There are basically three types of "engraving" used in the production of donor bricks for fundraising projects. These types are laser engraving, sandblasting and ENGRAVESTONETM engraving.
Laser engraving is a method of marking a brick or paver in much the same way as an ink jet printer prints on paper. A laser etches a series of dots as the laser head passes back and forth over the material surface. The laser vitrifies (turns into glass) the areas that it touches.
Sandblasting, as the name implies, utilizes a fine sand abrasive sprayed at high speed against a brick or paver that is covered with a rubberlike stencil. The stencil masks off most of the paver leaving that part that will become the inscription exposed. The sand "engraves" this exposed surface and bounces off the rubber stencil. When the stencil is removed, the inscription is revealed. The lettering is often left in its natural state, painted or filled with epoxy.
ENGRAVESTONETM uses a unique method of engraving: truly engraved. We use proprietary technology that was developed in the late 1980's. This method produces evenly engraved characters to depths that can be controlled to within .01". Then each inscription is hand-painted with industry standard heavy duty Lithochrome paint. Hand painting allows us to compensate for the surface irregularities of the material and results in a very attractive, durable and easy-to-read inscription.
Why is ENGRAVESTONETM engraving better?
Our process is superior to laser engraving and sandblasting for several reasons.
Inscriptions are extremely easy to read, up close and, more importantly, from a distance.
The unique shape and smoothness of the bottoms of the letters make them easy to clean, reduce the buildup of ice and give a uniformity to the inscription.
Each and every letter, number and punctuation mark is painted by hand. The result is a personal touch by one of our skilled painters - not just machine-made inscriptions.
The painter examines each brick thoroughly as he or she paints it, adding another level of quality control.
Engraving can be done on any flat surface -- smooth or rough -- as well as on uneven surfaces like slate.
The unique shape of the engraving and the durability of the paint make ENGRAVESTONETM engraved bricks stand up to heavy traffic.