Cutting 3/4" (19mm) thick EVA foam SUCCESS!

Hey all. Ive got some 3/4 inch eva foam arriving today and want to cut it on my Basic. I know that over 1/2" means I will need to cut without the crumb tray in place. Ive never tried that before. Tips? Tricks? Setting suggestions?

EDIT: Thanks for all the help!

As you can see from the change in title, I did get it to work.

Here’s what I did:

  • I started by simply putting a test piece on the honeycomb. THIS DOES NOT WORK WELL because part of the print head hits things this thick.

  • I removed the crumb tray completely (remember to remove the print head with the machine off when you do this).

  • I used my initial test piece to space up a Proofgrade draft board sheet that I also have used under felt, etc. Then I placed the second test piece on that.

  • Grizzarkhov’s test print was wonderful. I tried a bunch of settings and a few different numbers of passes.
    *Watch out if you’re a FULL POWER person. I got bigtime flareups on full power during testing.

  • I used blue tape to tape down the foam on the edges, just in case.
    *The setting I ended up using is 200 speed, 90 power, 3 passes., 0.5 inch focus. It doesn’t quite cut through all of it in all places, because of a texture on the underside of the foam, but it does leave some marks on the draftboard. Since my design is all straight lines and I have an Xacto, that’s not a problem.

  • You can use 200 speed, 95 power, 3 passes to get to where 99% of all lines are cut all the way through, but it does give you more scorch on whatever’s under your foam.

  • If you’re thinking of trying 7/8 or 1-inch EVA, I am pretty sure you won’t get there without using full power and that causes bad flareups.

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Here’s the standard response:

Doing searches will produce even more suggestions from the forum.

That’s pretty thick foam. Be careful, it smells like a fire risk.

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I have recently been cutting EVA foam and it stinks. Ha ha ha. It cuts like butter but it does small bad. Make sure you have adequate ventilation and you may still want to wear a filter mask with an open window. I have a window in my hobby room and when I finish cutting I put a fan in front of it and suck the stink outside. My suggestion for cutting and engraving setting would be to do a test run with several different setting for each cut. If you want I can create an SVG file to help you get started.

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Actually, why wait. Here is an SVG you can use to test Power/Speed options for the foam. The SVG has 12 different color lines (which the GF will recognize) and you can set different variables for each color. The GF doesn’t always read the colors in descending order at they appear in SVG so you might need to reorder them otherwise it does get confusing when the cuts are done.

EVA-Foam-Cutting-Tester

EVA-Foam-Cutting-Tester.svg.zip (1.2 KB)

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There is an image though I can’t view it on my phone easily. A quirk of discourse makes images infinitesimally small and hard to see.

Thanks, all! I’ll do some testing after work today and let y’all know how it goes.

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As you can see from the change in title, I did get it to work.

Here’s what I did:

  • I started by simply putting a test piece on the honeycomb. THIS DOES NOT WORK WELL because part of the print head hits things this thick.
  • I removed the crumb tray completely (remember to remove the print head with the machine off when you do this).
  • I used my initial test piece to space up a Proofgrade draft board sheet that I also have used under felt, etc. Then I placed the second test piece on that.
  • Grizzarkhov’s test print was wonderful. I tried a bunch of settings and a few different numbers of passes.
    *Watch out if you’re a FULL POWER person. I got bigtime flareups on full power during testing.
  • I used blue tape to tape down the foam on the edges, just in case.
    *The setting I ended up using is 200 speed, 90 power, 3 passes., 0.5 inch focus. It doesn’t quite cut through all of it in all places, because of a texture on the underside of the foam, but it does leave some marks on the draftboard. Since my design is all straight lines and I have an Xacto, that’s not a problem.
  • You can use 200 speed, 95 power, 3 passes to get to where 99% of all lines are cut all the way through, but it does give you more scorch on whatever’s under your foam.
4 Likes

Was your focus set to the new material surface height(beyond the ‘crumb tray’ 0 point) or did you offset it?

My focus was set to 0.5 inches, which is the max.

I’ve been playing around with this a lot today using some 3/4 inch EVA kneeling pads from the dollar store. I was able to get a single pass to work at Speed 180 Power Full with the focus at the surface of the EVA. However I found I get a cleaner cut focusing at the center of the EVA (in this case subtracting 3/8 inch from the surface ‘above crumb tray’ measurement) and setting the cut to focus there. Right now Speed 200 Power 75 with two passes has given the nicest edge, but I’ll keep playing with it. Also we ran the finished product through the dishwasher and that helped remove some of the burnt smell. I also had an old cookie sheet that I flipped upside down that made for a great surface to cut it on. Then I just used some flat sheets of cardboard under it if I need it higher.