I am starting my small business and I love what how the products are coming out. One little problem, my settings I think are too high (I’ve played with them quite a bit) and I cannot seem to find a sweet spot that looks good, but that does not take 14 + minutes per 5 x 5 plaque that I cut/engrave.
Has anyone found the perfect way to have our cake and eat it too?
Testing, tweaking, testing again, tweaking again. For every single material. There is no magic setting that will give you the results you want. Every wood type is different, and everyone’s idea of the perfect engrave is different. You must adjust your speed, power and lpi for the material and the project at hand. For cutting, adjustments up or down slightly from similar proofgrade material usually works for me.
15 minutes for a 5x5 sounds perfectly reasonable to me.
It would save time to do more than one piece at a time.
If you are engraving Images the GFUI will engrave only one at a time, but if you make them all one the result could be a huge file, or not enough detail. If you are engraving vector engraves, it might do all or one at a time. I have had it do both in the same file.
15 min for that large a piece sounds fast to me as I have a 3x3 take an hour routinely. It all depends on speed and LPI and the result you are happy with,
If this is your work looks Great to me wish my came out like that
I also have a small business and try to get the time down on things like this. There are a few things I do to make it go faster.
If you have the increased raster engrave speed settings (I think everyone does now), rasterize the image before engraving (solid black for everything you want engraved is best), take the laser to full power, and then try to find the fastest speed that gives you the engrave you want. For me on a pro that was 1650 speed at full power.
Reduce the lines per inch. Honestly, the difference between 225 and 340 is minimal on wood but it makes a bit of a difference (not as much as you’d think though because as the LPI goes down the speed has to go down to compensate)
And as others said, do as many at once as you can fit in the machine. The acceleration / deceleration at the end of each pass takes up a lot of time. But, you do need to combine everything into one action by making them all part of the same image otherwise it just does each individually.
That’s about it, after that it takes as long as it takes. I engrave 12x12 sheets and they take a little over an hour so your time isn’t that far off from optimized.
That depends a lot on the wood, On oak the grain is enough to cause problems even at higher speeds, but fine grain woods like maple the pattern caused by the laser can be a lot more obvious. Also even with oak higher LPI and maximum power burns everything and thus is more even than lower power or more passes that preferentially burn the softer wood more than the hardest, and thus make the grain stronger (which can be a desired effect under some designs.)
With Acrylic 640 or 1355 LPI is needed to eliminate the gouging effect from lower LPI.
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