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LASER ENGRAVING MATERIALS

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Thinking about starting a laser engraving business in South Africa and need to know more? Perfect Laser, has put together some tips pages that will help you learn more about the laser engraving business in general. We'll help you understand the basics of what you will be able to produce when you buy a laser engraving machine and hopefully give you some inspiration to help you start a laser engraving business successfully.

Laser engraving machines have many applications and are able to work on many different material types, giving various business opportunities with one laser engraving machine. Before buying any large quantity of material for laser engraving use be sure to use a sample of the material in the laser engraving machine to be 100% sure that the material will be suitable for your purposes.

LASER ENGRAVING PLASTIC

Plastic is a popular choice for laser engraving, though not all plastics are able to be used with laser engraving machines. The most common plastics used for laser engraving include cast acrylic plastic, acrylic sheets and other forms of cast resin platics, hard engineering plastics and bakelite. There are also plastics developed specifically for laser engraving which are made with materials that prevent the plastic from deforming due to heat during the laser engraving process.

Plastics like styrene and thermoforming plastics are likely to melt at the edge of the engraving, which will affect the quality of the engraving, losing its sharpness. Other plastics that are generally not recommended for laser engraving applications include vinyl, expanded plastics, foam, urethane and silicone plastics, though different formulations of these plastics may yield better results. Once again be sure to consult documentation and test a sample of the material before purchasing your laser engraving materials.

LASER ENGRAVING WOOD & NATURAL MATERIALS

Wood and other natural materials are the most easy to use in laser engraving and there are many applicatons for natural materials in a laser engraving business. Generally hardwoods such as oak, walnut, mahogany and maple are the first choice for laser engraving and many different products can be produced using a laser engraving machine. Softwoods produce less consistent results and require more care to be taken during the engraving process for a good result as well as to ensure the material does not ignite. Other natural materials that can be used for laser engraving include finished leather, fibreboard, hard paper and some rubber latex compounds.

LASER ENGRAVING COATED METAL

It is possible to achieve incredible engravings on coated metal plates specifically designed for use with laser engraving machines. The finely-polished metal is coated with enamel paint that is lasered off achieving the desired engraving.

BELOW IS A CHART DETAILING THE POSSIBLE CUTTING THICKNESSES FOR
VARIOUS MATERIALS WHICH YOU CAN USE AS A BASIS FOR REFERENCE
  40W 50W 60W 80W
general
80W
RECI
100W
general
100W
RECI
130W
RECI
150W
RECI
Acrylic 5 mm 6 mm 10 mm 15 mm 15 mm 18 mm 18 mm 20 mm 25 mm
MDF 1 mm 2 mm 4 mm 5 mm 5 mm 6 mm 6 mm 8 mm 10 mm
Wood 3 mm 5 mm 8 mm 12 mm 12 mm 15 mm 15 mm 18 mm 18 mm
Rubber 2 mm 2 mm 3 mm 4 mm 4 mm 5 mm 5 mm 6 mm 7 mm
Leather 2 mm 3 mm 4 mm 6 mm 6 mm 7 mm 7 mm 8 mm 10 mm
Cloth 2 mm 3 mm 4 mm 6 mm 6 mm 7 mm 7 mm 8 mm 10 mm
Paper 3 mm 4 mm 5 mm 7 mm 7 mm 8 mm 8 mm 8 mm 10 mm
Double
Colour Board
2 mm 3 mm 4 mm 6 mm 6 mm 8 mm 8 mm 9 mm 10 mm
PL-MC-1390 cutting 1.8mm Stainless Steel
Our Youtube Channel     DISCLAIMER / WARNING : Laser cutters/engravers sold by Perfect Laser are Class IV Laser Devices and are extremely dangerous. These lasers will instantly ignite clothing, wood, paper, plastics, and many other common items and will seriously burn flesh, including eyes. Care must be taken to avoid serious injury and/or blindness. Always operate any high power laser in an environment free of flammable materials, children, pets, spectators, etc. Always ensure that flooring around your laser is clean and free of any obstacles. Always ensure that the work surface is kept clean. Always ensure that water cooling is sufficient to keep the tube cool. Always use eye protection when operating your laser. Failure to do so may result in permanent blindness. This laser uses lethal high voltages. Care must be taken when working with high voltage. Failure to do so may result in Serious Injury or Death. Untrained operators are forbidden to operate any laser equipment supplied by Perfect Laser. The use of any laser equipment is dangerous, and you do so entirely at your own risk. Perfect Laser, its staff, employees, family, consultants and technical representatives will not be held liable for any injuries, damages to property or any other damages whatsoever caused by operating laser equipment.