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Can a lser cut be considered handmade?

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  • Can a lser cut be considered handmade?

    I found this description on-line. It says handmade and then laser cut. Does anyone else have a problem with this listing? I of course shortened the description. To me laser cut is not handmade. What's your opinion?

    Part of our new ..... Collection, our handmade Bookend......

    Our Bookend is laser cut from 3/8" mdf hard maple veneer. He is our original......

    I have asked the maker to clarify but so far no answer. Thanks.
    Last edited by Markru2002; 08-30-2011, 01:54 PM.
    Proud new owner of an EX-21


  • #2
    I guess if the laser is controlled by hand rather than computer it could be considered handmade but I doubt that's the case.


    • #3
      NO not in my book.
      If the laser is powerful enough to cut wood then it has to be in a class one enclosure so that you don't cut yourself.
      If I used a laser to engrave a name on a hand made (cut) ornament that may pass as hand made.
      RBI G4 26 Hawk, EX 16 with Pegas clamps, Nova 1624 DVR XP
      Philosophy "I don't know that I can't, therefore I can"
      Proud Member of the Long Island Woodworkers Club
      And the Long Island Scrollsaw Association


      • #4
        Not in my book.
        FD Mike
        SD Mike


        • #5
          Nope, I agree laser is not hand made.
          "Still Montana Mike"

          "Don't worry about old age--it doesn't last that long."
          Mike's Wood-n-Things LLC


          • #6
            Nope, not hand made...but I sure would like to have one to use on other "Hand Made" items I make.


            • #7
              When the power tools first came into play, I'm sure hand made meant all hand tools.

              Nevertheless, for this generation, I think for flat pieces that are laser cut and mass produced, even if it is hand sanded and finished, is false advertising. It might be a bit more gray if an artist used the laser for the rough cut, then carved the piece followed by free hand painting and/or burning.

              "Ever Striving, Never Arriving"


              • #8
                I think it's written somewhere in our scrollsaw club's bylaws that no computer controlled, laser/cnc type devices are to be used on any projects that are displayed as representative of the club's work. Only those projects cut with an electric or manually powered scrollsaw can be shown at club sponsored events.

                I guess that's my round-a-bout way of saying I don't consider laser cut to be handmade.
                Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter. Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."


                • #9
                  I'd say that representing a laser cut item as hand made is like saying your Ford is hand made.
                  It may be assembled by hand, but it sure as hell aint hand made.
                  "The Golden Mile"John Wayne
                  Some of my Stuff
                  Retired Medically Unfit Police Officers ***.


                  • #10
                    I have to agree with everyone, NO. But I got to thinking, was there a time when the scroll saw was introduced that the old hand saw guys would have said if it's made on a scroll saw, it's not handmade. As technology changes, does our perception of handmade change? Just wondering.
                    Dan H

                    I would rather be friendly to a stranger than be a stranger to my friends.


                    • #11
                      Like everyone else I agree a big NOPE.

                      But Max does raise an interesting point. I've had people query that I make the stuff by hand and have had to point out that the saw is electric. They've gone away with a "Thought so" look. I don't think they were from this planet but its a point of view.

                      Maybe when we all have 3D copiers the programming and adjustment needed for a laser will be considered "by hand".
                      Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.


                      • #12
                        I guess those folks Max talked about would also think that clothes made with an electric sewing machine aren't hand made either.


                        • #13
                          Most defintly not. There is nothing hand made about a computer producing an item. I take it as an insult when someone ask if my work is laser cut.
                          Paw Paw Ray



                          • #14
                            When I'm asked if my work is laser cut, I take it as a compliment because they see it as being good enough to have been computer cut.

                            Many folks just can't imagine being able to do the detail csts 'by hand,' so I keep some old blades on hand to show them the blade used. I put a tape 'flag' on on end to make them easier to pick up and keep track of.

                            Another thing to do is when you see a really bad (i.e. burnt) laser piece, buy it so you can show your customers what the laser stuff really looks like.


                            • #15
                              It all comes down to how you classify things. Is a pattern made using the computer with Coyote, or some other program really a hand drawn pattern. Many things we now use as scrollers are not really totally hand made already. Even making lumber anymore is all done with a computer generating how to cut the log for the most efficent use of the log. Is that any less of a board than one cut the old fashoned way?
                              I agree laser cut ornament is not the same as a hand cut one. But how many things have we seen that we try to redesign to cut on the scrollsaw, that were originally made automaticly by a machine. The laser people are just taking our hand cut patterns and cutting them the new way.
                              Rick Hutcheson


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