Is there a standard adjustment for laser engraving barrel staves with the Ortur Laser Master 3?

We have barrel staves that we would like to engrave on our Ortur Laser Master 3. We are wondering if there is a formula or adjustment we can make either in the software, or is there is any hardware that would help. Or even if we would make physical adjustments to the stave during the engraving process.

I’m assuming you are inquiring about a method to maintain the laser focus height as the etching spans lengthwise over the stave, the stave having a crowned/bowed-up shape relative to the Z axis. I’ve laser etched dozens of 1/2 length staves, aka ~ 17" long, and although at that length the delta Z is less overall, sometimes as little as 3mm, if I’m doing fine focus etching I will divide my design into sections (~4" long) along the length of the stave and reset the focus in the middle of each section as I etch them. Use the LB tool “Cut Shapes” to divide your overall design into such sections if necessary, but usually I can just select the shape objects in relative “sections” along the length of the stave and laser them in such groups.

When etching the side of the stave, since it has a taper relative to Z axis (when stave is laid on side), I shim the stave with wedges at both ends so the upside edge/face is parallel to X and flat to Z.

Another tip I can share from experience with staves (or any wood for that matter) is that the finer the surface is sanded, the better the laser etching. I usually etch whiskey barrel staves, which tend have a very gray/brown and weathered look, a look I’d like to preserve except that such a surface is far too busy with marks and dark grain lines that it interferes with the fine focus etchings such as text and shape outlines. So I sand the staves to a bare wood fine finish, but I preserve the charred inside surface of the stave as it maintains the bourbon aroma. :slight_smile:

I don’t have pictures to post of the shimming but I can take some later today and post if needed.

Thank you for the detailed response! This helps us tremendously, and answers multiple questions we had.

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