Are there any test template or vector files to download?

I just placed my pre-order for my GF and I can’t wait to get started creating. My goal over the next 6-9 months of waiting is to start preparing and prepping projects so that I can hit the ground running. I know with my plotter it reads different pantoes colours for different types of cuts. I am assuming the GF will be operating under a similar process. Can I star designing and prepping vector files? Any info would be greatly appreciated :slight_smile:



please remember every product i mean every way material reacts different to laser. a walnut board might be harder than birch or balsa is very soft . its great to be prepared but make sure you test every item you will use before you make the final product. it can be 100% power for 1 wood or acrylic or whatever it is the other might use 50% power

There has not been any definitive word (that I can find) on a standard or automated color to speed/power level, but that seems to be the way it will work.
As @puzantpuzantyan says you will probably want to test out every material to find the best settings.

Here are a few threads on the subject (try searching on “color” for more info):

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Design away. I just jumped into it. Read the following thread about the process I went through with a design. I even had someone put it to a laser and cut it to test it out. Print it out on a regular printer and glue it to cardboard, stacked to whatever thickness you need. Use a razor knife and see if it works.

Right now I’m prepping files by separating cut types by layers…etching on one layer, cuts on another, and so on. That way I can just change the layer display settings after we get more info on how GF handles different colors correlating to different power/speed settings (and after I’ve tested the material, of course :wink:). Though I’m using this same approach for my tester files as well- just the same line arrayed a few times with each on its own layer, and then applying different settings to each layer in turn. That way all I have to do when I get my GF is input some power/speed numbers and I’ll (hopefully!) be good to go!

I actually joined a makerspace in Grand Rapids,MI to get familiar with using a laser, I also started learning how to create things using Inkscape and Adobe Illustrator. Anything I can do to get a jump on what I can create with the GF. I have no experience in this field but am really eager to learn.

I would like to see some test files also. I know you already have a number of projects worked out IE the leather computer bag. Would love to have that posted so I can see how big to laser the leather for the theading. Also if you could post any HOW TO get your file right. I plan to use both Auto CAD and Illustrator and would like to get some of my designs down now while I wait for the machine. I want to hit the ground running when it comes in.

Please let us know if there is any way to access a test file, or also a set of general guidelines and helpful hints.

I found a post on another thread here that explicitly says you can define which colors map to which operations:
Continuing the discussion from Watch Brad Feld & Dan Shapiro print something:

In the video in that thread, it appears that the Glowforge software auto-selected cut for the vector circle and engrave for the raster image inside it, but I am guessing based on @dans comment that if you wanted to vector engrave some stuff, you would just need to make those lines a different color than the cut lines and then tweak the settings on the left side before you hit go.

No laser anywhere that I know of has a pre-set “This color does this action”

Rather, you set the colors in design to indicate lines which should be treated the same as one another, then when loading the cut, you decide how to run each one.

This is the interface for my Lasersaur. Those 6 colors are the specific colors in the loaded cut file. You can have somewhere around 32 different colors in any file. While you can pre-set the speed and power level in the cut file, you can also change it in this screen. In each pass, you set the speed/power, and which colors to follow the cut path for.

Now… the point where confusion easily comes in, would be laser cutting services. They have this interface available for themselves, but they don’t want to deal with custom requests on every single file they ever cut. So they make it a requirement that you set each color to a specific type of cut. Then the only customization they need is to append the proper presets to your file for the material which will be used.

From the Brad Feld video, it looks like GlowForge goes a step beyond. His file was all black lines, he never changed color at all from what I noticed/remember. Yet he was able to choose different speed and power settings for different components in his final file. Which is pretty damn awesome (you don’t have to pre-plan every minor tweak, or go back to the computer when you figure out one line should be done differently)