So I’ve had my GF for about a month and I’ve figured out that there are a lot of tools that make lasering easier that aren’t necessarily available on the website, and obviously can’t be endorsed by GF itself.
For example: Painters tape. Like what? It’s amazing. Found that on the forums.
So I was thinking that if there wasn’t a thread already we could start one and add our gadgets and tricks to it. I’ll add all the suggestions and links to the original post. I didn’t find anything in a forum search but if there is one feel free to point me in that direction.
Honeycomb Pins - Honeycomb bed holdown pins THESE ARE A MUST for holding down thicker materials that may have warped. Also amazing for jigs holding patterned work that requires flipping.
Knit Hook - Meant for loom knitting, but works ridiculously well for pulling up the edges of projects without moving the entire piece of material.
Hand Held Vacuum - Great for cleaning up the little pieces in the forge that are a pain to get to. I would hope it would be obvious but DO NOT USE THIS ON MATERIALS THAT ARE WARM. I mainly use this in the morning after it’s been sitting cold all night. Nobody wants a house fire.
fwiw, i also don’t mask areas i engrave unless it’s a deep engrave. if there’s anything light about the engrave, it will likely create a sticky mess where the light areas are and may not even engrave all the way through the tape.
yeah, US Cutter is where i got mine (and the link in my post).
as @jbmanning5 pointed out, cost is a big part of it. way less expensive per SF. it’s also less sticky, so for some substrates it’s much easier to deal with. it takes a little more work to adhere and smooth on, but a simple squeegee will take care of it (or even just the side of a credit card or something similar).
last, you can buy it in 12" wide rolls. if you’re masking large areas, using 2-3" strips of tape takes a lot longer and you have to be careful lining up the edges of the strips.i can mask a 12x20 sheet in moments with a single strip.
Looks like the same $9.99 flat rate shipping. I went with Sign Warehouse because they are in-state (hoping for faster delivery). However, I discovered that their flat-rate shipping uses FedEx SmartPost. Not sure about US Cutter. They sent the shipment out fast, but smartpost is very slow. Sent out 4/10 - estimated delivery is 4/17 - all within the state of Texas.
Different levels of sticky for different materials, so depending on what you do you may find yourself with a large collection of masking material. Transfer tape comes in very wide widths compared to painter’s tape. It also seems to be pressure sensitive, so use a squeegee to apply. For the types of squeegees I have you need a handle and a blade - not necessarily crystal clear on some of the web sites I’ve seen.
You need to add a weeding material to the list. Gorilla tape or a plastic razor blade. I used my trusty fingernail Sunday and broke off a fine detail. I know better.
the fancy squeegees are nice, but you really don’t need one of them to do this. you could literally use an old credit card, or you can throw on a cheapo like one of these for a dollar or a few dollars when you order from us cutter (or similar shop).
i have one of these that i added onto my order last fall. works great.
I use the one you linked, but I have the handle as well. You don’t need the handle, but nice to have in my opinion. The ones from a sign store will match the widths of the transfer tape. Again, you could use an old credit card on 12" wide transfer tape, but it is nice to have a matching squeegee.