Hi! I will be going through the steps of how to create a wooden bookmark mostly using a laser cutter and engraver. I will highlight the steps needed to select and cut the size of your piece, and how to set up the laser correctly.
*Attention!* The laser settings should be relatively similar between models, so follow your laser cutter's specific steps if mine do not produce the correct results!
I made this at Techshop @ RDU! Please go and check them out at: techshop.ws
Step 1: Size of Piece
This is mainly up to you. For my own, I cut out a piece 12x4x0.3cm from a piece of pine wood using a band saw.
Step 2: Setting Up the Document
The two best applications for the laser cutter are Adobe Illustrator and Corel Draw. The steps are relatively the same, but I used Illustrator.
1. Create a new document with the same length and width you chose for you piece. (12cm x 4cm).
2. To make sure everything is precise turn on rulers "view -> rulers -> show rulers"
3. Set guidelines by clicking on the ruler and dragging the line to where you want the lip of your bookmark to be located (see picture for reference).
4. With the pen tool, create a lip by using the intersecting lines as a guide. Make sure to set the line width to hairline (in Corel draw) which is the same as 0.001 pt. in Illustrator. This is important to make a cut and not an etch.
5. Now as you wish, connect both sides of the U-shape to create space for the flap to move. (see final product pictured)
Step 3: Print Laser Cut
1. Now with a finished shape, go to "File -> Print." The next steps may depend on the laser you are using, but if using an Epilog laser you must open up the laser properties (if Illustrator, go to "Setup -> properties"). My laser settings for a vector cut in wood require to use 35% speed, 90% power and 500 Hertz (for frequency). *REMEMBER* You must set the size of the document once more in the properties. (My settings required inches, so a quick conversion gives us: 1.6 x 4.7)
2. On the physical laser itself, a home point must be set at the top left corner of your bookmark.
3. After pressing "Go" on the cutter, it should make the lip we've been waiting for!