Cricut is a cutting and scoring tool primarily used for DIY projects. But can it engrave as well?
Yes, Cricut Maker can engrave a wide range of materials like an engraving machine. With the addition of the QuickSwap tool, you get engraving tools to incise the design of your choice easily.
If you’re new to the world of Cricut Maker and looking for ways to engrave with it, this article is for you. Here we explain how to engrave acrylic, wood, and metal surfaces with a Cricut Maker at home. Don’t worry, it’s going to be easy and a lot of fun!
Table of Contents
- 1 Can You Engrave With the Cricut Maker?
- 2 What Materials Can You Engrave with a Cricut Maker?
- 3 List of Cricut Maker Tools & Accessories for Engraving various Materials
- 4 How do I Engrave Text with My Cricut Maker?
- 5 How to Engrave Acrylic With Cricut Maker?
- 6 How to Engrave Wood with Cricut Maker?
- 7 How to Engrave Metal with Cricut Maker?
- 8 Can you engrave leather with a Cricut Maker?
- 9 How to Make Cricut Engraving Stand Out?
Can You Engrave With the Cricut Maker?
There’s some confusion regarding Cricut’s ability to engrave materials — even among Cricut users. Some claim you can engrave with Cricut, while others dismiss it.
To answer the question, you can engrave with the Cricut Maker. The reason for the confusion is that not all Cricut machines can incise. Furthermore, Cricut is not exactly an engraving machine, and most users do not buy Cricut for that purpose.
It’s important to note that you can engrave only with the Cricut Maker and not with other models like Cricut Joy or Cricut Explore.
Cricut Joy is an entry-level model that can do basic cuts, writes, and draws on a limited number of materials. Cricut Explore is one level up with more capabilities. The Maker is the top-of-the-line product from Cricut. It has engraving tips and other tools that allow you to engrave at home.
The Cricut Engraving Tip is the newest addition to the lineup of specialty tools. Currently, it’s available only for the Cricut Maker.
Related: How to Engrave Rocks or Stones?
What Materials Can You Engrave with a Cricut Maker?
This machine can engrave plastic, wood, metal, glass, and more. Each material has different settings you will need to use to get the best results. Here are some tips for engraving each type of material:
Plastic: Use the engraving tool on medium speed and light pressure for best results.
Wood: Use the engraving tool on low speed and high pressure for best results.
Leather: Use the engraving tool on low speed and light pressure for best results.
Metal: Use the engraving tool at high speed and light pressure for best results.
Glass: Use the engraving tool on high speed and medium pressure for best results.
I have tried the machine to pen my pet’s name on its anodized aluminum dog tag. Also, I recently engraved a design on one of my wallets. Results were excellent in both instances.
List of Cricut Maker Tools & Accessories for Engraving various Materials
Here are just a few of the things you can do with the Cricut Maker 3:
1. Engrave wood, metal, glass, and more
2. Cut intricate designs and shapes
3. Make custom stamps
4. Create unique artwork and décor
5. And so much more!
Whether a beginner or a seasoned pro, the Cricut Maker 3 will meet all your engraving needs. So why wait? Get started on your next project today!
When it comes to cutting machines, the Cricut Maker 3 is in a league of its own. This powerful machine can easily cut through materials like vinyl, paper, and fabric, making it the perfect tool for crafters and DIY enthusiasts.
If you’re looking for a machine that can help you take your projects to the next level, the Cricut Maker 3 is worth considering. In this review, we’ll take a closer look at what this machine offers so that you can decide if it’s right for you.
First and foremost, the Cricut Maker 3 is incredibly easy to use. The touch screen interface makes it simple to select your project settings and get started. The machine has several built-in designs, so you can start creating immediately.
One of the best things about the Cricut Maker 3 is its compatibility with many materials. Whether you want to cut vinyl for a new sign or fabric for a quilt, this machine can handle it. And, if you’re looking to expand your crafting horizons, the Cricut Maker 3 also comes with an engraving tip so that you can add intricate details to your projects.
If you’re looking for a powerful and versatile cutting machine, the Cricut Maker 3 is worth considering. With its easy-to-use interface and compatibility with a wide range of materials, this machine will take your projects to the next level.
If you’re looking for an engraving tip compatible with the Cricut products, then the Cricut 2006978 Engraving Tip is a great option. This tip can engrave various materials, including glass, metal, and plastic. And because it’s compatible with the Cricut Explore Air 2 and Cricut Makers, you’ll be able to use it with a wide range of materials and thicknesses.
One thing to remember when using this engraving tip is that it is not recommended for use on paper or cardstock. This is because the tip can cause these materials to tear. So if you’re looking to engrave something on paper or cardstock, you’ll need to use another engraving tip.
In terms of performance, the Cricut 2006978 Engraving Tip does a great job. It’s able to engrave clean and precise lines, and it can even handle intricate designs. So if you’re looking for an engraving tip that can produce professional-looking results, this is a great option.
The only downside of this engraving tip is that it’s not compatible with all materials. In particular, it’s not recommended for use on leather or fabric. So if you’re looking to engrave these materials, you’ll need to use another engraving tip.
If you’re looking for a versatile and easy-to-use cutting machine for your home crafting projects, the Cricut Maker is a great option to consider. One of the unique features of the Cricut Maker is its Tip Housing QuickSwap Fine Debossing tip. This allows you to quickly and easily switch between different debossing tips, giving you more control over the depth and detail of your cuts.
As anyone who has ever used a Cricut knows, one of the best things about the cutting machines is their versatility. Whether you’re looking to make simple cuts for a scrapbooking project or more intricate designs for a card or invitation, the Cricut can handle it. The Tip Housing QuickSwap Fine Debossing tip takes this versatility by allowing you to quickly and easily switch between different debossing tips. This means that you can create different levels of depth and detail in your cuts, depending on what you’re looking for.
For example, if you’re working on a scrapbooking project and want to add some dimension to your cuts, you can use the Fine Debossing tip to create detailed and precise cuts. Or, if you’re working on a card or invitation and want a more subtle debossed look, you can use the Medium Debossing tip. The QuickSwap feature also makes it easy to change tips if you decide you want to try a different one mid-project.
Overall, the Tip Housing QuickSwap Fine Debossing tip is an excellent addition to the Cricut Maker, adding even more versatility to an already versatile machine. If you’re looking for a cutting machine that can handle any project you throw at it, the Cricut Maker with the Tip Housing QuickSwap Fine Debossing tip is a great option to consider.
If you’re looking for a top-quality cutting mat that can handle even the toughest materials, then you need to check out the Cricut StrongGrip Cutting Mat. This mat is specifically designed to cut through tougher materials like vinyl, cardstock, and even fabric so you can make all sorts of projects with your Cricut machine. And because Cricut makes it, you know it will be high quality and last for a long time. So if you’re ready to take your crafting to the next level, then be sure to pick up a Cricut StrongGrip Cutting Mat.
How do I Engrave Text with My Cricut Maker?
Text is usually the first thing users engrave with their Cricut Makers. That’s a good starting point for getting familiar with Cricut’s engraving process.
Using the Cricut Maker to engrave text is easy once you know the basics and how to use it. To engrave text with your Cricut Maker, you’d need the following things:
Cricut Maker Machine
You can either use the original Cricut Maker or the upgraded Cricut Maker 3. For engraving purposes, there aren’t many differences between the two. So either of the machines will fit the bill.
The engraving tool, also known as the engraving tip, makes inscribing with the Cricut Maker possible. This tool is part of the QuickSwap Housing System, including the debossing tip, perforation blade, wavy blade, and scoring wheel.
The thing you want to engrave can be an acrylic blank, metal pet tag, pendant, bracelet, knife, or anything else.
The mat is super important when you’re engraving anything in Cricut Maker. It works as an adhesive and fixates the material to the surface.
A masking tape is used to bind the edges of the material to the mat. While using the tape is optional, avoiding slippage during engraving is highly recommended.
With a lint roller, you can clean the dust that comes off the material.
Now that everything is in place, it’s time to start engraving the text. It will be a simple three-step process, but you must take care of certain things. Here are the steps involved:
Create the Text Design in Design Space
You first need to prepare the text design in Design Space, the app Cricut Maker used for design purposes. You can load the design in SVG format or create a new one from scratch.
To create the text, open the canvas and select ‘Text’ from the left panel. Enter the text you want and design it using the available fonts. You can put the letters in bold or underline or italicize them.
You’d have to make sure that the text design fits the material. For this, draw the image on the canvas as close to the original material as possible. Then fit the text inside that image.
Post that, change the operation (line type for older models) to ‘Engrave’ and keep the style as ‘Writing’. This is important; otherwise, the Cricut Maker will only engrave the outline.
Lastly, click the ‘Make it’ button to move on to the next step.
Align the Object on the Mat
The second most important task is aligning the engraving object on the mat.
The easiest way is to drag the image to either the center or an easy point in the canvas. The point can be one block from the left and top, but centering the elements is the best option. Then, mimic the placement on the StrongGrip mat.
Once placed, you need to secure it with tapes. So tape down the edges of the object from all sides.
Set up the Cricut Maker
Go back to the Design Space and select the base material settings. You must select the material you want to engrave along with the thickness. There’s a good chance that you may not find the material of your choice. In that case, select the closest one you can find.
Now set up the Cricut Maker for engraving, take the engraving tip and place it in the ‘B’ carrier. Then, gently move the white star wheels to the edges of the roller bar. After this, slide the mat into the machine using the Load/Unload button. Lastly, click on the ‘C’ button to start engraving.
Depending on the design complexity, the Cricut Maker will take a few minutes to finish the engraving process. After it’s done, remove and polish the object using the lint roller. The material is now engraved with text!
How to Engrave Acrylic With Cricut Maker?
Engraving acrylic is more or less the same as the process described above. However, you should know some key differences when engraving acrylic with the Cricut Maker.
To start with, you’d need the following things:
- Cricut Maker
- Engraving tip
- StrongGrip mat
- Acrylic objects (acrylic blanks are the most common items)
- Lint roller
- Masking tape/painter’s tape
Once you’ve assembled the items, follow the steps to engrave acrylic with the Cricut Maker:
Prepare the design in the Design Space app
Open the Design Space app and create the design you want to engrave in acrylic. Or upload the image from other sources onto the canvas. Make adjustments, if any, to fine-tune the design.
The design fits into the acrylic object. To ensure that’s the case, draw the object with the exact dimension as the real object on the canvas and place the design inside. Resize the design till it fits the acrylic.
Then, click on the design, select ‘Engrave’ from the Operations drop-down, and click on ‘Make It.’
Align the acrylic object on the mat
Proper alignment is the next step to engraving on acrylic. So take the acrylic object and place it at the center or near an easy spot.
Before that, remove the plastic backing sheet from the acrylic on one side. In most cases, acrylic has a plastic backing on both sides to prevent scratch marks. You must remove the sheet from the side you want to engrave. Leave the plastic sheet on the other side as it is.
Once you’ve aligned the acrylic object on the mat, time to replicate the same on the canvas. Drag the design to the center of the canvas or where you’ve placed the object on the mat.
Before engraving with the Cricut Maker, apply tapes to the acrylic edges to ensure they don’t get displaced during the process.
Prepare the Cricut Maker
The last step is to set up the Cricut maker for engraving. Go back to Design Space and select the material as ‘acrylic’ and then the thickness level.
Once prompted, place the engraving tip in the ‘B’ carrier and move the white star wheels to the edges. Load the mat into the machine and start engraving by clicking the ‘C’ button.
After the design is inscribed, polish the acrylic object with the lint roller. Your acrylic is now engraved!
How to Engrave Wood with Cricut Maker?
The Cricut Maker is a handy tool for engraving wood. But there are certain limitations you should know.
The machine won’t engrave hardwood like oak, maple, alder, or mahogany. You need to use softwood. Cricut recommends using basswood or balsa wood. You can also use softwoods cedar, fir, pine, and spruce. But make sure they’re not thicker than 2 mm.
Here are the things you’d need to engrave wood with the Cricut Maker:
- Cricut Maker
- Engraving tip
- StrongGrip mat
- Masking tape/painter’s tape
- Wood stain (optional)
- Sandpaper (optional)
After you have the necessary items, get busy with engraving wood with Cricut Maker by following these steps:
Create the design on Design Space
Open the Design Space app and create the design you want to inscribe on the wooden surface. Or else, upload the design in SVG format. Then, draw the wood’s shape with the exact dimension on the canvas. After that, resize the design inside the wood.
Click on ‘Make It’ and select the material. Please note that you’ll not find wood as one of the options because it’s not material. The closest option is Tooling Leather 6.7 ounces. So select it as the material and move on to the next step.
Align the wood on the StrongGrip mat
The next step is to place the wood on the StringGrip mat properly. Ideally, you’d position the wood at the center, but feel free to place it at an easy spot that’s comfortable for you.
Then, tape the edges with painter’s tape to ensure it doesn’t get displaced during the engraving process.
Set up the Cricut Maker for engraving
The last step is to prepare the Cricut Machine. After you select the material, you’ll be prompted to place the engraving tip in the ‘B’ carrier. Then, move the white star wheels to the edges.
Insert the mat into the Cricut Maker and begin the engraving process. It should take a few minutes, depending on the design.
After the engraving is done, polish with sandpaper and apply the wood stain to create a darker shade. The wood is now engraved!
You can also use the Cricut Maker to cut the wood in a particular shape before engraving it. The process of cutting requires you to use the knife blade tool. Also, you need to work from your desktop as the tool cannot be accessed on mobile devices or tablets.
How to Engrave Metal with Cricut Maker?
Engraving metal with the Cricut Maker isn’t any different from other materials.
You can engrave many metals, including aluminum, brass, stainless steel, bronze, and anodized aluminum. These are the metal options you’ll find in the material settings. But users have also reported success with silver plates, tin, and even gold.
If you look at the official compatible materials list, you’ll only find two metals: aluminum sheets (0.5mm) and 40 gauge thin copper.
To engrave other metals with the Cricut Maker, you need to find the equivalent material setting as per the metal hardness.
Here are the items you’d need to engrave metal:
- Cricut Maker
- Engraving tip
- StrongGrip mat
- Masking tape/painter’s tape
- Enamel marker (optional)
Once you have all the items at your disposal, follow the steps to start engraving:
Prepare the design in Design Space
The first step is to prepare the design you want to engrave on the metal. Open the canvas on the Design Space app and draw the design. If you already have the design saved on your device, upload it instead onto the canvas.
This design needs to fit within the metal surface. Therefore, outline the metal object with precise dimensions. Then drag the design inside the outline and resize it. This is the hardest part of the engraving process.
Once that is out, select the design and change the operations to ‘Engrave’. You can hide the outline if you want.
Align the metal to the center of the mat
The next step is to position the metal piece centrally to the StrongGrip mat. So, pinpoint the central spot and place the metal in there. Or, you can also select a spot that’s easy for you to locate on the Design Space.
Then, take the masking tape and apply tape to the edges of the metal. This would ensure the object isn’t displaced due to the pressure applied during engraving.
Now, return to the Design Space and place the design on the same spot as the metal object on the mat. If it’s in the center, position the design on the center.
Click on Continue and select the material. This can be tricky if you cannot find the material since only two metals exist. The best option here is to find the metal hardness in The Mohs Scale of Hardness and use the equivalent material available in the Cricut material settings.
Set up the Cricut Maker for engraving
The third step involves setting up the Cricut Maker for engraving.
After selecting the material, you’ll be asked to place the engraving tip in the ‘B’ carrier. Then, shift the white star wheels to the edges.
Place the mat inside the Cricut Maker and begin the engraving process. Since it’s metal, the process may take longer than usual. Once it’s engraved, use the enamel marker to make the engraving darker.
Can you engrave leather with a Cricut Maker?
Yes, you can engrave leather with a Cricut Maker! You’ll need to use the Rotary Blade and the Bonded Fabric setting in Design Space. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to do it:
1. First, you’ll need to gather your supplies. You’ll need a piece of leather, your Cricut Maker, the Rotary Blade, and some transfer tape.
2. Next, open up Design Space and create your design. Make sure that your design is reversed before cutting!
3. Cut your design out of vinyl using the Bonded Fabric setting.
4. Weed away the excess vinyl from your design.
5. Place your transfer tape over the top of your design and burnish it down.
6. Peel away the backing paper from your transfer tape and place it on your leather.
7. Burnish your design onto the leather.
8. Remove the transfer tape, being careful not to pull up any of the vinyl.
9. Now you’re ready to engrave! Select the Rotary Blade from the drop-down menu in Design Space and choose the “Engrave” setting. Send your design to the Cricut Maker and watch it engrave!
10. When it’s finished, remove your leather from the machine and admire your handiwork!
How to Make Cricut Engraving Stand Out?
The Cricut Maker is not explicitly made for engraving. There are other tools like laser engravers that do a better job. Hence, the results from a Cricut Maker might not be the best. But there are a few ways to make the Cricut engraving stand out.
- One way to enhance the engraving is by adding hatch pattern fills and using acrylic paint to darken it. This will add depth to the designs and increase visibility.
- Another way is to draw the design twice, so the material is engraved twice. This way, the incise will be deeper and clearer. You should use this tip for thicker materials like metal and wood.
- Also, enamel pens give a rich and defined look to the engravings. So use these pens to darken the areas to help your design stand out.