Engrave on MDF 1”

Hello! I am new to GF, and happy to be a part of this community.

I’ve recently done fine with Proofgrade materials; however, I would like to engrave and score on MDF that is 1” thick.

I would like to know what the recommended steps are in order to do so…

-What settings should I try?

I highly appreciate any feedback!! Thanks in advance!


Try search terms such as “cutting without the tray” to find tons of information on how to do that. The Set Focus tool (another good search term) will help to eliminate a lot of the math calculations we used to have to do.

And finally, “MDF settings” will probably bring up some settings to try. Draftboard is MDF, so you could probably start with those numbers and do some testing to dial things in.

Good luck!


Hi! Welcome to the fun house!

With the tray in you are limited to half inch thickness, with the tray out you have right at two inches. The thing is the surface you want to engrave has to be within 1/2 inch of the head to be in range of the focus.

@dwardio devised This helpful tool and shared it with the community. I find it very useful, and easy to check the material height.

I have found that scraps of 3/4", 1/2", 1/4", and 1/8" boards work well for shimming up your work with the tray out to get within the range of focus indicated on the ruler. :sunglasses:

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Just make sure you’re 100% consistent across the piece for distance. I’d lump 2 - 3/4" pieces underneath to get it to the right height (Although that might be too close).



Thanks so much for the prompt feedback. The tool looks great, I will go ahead and give it a try and I will get back to you.

Highly appreciate your advice.

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Thanks so much for your prompt feedback. I will go ahead and read a bit more and then give it a shot. Great advice to look into.


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Once again, thanks for the link of the tool, it was very easy to use!! I loved it…

I did a test with different settings to engrave on draftboard 1" thick. Attached is a picture of different results of engraving settings and how they turned out…



You’re welcome! I love it too :sunglasses:

That is absolutely the best thing to do. Test, test, and test. You can do a search here for materials to get a ballpark, but with the exception of proofgrade there will always be variables so anytime you use something new, or a new batch you need to run a quick test, which may end up being a longer test depending on how close you are dialed in from the beginning.