Cutting Fusion 4000 on the laser


#1

I’m about to cut my first puzzle on the Glowforge Plus. After printing the photo, I’m using a product called Fusion 4000 to attach the image to book board using a hot press, a process we use a lot for making our handmade books. Fusion 4000 is designed to be used with hot presses at 160 degrees. I wasn’t sure if it would be okay to cut through it with the laser, even though it’s sandwiched between the paper and board, so I contacted the company who makes it, D & K. They have sent me a data sheet which shows no hazards with “normal” use, though I don’t imagine laser cutting would be considered normal use.Old Fusion 4000 - Now send letter.pdf (99.4 KB)

I’ve attached their spec sheet here which indicates the composition of the material: Polyethylene, Copolymer of ethylene and acrylic acid, Copolymer of ethylene and vinyl acetate, Copolymer of ethylene and butene-1, Silicon Dioxide.

What do you think? Safe or not?


#2

Probably okay as long as your venting is excellent.
(Apparently polymer fume fever is a thing.)


#3

Disclaimer: This should not be considered legal or safety advice. Do your own research and come to your own conclusions and don’t sue my pants off. That would be bad for everyone.

As far as what it does to you, what you generally want to look at is the decomposition products. In this case, they seem pretty unexciting.

The other aspect is whether it will cut cleanly and/or start on fire. It looks like a thermoplastic, so engraving it is unlikely to produce pretty results and cutting a thick piece might just produce a blob of goo. But you’re just cutting a thin sheet, so it probably works fine, unless the edges stick back together.


#4

Thanks, Chris. The thin sheet of Fusion 4000 is sandwiched between the photo paper and book board, so it should be okay. I’ve also sent a message to the Glowforge folks to see what they think, but I’m thinking it should be okay