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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Has anyone used a trophy shop to laser engrave an AR lower? I'm curious if it meets the .003" depth required for NFA or other manufacturer markings. My local shop isn't comfortable diamond drilling my lower and he can't estimate/guarantee a depth for the laser etchings. 3 thousandths seems pretty shallow though - anyone else done it this way?

This is a standard laser, by the way - I would guess 25 watts. It's not a deep-laser engraver or anything.
 
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
.003? thats three hairs. sounds pretty damn shallow to me. i work in a sheet metal shop, all i do is run the laser. we could do it, and i have been thinking about doin it on mine, but there is alot that goes into it, and would be pretty $$$ for anyone on the outside....
here is our laser in action ( i jacked the vid off youtube, but this is the same one i operate)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FvGF-p1V6z8
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
That laser vid is pretty serious! Im just looking for an etching into the metal in order to make my SBR legal. The trophy shop's main concern was that the laser would just cut into the finish without etching the metal to any depth. He showed me an anodized aluminum card that he used the laser to etch but you could barely feel the etching when you ran a finger over it. I really don't want to send it off somewhere as my upper is due in this week and I'm SO close to finishing a multi-month project.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yes, the etching could be done on the laser. It would take multiple passes on a yag laser or one on a CO2. Depending on the shop you take it to, it will probably run you between 20 and 80 bux. Don't know if a trophy shop will do it, but most machine shops that have the capability will do it in a heartbeat since most of us knuckledragger machinists likes our gunz... :)
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I have a Spike Tactical lower w/Punisher laser engraving that I used on my SBR. Not sure what type of laser they use, but I don't think it is deep enough to meet specs. Nowhere near it actually.

Matter of fact, it looks more like the laser just bleached the parkerizing than anything. You can rub your finger over it and can barely tell that it's there if you didn't know any better.

If I were a betting man, I would imagine that if it were duracoated or refinished, the engraving would likely disappear entirely.

My 2 cents.
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, I went by the trophy shop and had them do a test on a trigger guard. It looked awesome but wasn't very deep. I still left the lower - the engraver is going to reduce the font to increase the intensity, slow it down and do some multiple passes. If I get it back and it's not deep enough I'll look into other options for marking it, but I have a good feeling about it. It's only going to cost me $20 either way.
 
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