In this article, we look at a sample processing request we received to erase the model name from an IC. Aside from just creating crafts, laser cutters can also be used to erase previous engravings! Great for preventing circuit copies!
We’ll process this IC with the FABOOL Laser Mini 3.5W. It measures 10x14mm.
First, in order to get a precise engraving, we have to pinpoint the exact position of the IC. However, the FABOOL Laser Mini’s boundary check alignment feature only allows for an approximate location check. So, here we’ll use a spongy sheet. We cut this sponge to make appropriately sized holes to set the IC and perform the engraving.
Fix the machine so that it does not move (fastened to the working bed), and set the sponge sheet into place. Here, we fixed the sponge sheet with magnets to keep it from moving.
Now we cut the sponge sheet. The data for the cuts was created by combining the squares in the software preset database. The outer squares are for cutting the sponge and the inner squares are for engraving the IC. If you place the IC within the squares cut from the sponge, you can pinpoint the exact engraving location (unless you move the sheet). When you cut the sponge, the data should be slightly smaller than the intended size of the hole as the melting of the sides will create a slight increase in the size of the hole cut.
Cutting done. For the record, we did 2 passes, a speed of 100, at 100% power to cut the sponge sheet.
Engraving the IC
Now we engrave the IC. Set the IC (if you accidentally move the sheet, you’ll have to start over) and start engraving using the data to fill in the squares. Parameters: Speed –2000, power – 100%, 1 pass, pitch – 0.2mm. Here is the result. The model name is completely gone. All 5 pieces took about 1 minutes, 20 seconds.
We also gave the FABOOL Laser CO2 a try as well. The parameters were speed at 4000, power at 10%, 1 pass, pitch 0.3mm, and it took about 40 seconds to process all 5.
Though the alignment was a bit tough, but we were able to erase the model name without any problems. Give it a try.