Laser Metal Cutting

Chemical etching and laser metal cutting are two methods used for precision machining metal parts. Depending on your application, one method may be better suited than another-or, both methods may be best. For example, Fotofab may choose to use lasers for sheet metal cutting where certain features (holes, slots, etc) smaller than 0.004" (.102mm) are required. Below is a comparison chart that shows how laser cutting and chemical etching metal parts compare:


Laser Metal Cutting

Chemical Etching

Min. feature size 0.001"(.0254mm) 0.004" (.102mm)
Tolerances Down to +/- 0.0002" (.005mm) Down to +/- 0.001" (.0254mm)
Delivery Standard delivery: 2 weeks Same-day up to 2-3 weeks
Minimum lot Usually $300 plus set-up/programming $300 plus $250 for phototool
Additional fees Set-up fees and programming(fees vary) Phototool(usually $250-$275 for single part tool)
Materials Metals and non-metals Metals
Ideal material thicknesses From 0.0005" (.0127mm) to 0.1250" (3.18mm) From 0.0005" (.0127mm) to 0.090" (2.29mm)
Intricate features Can add to cost No price increase for intricate designs

You can count on Fotofab for all of our laser metal cutting and precision machining needs! To discuss your application, please send an email to Sales or call us at (773) 463-6211.