You will need:
1. My test pattern (Laser Kerf Test Slots.ai)
2. My laser kerf meter pattern (Laser Kerf Test.ai)
3. Some test pieces of the wood you plan to use for your next project.
Step 1: Don't Believe Labelled Thickness
Step 2: Measure Wood and Adjust Pattern
I then adjusted the lines in my pattern representing slots to a thickness I received from the calipers (in my case .204") and cut another test.
To do this in Illustrator:
1. Make a copy of the original file to use later.
2. Select the lines that represent slots set their stroke thickness to your caliper readings
3. Then go to Object>Expand. This turns your lines into blocks.
4. Select the blocks and the other pattern lines and use Pathfinder>Subtract from area shape.
5. Make sure all lines are still set to .001 and cut a new test.
Now the pieces fit together well and held a 90 degree angle, but were still not tight and could be pulled apart easily.
Step 3: Account for the Kerf
1. Open the meter (Laser Kerf Test.ai) file and cut it using the settings you've established cut through your wood.
2. Push all the blocks to the left and measure the gap created on the right with your calipers.
3. Then divide that by the 20 cuts you've made (gap measurement/20).