While Proofgrade is awesome for having masking already present, I do a LOT of work with non-proofgrade. Especially when I break out the cardboard to proof-of-concept prior to doing a final job.
I realized with my latest new material acquisition that there is a MAJOR difference in the surface of the material if you first run all of your cut lines as a score, THEN run them as the full cut.
For a stark example: I used an amazon cardboard box to test some lettering for a large sign and see if I made the bridges large enough on letters which have internal voids (a,e,d,o…). I thought the cardboard was going to cut real easy, so I ran it at 500 speed and 40 power. Did NOT cut through. I knew that if I went full power I would be risking fire, so I ran the 500/40 again, still not through. I finally decided to just blast the full power. Got through with no burning! Yippee!
So, having done each of the modified letters and seen that the bridges were large enough, I then ran the full sign. Since I knew the 500/40 wasn’t good enough, and I had survived the 500/full… I just started with 500/full.
Basically every bridge burned.
Next run, I did the 500/40, then a 500/full.
No bridges burned.
I have since then used this trick on wood as well (light score, then full cut), and found that the charring on the surface is reduced rather considerably. I assume that there is a channel due to the score and it helps to focus the air assist and remove more of the debris. Not sure. But it does make for a pleasant end effect, with just a little more time spent running the job.