Friday, August 18, 2017

Designing For Laser Cutting: Achieving Ideal Edge Burn

Designing for Laser Cutting

 

 

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Edge burn is a natural occurrence when cutting certain materials with a laser cutter, such as wood. It is the result of the laser touching the material during the cut. This can give a piece beautiful contrast or it can create overly burnt edges.

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Differing degrees of edge burn come from power settings in your laser software. Too much power and the edge will be black with soot coming off on your finger when the edge is touched. Ideally, for wood, we want a rich amber color and very little soot rubbing off.

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Reducing Burnt Edges

For vector cuts, dialing in power settings is key to reduce char on materials, such as wood. If speed and power adjustments aren’t enough to reduce char on your vector cut edges, try adjusting your vector current to dial in your cut even more.

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Adjusting Current

Besides power and speed, vector current is a third option that can be dialed in to create a better cut. This is particularly apparent on paper, as it cuts very easily but tends to burn on the edges. To reduce charring on the edge of thin paper, vector current can be lowered as low as 20 percent with a low power setting and still effect the paper.

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To learn more, download our free ebook, Designing for Laser Cutting: A Technical Ebook for Creatives, where you will discover more design tips such as:

  • Choosing Image Files
  • Raster Engraving Techniques
  • Designing for Vector Cuts
  • Utilizing Kerf in Design
  • 3D Object Stacking Designs
  • And dozens of other tips & techniques

Look for more ebooks, coming soon, from Full Spectrum Laser