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Laser Cutting Format Guide

Beginning 9/12/2011, A template file must be used in order to laser cut. Please download it here and follow the instructions within. 


The following instructions have been left for reference purposes only.   

  1. When creating a file to be laser cut, start with a CTB type or the basic acad.dwt file.
  2. Using the layer command, create two new layers and title them CUT and SCORELayer Properties
  3. Set the CUT layer color to YELLOW (index color #2) of the basic color pallet.
  4. Set the SCORE layer color to RED (index color #1) of the basic color pallet.
  5. Turn all other layers OFF for plotting.  Score and Cut screen shot
  6. Create your AutoCAD Drawing.
  7. Move all CUT and SCORE items to the appropriate layers.
  8. Make sure you DO NOT have multiple lines overlapped as the laser cutter will read each and every line, even collinear ones, and cut them all.  This takes up your time and money and can degrade the quality of the cutting job!  Using the OVERKILL command in AutoCAD will eliminate these overlapping lines.  Look into the HELP section of CAD for further instructions on the command.
  9. Create a rectangle in MODEL SPACE that is 31 11/16” x 17 11/16”.  SCALE the rectangle by the following scale factor.  The scale factor is the inverse of your scale, then multiply it by 12. (i.e.  3/16” = 1’-0” :  multiply 16/3 x 12  or  1” = 30’-0” : multiply 30 x 12)
  10. Arrange the CUT and SCORE objects so they fit into the rectangle.  Copy the rectangle as needed for the additional items.  Break up any items that extend beyond the boundary of the rectangle and place them in another rectangle.
  11. If cutting multiple sheets, please DO NOT create several layout tabs as this will slow down the technician and delays other jobs.  ONE layout will serve all laser jobs.
  12. CUT the media you plan to laser cut to the appropriate size PRIOR to coming to the lab.  The laser cutting deck is EXACTLY 18” x 32”.  To ensure your media will fit, please cut your material 1/8” SMALLER than these dimensions.  IF THERE IS A QUEUE YOU WILL BE SKIPPED UNTIL YOUR MEDIA IS CORRECTLY CUT.
  13. KNOW WHAT SCALE your laser cutting file is at PRIOR to coming to the lab.  (eg. 1’-0” = 1’-0” OR 1’-0” = 1/16”, ETC.)


LAB TECHNICIANS ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR MIS-SCALED LASER CUT JOBS.

IF YOU NEED HELP WITH ANY OF THESE STEPS ASK A LAB TECHNICIAN.  IF THEY ARE NOT BUSY THEY WILL HELP IN ANY WAY THEY CAN.