I think I found the limit

… of how fine I can go with medium maple ply PG.

That’s the back side, which unfortunately means I lose the score I have around the design on the front side but after cutting this one piece, I’m not too concerned as it looks great and is designed to be an ornamental lamp of sorts.

(The limit, it seems, for practical use is 0.6mm. This is PG settings.)


That looks really nice! Is 0.6mm the part size as measured or the centerline of the adjacent cuts before kerf? My machine has a kerf of about 0.2mm,

Pretty design too!

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It’s the minimum width of the remaining structure you see. Any narrower, and the top side is “blown out”.

As I like pictures:


… a taste of where this is going.


Looks great. Is it one finger poke from destruction, or does it feel fairly robust?

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It’s fairly solid, but given who I’m giving it to, I’m glueing the joints. The PG Maple Ply is a lot thicker (3.48) than some other materials, so I spent a little time finding the right width (3.27) for the slots so the joiners are a very tight fit.

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I like the looks of that already!

Ooooo, nice! I’m particularly fond of Celtic designs.

This came up in a similar thread so I figured I’d address it here.

Part of determining the “limit” of how small I could cut involved making sure that “weeding” was practical. It involves more than just determining the minimum cut width to preserve the detail, but also making sure the cut goes thru cleanly enough to be able to remove the excess material.

It sounds simple enough, but as most owners know it’s not always 100% guaranteed that parts will drop out of a completed cut. Even with PG materials, there are variances in material density that can cause issues. While extracting other (much simpler) parts for this project, I had a whole piece (the center one in the previous image, in fact) give me a heck of a time. It was at one end of the sheet, so there was something different about the makeup of that material over on that side.

When trying to come up with settings that work reliably for something as detailed and complicated as this (the first piece I posted), and be able to extract the waste without damaging the design, you need to test and come up with settings that work.

As it happens, in this case, the width of the detail, cut using PG settings but with the upper layer of masking removed, meant that a lot of the scrap dropped out when lifting from the bed. The really fine stuff came out when tapping out on a hard surface after removing the back-side masking.

It takes a little practice to know what works for this kind of detail work, but it’s worth it if you like this kind of thing.

That’s less my problem than the design - usually my thin stuff is floral or vegetation oriented so I have unsupported branches or leaves or other things that are supported (weakly) on one end but the other end is free of connection to any other part of the design.

I also usually pull the masking off the back and place the material on a piece of copy paper. That way any flashback is primarily constrained to the paper and anything that gets onto the material back is easily removed with an alcohol soaked cotton swab.

I thought about trying that for this one, but I was under a time crunch. I might try that with this panel just to see how it comes out.

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