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How to set a cut file for engraving

Posted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 4:56 pm
by bob7450
I search the forum and couldn't find how to set qcad cut file for engraving
I just done my first RC model airplane parts cut file with a laser engraver out of New Mexico. and they had no problems cutting it.
But for future projects I would like to have letters and numbers engrave on my model airplane parts. I hear some about adding a layer on to the cut file for the engraving of letter and number but want to check with the experts in this forum or someone who as done this.

Posted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:38 pm
by Clive
Hi bob7450

Generally you can work on 2 layers yes!

Set one layer for all your cutting (lineweight 0.00 or similar) and the other layer will be your text etc.

When you send to print (on the Laser Cutter) you can either send as one combined job (as above) or send as 2 seperate jobs, one job for cutting and one job for engraving.

The guys who are doing the printing will know what settings to apply. All Laser Cutters will have their settings dialog boxes, where you would set the speed,power and frequency for each individual/combined jobs.

I find sometimes its just as quick to print as seperate jobs, the Laser Cutter I use is an Epilog Legend 70 Watt!

Hope this helps some.

Clive :wink:


Posted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 3:14 am
by bob7450
Thanks again for the quick response.
That what I though intially and I just talk with my laser cutter guy and he pretty much said the same thing although he did warn me about engraving on the small size balsa like 1/16th. He said it was best to put the label next to the part as it may burn though on the part.intial fear was I would not be able to get anything cut but I received really go comment from the laser guy about the file I sent him.
I may ask you in the future about the best way to do wing ribs, But that for another time.
Thanks again

How to set a cut file for engraving letters/number details

Posted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 8:07 pm
by Clive
Hi again Bob

If you just want to add a letter or a number to your parts, "and I`m guessing they would be for reference right"?

The easiest way to do this would be to set a new layer and on this layer draw the letters/numbers where you want them and send this layer to the printer and run the job as a Vector cut job - yes cut job! All you need to do is make sure the lineweight for this layer is again 0.01 or similar but this time the settings are:

*Speed = 100 %
*Power = 1-5% (you will need a low power)
*Frequency = 500% or whatever the laser`s recommended settings are!

Running at these types of settings in a cut (not engrave "Rastor") mode will run the job through at top speed and will achieve a "score/etch" cut and will not cut through your material thus giving you a lightly scored reference detail.

I do this constantly when I need to achieve reference lines, contours, details etc. for architectural model-making. Beleive me this will be the most efficient and fastest way to do it because engraving will make the laser carriage travel across the bed like a standard paper printer and take a lot longer.

Hope this helps.

Clive :D

That sounds great

Posted: Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:45 am
by bob7450
I will pass this instruction along to my laser cutter guy in NM.
That sound like an efficient way to engrave for my up coming project.
Thank for all your help