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Sandcarved Engraving

The sand carved engraving technique is used for gifts made from our stone product line, and is completed in-house to allow for a fast turnaround. This particular technique requires a large amount of patience and artistic detail.

This process involves using compressed air to force an abrasive stream through a nozzle and onto the stone. Even if a small piece of the stencil is blown off because of the high pressurized air, the entire engraving can be jeopardized. To find a consistency of the depth of the engraving, the engraver must have a strong eye and pay close attention. The result of the sandcarved method is a deeper, long lasting engraving with smooth, crisp lines, depth, and definition.

Rarely can we use photographs on sandcarvings due to the complexity of the photographs. Sandcarving is a very one dimensional, black or white process. The space is either engraved or not engraved – there isn't a gray area or shades of color to show different dimensions. Vector images and silhouettes are often used in sandcarving. If our customer provides a photo, we can try to match a vector image similar to the image.

How It Works

On custom orders, we help walk you through the process of selecting your product or stone, paint colors, fonts, and artwork. A designer will take a photo of each stone, create design options based on the customer's ideas, and superimpose the design onto the image of each stone so the customer can see an approximate idea of what their product will look like. This step helps to ensure our customers' satisfaction.

If your design is being engraved on a boulder, your proof for approval or design estimate will be sent within a week.

Once you approve your design, a rubberized stencil is created. We create one-time use stencils especially for your order that's cut to your specifications from the approved design. When we complete the stencil, we cut out the parts that will be engraved, then clean and prep the engraving so the stencil will stay secure to the surface during the sandcarving process.

When the time comes, our engraver suits up in special protective safety gear and a helmet to start the engraving process. Most stones take a minimum of one hour to engrave. Our desired depth of engraving is a 1/2 inch to 1 inch deep. All stones are different, but we will go as deep as the stone and stencil allow us, so long as we don't jeopardize the quality of the unique engraving.

After the order is engraved, it goes into the painting process, where it receives three coats of industrial monument paint made for stone, along with two coats of a clear UV protector and sealer. With the fresh engraving on the stone, the paint absorbs quickly and maintains its longevity. The paint must cure for 24-48 hours. The stencil is then torn off and the order is cleaned again and ready for the customer.

The sandcarving process is more time sensitive and labor intensive. Please allow for longer turnaround times for sandcarved products over laser engraved products. We do not want to compromise the quality of the engraving and painting by trying to rush stone orders through too quickly.

For original and personalized designs, we strive for a turnaround time of 3-5 days, and 7-10 days post-approval for custom designs (roughly 14 days start to finish to include design proof).

Note: Regarding paint, we say that black is best. We don't offer a lifetime guarantee on paint because, like all paint, it will fade or wear over time. Due to UV rays, red, pink, orange, yellow, and white paints will fade the fastest within 10 years. Should someone require a touch up, this is no problem. We always keep digital files of all of our orders, and can make a new stencil, clean up the old paint, and repaint the area that needs a little care.