Posted on 04.14.2014 by Aaron Grimes

Laser Marking on White ABS Plastic

Last Updated on Dec 7, 2023

Applications News
Laser Marking on White ABS Plastic

In the application shown above, we were able to achieve black contrast on white ABS plastic with our MOPA fiber laser.

The Best Technique for Laser Marking White ABS Plastic Surfaces

Laser etching on some plastics can be difficult, but various levels of contrast can be achieved depending on the type of plastic and the laser parameters utilized during the marking process. To achieve optimum contrast when laser marking white ABS plastic, the laser must melt or burn only the surface layer of the plastic. This type of laser engraving is sometimes referred to as “foaming.”

Laser foaming is accomplished by lowering the power of the laser, utilizing a low frequency, and moving at a high scan speed. The process of laser foaming facilitates a slow and controlled burn to create a dark mark on a light surface. The end result of this process is a smooth mark that is minimally invasive to the surface.

Read on to learn more about how you can use laser foaming or laser engraving on white ABS plastic surfaces.

Laser Marking on White ABS Plastic

Using the Proper Tools for Laser Engraving White ABS Plastic

When laser engraving white ABS plastic, it is important to use the proper machine. Not only are MOPA fiber laser systems reliable and efficient, but they also create distinct markings on plastic surfaces.

This mark seen above was made with our 10-watt fiber laser using the settings shown below.

  • Power – 40%
  • Frequency – 20,000 Hz
  • Scan speed – 1000 mm/sec

The most important part of the procedure is to maintain control. If the laser scanned too slowly, used too much power, or used too high of a frequency, the material would simply melt, as too much heat would be generated by the laser. In this case, it would be difficult to achieve a sharp, crisp character with ideal contrast. Thus, laser marking of plastics is a delicate balance of generating the correct amount of heat on the surface of the material to obtain the best mark.

What Machine Should I Use?

As you can see, by using the proper configurations you will end up with a smooth mark that will last through the product’s useful life. At TYKMA Electrox, we supply customers with MOPA laser engravers that are among the best technology available on the market.

Here are some of the benefits you’ll receive when you use one of our fiber lasers for laser engraving white ABS plastic:

  • Highest beam quality
  • Air-cooling with high ambient air temperature operating capabilities
  • Very efficient operation with low power consumption
  • A virtually maintenance-free design
  • Longest diode life (up to 100,000 hours)
  • Maximum application flexibility
  • Easy to integrate within your operations
  • High peak power and long pulse durations, allowing for high-speed, aggressive marking and deep engraving applications

Last but not least, these laser systems are easy to service and are backed by 24/7 customer support supplied by our team, along with downloads, training, and tutorials to make sure you are confident operating your equipment.

FAQs About Laser Engraving on White ABS Plastic Surfaces

What are some applications for laser engraving white ABS plastic?

ABS plastic is known for its strength, durability, rigidity, ease of processing, temperature resistance, chemical resistance, and so much more. This makes it useful in the following applications, either as a component or as the primary material:

  • Automotive parts – Interior and exterior trim, dashboard panels, and bumpers
  • Household appliances – Vacuum cleaners, blenders, coffee makers, and more
  • Electronics – Computer keyboards, monitor cases, printers, and other devices
  • Accessories – Luggage, briefcases, protective eyeglass cases, and more
  • Sporting equipment – Helmets, pads, and other protective gear

How do I clean the white ABS plastic after it has been engraved?

After laser marking white ABS plastic, be sure to clean the engraved surface with a mild cleaning agent. We suggest avoiding the use of anything that can scratch the surface.

What designs can be created when laser marking white ABS plastic?

Whether you need to craft a very intricate design or just want to add a serial number, laser engraving white ABS plastic allows you to achieve a precise design that is going to last.

While the possibilities are endless, here is a list of things you can laser mark onto a white ABS plastic surface:

  • Line art and vector graphics
  • Text and typography
  • Logos and branding
  • Intricate patterns
  • Icons and symbols
  • Barcodes and QR codes
  • Text and other messages
  • Geometric patterns
  • Measurements
  • And more!

Contact Us Today for More Information

If you’re ready to start laser engraving white ABS plastic, be sure to get your system from TYKMA Electrox for the best engineering and customer support.

Contact us today with questions!

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