Photo etchingCustom precision metal components delivered fast

What is photo etching?

Photo etching, also known as chemical etching or metal etching, is a highly precise, tightly controlled corrosion process used to produce complex metal components with very fine detail.

The photo etching process offers a cost-effective alternative to stamping, punching, laser and waterjet cutting when machining precision components from thin gauge metals to 1.5mm thick.

Read the design engineers guide to etching

Photo etching benefits

Photo-etch tooling is digital, meaning no expensive hard tooling needs to be machined. Photo-tooling can be produced and modified extremely quickly allowing for low-cost, risk-free design optimisation.

When component integrity is critical, photo etching is often the only suitable metal machining technology as metal properties are unaffected.

No mechanical force or heat is used during the etching process, meaning components are free from stresses and burrs.

Photo etching is the most economical option for producing custom parts with complex designs as cost rarely ever increases with design complexity.

Benefits at a glance:

  • Unlimited complexity – you only pay for the first hole
  • No expensive hard tooling required
  • Low-cost design iterations – fast
  • Burr and stress-free – metal properties unaffected
  • Lead-times in days, not months
  • Virtually any metal
  • Accuracy to ±0.025mm
Compare etching, stamping & laser

What metals can be photo etched?

Chemical etching components

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