Colchester engraving business operates out of resident's garage

By Jason Harris - Staff Writer
Colchester - posted Thu., Dec. 20, 2012
Rob D'Atri stands next to his engraving laser. Photos by Jason Harris.
Rob D'Atri stands next to his engraving laser. Photos by Jason Harris.

Redco Industries is a local custom engraving business which Rob D’Atri and his friend, Rob English, formed in the fall of 2011 and began operating this past January out of D’Atri’s garage. The original business plan was to create signs with their laser that said things like "120 Volts AC" and "on/off," which are then screwed onto machinery or control panels for a company. But when their first such job fell through, they decided to branch out.

D'Atri loves art, music and everything artistic, but says he can't draw, sing or even play an instrument. By working with the Corel Draw computer program and coming up with artistic designs, however, D'Atri said the laser allows him to be artistic without having his work ruined by a shaky hand. It fulfills an artistic need in him, he said.

The laser burner allows for much versatility, as it can engrave wood, glass, acrylic and even paper. D'Atri recalled a recent play date for his daughter where he needed 10 cut-outs of a cat. "It would have taken an hour to cut them out with scissors, but it took seconds with the laser," he said, noting that he doesn't know how people live without lasers.

D'Atri said he spends most of his time in the garage doing the engravings, while English is out on the road looking for orders. "He would love nothing more than to be here burning stuff because it’s a lot of fun,” D’Atri said of English.

Currently D'Atri is creating bookmarks. The artistic designs on his bookmarks are geometric shapes he has made on the computer. “There are infinite amounts of designs,” D’Atri said. “I think the bookmarks may be my favorite thing to make.”

The hard part about creating the bookmarks, he said, is not cutting through the wood around the design; otherwise the middle of the bookmark would fall out, he said. The easiest part is coming up with what he puts on the top of the bookmark. He has made bookmarks with “Harry Potter,” “Twilight,” and “The Hunger Games” on them because they are popular and had movies come out in the last couple of years, he said.

His “Fifty Shades of Grey” bookmark came about because he looked on the bestsellers list and saw it was the most read book this year. The cover had a necktie on it, but it would be hard for him to engrave it on a bookmark because of shading issues, he said. Instead of the necktie, he searched online for quotes and found, “Laters, Baby” and added a little pair of handcuffs hanging from the letter “L.”

D’Atri said they plan to have a physical storefront in the future, but until then the company is selling its products at craft fairs like the recent one at Bacon Academy, and at a local bookstore, Books & Boos, in Colchester.

Redco’s products can also be found on its website, http://www.redcoindustries.com/.


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