Eagle Scout needs wood engraving help

Hi Maker Space group, I am working on my Eagle project. I will be building benches for the Allen Food Pantry and would like to laser engrave the name of the pantry onto the front of the benches. The boards are 2x4x5. I am available the 20th until 1pm and after 5, the 21st until 5, the 23rd until 5, and all day the 27th. Any help would be appreciated.
Grayson Ireland

1 Like

Hi Grayson

Welcome to the chat.

Wondering about your post. Are you asking for someone to volunteer to laser things for you? Are you going to pay for the laser time cost? ($1 per 5 min). Are you asking someone volunteer time and expertise for your project?

Do you have the writing (lettering and font and size) defined?

Normally, operators cost $100 an hour.

I say this not to discourage, but to ask you to build a better ask.


Hi Grayson,
Cool! Eagle project is such an important part of scouting. You said you need this on a 2x4x5… that won’t fit on even the largest laser cutter. I think the max is 36" (might be 48" but not 60") . If that is cast in stone, then the only hope is the multiCAM router. It can take something that big but might take a bit of finesse. Would a PLATE work? That could be cut as a wooden plate on the laser or as an aluminum plate on the plasma cutter. Also, do you have an idea which font? (I like one called “He’s dead Jim”) . Problem with a plate is that it would have to be a Stencil type for internal spaces to hold in place. No issue with costs. What are you thinking with text and font? Do you have it already in a CAD file?


the largest Thunder is 1m x 1.6m, 39in x 63". Plus the front panel opens to welcome larger objects.

Really? Thanks you for the information… but I would never use an open system with a laser. I worked for HP and the first laser printers ever… No Way I would ever open a laser printer where a beam might escape. Just a phobia I have for an invisible blinding ray. Still Thanks… sounds like it might be Doable.
Big Thunder seems to be having issues lately.

With clever use of a cardboard positioning template, and placing the lettering 30 degrees off of horizontal, a 71" long 2x4 should fit into the bed of Big Thunder.

1 Like

I am asking if there is anyone with experience with the laser machines that might be able to “guide” me as to what to do. Possibly if someone was there at the times that I’m able to be there and they are working on projects and wouldn’t mind guiding me along. I don’t have the font or size yet because I wanted to find out if it was even possible to do on a 5 foot board. Unfortunately, I don’t have $100 per hour to pay someone and from what Steve_a stated below, it looks like it might be somewhat impossible to do so I guess I’ll think along some different lines and try to come up with another idea.

How large of an engrave area is needed?

There is a flap than can be lowered for a part that sticks out of the machine. If inserted in the short way you can fit the ends in. Using this method requires a little care (material support, safety glasses for the laser) but doable under controlled conditions.

If you’re looking to operate the machine you need the laser 101 class, but if you can prep the design files I wouldn’t mind running the machine for a scout troop

1 Like

Let me do some playing around with fonts and the size of the board and I’ll get back to you. Thank you for offering your help. How could I contact you?

you can PM me on here, or ping my cell. I’ll PM you my number shortly.

OOPS! My BAD! I measured the bed on Big Thunder, It’s almost 5.5 ft long and about 3.5 ft deep. It can be done as long as Big Thunder behaves. (I was mistakenly thinking it was the same size as a Full Spectrum model I used to work on.) Sorry for causing a panic.