Step 7: Fun with Lasers: Cutting Out the Components
Create additional drawings using the same method and import the panels you created for the gear box.
You should export these files into a format that is compatible with whatever vector drawing software you plan to use to cut the file. I chose to use Adobe Illustrator for this step and therefore exported the files as AutoCAD DWG files. For some reason the latest version of Adobe Illustrator only works properly with files saved as AutoCAD 2004 Drawings so make sure you select this option when exporting the file. (See second illustration.)
Next open the file in illustrator. (See third illustration.) After the file is loaded you must first select the entire drawing and change the width of all of the vectors to .001pt or smaller. The Epilog laser driver requires a very fine line to be interpreted as a cutting vector. If you skip this step the laser cutter will treat the vectors as rasterized images and only etch the images onto the surface of the acrylic. Finally before you print the images to the laser you must configure the laser to the specified parameters provided by the manufacturer for the material you are using. Once you have done this send the drawing over to the laser cutter and begin the cut!