Cutting Stickers and Decals

Curious if anyone on here has cut decals or stickers on their glowforge? I’m wondering what material you used and settings. Thanks in advance!

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I have used paper stickers because you can’t put vinyl (except for HTV) in the laser.

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People have. Do a search on “kiss cut”. That’s where it cuts the sticker but not the release paper underneath. Someone doing stickers used that term and I remember it from then :slightly_smiling_face:

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I’ve used polyester mailing labels to make stickers and they work great. Not as durable as professionally done ones but for most of my use cases they are fine.
I buy them in full page (8.5 x 11).

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Previously:

My settings for the Online Labels polyester sticker stock:

195/3 – Cut sticker but, not backing.

195/9 – Cut sticker and backing.

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Stupid question but what about the LPI or focus height? And do these setting apply to the gold foil labels they have? Also, do you have the settings for scoring by any chance? Sorry for all the questions!

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Not a stupid question in that it reveals we are likely talking about slightly different things.

What I am describing above is printing with an actual laser or inkjet printer onto the white or clear polyester label stock. Those sheets are then placed in the Glowforge where you make two cuts around the perimeter of the sticker: one just cuts the label layer, not the backing while the outer cut cuts through both the label and the backing. This is done in order to make it easier to peel the finished label off the backing. These end up being like the promotional stickers a lot of people have covering their laptops.

I generally just use the automated set focus function these days. If you prefer to do it the hard way, you can measure the thickness of the stock with calipers. My notes say the stuff I mention in the post linked above is .006 inches thick.

LPI is only relevant if you are engraving, which is not what I am describing. Scoring is ambiguous, depending on what we are talking about.

It sounds like maybe you are thinking you can engrave on the gold foil sticker stock. I have no experience with that stock. My experience has been that it is challenging for the Glowforge to cut through even a thin layer of any kind of actual metal foil and, it is unlikely to mark it without some sort of chemical assistance (e.g., Cermark).

I don’t want to discourage you, though! There is probably some route to what you want to do. It may take some experimenting or compromise to get there but, that’s how the coolest stuff is discovered.

If you want to describe what you want to do in more detail, I (or someone else) may have suggestions for things to try.

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What setting worked for you? I want to try this tonight. :slight_smile:

@evermorian’s post above lists his settings.

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I bought the labels from online labels (OL177LP),

I have the cutting settings, but has anyone engraved them at all or is that not possible?
Maybe we should put them through the printer first to get the images on them then cut them?

Perhaps you could do some test engraves and share your experience. This thread states that the labels used were clear or white ones printed in a laser or inkjet printer and then cut. You could contribute to the knowledge base if you choose to do some testing with laser engraves.

That’s typically what I do with them.

I design my labels with an image, surrounded by a just-through-the-sticker score line, then a cut line outside that all the way through the backing. That leaves a little border that makes it easier to peel the sticker. I put registration marks in three corners of the page. I print the sticker design and the registration marks on a color laser printer, put it in the Glowforge, then use the registration marks to align the laser operations to the print.

If you don’t need individual labels, you can just do the through-the-sticker-only score lines to get a sheet of stickers.

I try to design so that the score and cut lines can be a little off. For instance, if the background of the sticker is printed color, I make that color extend a bit past the score line. Then, if the score line is a bit off, you won’t have a little sliver of white.

Let us know if you try engraving them!

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I tried at 195/1 and it burned through the sticker pretty much instead of engraving. I then tried 500 speed and 1 power, and it was pretty light, but did work somewhat… not super results though.

You could try the 20 lb copier paper settings. It is just so much faster to print these than to engrave.

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