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6w Optlaser NOT cutting all the way through 3mm Laserply Wood

Hi,

I’m currently working on a little project for Christmas for my wife and having a issue once the laser cut is complete. The issue I’m having is that not all the cuts are making their way through the 3mm Laserply and I’m not sure why that is. Please refer to the pictures, this is the underside of the piece.

I have run a few laser cutting tests at different power settings and speeds and found a few settings that have worked and yielded a full cut. I used those identical setting in my project.

A little info about my setup and settings:

I have the 750mm X-Carve with the 6w Optlaser and X-carve mounting system. The laser is focused at 30mm (just over an inch roughly) and my laser cut settings are 4 Passes at 3mm/s (180 mm/min) and the laser power at 80%.

I’ve tried have the wood flat to the spoil board and also tried it slightly raised to see if that would make a difference. I get the same issue in both cases. My spoil board is leveled.

Edit:

This is my workflow: illustrator and export as .svg and load into LaserWeb to generate the gcode then using UGS as a controller.

Hopefully some one on here can help me and thanks in advance.

-Shane

You are not giving it enough time.

Opt website indicates 10 passes for (3mm) plywood.

  1. PLH3D 6W LASER HEAD TEST

Thanks for replying to my message. I shall try Optlasers settings and get back to this topic by the end of the day.

It’s just odd that my test cuts were successful with my settings, yet when it came to cutting the piece I got widely varying results.

That is normal with all low powered laser diodes. It is common wood variation that causes this, not the laser. If you watch the beam carefully, with good safety glasses, you can often see it flashing (or being reflected) at different spots along a cut path.
John

Thanks and understood.

So I shall assume that based on recommended speeds and passes I should increase passes and step down per pass. Surely that should guarantee a decent cut then?

Hi Larry,

I did run a new test cut with Optlasers recommendations and I managed to get similar or slightly worse results. I’m assuming that’s because my cut speed was effectively 3 times slower however my laser power was also reduced by 30%. I’m continuing my test cuts for now before I attempt another full cut.

I do not use an Opt laser, but when cutting I use full power on my laser, and adjust passes and speed as needed. Also, helps to set focus for center of wood, not surface.

2 Likes

I also have the optlaser, and my best result is to take the thickness of the wood and divide it by .2 and add 1 to the number to determine the number of passes with the z stepping by .2 (@100% power). (I use LightBurn). If after running the first part the count is too high i drop the number of passes for the next part.

Another option i’ve done is to duplicate the work into another layer and set everything to 0 (thickness and steps) and if the part does not seem like its going to come out run another pass or two to see if i can break it free.

Hope this helps.

Great. I e been trying a variety of options. That have been suggested. I still get varing results.

I have already done your suggestion of a single pass files and run it until I get through the material. And I make a note of those additional passes. And try it again with a different result. It’s a mixture of issues I think which includes the density of the woods or the grain directions or even the layer of glue.

That’s for all suggestions.

I’ve also encountered a problem with using plywood from my local hobby store. My laser will scorch it but will not make it thur. I’m assuming the glue that they are using for this plywood is not conducive to cutting with my laser. On the other hand I get 12"x24" sheets of plywood from ocoochhardwoods.com (poplar, maple, cherry) and all of these cut very well.

One other thing. Is your material suspend with a grid or somehow up off the bed of your xcarve? From your photos it looks like its being flush. I purchased a 24" aluminum grate (Amazon) and use that to elevate the work and it gives the gas and laser someplace to go so the back looks better, and I think I get better cuts.

Thanks for all information given and all suggestions have been very valuable.

I have purchased some high quality LaserPly from a brilliant online store and they recently added a new option of LaserPly wood for use on low powered lasers. And this has been a game changer.

If you live in the UK the store is called Hobarts (https://hobarts.com) and they now offer the LaserPly LITE sheets.

I also used all the suggestions here on this discussion and these are the ones that I have been using with 99% success.

  • 600 mm/min
  • 100% Power
  • 7-8 passes for 3mm stock
  • 60mm height off the stock with the laser focus approx 1/2 way through the stock (1.5mm in the case of 3mm stock)
  • Laser honeycomb grate under stock

Thanks for all the help

1 Like

What Mike Hurst said. I was using a tempered glass plate with some feet under it as a base. Even with the ability for the laser to pass through without any problem, the part of the wood (2mm thick) touching the glass plate only got scorched, but never burned through. I’m assuming it’s a problem with heat transfer. Either way, the cut-able surface in contact with anything can be a major problem. I also assume aluminum is used in the honeycombs because it’s cheap…and transfers heat extremely well.