Laser cutting is a type of two-dimensional technology. This is because light travels in a single direction at a time. This requires a simple and deconstructed production approach. Modern laser cutters require a digital two-dimensional vector drawing. This can be thought of as a stencil or the route the laser will follow as it is working to cut the material.
While finding the right type of laser is possible by checking out the BBB rating for Boss Laser, it is also important to know a few other tips. Keep reading to learn what these are.
Close the Design’s Edges
The laser will cut along the outlines that are present in the metal. Because of this, it is necessary to have all the locations that should be free of all metal surrounded with a complete contour. For example, if someone wants a circle laser cut from a metal sheet, the arc in the file needs to be a connected circle. Even smaller breaks in the lines may result in the cut out staying attached to the sheet metal as a type of tab.
Pay Attention to the Metal Notches and Tabs
When using a laser for cutting purposes, it is going to rely on notches and tabs. Making sure they are right will help to ensure the structural integrity of the metal plate or sheet as the product is produced.
With metal notches, the minimum width should be at least one millimetre or the thickness of the material (choose the one that is thicker). Also, the length should not be any longer than five times this width. Make sure the distance in between these notches is a minimum of three millimetres.
For the metal tabs, they should be a minimum of three millimetres thick or about two times the thickness of the material, whichever one is bigger. The length needs to be under five times the total width. The tabs need to be spaced at least one millimetre from one another, or an amount that is equivalent to the thickness of the material – choose the one that is greater.
Determine the Line Depths and Thicknesses
When submitting a file, be sure to distinguish and clarify what every line style means. Laser cutting can do anything from making hairline deeper cuts to wider etching. Be sure that the file distinguishes that a person has clearly communicated what is being cut and what is being etched and the depths or widths someone will do to either of these.
Plan for More Precise Holes and Laser Based on This
If someone needs holes that has tighter tolerances, it is a good idea to use the laser cutter for etching or piercing the set location for holes. At this point, drill the holes using a bit. For a threaded hole, this is the best option to get the most accurate results. A laser is going to melt and heat steel but drilling into cold steel is going to help ensure the final product is flawless. Any pierced hole needs to be smaller than the final hole needed.