Can we speed this up? Engraves are ridiculously too long

Trying to do a rather large piece, and it says FOUR HOURS?

Come on. That’s ridiculous. There’s no reason a piece 11x8 should take THAT long.

Edit - That was after waiting about 15 mins for “Preparing your design”…


What are your settings? Speed? LPI?

Fastest way to speed it up is reduce LPI. That’s about your only option aside from making sure the long edge is horizontal not vertical.

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Try dropping the LPI to 270 or lower, but I don’t know what you’re comparing this to.

Not ridiculous at all, imho, but obviously you have a different expectation.


Wow. That seems pretty good to me. That’s a HUGE piece!
Also good in that, last I heard, it couldn’t handle anything over 3 hours.

What are you used to/expecting?

8” at 450lpi is 3600 passes, which is 39,600 inches (3,300 feet) of movement across an 11” horizontal, which is 165” a minute or 3” a second. Shrug.


GOOD? This is a LASER cutter. I’ve never seen a laser cutter take that long to do ANYTHING. Perhaps I’m being unrealistic. I just thought with lasers, this kind of thing wouldn’t take this long. =(

Kinda makes it not as useful as I thought. I wouldn’t want the machine to run that long for fear that it would break. I see all these INFINITELY more complex jobs jobs people post on here, and I can’t imagine they are waiting that long for an engrave of a photo, or elaborate artwork. /shrug

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Oh… Yeah. I mean, my first photo took about an hour, I recall. And that wasn’t very big. I guess the longest ones I’ve done have been 3 hour jobs.

Default Proofgrade Engrave.

That LPI is really high, for sure. Which material is defaulting that high?

medium maple ply.

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The motors are the problem and why it takes forever. They are open loop which means they don’t where they are or when they skip a “step” (increment of rotation). This means they change direction slowly and then on the other side they dont accelerate fast enough. More expensive machines have better motors but again those are more expensive. You could easily double the cost of the machine just upgrading the motors.

There are a bunch of threads about DPI of the source image mattering to the length of the engrave. Can you elaborate on the source image size and your process for preparing it?

LPI and speed are the big variables that would seem to matter here. Maybe you should try a few test engraves at different settings until you find a custom engrave that you like. In my thread about the large money engrave, I did a 8x17" piece in about 2 hours, and that was only speed 600.

That looks, AMAZING. My image is literally just a vector image. With Block text, and a small image in the center.

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Right. The image in the center, it’s a vector or a raster? If it’s a raster, what size is the source image?

Edit: Thanks :slight_smile: But really it’s a great image, I don’t deserve that much credit.

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It’s vector. Fill, no stroke.

Yeah I’d go manual and cut the lpi/increase the speed to whatever is the highest speed/lowest lpi combo that gets you the quality you want. I haven’t seen anyone do a writeup of maple settings, maybe @mhumphrey wrote it up somewhere and I just missed it? He went deep on photo settings on wood here:

I’m just redesigning to cuts, and a second solid piece on the back painted black.

That will look awesome, as well :slight_smile: Heck you could do the lazy inlay method: cut, take the middle pieces out, paint them back and inlay then back in… lots of ways to make a sign.


I should also mention this: I had some luck designing my own vector engrave paths, especially for primitive shapes, which it sounds like yours might be:

I think @chris1 summed that thread up perfectly. LOL Great job!