- KNOWLEDGE EXCHANGE
- EXHIBITIONS + EVENTS
- CASE STUDIES
KNOW THE LASER LAB
KNOW THE LASER CUTTER
ALWAYS WATCH THE MACHINE
WAIT BEFORE OPENING THE COVER IN DOUBT, ASK FOR HELP
In this page you will find a selection of common mistakes and how to fix them as well as some tips on how to create a more efficient file.
One of the greatest risks to the laser cutter is duplicate or overlapping lines. This is often done by copying and pasting too many times. The laser cutter will cut what is there not what is seen. If you have 10 curves the machine will cut 10 times and potentially set the material on fire.
To find duplicates type 'SelDup' into the command line of Rhino. This will highlight all duplicates so you can delete them. This will only find identical geometries and not lines that overlap. For overlapping lines the only way to make sure you have none is to make sure your lines join up.
A rectangle, for example, can be made up of four separate curves or one continuous curve. The advantage for joining the four separate curves into one continuous curve is that you save time. It takes longer for the laser cutter to jump from one curve to the other than it does to cut a single continuous curves.
Select the curves you want to join and type 'Join' into the command line of Rhino. Be careful not to join curves on a separate layers as it will transfer the geometry onto that layer. A good practice is to select everything on your score layer and join that, then move onto the other layers and do the same.
IMPROVING YOUR FILE:
When you arrange your drawing in the template ready to cut, this is called nesting. You want to arrange the drawing in such a way that it wastes as little material as possible and cuts in the fastest time. As a general rule you space your parts as the thickness of the material. Your drawing should be up against the dashed line.
We have five Trotec laser cutters, they are named Mies, Jorn, Alvar, Zaha and Liz. They have important differences:
Zaha and Liz are 100w and they are also bigger than the other three, their bed size is 1000mm x 610mm. Their only limitation is that they do not cut MDF.