The gun laser engraving cost will depend on what you want engraved into the gun. For example, the cost of engraving initials into a gun will be much less than the cost of engraving a logo or full name and address into the gun metal.
Why do people have their guns laser engraved?
Laser marking is very durable and resists extreme temperatures. If your gun is heavily used, laser engraving the serial number on it ensures that the identifying marks won’t get rubbed off. Then you won’t get in trouble for obscuring them because you oiled and polished it too much.
There are items that require registration under the NFA. These items include machine guns, short barrel rifles, and short barrel shotguns. You can also make an existing gun regulated by the NFA by adding a silencer to it.
Federal law imposes a tax on the manufacture and transfer of these items. Owners may laser engrave it with the NFA tax stamp information. Then you can’t be wrongly charged with owning an illegal version of the item.
Engrave the gun with your name and address so that it can easily be returned to you if stolen. If someone does steal it and the police find it later, they are much more likely to return it to you. But unless you’re making the firearm from scratch, it will already have the caliber, serial number and manufacturing location already marked on it.
Some people have a line engraved on the top of the slide so that they can more easily line up the sight.
What do people typically have laser engraved into their guns?
Engraving serial numbers and your contact information into the gun can help you remain in compliance with government regulations. This could protect you from hefty fines or being charged with a crime. It may result in lower insurance premiums or be a requirement set by your insurance company.
For example, you might need to have your name and address engraved into the gun in a permanent manner if you want your property insurance to cover the gun.
A gun might be marked with the ID number of the NFA trust, also known as a gun trust. An NFA gun trust is used to legally own an NFA item. You can set up an NFA trust that would then legally own the gun. This trust allows you to possess and transfer the firearm to heirs, though they otherwise may not be allowed to legally own it.
For example, this is the only way you could ensure that children that are under 18 when you die could inherit your Title II firearms. And a trust like this is the only way to avoid the fine of up to ten thousand dollars that comes with the improper registration or unlawful possession of an NFA firearm. And those found guilty of violating the National Firearms Act could be hit with fines of up to 250K under the Gun Control Act as well as be barred from owning guns.
But many people have their guns engraved simply to make them look good. That’s the only explanation for everything from dragon tooth patterns to floral patterns engraved on guns. Laser engraving is a great way to personalize a gun in a permanent way, whereas paint could rub off over time.
What is the standard cost of engraving something into a gun?
A gun laser engraving cost or price quote may be per letter or line of text with a minimum cost per job. That is because the engraver has to take time to set up the equipment and process the order no matter how large it is.
For example, engraving initials or letters will cost two to seven dollars depending on the size of the letter, but you may be charged a minimum price per job like 50 or 75 dollars. Engraving the factory lettering or other manufacturer’s marks is going to cost you at least fifty dollars.
The cost of engraving a logo or symbols in the gun will depend on the size and complexity of the job. The price will be proportional to the amount of work the engraver has to do. For example, it will cost less to have a cool curling flourish after your name than it would to have a wavy pattern etched the entire length of the gun.
This is why you’ll pay far more for a full gun scroll than one on the top of the slide. Tiger and saber serrations often cost more than basic serrations. You may have to pay a lot more to have a bear or tiger etched into the receiver of the gun than your name, because of how hard it is to create such a detailed image.
You could lower the overall cost of engraving the gun by having all the work done at once. For example, you could ask for complex artwork to be engraved on the gun along with the serial numbers and/or NFA trust number. Since the setup and tear-down costs are built into the price, you’ll pay less overall relative to having the two jobs done separately.
You may see gun engraving prices quoted by the piece. For example, laser engraving the bottom strap will cost a fraction of the cost of engraving the bottom strap. Engraving the front of the gun frame will cost much less than the cost of engraving the entire frame, since it is much smaller. The same is true for engraving the cylinder ring relative to the work of a cylinder scroll.
You may see prices for engraving one side of the gun. In these cases, you’ll pay twice as much if you want the same information or pattern engraved on both sides of the gun.
Note that you may have to pay to ship the gun to a gun engraver, if you aren’t hiring a local artisan to do the job. Make sure the engraver has a Federal Firearm Licensed or FFL so that they can receive and return the gun. Shipping will of course be an additional expense.
Gun laser engraving cost – Conclusion
Gun engraving may be done for legal or purely aesthetic reasons. The cost of engraving the gun will depend on the size and complexity of the job, though there may be a minimum price tag to ensure that the gun shop pays its bills.