At the end of the ModLab, someone was cutting something on the laser cutter. I had never seen one in action, so I stayed to watch.
The project was to cut out a series of squares of a clean plastic, with the numbers 0 to 9 engraved on the surface of the plastic, one with dots and the other solid.
There are two types of cutting that the printer uses:
- Raster: For adding a pattern/engraving on the surface, and can get a bit of a 3D look.
- Vector: For cutting through the material, or for pattern/engraving where the depth doesn’t matter so much. If you want letters drawn on, you could vector with a laser strength of 5%.
You simply save whatever you want printed in a PDF and then define what each colour means in the printer softward: e.g. means rastor at 60% with speed 50%, while black means vector at 50% with speed 100%.
A couple of words of advice on using the ModLab printer:
- Raster/put letters on before the vector to cut the piece. It helps to keep it all together at the start.
- Make sure the “combined” is checked off on the General tab, else it will just vector or rastor!