Light Pads are handy


Was in Michaels today and the wife noticed some cheap laser cut chipboard owls. (Less than a buck) Asked me whether I could recreate the same in Proofgrade maple, with a key ring hole. Sure, no prob.

Put the original piece on a small Lightpad (almost any diffused light source will work).

The owl on the left is with the light off. The pic on the right shows a very well defined silhouette. Take a picture and import into Inkscape.

Easy Peasy from there to convert for the Glowforge. Couple minutes.

Weekly Highlights for the Week Ending March 11th, 2017
Ninja 'Forge



Good thinking, you do the same with a page scanner as well


Slick as a whistle! :relaxed::+1:


Hmmm…Nice tool. But Artograph are pricey. Time to break out the laser and make one. (Didn’t know I needed one but now I do so it’s time to make one. Got plenty of acrylic & LEDs :slightly_smiling_face: )


Moved this to “Made on a Glowforge” category because… it is, right?


technically i guess it should be moved to the made on a lightpad subforum…


Do you happen to have a link to that light board you used?


You can see them on amazon:

hilarious that they put it in as a subscribe and save option (yes, please, I’ll take one lightpad every three months, thank you, jeeves).


Yeah. I did laser cut an owl out of Maple Proofgrade, which my wife loved, but didn’t show the final result. I might go back and add a picture later. The reason was because I “simplified” the paths once the design was in Inkscape and it softened some of the inside cuts. Was just me not taking the extra 5 minutes. Didn’t want folks going “Oh it wasn’t perfect down to .001 nano-knats.” The purpose of the post was to show the great silhouette, which went into Inkscape perfectly. Not to show my Inkscape sloppiness.


That’s great. I think it was such a clever and quick way to get the design in.


You can get a LOT cheaper light pads. Just happened to have this one because my wife uses it everyday for her draft artwork. Great for tracing, silhouettes, looking at negatives, etc. Even cool to better see any kerf effect in laser cuts.


yeah i imagine if you’re handy it would also be pretty easy to whip up a little box, some led strips, and a piece of frosted acrylic…


A tablet or cell phone with a white background displayed should work fine too


I always get a kick out of the subscribe and save items. I mean how bad of a cook do they think I am it I need a subscription for replacement electric stove elements?!

By the way, the price I was shown in your link was $99.99 and the subscribe and save price was $100.01. I guess I’ll make up the savings in volume. :thinking:


haha! when i loaded it it was offering 20% off if you subscribed!


gorgeous! Instead of the lightbox, could you have placed the chip-board owl directly into the GF and have the camera trace it directly into the software? Or, would that have been not enough contrast?


It might have done an okay job, but you’d probably be left with an outline. Plus, this way you can modify / resize easily!


inspiration - no idea if this would work, but a really cheap light pad would be a laptop / tablet screen with a blank text document (or Word or Inkscape or whatever) showing… I’ll have to give that a try tonight.


No. My experience is that would not work out well. The trace function is not set for that level of detail.