Frequently Asked Questions


Here are a few common questions about our products. If your question is not answered below, please contact our office and an engraving expert will be happy to assist.


Phone: 1.800.843.7637


Q1: What is Ply?

Ply is the number of colored layers in a single sheet of plastic. Gravotech carries 1, 2 & 3 Ply standard products.

Q2: What is surface vs. subsurface engraving?

Surface engraving, or standard engraving, materials are either laser or rotary engraved to expose the core of the material, thereby giving a color contrast between the cap and core.  

Sub-surface, or reverse engraving, involved laser or rotary engraving the material from the back. Once engraved, the characters and logos can be paint-filled to achieve aesthetic color contrast.

Q3: Do you need UV/sunlight safe material?

It depends on the application environment. A great example is a hospital with 24-hr. light. Even though the plastic is indoors, the continuous light will dull the color of a non-UV safe material.

Q4: Can I create my own custom material?

Of course! Gravotech can manufacture plastic in any color and a wide variety of thicknesses, finishes, ply's, and sizes. See the Custom Materials page for more information.

Q5: Can I get my sheet material cut to a size other than full, half or quarter?

Yes. Gravotech offers custom fabrication services to help speed up your manufacturing process. Get your plastic or metal sheets cut to your specific shape and design. You can even have holes drilled, backing applied, corners rounded, and more. See the Custom Fabrication page for more information.

Q6: Is there a quick material selection guide I can download?

Here you will find an easy to read chart explaining the composition and applications for each type of Gravotech material range.

Q7: Can I get a physical copy of the catalog mailed to my home or shop?

Sure! You can either fill out this request form. Call 1.800.843.7637 or email

Q8: Is ABS plastic laser engravable?

Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) plastic is recommended to be rotary engraved since a powerful laser can melt the plastic. However, using a lower power, and multiple passes, ABS plastic can be laser cut without causing too much damage.

Q9: IS PVC plastic laser engravable?

NO! When laser engraved, PVC plastic releases a gas fume that is harmful to both the operator and machine.

Q10: I am getting a brown char/burn on the underside of my material when I laser engrave. What is happening?

We recommend two immediate solutions for this issue. First, be sure you are using a honeycomb table or pin table. If the material sits directly on the laser table, air cannot cycle under the material for an efficient cut. Second, make sure your laser has an air assist system. This prevents flame-ups on the plastic and more efficiently moves air around the laser cabinet.

Q11: How to create a flame polished edge on acrylic?

The flame polished edge can be achieved in a few different ways. The first way is to cut the acrylic with a laser to automatically get the polished edge with no excess work. If you don’t own a laser powerful enough to cut your thickness of acrylic, one of the simplest things is to go to the hardware store and purchase a mapp gas torch. You can also use helium gas. You can use this to polish the edges by hand. This will require some practice, so start with some scrap pieces of acrylic until you develop the proper rhythm and speed to not melt the plastic.

Q12: Can I get better pricing from Gravotech?

Gravotech offers quantity discounts on all list price orders. For further discounts, contact your Consumables Territory Manager.

Q13: What is your Return Policy?

See our Returns Policy page here

Q14: Can I use my own UPS or FedEx shipping account?

Yes. Enter it prior to completing your order. If you have any issues, contact our e-commerce specialists. 1.800.843.7637.

Q15: How do I purchase Gravotech engraving machine?

Our machines are customized for each customer’s need. Our experts want to make sure you receive the perfect profit generating partner, so we like to take some extra time to discuss all your requirements. To purchase a Gravotech engraving machine, contact our office by calling 1.800.843.7637 or emailing: