Universal VLS4.60 Laser Cutter and Etcher
The Universal VLS4.60 is a 60 Watt Laser Cutter can cut and etch wood and certain plastics. The bed size is 24″ wide and 18″ deep, and there is a rotary tool attachment that allows etching of cylindrical objects, such as glasses. When the laser cuts, it burns all the way through the material. When it etches, it burns the surface of the material, but it does not burn very deep. A list of materials suitable for use with the laser cutter is available below.
It should be noted, this machine can not cut or etch metal. What they can do is etch paint, or ink, or anodization, off of a metal surface. Attempting to etch or cut bare metal will damage the Laser Cutter.
How to Start
Prepare your design using your graphics design software, then bring it to LASER_CUTTER_PC and finish the design using CorelDRAW.
- Ensure cut lines are RGB Red and Hairline thickness
- Ensure score lines are RGB Blue and hairline
- Everything else will be raster engraved
- Ensure you are using a permitted material
- Measure material thickness with calipers
- Place your material in the machine bed
- Turn on machine and wait for it to boot up
- In CorelDraw: select file→print→ preferences and set material type and thickness
- Select apply then ok
- The recommended setting for plywood: General Medium Wood and select a thickness +0.2mm more than measured
- Close out the printer dialog box with apply→ ok
- Open the universal control panel (ucp)
- Use focus view to position your artwork design on your material
- Adjust z height using manual focus tool
- Pause and check again
- Close lid carefully and select green Play button
- Do not leave machine while processing
To use the laser cutter, start by preparing a .DXF file (a common CAD sketch format) or a vector art file made in CorelDraw (.cdr) or Adobe Illustrator (.ai). In addition, the 1-Touch Photo software can process jpg and other image files.
Be aware that certain materials such as PVC and Fiberglass emit hazardous or toxic fumes and may not be cut or etched under any circumstances.
The laser cutter can successfully process:
Here is a useful Guide to Laser Materials from ATX Hackerspace
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