Traceable Shapes

Heyy all!

I am trying to make some acrylic educational traceable sheets! I can NOT figure out how to make traceable shapes that will show up on the glowforge to engrave!! They show up as cut but when I change it to engrave they disappear. I have my “cut” in red and everything else I want engraved in black. I am Using inkscape but could use illustrator if I need to. These are the steps that I have been doing.

  1. Make shape with shape tools.
  2. Change shape to no fill and assign a dash
  3. Go to Path > Object to path
  4. Reselect shape. Go to Extensions > Modify Path > Covert to Dashes
  5. Object > Group

I saw these steps in another post and thought they might help but I still can not get it to work. ANY advice would be greatly appreciated!! Thank you so much!!

I can only guess, without seeing the artwork, but I’ll give it a try:

You can only engrave closed shapes. If you’re using vector lines, you would need to score them rather than engrave.

I’m not sure how your dashed line extension works, but unless it actually breaks the vector up into segments, you’ll still get an unbroken line when you laser it. Glowforge sees a vector as a line, no matter what sort of stroke you’ve applied to it. :slight_smile:


I think we need a little clarification here. Are you trying to end up with an engraved image of a dashed line or do you want the shape to be filled in?

I’m going to assume that you mean the engraved image of a dash line. You’re almost there, there’s two ways to handle it. One way would be to do a crew in grave by converting your dashed segments into shapes by using stroked path. Once you do that it’ll be a collection of closed dash shapes, which are ready to upgrade.

The only downside here is that engraving is slow compared to scoring. If I were in your shoes, I would probably score your dashes. It will be so much faster anyway, let us know what you’re trying to do and I’m sure we can narrow it down.

1 Like

wow okay that makes sense! I did change it to “score” setting in the glowforge and now they are showing up. So I may give that a try!

This is an idea of what I am trying to figure out just so you can see!


Yes exactly! :slight_smile: I am trying to engrave a shape with dashes like the picture i just posted! Sorry if that was confusing haha but it sounds like scoring may be a good option to try?

Yup! Scoring is how I’d do it. So much faster.

If you’re feeling adventurous you can make the scores lines thicker by defocusing. You can see the potential of that here:


This topic was automatically closed 32 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.