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spacedocumentation:lasercuttermateriallibrary

Laser Cutter Settings & Material Library

Other references

General Notes

  • The following settings are suggestions from various members. Use at your own discretion.
  • Remember that you can always run multiple passes if needed.
  • Off-focus heights can be achieved by placing additional material over your work piece, focusing the machine, then removing it before cutting.
  • Things you should never use in the machine:
Material Etching Cutting Fire Hazard Smoke/Fumes Fine Dust Hazard Poor/No Cut Melts
PVC, Recycle #3 (poly vinyl chloride) Never Never *
Lexan, Makrolon, PC, sometimes #7 (polycarbonate) Never Never
ABS, sometimes #7 (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene) Never Never
Bakelite Maybe Never X
HDPE, Recycle #2 & LDPE, Recycle #4 (polyethylene) Never Never X X X
PS, Recycle #6, polystyrene foam Never Never X X
PP, Recycle #5, polypropylene foam Never Never X X
Fiberglass (epoxy & glass fiber) Never Never X X
Coated Carbon Fiber Never Never X
Oily/resin woods Maybe Maybe X
Mirrored Surfaces Maybe Never X
Metals Maybe Never X
POM, Delrin, Polyacetal Never Never
Polyurethane Never Never
Teflon Never Never *
Nylon Never Never X

* Fumes or material contain halogens, Extremely toxic and WILL damage cutter

† Fumes are poisonous or toxic without ventilation

Gradient Charts & Sample Patterns

  • Power vs. Speed (25-watt, 3mm Baltic Birch)
  • Power vs. Speed (60-watt, granite tile)
  • Power vs. Speed (60-watt, 3mm Baltic Birch)
  • PPI vs. DPI (60-watt, 3mm Baltic Birch)

Image Density

  • The “image density” setting varies the DPI (not PPI) and determines how many horizontal passes are made per one vertical inch of travel when raster engraving.
    • High image density = 6, slowest, highest quality
    • Low image density = 1, fastest, lowest quality
    • A setting of 4 or 5 will generally produce an acceptable image faster than always using 6

Wood

  • You can buy sheets of Baltic Birch from Pete, he keeps them in a locker in the meeting room.
  • Pine: ?
  • Medium-density fiberboard (MDF): ?
  • Plywood and OSB: Terrible. We've tried 1/4“ plywood, and after 20+ passes it doesn't cut through. Use Baltic Birch.
  • Exhaust air is pulled across the work surface toward the back of the machine and could stain your material, speeds over 3.2% may help prevent this, but it may mean more passes to cut through. — Pete 2012/03/22 13:03
Material Thickness Finish Operation Speed Power PPI Focus Passes Result Notes Contributor
Baltic birch 1/8” Unsanded, stock Raster engraving 90% 80% 500 Focused 1 ? This leaves a nice, deep etch, suitable for most standard projects. Some clean up necessary Shane T.
Baltic birch 1/8“ Unsanded, stock Raster engraving 30% 40% 500 Focused 1 ~0.05” n/a Brant
Baltic birch 1/8“ Unsanded, stock Vector engraving 30% 40% 500 Focused 1 ~0.05” n/a Brant
Baltic birch 1/8“ Unsanded, stock Vector cutting 3% 83% 300 Focused 1 ~0.125” n/a Shane T.
Baltic birch 1/8“ Unsanded, stock Vector cutting 2% 80% 500 Focused 2 ~0.125” n/a Brant
Baltic birch 1/8“ Unsanded, stock Vector cutting 3% 60% 500 Focused 3 ~0.125” Doesn't burn as easily Brant
Balsa 1/8“ Sanded Vector cutting 3% 20% 550 Focused 1 ~0.125” Cuts through just enough without singeing significantly. Only tried cutting on 60W. Karl H.

Plastic

  • Protective paper backings have a tendency to flame up
  • For best results, remove paper covers first
  • Cover items with blue painter's tape if you want to paint/infill an etch
Material Thickness Finish Operation Speed Power PPI Focus Passes Result Notes Contributor
Polyester SH82 - single layer 0.003“ Stock Vector cutting 20% 20% ? Focused 1 0.003” Film for solder paste stencil Brant
Polyester SH82 - double layer 0.003“ Stock Vector cutting 15% 25% ? Focused 1 0.003” Film for solder paste stencil Brant
Polyester SH82 - Raster, direct from DipTrace 0.003“ Stock Raster 90% 100% ? Focused 1 0.003” Film for solder paste stencil Brant
Acrylic 1/8“ Stock Vector engraving 7.5% 20% 500 Focused 1 0.05” n/a Brant
Clear Acrylic 1/8“ Stock Vector engraving 7.5% 2% 500 Focused 1 0.05” n/a Alden
Acrylic 1/8“ Stock Raster engraving ?% 20% 500 Focused 1 0.05” n/a Brant
Acrylic 1/8“ Stock Vector cutting 1.5% 25% 300 Focused 3 Cut thru Watch kerf and melting edges Brant
Clear Acrylic 1/4” Stock Vector engraving 100% 1.5% 1000 Focused 4 Cut thru .75 clockwise turn after each pass when using 50w Alden
Gravograph GPoly 29732 (ABS) 1/8“ Stock Vector engraving 80% 40% 700 Focused 1 0.05” Surface etch great, use the 50 watt Brant
Gravograph GPoly 29732 (ABS) 1/8“ Stock Raster engraving 80% 40% 700 Focused 1 0.05” Surface etch great, use the 50 watt Brant
Gravograph GPoly 29732 (ABS) 1/8“ Stock Vector cutting 10-80% 40-70% 300 Focused 10+ Cut thru Etches better than it cuts, try CNC Brant
Acrylic with spray paint on top 1/8” Stock Vector engraving 50-80% 50-80% 500 Focused 1-2 0.05“ n/a Brant
Acrylic with spray paint on top 1/8” Stock Raster engraving 50-80% 50-80% 500 Focused 1-2 0.05“ Image densities 3-6 Brant
Acrylic with spray paint on top 1/8” Stock Vector cutting 2-10% 50-80% 300 Focused 3+ Cut thru Cuts well, clear coat spray when done Brant
Acrylic 1/8“ Stock Folding, origami 33% 20% 500 1/8” higher 20 No effect n/a Brant
Acrylic 1/8“ Stock Folding, origami 33% 20% 500 1/2” higher 20 Light cut n/a Brant
Acrylic 1/8“ Stock Folding, origami 33% 20% 500 1/2” higher 60 Fold, <30 deg n/a Brant
Acrylic 1/8“ Stock Folding, origami 33% 20% 500 1/2” higher 100 Fold, <60 deg n/a Brant
Acrylic 1/8“ Stock Folding, origami 33% 20% 500 1/2” higher 200 Fold, <90 deg n/a Brant
Chip Board 1/16“ corrugated Stock Vector engraving 60% 100% 500 Focused 1 0.05” Handwritten in margins of the manual Brant
Chip Board 1/16“ corrugated Stock Vector cutting 9% 100% 500 Focused 1 Cut thru Handwritten in margins of the manual Brant
Black-on-white sign plastic 1/8” Stock Raster engraving 30% 15% 500 Focused 1-3 0.05“ Works best with air assist off Brant
Black-on-white sign plastic 1/8” Stock Vector engraving 30% 15% 500 Focused 1-3 0.05“ Works best with air assist off Brant
Black-on-white sign plastic 1/8” Stock Vector cutting 2% 25% 500 Focused 1-3 Cut thru Works best with air assist off Brant
Mirror-backed acrylic 1/8“ Stock Vector cutting 2% 50% 300 Focused 1-3 Cut thru Works best with air assist, go slow and low power, splatter/bubbling may happen Brant
Mirror-backed acrylic 1/8” Stock Raster engraving 80% 50% 500 Focused 1-3 0.05“ Works best with air assist, mirror and cut on back of material, image density 4-5 Brant
Thin PETE/PP film 1 mm Stock Vector cutting 10% 50% 300 Focused 1-2 1 mm Photos/settings, 50-watt preferred Brant

Paper

  • Paper products require CONSTANT SUPERVISION due to potential for flame/fire
  • Construction paper: Works well. You can etch or cut. Start with high speeds to get a feel for it first. — Pete 2012/03/22 13:01
Material Thickness Finish Operation Speed Power PPI Focus Passes Result Notes Contributor
Mat Board 1/8” corrugated Stock Vector cutting 11% 100% 200 Focused 3 Cut thru Handwritten in margins of the manual Brant
Paper ? ? Vector engraving ? ? ? Focused ? ? ? ?
Paper ? ? Raster engraving ? ? ? Focused ? ? ? ?
Paper ? ? Vector cutting ? ? ? Focused ? ? ? ?
Construction Paper ? ? Vector engraving ? ? ? Focused ? ? ? ?
Construction Paper ? ? Raster engraving ? ? ? Focused ? ? ? ?
Construction Paper ? ? Vector cutting ? ? ? Focused ? ? ? ?
Cardboard 3/16“ corrugated Stock Vector engraving 100% 20% 300 Focused 1 <1mm Brant
Cardboard 3/16” corrugated Stock Raster engraving 100% 20% 300 Focused 1 <1mm Brant
Cardboard 3/16“ corrugated Stock Vector cutting 5% 40% 300 Focused 2 Cut thru 2 passes reduces risk of flame Brant
Onion skin/tracing paper ? ? Vector engraving ? ? ? Focused ? ? ? ?
Onion skin/tracing paper ? ? Raster engraving ? ? ? Focused ? ? ? ?
Onion skin/tracing paper ? ? Vector cutting ? ? ? Focused ? ? ? ?

Metal

  • Etch metal yes
  • Cut metal no
  • Do not use on mirrored surfaces
  • Anodized metal: Ben did his coffee mug. I do want to try the technique where you paint the metal black and then etch that off, so the metal shows through. — Pete 2012/03/22 13:00
Material Thickness Finish Operation Speed Power PPI Focus Passes Result Notes Contributor
Etch resist on copper circuit board, PCB 0.05” Mask/paint layer only Raster engraving 25% 90% 250 Focused 1 Good Ask TomGz, AdamC or ChrisH Brant
Etch resist on copper circuit board, PCB 0.05“ Mask/paint layer only Raster engraving 30% 80% 250 Focused 1 Good Ask TomGz, AdamC or ChrisH Brant
Metal Any Stock Any n/a% n/a% n/a n/a n/a DO NOT ATTEMPT n/a Brant

Glass

  • Etch glass yes
  • Cut glass no
  • Mirrors: The front glass as well as the back coating can be etched
  • Too high power or too slow speed may cause cracking
  • Consider infilling with acrylic/craft paint and then wiping off excess
Material Thickness Finish Operation Speed Power PPI Focus Passes Result Notes Contributor
Glass Any Stock Vector engraving 30% 50% 300 Focused 1 500 DPI, light etch Glass dust/flecks, infill with paint Brant
Glass Any Stock Raster engraving 80% 90% 300 Focused 1 500 DPI, light etch Glass dust/flecks, infill with paint Brant

Leather

  • Rick suggests wetting the material to keep smoke/dust low
Material Thickness Finish Operation Speed Power PPI Focus Passes Result Notes Contributor
Leather 7 oz. Stock Vector cutting 0.4% 60% 500 Focused 1 ? Handwritten in margins of the manual Brant
Leather Any Stock Raster engraving ?% ?% ? ? ? ? See manual Brant
Leather Any Vinyl coated Raster engraving 50% 100% 500 Focused 1 or 2 1mm or less Image densities of 4-6 Brant and RickB

Rubber

  • Rubber Stamp setting used on Print Settings in Corel Draw
    • Subsetting under the Rubber Stamp options were left as their defaults
    • Pattern was build as a negative
    • Black color was used as what would be cut out
    • Invert any text as a stamp is a negative
  • We should order some of this.
Material Thickness Finish Operation Speed Power PPI Focus Passes Result Notes Contributor
Rubber ? ? Vector engraving 50% 100% ? Focused 1 Shallow cut High flame ShaneT
Rubber ? ? Raster engraving 50% 100% ? Focused 1 Shallow cut Some flame ShaneT
Rubber ? ? Vector cutting 25% 100% ? Focused 1 or more Deep cut No flame, best results ShaneT
Rubber ? ? Vector cutting 0.5% 100% ? Focused n/a Poor quality, not advised Burnt, melts, chars ShaneT

Vinyl

Material Thickness Finish Operation Speed Power PPI Focus Passes Result Notes Contributor
Vinyl ? ? Vector engraving ? ? ? Focused ? ? ? ?
Vinyl ? ? Raster engraving ? ? ? Focused ? ? ? ?
Vinyl ? ? Vector cutting ? ? ? Focused ? ? ? ? Brant
spacedocumentation/lasercuttermateriallibrary.txt · Last modified: 2017/09/04 12:21 by branth