Instructables

How to cut different plastics using epilog legend 32, 30 watt laser cuter/engraver?

So my school has an epilog legend 32 laser cutter engraver. I'm trying to cut some plastics but at slow speeds it barely touches the top and melts it. i have tryed higher speed and lower power but i get the same results. the frequency is at 2500 and can go to 5000. any sort of advice to how to configure the laser to cut plastics right and with out it burning?

rickharris2 years ago
Out of focus
Dirty lens system
Moving too fast
Not actually at 100% power or not plastic.

Our epilogue 35 watt used to cut plastic very well and even mirrored plastics.
TwistedJack (author)  rickharris2 years ago
come to think of it some times when we cut things the power we set is not the power it shows on the machines, ideas on how to fix this??
Jayefuu2 years ago
Did you focus it?
TwistedJack (author)  Jayefuu2 years ago
that is the first thing we do before anything. thanks though
check out pages 49 & 54:

http://www.epilogfiles.com/legend_manual.pdf
elabz2 years ago
Try dark colors and/or don't remove the paper backing if it has one - it seems to help starting the cut so you can speed up the feed rate a bit.
ASSUMING its 3mm acrylic
Start with power at 100% (cutting always seems best at full power !)
Cut rate ~6mm/sec to begin with.

A 35 W machine is going to really struggle with much more than 8mm acrylic.

We always cut a couple of test squares out in unknown material - take a look at the cut edges, if its discoloured, try faster, if its not cut through well, try slower.

Steve
First of all what kind of plastic are you trying to cut and how thick is it?

Your trying to cut plastic so its going to melt where the laser hits it. Thats how it cuts. It will melt and burn off the material as it goes. If your just barely scratching the surface then up the power and slow it down. You need more power to help get through the material and you need to give it time to get all the way through. Its not going to cut plastic as fast as it would say 1/8 inch ply wood.
WHICH plastics ???
How thick ?

Steve