What are the recommended power settings for engraving plastic sheet?

Keep power settings as low as possible to avoid melting, warping, and distortion of the plastic sheet. Using too much power is the most common fault most laser operators have with engraving plastic sheet materials. The cap layer of the plastic is thin and often just 3-4 thousandths of an inch thick, so not much power is required to ablate this layer. Adjust power and speed settings so engraving just barely reveals the base layer, then add 5-8% more power. One indicator of using too much power is a lip that is formed around the outside of the engraved area. Laser engraved plastic sheet should have clean, crisp edges, and should cleanly remove the cap to reveal the base color. 


Mike Fruciano

Mike Fruciano

Mike Fruciano is the Distribution Sales Manager - The Americas 3D Printing & Laser Systems at Coherent Inc. Mike brings 25 years of laser systems, laser processing, and materials experience, and is a frequent writer and speaker on these topics. Contact Mike at 602-616-4971 or at

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