filling, firearms or any type of metal requiring a specified depth.


As long as you can secure the material while engraving, you can engrave it. An example of this would be engraving on gun receivers. As long as you have a fixture holding the part down, you can engrave it. You would, however, need a machine that gives you the clearance, taking into account the gun and fixture. Generally a 7” clearance is enough; however, there are metal engraving machines with a 10” clearance if you need the extra space.  


When engraving metal with a carbide tool, you must slow down the feed rate and increase spindle rotation. Sound complicated? Don’t worry! When using Vision software (Vision 9), there are preset settings for all the common materials being engraved of which one of them is deep metal engraving. You simply select the type of engraving you are doing and the software will automatically set all of the feed rates for you.  


Here are some points on using deep metal engraving machines:


– Feed settings for carbide tools are much slower and tool life is also shorter than a diamond tool

– Carbide tools can be re-sharpened 4 to 5 times at a cost of $6 to $8 dollars per sharpening

– Software comes with tool settings application chart for auto setting of tool feed rates by application

Metal Engraving Machines for Sale

Below is a chart for the different types of machines we have and the appropriate application for the specific machine, either diamond drag or deep metal engraving (or both).

Model # of Machine Engraving Area Diamond Drag Deep Metal Engraving Z-Clearance Max Z Movement
VE-810 8” x 10” Yes Small Volumes 3.5” with Vise 1.25”
Phoenix 1212 12” x 12” Yes Small Volumes 3.5” with Vise 1.25”
1612 Pro* 16” x 12” Yes Yes Up to 7” with Risers 1.875”
1624 Pro* 16” x 24” Yes Yes Up to 7” with Risers 1.875”
1624 Router** 16” x 24” Yes Yes 7” or 10” 7” or 10”
2525 Router** 25” x 25” Yes Yes 7” or 10” 7” or 10”
2550 Router** 25” x 50” Yes Yes 7” or 10” 7” or 10”
VR48** 48” x 96” Yes Yes 7” or 10” 7” or 10”

*Denotes Rotary attachment available.

**Denotes rotary attachment and high frequency router head available.

Questions? Call Us!

If you have any questions about our machines or their applications, do not hesitate to call us at 419.787.3882.