Successful Test Print of 3 Layer/3 Color Acrylic!

I thought folks might be interested to see that the 3 layer acrylic products by Rowmark can be engraved on the Glowforge. I have no financial interest in Rowmark or its distributors. :slight_smile:

Here is the test Illustrator file: (221.3 KB)

I thought I used the manufacturer’s recommended settings for the two engraving layers but upon checking, I didn’t for the top layer. I also didn’t use the manufacturer’s recommended settings for the cut:

Thickness 0.0625 in (= 1/16 in)
Layer 1 (Blue): 1000/15, 675 DPI auto focus
Layer 2 (Black): 650/60, 675 DPI, manual focus 0.06 in
Cut 180/100, auto focus

Note that the Layer 2 engrave settings are to remove the white and blue layers, so you need to do color separations like an old style print job:

With the separations, the laser assembly is doing 2 entire passes, so my little 1.5" x 1.5" test took 20 minutes. I’m wondering if you could speed up the process by having the Layer 2 engrave settings remove only the excess Layer 1 (blue) material for the Layer 2 image, so the Layer 1 engrave then would be the union of both separations. First you would remove the white material to expose blue for both final layers, then remove only blue material where you want black. The laser assembly might do only one full pass and then a smaller set of movements for Layer 2.

It’s treating the optimization algorithm like a black box, unfortunately. If 3 layer material becomes popular and the laser power can be adjusted quickly enough, one could imagine doing an engrave in one pass with a new Glowforge mode that flips the laser between two power levels, assuming the same speed for both levels.

I will post my first real project when I get to it.


This is what 3d engrave is for. You’d make your image with different shades of grey that equate to power levels and upload it to
Glowforge as a raster.

Your result is pretty cool, but I wonder: the vertical edges of the white look a bit “jagged”, is that an artifact in the photo or is it a little uneven?


I got some samples of that when it came out. Fun stuff: New Rowmark 3 layer acrylic - #2 by UrJac

Yes, good eye. Here’s the most detailed image I can create with my phone.

Maybe the speed is too high at 1000? The GF is lasing line by line from bottom to top. Any other ideas?

I was totally unaware of the 3D raster/grayscale mode! Doesn’t really help with the 3 layer material, though.


Why not? :thinking:

Yeah, it should. Hmm.

This looks very nice. Since it is discussing settings for non-PG material, I will move it to Beyond the Manual for you. That is the only place we are supposed to discuss settings.


You can add a score line around the the borders of an engraving, and make sure the score operation runs last, to clean up the edges and the aliasing from low LPI of the engrave.

Try loading this into your GFUI with a vector box around it. You’ll find the shading does help :slight_smile:

Layer 1 (Grey): 1000/15, 675 DPI auto focus
Layer 2 (Black): 650/60, 675 DPI, auto focus
Cut 180/100, auto focus


Can’t wait to try.

Does “load a vector box around it” mean that I also upload a vector image of the correct size for the cut?



Thanks! I’ll remember to post there from now on when appropriate.

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Yes, the vector box is so you can cut it out :slight_smile: You can create a vector box in your design software - or if you have it - right there in the GFUI.

SO many options :slight_smile: