Archive for June, 2014

Upon the purchase of a monument from Sartin Memorials/Mike’s Laser Etching, you will have received a copy of our LIfetime Warranty. If at any time, you believe that you have an issue which should, or may be, covered under the lifetime warranty, we ask that you take the following steps to file a claim with us:

1. Take clear photographs of all of the damaged area, both up close and of the full monument.

2. Find your original purchase contract to reference.

3. Contact us to request a Memorial Damage Claim Form to complete. Below is a link which will take you to an example of the Memorial Damage Claim Form.

4. Complete the Memorial Damage Claim Form completely and forward to us, along with the photographs of the damage. These can be mailed to us at PO Box 184 St George’s, De 19733 or emailed to us at (Please be sure to keep a copy of everything submitted if you are mailing your claim. Although we typically return all original photographs being used in the design process immediately, we will be retaining any photographs submitted with a damage claim for our own records.)

5. Contact us to verify that we have received the form and photographs no earlier then 24 hours after you have emailed and 7 days after you have mailed the form and photographs.

6. Allow us 30 days to review the claim form and photographs.



Anytime a monument is installed in the cemetery, a foundation will be placed beneath it. A foundation, also known as a footer, is cement which is the same width as the base of the monument, and several inches thick. The purpose of a foundation is to prevent the monument from sinking into the ground as the dirt around the monument settles, as it naturally does.

Although Sartin Memorials/Mike’s Laser Etching is more than happy to lay the foundation when the monument is delivered and installed at the cemetery, there are some cemeteries which do not allow outside companies to lay them. In these cases, we typically include the cost of the foundation in the total cost of the monument and deal directly with the cemetery to order and pay for the foundation. This not only ensures that the correct size foundation is ready upon delivery, but takes a bit more work off the shoulders of the family who has recently lost a loved one.

We Need Your Help!

Posted: June 25, 2014 in Uncategorized

We have decided to create a program to assist families who have lost a loved one, but you are unable to afford a monument. Before officially beginning this program, we need to figure out a name! We would like the name to include “Sartin’s” and had thought of “Sartin’s Cares”. But, we figured that we would ask all of you what you thought. What name can you think of? Or, do you think Sartin’s Cares is great?

Leave a comment and let us know!

Heather, our General Manager, forwarded an article to me that she had seen attached to an email from a web design business we were working with. What this article says is so very true, not only for a web design business, but also when it comes to purchasing a memorial monument. So, we wanted to share it with you.

To see the original article, visit the following link:


The original article states that the above image is a web designer’s holy grail. Well, it is also a monument designers! It is not possible to have all three: Fast, Good and Cheap. A client must choose only two of these options.


You have a deadline and need the monument to be installed prior to the typical 8-12 weeks we promise to have your monument completed in. You also want your monument to be the highest quality granite, with a custom design, so it is truly a reflection of your loved one. Great! We will make your monument our first priority and push it ahead of all the other orders we are currently working on. Until your monument is completed and installed, we will focus all of our energy on making sure it is done not only on time, but is the highest quality work possible. However, if you choose Good & Fast, you must accept that you will be paying top dollar for your monument or there may be an express fee (decided on a case by case bases). Once you see your monument installed in just a few short days or weeks and can really appreciate the amazing design, you will realize that it was worth it!


You still want the highest quality monument, but you want it at a discounted price. We can certainly work with you to ensure you are getting what you want AND what you can afford. However, in choosing Good & Cheap, you must be willing to be patient. We will need to work with those clients who are paying top dollar in order to see their monument completed quickly. You patience will be rewarded but we do ask that you remember that by choosing Good & Cheap, you are agreeing that your monument will not be our first priority and that we can not promise an installation date earlier than the typical 12-16 weeks.


This isn’t truly an option for our clients. We do not feel comfortable providing a product that is not the highest quality available. However, we still want our clients to realize that if you are offered a monument that is both fast and cheap, or you are in search of the same, you are not going to be purchasing a monument that your loved one deserves. This is by far the least favorable choice of the three, and if you do decide to choose this option, please keep in mind that the company you are purchasing your monument from is likely not reputable.

Speedball White

Ever since writing the blog about how to add the highlight to a laser etched monument that is beginning to fade, ( ) I have received several emails and messages asking where to purchase the Speedball Oil Based Block Printing Ink that we use on our monuments.

I have located a very inexpensive online retailer who will ship to anywhere in the U.S. and Canada.

The following link will take you directly to the page from which you can order 1.25 oz of the white ink for only $3.98. This amount should be more than enough to last a lifetime for any monument, even those with a full size laser etched scene. PLEASE BE SURE TO ORDER THE WHITE INK! ADDING ANY OTHER COLOR WILL RUIN THE LASER ETCHING UNTIL IT FADES AWAY AFTER SEVERAL YEARS.


Over the years, we have received many a panicked telephone calls from clients, advising us that the laser etching was disappearing off of the monument they purchased from us. Much to their relief, this is never the case. In reality, what is happening is that the highlight which is added to every laser etching prior to the monuments being shipped out or installed into a local cemetery, needs to be refreshed. This is an extremely easy thing to do and we recommend that you refresh your highlight once every 5-10 years depending upon the effect your local climate has on the highlight’s longevity. In areas such as the state of Washington, where it is extremely rainy and wet, or the state of Florida, where it is humid, with frequent downpours, you will most likely need to refresh the highlight every 5 years. In areas such as Arizona and Texas, where the climate is dry, you will probably notice that you need not worry about the highlight except once every 10 years. In any case, no matter where you live, we recommend that you purchase a bottle of highlight as soon as you have purchased a laser etched monument.


Here at Mike’s Laser Etching, we use Speedball Oil-Based Block Printing Ink as our highlight. It is very important that you be sure that you purchase pure white ink. If you choose to purchase the Speedball brand, the color number you should order is 3553.

When you see that your highlight needs refreshed, you will want to clean off the monument with Windex first. Once you are sure the monument is free of dirt and grass, place several small dots of the ink on the area of the laser etching. You will notice that a little goes a long way when it comes to the highlight. For a 24″ x 12″ Flush Marker with a full laser etched scene, it will take no more than a nickel size dot of ink to cover the full laser etching.

Once you have the ink on the stone, use an old washcloth to begin rubbing the highlight into the etched areas in small circular motions. You will immediately see a difference in the brightness of your laser etching. Once all of the laser etchings have been covered, use the washcloth to wipe the excess ink off, After you have removed all of the excess, throw away the washcloths. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO WASH THE INK OUT OF THE WASHCLOTHS.

So long as you follow this instructions and keep your highlight fresh, you will be able to enjoy the laser etched monument for years and years to come. Generations through the years will be able to appreciate the beautiful and unique monument you designed for your loved one(s) and that is our goal here at Mike’s Laser Etching/Sartin Memorials.

If you are interested in learning more about our custom laser etched monuments and tiles, call us today at 877-836-0332 or email our sales team at



Since publishing this blog, I have received many emails and messages asking where to purchase the Speedball Oil Based Block Printing Ink. Click the below link to visit the blog with this inforamtion.

UPGRADES: Adding Color

Posted: June 11, 2014 in Uncategorized

One of the most popular upgrades is adding color to the monument. Originally, this began with clients requesting that gold be added to the lettering on their monument. Gold really pops, especially on Jet Black granite.BOUKNIGHT Completed Stone Image      WRIGHT WITH GOLD











“Like” Us On Facebook!

Posted: June 11, 2014 in Uncategorized

Have you “Liked” us on Facebook yet?

If not, head on over today! Our Facebook fans receive special offers and discounts and are kept up to date on all new products and services!

Follow the link below to “Like” us now!

After receiving so many messages asking for the definition of a specific “monument word” or for further clarification on what exactly to ask for in order to get the monument that they want, we here at Mike’s Laser Etching/Sartin Memorials have decided to create a brand new featured post: Learning The Language.

At least once a week, we will be posting a Learning The Language blog with explanations and/or definitions of words that are commonly used in the monument business, but that are not exactly obvious to those who are unfamiliar.

Please feel free to comment or message us with words that you would like to learn about! Its always nice to help others better understand what it is we are talking about!

To read our very first Learning The Language blog, please click the link below:


Our very first “Learning The Language” featured post! Keep an eye out for these brand new weekly posts which will helping you to better understand our “monument talk” and what the heck exactly it is we are talking about in our blogs.

This week, we are going to talk about POLISH LEVELS.

You may have noticed during your time learning with us, browsing online or maybe while walking through a local cemetery, that edges and surfaces may or may not be polished. Depending upon which surfaces are polished, a level is then assigned to that layout.

Polishing is extremely  important because by polishing a surface, you create a much darker area on the monument. Prior to a monument being polished, nearly all types and colors of granite are a light, muted, dull color. By polishing the surface, you allow there to be a contrast in lettering, whether it is Sandblasted or Laser Etched. (You can learn more about Sandblasting & Laser Etching by visiting our blog: ) Once you remove the polish, in the shape of a letter, that letter will then stand out due to the difference in the polished area and the unpolished area which has now been exposed. The image below is an example of the huge difference that polishing granite creates.

polish vs. unpolished



Typically, you will never see a monument with a Polish 0. If a monument were to have a Polish 0, it would mean that not a single surface is polished. Normally, in order for names and dates to be added to a monument, at least the front surface will be polished. As a matter of fact, a Polish 0 is so rare, I was unable to even locate an image to show an example.


A Polish 1 monument is a monument which only has one surface polished. In nearly every case of a Polish 1, the polished surface will be the front. There would be no reason to polish only a side, the top or the back of a monument. With a Polish 1, it is common for lettering, dates, epitaphs, designs, etc. to only be included on the front polished surface. As you can see in the image below, the front of this double heart slant is polished, allowing the names, dates and designs to be added, but the top, sides and the back of the monument are unpolished. In this case, they are “Rock Pitched”, or rough. In some cases, rather than being Rock Pitched, the surface can be “Sawn”. A Sawn surface is flat and smooth, it is just not polished. The first picture in this post shows a Sawn surface on the left and a polished surface on the right.

polish 1 monument


A Polish 2 monument can typically be one of two different layouts. The first of these would be for the front and the top to be polished, while the back and sides are Sawn or Rock Pitched. The below image of the slant monument shows a Polish 2.

Polish 2 front and top

The second of these layouts would be for the front and the back surface to be polished, while the top and sides are Sawn or Rock Pitched.

Polish 2 front and back


Although not as popular as the Polish 1,2 or 5, Mike’s Laser Etching/Sartin Memorials does have several Polish 3 monuments in stock. The only logical layout for a Polish 3 is for the front, back and top to be polished, while the sides are Sawn or Rock Pitched. The image to the right below is an example of this layout.


I have never seen a POLISH 4 monument, as this would just not be logical. There would be no reason for a monument to have all surfaces, apart from one polished. Although it could certainly be custom ordered if a client was insistent on this layout for whatever reason, it is not something I would expect to see in your local cemetery.


In addition to the Polish 2, the Polish 5 is the most popular layout with our clients. A monument with a Polish5 has all of its surfaces polished. The front, back, sides and top are all polished and could potentially have lettering or designs added to them. The monument below is a Polish 5.

Polish 5

I hope this first Learning The Language post has helped you to learn a bit more about the language we speak in the monument business. I look forward to hearing from you and finding out what you would like to learn more about!