Hoping to get a little help from folks that have successfully made jigsaw puzzles. I think I’ve read through every thread I could find, but being new to both GF and puzzle making, could use a little push.
What I did:
- Russian Birch 3mm ply. Test cut cleanly at 230, full power (pro)
- Spray mounted an 11x14" photo from Wallgreens, J-Rolled it and gave it 15-20 min cure time
- Slowed to 220 since I had added the photo (a guess)
- Watched the cut for problems. After cutting the border, the first row cut (I split rows and column cuts) showed flame that I hadn’t seen in test cuts. I opened the lid out of an abundance of caution
- Read forums about “candle flame” being okay, but couldn’t find any images or videos to see what was acceptable
- Leanred that opening the cover doesn’t “pause” but cancel. So, I restarted the job
- Watched the entire cut to make sure nothing happened. The flame seemed to happen more in one than the other direction, assumed this was because of the airflow inside
What I got
- Didn’t get a clean through-cut. Very little burn on the backside, but the puzzle didn’t break cleanly
- “Burns” on the image. Some scorching wiped off, but a most stayed. There was also a “tack” to the image when touched
- Scary(?) flame
I’m guessing that the flame was because of something in the print or the adhesive. I checked several sources about spray mount (and photos) with laser, but found that many people use this and didn’t see any ingredients to cause alarm. Is the flame in the video below “acceptable” / expected?
I’ve seen that people both seal and mask the photo. I was afraid to seal it because I didn’t want to add too many additives to the equation. I did plan to mask it, but all of my tape was of too-high tack and would have wrecked the photo. I plan to try both tomorrow with spray-on minwax polycrylic and low-tack mask
I’m wondering if anyone has a terrific recipe for the puzzle sandwich to get great results - what type of wood (i’d probably like to go up to 6mm), what brand adhesive, any guidance on printing (paper / ink), how much sealant. I saw the thread on masking -> horizontal -> remasking -> vertical which makes a ton of sense and plan to follow.
Any advise would be helpful. Unlike the inexpensive raw materials, this process is a little more expensive and time consuming to get dialed in. Looking to get some coarse adjustments to speed up my tuning of this type of project.
(note - the “fatter” cut at the top of the image was the result of the re-cut after aborting when I spotted the flame)