1/4 inch excessive charring

I’m having a hard time cutting through the 1/4 inch boards from Woodpecker without getting lots of char. I don’t know if I’m doing it wrong or if my wood is the issue. Any tips??

Hey, welcome to the forum.

Some of it will come down to species. Woods like maple and walnut char less than something like zebrawood or cork.

I would suggest using best practices, cut hot and fast generally leads to less char.

This should help you zero in your settings:

If you tell us what species you’re using we might have more tips.

Also in cases where char is unavoidable, you might want to look up the salt cleaning trick.

If you’re talking about surface fouling (not charred edges) you may want to invest in some masking.


I’m guessing you’re using their 1/4in baltic birch plywood, which I used to use. The problem you’re going to run into is 1/4 ply is usually veneer sandwiching 3 inner layers of filler materials. The inner layers have glue, hollow areas, knots, and areas filled by something similar to wood putty. The middle layer tends to be the worst offender. By setting to what will consistently cut through the toughest areas, you end up with a charred edge, but if you set it to less you end up with areas that don’t fully cut.

Basically, you’re not doing anything wrong, it’s just what happens with thicker plywood, and to some extent thicker woods in general. You hear a lot less problems with 1/8in ply because it’s only 3 layers (veneer, filler, veneer), so less problem spots, and with all 1/8in woods the cut is fast enough not to leave much burn.