Updated Material Test Template

I took a pass at updating the Laser Cutting Materiale Template (from Noloxs on Thingiverse) to make it more Glowforge-friendly:

  • Changed the engrave test shades to rasters
  • Combined the paths on the same test (so holes aren’t punched through the material at each intersection of the outlines
  • Added a (limited) vector engrave test tile, using the colors provided in @chris1’s Illustrator Workspace Setup for Glowforge Laser Cutter tutorial.

Full disclosure, I haven’t tried out the vectors yet because I haven’t taken the time to enter all those settings into the GUI.

So far so good. Any further suggestions?

balticbirch_testing_squarebalticbirch_testing_square.ai (1.8 MB)
Material test tile.zip (1.8 MB)



Fantastic work!

Wouldn’t it be great if we could specify the power and speed settings for vector cuts in the SVG? Then it’d be a trivial matter to write a script to generate something similar to this, but for a matrix of speed-power settings for vector scores and cuts. Seems like it would be a piece of cake for glowforge to write an XML schema extension for SVG to add this?


Nice. Sadly, the forum software strips out embedded bitmaps, so you’ll probably want to upload this zipped.

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Will do. Thanks.

Also, THANK YOU for your tutorials. They’re a great way to simultaneously learn more about AI and Glowforge for those of us new to both.


Very cool, thank you! I love the look of this particular test but haven’t found the time to glowforgify it, so this is great.

This is awesome! Thanks. The only test I did so far was for score spacing. I figured if the beam was 0.008" wide, then space the lines at 0.008" and I get a faster engrave. In fact, I got a scorched engrave. But 0.010" and 0.012" weren’t bad. I’ve added a jpeg and zipped AI file to potentially add to your template.

Test-Run-Score-Spacing.zip (1.5 MB)


@rpratt: You might try making every nth line of your score a different color so that the laser head makes n passes to do the “score engrave.” This might decrease fire potential. I don’t know what effect it might have on scorching.

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Okay - N00B question here. I tried the template above on some Bass wood that I got from Blicks. I haven’t been able to get the cuts to actually go through the wood yet, and the engrave section doesn’t look anything like what this image does. My thickness according to my caliper was .19 and I used cut speed 225 power full. For the engrave, do I use variable power or 650 and 80% power?

Every wood is going to be different looking, that’s the reason for these test strips. :slightly_smiling_face:

Generally, if it’s not cutting through, you need to slow the speed down, a little bit at a time, until it does. That’s where you stop and record the settings, because you always want to use the fastest possible speed that cuts completely through your material.

For engraving, you’re going to get different results with Photo engrave versus 3D engrave (variable power) so just do some testing to see which look you’re going for.


thanks - I guess I need to start smaller because the test template took 45 minutes to not cut through. :slight_smile:


Oh ouch! :smile:

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so very helpful! Thanks!!

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Hi!! i downloaded the file, and I try to make the test, but it graves all with the same velocity, it didn´t show diference, even the cuts it didn´t do it… there’s a test that I can do for my own design to know and be sure to what velocity use to get what I need?

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You have to go in and specify a range of speeds and power for each of the engrave blocks in order to see how the results turn out - it’s not set up for you in advance. We use these to learn the best settings to use for new materials.

To do that, you go into Manual settings and change the speed and power sliders by dragging up and down with them. (Do not go too slowly with engraves, you will cause a fire or cut completely through the material.)

If you’re new to cutting with a laser, you will be better off trying to find some starter settings in the Beyond the Manual section of the forum…just use the Search bar in the upper right of the screen and search for “Settings + Material Name”.


Hi, thanks for your answer, but the problem is that I can not set the elements of the design for separate, it takes the same velocity for all the elements :frowning:

Ahhh, my mistake, I should have gone back and looked at the original post again…looks like the original creator rasterized the engraves, so this is more of a view of how the variable power engrave works…which is good, you don’t have to set up separate settings for it. She lists the settings she used right there on the top in the picture.


Thank you for this!


Cool. Soon after I got my Glowforge, I did almost the same thing, with the same Thingiverse thing, as a learning exercise. I dived into the materials.json file (from app.glowforge.com) to get the exact Proofgrade settings from Glowforge, and used it to make some tables on the back side of the template. I also added ruled markings on the edges, and tweaked the center engrave circle to show variations in speed as well as power. I didn’t think of rasterizing the shaded areas, so it was a lot less convenient to use my templates, since I had to manually set the power for each section. Sometime I’ll fix that. Here’s what I’d come up with (very similar to yours): [https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1ZB3zFLY2PkoclyU3gLqOO_DGDIY_gRxa?usp=sharing](http://Glowforge Material Templates)
PG Medium Walnut_v10_reverse.pdf (369.4 KB)

PG Medium Basswood_v11.pdf (338.0 KB) PG Medium Basswood_v11_reverse.pdf (373.0 KB) PG Medium Cherry_v11.pdf (338.0 KB) PG Medium Cherry_v11_reverse.pdf (370.9 KB) PG Medium Poplar_v10_reverse.pdf (370.6 KB) PG Medium Popular_v11.pdf (337.1 KB) PG Medium Red Oak_v10.pdf (340.5 KB) PG Medium Red Oak_v10_reverse.pdf (367.1 KB) PG Medium Walnut_v10.pdf (339.7 KB)


Thank You!