ok, i was just thinking, has anyone tried to burn a design on cotton fabric? I am thinking it would be a cool way to use the glowforge to make designs.
Just do a search using the search term ‘fabric’.
Here’s a start for you:
I engrave my logo and web address onto muslin cotton bags. It works really well for the most part. A couple of cautions: it’s easy to weaken the fibers without it being overly apparent. Do some tests and then simulate some stress tests (Bend, fold, etc).
It’s also pretty susceptible to variations in the engrave wherever there is any kind of crease, etc. Make sure it’s laying as perfectly flat as possible.
I’ve been using the Glowforge a ton on technical fabrics like Cordura, Diamond Ripstop, packcloth, and gridstop. It works super well and lets you cut some really complex shapes super easily. I haven’t tried etching, but I imagine it would work if you kept the power low enough!
I’ll second what others posted - engraving (and scoring) on Denim looks amazing because it burns through the blue dye and exposes the cotton core, so it has great contrast. You can also cut through cloth completely, but that’s trickier as you have to think about the integrity of the resulting shape - too thin and it falls apart, much more than (for example) paper.
Does anyone happen to know before I go searching the web… if “Sunbrella” outdoor fabric is safe to cut?
The MSDS here: https://www.sailrite.com/PDF/Sunbrella-Furniture-Fabric-MSDS.pdf has the following:
A bunch of that sound like burning plants/trees and acrylic. They’re all dangerous, but that’s why you’re venting to outside. However, the hydrogen flouride is the one standout that catches my eye. Perhaps there’s Teflon in there? I think you don’t really want hydrogren flouride gas inside your laser cutter (it’s corrosive) and it’s pretty dang dangerous for you too.
From wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrogen_fluoride):
Getting ready for some fabric tests