Author Topic: Laser engraving into acrylic  (Read 1613 times)

Haan

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Laser engraving into acrylic
« on: August 02, 2017, 02:19:48 AM »
I have recently purchased an Eleksmaker with Mana SE controller. I use the T2 Laser program. Meanwhile, I have burned quite a bit in wood. My next step is PMMA, acrylic.
I'm reading something about black paint or transfer tape which is black with paint.
Who has good experiences with laser in acrylic and can help me?
The laser beam now passes through the material and leaves only a slight print.

Zax

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Re: Laser engraving into acrylic
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2017, 04:37:56 AM »
You may be able to use the same process as glass, place the sheet on a piece of black paper and flip the design.

Haan

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Re: Laser engraving into acrylic
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2017, 05:07:25 AM »
High speed and low power? Just try out I think.

ThothLoki

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Re: Laser engraving into acrylic
« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2017, 06:20:54 AM »
What color are you engraving? I am assuming clear?

First, have a look at Ralph's post about what can be cut. While you are not trying to cut, it can prove helpful on what can and cannot be touched by our lasers:
http://benboxlaser.us/index.php/topic,21.0.html

I have a bunch of clear acrylic at home that is begging to be etched. I have etched a little bit by putting some black spray paint on it. I also tried the sharpie method (just rub black sharpie marker all over where you want to burn). Both worked for me.

I tried the black paper under glass and did not have good results. It was probably because I was doing it wrong.

Quote
High speed and low power? Just try out I think.
I have always used full power (my old laser did not give me much of a choice) and just adjusted my speed to what I wanted. Now that I have a good laser with a Mana board, I can adjust my power.

My neighbor is in the plastics business, so I can usually get all of his scrap. If there is some settings or methods you would like me to try out, let me know.
Laser: A3 2500mw with L7 Board / A3 2500mw PWM with Mana SE -- All using T2Laser
3D Printer: Monoprice Maker Select v2.1
Image Resizer Applications (All OS): http://benboxlaser.us/index.php/topic,1434.msg17297.html#msg17297

chgames

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Re: Laser engraving into acrylic
« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2017, 01:37:03 PM »
We have done some stuff...

http://benboxlaser.us/index.php/topic,2142.0.html

Intensity 255, speed 20, 3000mw laser.

Edge lighting by LED works better if you etch it on the back.

We use 1/4" acrylic that comes with brown paper backing.  I'm pretty sure that the paper vaporizing is how the heat starts on the acrylic.  Then once the heat starts the acrylic, a slow speed allows the bubbling to extend deeper and deeper into the surface.

When we were using lexan it came with plastic protective backing instead of paper.  The clear lexan with no paper would barely etch at all.  We use transfer tape because we also do vinyl for signs.  Transfer tape is like masking tape but not very sticky and it comes in 12" tall rolls.   The plain transfer tape would work, but it worked better when we spray painted it black.

Lexan BURNS.  Acrylic bubbles but doesn't discolor like lexan.  So when it is edge lit, both look good.  When the lights are off, you can see the burning of the lexan and it isn't as attractive.

Below are three pictures, one is the NASCAR logo engraved into 1/4 lexan before we peel off the backing paper.

The next is a blurry and out of focus picture of some edge molding we use.  The led strip is mashed into the bottom of the edge molding and the engraved acrylic piece is fitted into the slot on top of it.  The screw holes allow it to be bolted down to make it secure.

Finally I thought I'd take a picture of one of our display boxes with the Harley Davidson Logo in it.  The funny white thing on the side is the sensor for changing the color of the LED lights.


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Re: Laser engraving into acrylic
« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2017, 03:34:01 PM »
I burn on 1/4 inch thick acrylic also. I peel off the sticky brown paper however. I lay my acrylic plate on top of a white 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper. My focus point is the bottom of the acrylic plate. Using BCL, I mirror the text image to do the burn. When finished, I pop the plate into an LED lit stand and it looks outstanding.
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