Paper Finishing: 7 engraving and cutting techniques

Use these different engraving and cutting techniques to put a finishing touch on paper.

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Paper is an exciting material for laser processing. It is extremely versatile and can be laser cut and laser engraved well for many different projects.

Consider the different techniques using a paper movie voucher as an example. Make sure to assign the appropriate laser parameters (Image 1) and the appropriate print settings (Image 2). The parameters will deviate depending on the paper you use, as well as your laser and the available power output (Image 3).

Deep engraving: For deep engraving, you will need relatively more power output during engraving. Assign the first engraving color. In this case, we used black. In the parameter database, assign the appropriate parameters for the color black. Use a higher power output and a lower speed for deep engraving compared to customary engraving to achieve depth. (Image 4)

Light engraving: For an elegant effect, you can bleach out the uppermost layer or the surface of some types of paper. (Image 5) Bleaching out involves engraving in a way so that little or no material is removed. Assign the next color for the surfaces you want to create. Use lower power and a faster speed than you would normally use for engraving on paper.

Scratching: The scratching technique can be used for filigree and very fine markings. (Image 6) For this, assign a hairline using a different color as a contour to the object. In the parameter settings, select cutting as process and use a lower power output compared to the customary paper cut.

Engraving line: The engraving line technique is like scratching, but with a different thickness. (Image 7) This is defined by the parameter setting.

Assign a hairline to the object again. In the parameter settings, choose a Z-offset of about 2-5 mm for the cutting process, depending on the desired thickness of the line. The power output should be similar to the scratching line.

Perforation: Parts of the paper can also be separated with a perforation, which is a discontinuous cutting line.

To create this, draw a cutting line and convert it into a curve. Then select a dashed line for the line style. (Image 8) Use the same parameter settings as with the filigree cut.

Filigree cut: You can also cut filigree writing, figure or ornament with the laser by drawing an arbitrary form with a hairline as contour. (Image 9)

For your parameter settings, use a lower speed and power output than with the outer cut.

Outer cut: When cutting the card out you can use a separating cut if there are no elaborate curves in the design. (Image 10)

Depending on the length of the straights to be cut, you can use up to 5 percent speed. Adapt the output power accordingly.

-Josh Stephens, Trotec Laser

Josh Stephens Lasers Plus

Josh Stephens

Josh Stephens is the owner of Lasers Plus. Formerly, he was the lead applications expert for a large laser manufacturer. He has been in the industry for over seven years.

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