Engraving Review

Laser Cutting

Laser Cutting

Laser cutting is a great way to cut complex shapes in flat materials, including paper, wood, plastic and metal

Laser cutting is similar to laser engraving but goes one step further...it completely cuts through the object.

Lasers may be used to cut many materials, such as wood, paper, plastic and metal. It can be used to quickly cut parts that are complex and time consuming to cut by hand or machine. Powerful laser cutters can easily cut through 1 inch (25mm) of stainless steel.

The process of laser cutting can be very simple. You draw a design, either a sketch on paper which is scanned into a computer, or you draw it directly on a computer. The computer has software that takes data from the drawing and uses it to control a laser beam. The laser beam cuts by melting or burning material in its path. Laser cutters produce a clean cut compared to machine cutting, with little burring of the edges. Nitrogen gas is used to stop flammable materials like plastic from catching fire.

Laser Cutting Machine
laser cutting machine
A small machine
Suitable for cutting flat objects

Laser cutting work best on materials that do not reflect light and do not conduct heat too well. Some metals which reflect light and absorb heat easily are more difficult to cut (e.g. aluminum and copper) and need more powerful lasers.

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