Recreating Authentic Looking Wood Grain

Heirloom quality finishes look nice on wood products but wouldn't it be nice to also have an authentic wood grain from a piece of wood like a tree, log, old fence post, old barn wood or a rail road tie? The qualities found in those types of pieces would look really great in wood products.

So, earlier today I set out to experiment and went searching for the right piece of wood around my house. The firewood pile served me well and I was able to find a log that I really liked. The wood was stripped of bark, it was aged a bit so the patina was just right and offered a variety of color depth.

I took a variety of photographs of this wood, selected one that I liked (featured image) and loaded it into the Glowforge software used to digitally transfer design instructions to the laser machine, we can begin to see that our wood grain can come to life.

We selected a small sample (4" x 2.5" x 1/8") of Basswood Hardwood from our scrap cut pile and you can see that it's non textured and flat surfaced.

We're setting our laser so that the photograph we took is going to be engraved into the sample piece of wood that you see in this photograph. A low speed and 225 lines per inch setting will be used to engrave our authentic wood grain pattern.

The outcome on the very first pass exceeded my expectations, I can even see the various tool markings in the engraved piece. This took 11 minutes to engrave a piece of this size and I'm excited about the possibilities to design products using this technique to make them completely unique for our customers.