Hi, I’d like to suggest a larger variety of proofgrade materials to purchase. One thing that drew me to Glowforge was the marketing that shows the wide variety of materials it can work on. Some materials I buy elsewhere but I do like the convenience of products that I know are safe for use in the Glowforge and cut to fit in the machine.
For example, metals like powder coated steel and anodized aluminum would be great to purchase directly from Glowforge. One project I’ve been wanting to try out is making little coins/tokens but online I could mostly just find dog tag like rounds with holes cut out.
Proofgrade rubber, EVA foam, glass, and essentially any other material indicated as safe for etching and/or cutting would be great to purchase directly.
In the meantime, anyone have specific suggestions where you buy your non proofgrade materials (especially round metallic “coins”)?
First Glowforge cannot cut any metal. ceramic, or glass. If you blast ceramic tile or glass the top surface spalls and leaves a rough surface, which you can leave or paint.
Metal is different, and you cannot “mark” it with the laser, but you can paint it and wipe away the paint with the laser (as is what happens with anodized.) or you put on chemicals that will act with the metals when heated by a laser.
None of that has easy use as a piece of glass or aluminum is just a piece of glass or aluminum
The forum is filled with over four years of posts regarding materials used in the Glowforge, where to source them and in many cases settings for successful cutting/engraving of these materials. A few searches will result in a great many sources. To get you started on suppliers I suggest Johnson Plastics Plus https://www.jpplus.com Inventables https://www.inventables.com/ and The Ring Lord https://theringlord.com
Yes I understand that, that’s why I specified powder coated and anodized aluminum. I’d like to etch designs into them (etching away the surface coating). It would be nice to buy such items from Glowforge.
I agree there are lots of other places to source these materials. But having them as Proofgrade with settings might be a win for both Glowforge and users. If they had anodized dog tags, I’d have bought some. But yes, the size choices would have to be judicious.
Since the GF cannot cut any type of metal, I’ve purchased anodized aluminum blanks from places like Amazon and Chewbarka for the past 4 years – they are much more economical, since you can buy small quantities as needed. YMMV, of course!
Since my is outside the US, I buy materials from other laser manufacturers like Trotec and Universal. They work well and have much more variety. I also try plywood and acrylic from local sources. For metal I source from amazon.