Question about MC Etcher

I have the MC Etcher on order and I was working on a CC job that will use it.

I don’t see this tool in the CC tool library. Do I need to define a custom tool for this?

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We don’t have it in our standard tool library yet.

I covered entering it at:

(but please update with the numbers on the Shop page)

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Here’s the setup i used for the MC Etcher. The 90 and 120 degree bits are the same except for the angle.


RPM Doesn’t matter because the spindle is turned off anyway. But you cant use zero so I just used 1 to make the S/W happy. I only use 2D so can’t confirm the 3D settings.


3D toolpaths don’t apply to this tool — it would be nice if there was an option to indicate that.

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Spindle speed does matter if you are using it on a Nomad, or a machine with a VFD, or the new HDM.


Why is this? It’s a drag tool.

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One doesn’t want the spindle being turned on when the drag tool is in the collet.

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I was responding to Gerry’s comment that RPM does matter in some cases. I understand that you would never turn on the spindle with a drag tool.

The machines mentioned have software controlled spindles - there’s no physical switch to turn them on or off. (edit: the nomad has no switch but you can turn of the VFDs for the other two, but it is not normal to do so… you leave it all running, and might forget to turn it off when putting the drag bit in)

As such, the machine will spin up the spindle automatically based on the setting you put in the tool database (or override in your project).

So for some machines, the setting in the tool database for the spindle speed is important.

I see. In my hands, that could be dangerous :slight_smile:

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haha… yes… I edited my post to say that it is possible (but for me at least not normal).

Auto spindle control is terrific and very very easy to get used to.

Received my new drag tools and just tried it out. When i did a pocket i could see the results. But just doing a contour i could barely see the etch line. Tried it on a piece of wall tile and a piece of plexiglass with the same results. maybe it works better on a piece of marble or similar material.

Thanks for the passive heads up! I just ordered a combo pack after waiting patiently for them to be restocked. I’m excited to try these out.

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For engraving text, what tool path type would you use?

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For text i would use pocket

Specifying contour is telling the spindle/tool bit to only follow the contour of the pattern you wish to engrave… you can choose to follow the outline exactly or follow along the outside of the outline (using a specified offset) or use the inside the contour using a specified offset. You will only be following the boundary of the enclosed area which is the reason the line engraved is very thin and barely visible.

Specifying pocket is going to result in a visible engraving because you have told the spindle/tool bit to cover the whole area which is included inside the boundary of the pattern you wish to engrave. If you want just to engrave, you could specify the engrave toolpath (only Pro version of CC at the moment) and that will be easy.

If you do not have the Pro version of CC or are using different software, then using pocket is going to get you the engraving you want.

I would recommend outlining with a no-offset contour and a suitable texture toolpath if you don’t have Carbide Create Pro w/ its nifty Engraving toolpath option.

When I create a pocket toolpath on some text the simulator shows nothing at all. What would be causing this?

Probably, the depth of cut is so small that it is below the level of detail that CC’s preview can show. You can temporarily use a larger depth of cut to double check that the toolpath is actually ok, reset it back to the depth you need for the engraving, and save G-code then

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