Author Topic: Materials that I can cut  (Read 12294 times)

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Materials that I can cut
« on: February 21, 2016, 09:39:59 AM »
I have posted some results of what 3mm materials I can cut with my 2.5 watt laser diode.

I purchased a lot of different types of wood materials just to see what can be cut or not cut.

Please check back here for my updated results.

Here is a list of what I have tried to cut...these are all 3mm thick:

1. REGULAR BIRCH PLYWOOD (from Revell) - Can cut in 8 passes.
2. CRAFT PLYWOOD (from Hobbylinc.com) - Can cut in 6 passes.
3. Craft Plywood (from Amazon.com) - Cannot cut.
4. Baltic Birch (from Rockler.com) - to be tested.

The following 3mm woods came from Ocooch.com:
5. ALDER - Can cut in 7 passes.
6. White Oak - Cannot cut.
7. POPLAR - Can cut in 6 passes.
8. Mahogany - Cannot cut.
9. CHERRY - Can cut in 8 passes.
10. WALNUT - Can cut in 6 passes.
11. ASH - Can cut in 6 passes.
12. RED CEDAR - Can cut in 2 passes.

Revell Balsa Wood test cut results:
2.3mm - can cut in 5 passes.
4.7mm - cannot cut in 6 passes.
6.3mm - can cut in 1 pass.

In addition to the above woods, I have the following 3mm Acrylic sheets cut results:
These all came from ePlastics.com.

UPDATE: All the Acrylics have now been tested and the results are below. The 4 digit numbers are the ePlastics Reference Numbers.

13. ORANGE 2422 - Can cut in 4 passes.
14. Light Purple 1020 - Cannot cut.
15. Dark Purple 3730 - Cannot cut.
16. RED 2423 - Can cut in 3 passes.
17. DARK GREEN 2092 - Can cut in 3 passes.
18. Light Green 2111 - Cannot cut.
19. Glass Green 3030 - Cannot cut.
20. Dark Blue 2424 - Cannot cut.
21. Light Blue 2069 - Cannot cut.
22. Yellow 2208 - Can cut in 3 passes.

I will update my results as I complete my materials testing. Check back here on Sunday evenings (Los Angeles time) as I only get to cut on the weekends.

I have Baltic Birch to test cut this weekend.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2016, 12:01:19 PM by Administrator »
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ROSS

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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2016, 03:35:35 AM »
This might help modellers.  (Balsa Wood cutting).

http://jtechphotonics.com/?p=733
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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2016, 08:21:49 AM »
Great timing @Ross...I plan to do some Balsa wood test cutting this weekend...I will post my results...!!!
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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2016, 12:02:33 PM »
UPDATE: Balsa wood test cut results have been added to my original post.

I have 3mm Baltic Birch to test cut next.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2016, 12:03:10 PM by Administrator »
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Zax

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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2016, 02:05:34 PM »
You may want to check the balsa results, not sure you can cut 6.3mm in one pass  ;D

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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2016, 04:19:20 PM »
You may want to check the balsa results, not sure you can cut 6.3mm in one pass  ;D

It's correct...the cut was very clean and very easy to do with one pass...surprising to me too...!!!

Here is the gcode I used:

Code: [Select]
G91 (relative)
G21 (mm)

F180 (set Feed rate)
G01 X0 Y0
M03 S255 (set 100% power)

G01 X0 Y10 (vertical line against the grain)
F270
G01 X10 Y0 (horizontal line with the grain)
F180
G01 X0 Y-10 (right side vert line down)
F270
G01 X-10 Y0 (horz bottom line with the grain)

M05 S0 (laser off)
G01 X15 Y0 (moves laser head to next spot for another square cut)
M30
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ROSS

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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2016, 01:42:54 AM »
Ref the acrylic cutting.  Did you leave the plastic coating on it when cutting?  This apparently makes a difference when cutting......

Balsa cutting.  What was the grade of Balsa wood used.  Soft?  medium?  Hard?

Think the 6.3mm must have been soft as hard Balsa is  quite hard enough to cut with a scalpel.....
« Last Edit: February 28, 2016, 02:19:46 AM by ROSS »
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Lasers are wonderful machines..not ONLY  can they cut a finger off BUT  they can also cauterise it at the same time.....

SAFETY -  IS NO ACCIDENT

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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #7 on: February 28, 2016, 07:43:39 AM »
The acrylic did not have any coating of paper on it...it was just the plastic surface that I cut.

I would say the 6.3mm Balsa was 'soft'. Cutting it was quite easy, quick and clean around the edges.

The 4.7mm was what I would call a 'medium' hardness Balsa and I could not cut it using 6 passes. I could use more passes but the cut lines were already getting wide and burnt, so by the time I could have cut through it with, say, 9 passes, it would have have been a pretty cut.

The 2.3mm was a 'medium' hardness too and although it took 5 passes to cut, the cut lines were still looking good on the surface after 5 passes.
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ROSS

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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #8 on: February 28, 2016, 12:24:54 PM »
The acrylic did not have any coating of paper on it...it was just the plastic surface that I cut.

I would say the 6.3mm Balsa was 'soft'. Cutting it was quite easy, quick and clean around the edges.

The 4.7mm was what I would call a 'medium' hardness Balsa and I could not cut it using 6 passes. I could use more passes but the cut lines were already getting wide and burnt, so by the time I could have cut through it with, say, 9 passes, it would have have been a pretty cut.

The 2.3mm was a 'medium' hardness too and although it took 5 passes to cut, the cut lines were still looking good on the surface after 5 passes.


Thanks for the info.
 When I get up and running I will give a good test on balsa as I have a stack I picked up years ago..all different grades...see how it goes.
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Lasers are wonderful machines..not ONLY  can they cut a finger off BUT  they can also cauterise it at the same time.....

SAFETY -  IS NO ACCIDENT

ROSS

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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #9 on: March 24, 2016, 07:15:09 AM »
Here's a useful page that will answer  a few of your questions......

http://www.tamar-laser-craft.co.uk/laser%20cutting%20and%20engraving%20materials.html

NOTE THAT PVC IS DANGEROUS TO ATTEMPT TO CUT.  It gives off poisonous fumes and will ruin a laser lens etc., DONT  do it!
« Last Edit: March 24, 2016, 07:17:03 AM by ROSS »
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Lasers are wonderful machines..not ONLY  can they cut a finger off BUT  they can also cauterise it at the same time.....

SAFETY -  IS NO ACCIDENT

carolynsdad

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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2016, 03:51:40 AM »
Ralph,
It would be good to know the speed and burn times for each wood or did you use the same for all?

I presume you used Outline but did you use Polyline or Continuous?

For the thicker materials did you manage to change the focus in between passes?  It would be possible to keep a record of the amount of rotation for given depth changes.

Mike
2.5W BangGood laser kit in use by my daughter for craft work.
3.5W BangGood with TTL board in use by me as a developemt tool only.
T2Laser and Benbox software.

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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2016, 08:12:49 AM »
The speed was pretty much the same as the cut depended on the wood type (how many passes was needed to cut through it).

>I presume you used Outline but did you use Polyline or Continuous?

Not at all...I did the PWM mod so I was not using the Benbox software. The cuts were done using plain old manual gcode.

Here are some examples of my gcode for various materials.

Note two things:

1. The speed is different for cutting with the grain vs against the grain.

2. The only difference in the gcode is how many times to make square cut pattern.

I manually wrote the gcode and used Gbrl Controller or Universal Gcode Sender to send the code to my laser machine.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2016, 08:13:50 AM by Administrator »
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Nigelnowhere

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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #12 on: April 17, 2016, 01:21:45 PM »
I have come back to reference this page more than most, thank you it's a wonderful tool to have

I know it would be a lot to ask, but if you ever have time to post images of any of these materials, I would greatly appreciate it.

Also has anyone tried cutting leather? I would really like to cut 2mm - 3mm leather. Is that even possible?
2500mw Eleks Maker A3 and A5 running GRBL 0.9 and using T2 laser. I have two lasers and I am not afraid to make them work for me.

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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #13 on: April 17, 2016, 03:09:17 PM »
I have come back to reference this page more than most, thank you it's a wonderful tool to have

I know it would be a lot to ask, but if you ever have time to post images of any of these materials, I would greatly appreciate it.

Also has anyone tried cutting leather? I would really like to cut 2mm - 3mm leather. Is that even possible?

I looked through my photos and apparently didn't keep any of those I may have taken showing the plywood cuts I did. Sorry.

I am attaching the Acrylic panels that I used to do my cuts.

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QuietMike

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Re: Materials that I can cut
« Reply #14 on: April 21, 2016, 09:49:15 PM »
is it possible to make cut paper art/cards with our lasers? see attached
would you have to make the design a vector? has anyone tried this?