Make Your Own Counter-top Point of Sale

Introduction: Make Your Own Counter-top Point of Sale

I recently created a counter top POS (point of sale -- what were you thinking?) for our iPhone case product and made it at Techshop (  The kind that sits next to the register at your local cool design store.  I looked at some cardboard premade ones and thought I could better.  I headed over to TAP Plastics, and reserved a slot on the San Francisco TechShop Epilog Laser cutter and got to work.

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Step 1: CAD It Up -- Pick Material

First you need to decide how many items the display should contain, how much counter space you can take up etc. I played around a little with the product to make sure different colors were visible etc.  After your concept design is complete, draw it up in your favorite CAD program.

For the material, I looked through the TAP plastics samples, and decided on the 1/8" P95 acrylic green edge with a haze finish on one side.  It basically looks like sandblasted glass -- pretty slick-looking stuff.  

Step 2: Testcuts

The Epilog laser cutter requires a class to use it, so hopefully you already know how to focus the laser etc.  The hardest part is figuring out the power settings for a clean cut, and nice engraving etc.  

for the 1/8"  P95 I ended up using the following settings:

For Cutting:
speed: 7% -- Power:100GW -- Freak:5000 Hz

For raster:
Speed: 50% -- Power: 30

The part I messed around the most was the cutting speed -- anything faster moving or lower frequency produced a non-smooth cut making the surface of the cut appear less like glass and more like molten plastic (like in the photo).  Slowing it down and cranking the frequency gave good results.  Do a bunch of cuts on a scrap piece and write down what settings.

Step 3: Test Cut Again

Just to double check my design, I test cut the whole thing out of cardboard and assembled it. 

Step 4: Cut for Reals

This is the most satisfying part of lasing stuff -- fun :)

Step 5: Glue It Up

Any acrylics glue will work.  I used fast medium-bodied glue out of a tube (SciGrip #16), and I gotta say I would not recommend doing it this way.  I should have used one of those little syringe dispenser.   As done, it was difficult not to get the stringy glue on the nice fresh plastic.  I could have masked the whole thing, but that's kind of a lot of work.  I think a smaller more precise dispenser is key, so you have time to align everything and insert a little glue at the joints.

The 1/8" feels flexy and flimsy when you get started, but once it's all glued up, your display will feel nice and strong.

Step 6: Finished Product

Voilà -- product on counter top.

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    2 Discussions


    5 years ago

    Could you share the dxf file?


    dont know if this is true or not but i heard of a gas station had one of those with mace on it, right next to the register. A bad guy grabbed one and maced the store attendants and then robbed the place.