Understanding The Effects Created By Various Depth Cuts Using A Laser Cutter

1 May 2019
 Categories: , Blog

Laser cutting is so precise that you can use a laser cutter to create unique effects in the materials you want to cut. It all has to do with the depth of cutting and the thickness of the material. Using a CNC laser cutter helps you pre-program and set the laser cutter to very specific depths, each depth creating a unique effect. Check out some of the effects you can do with a one-third inch thick piece of plexi-glass. 

Surface Etching

You are dealing with a piece of plastic, see-through glass substitute that is one-third of an inch thick. You want the laser to just "kiss" this material on the surface to make it look like real etching on real glass. You have to set the laser cutter to a millimeter thickness cut, and then program the machine to "cut" a specific pattern into the "glass" on certain areas. Once you do that, the machine takes over and you are left with something that could easily be called art. 


Cutting precise slivers at different angles out of the faux glass creates a hand-carved effect. Create detailed leaves, flower petals, etc., all through the laser's ability to cut slivers from the plastic that are anywhere from a hair's breadth wide to several millimeters or inches deep. Given the thickness of the piece of material mentioned in this example, you would have to program the laser cutting machine to make cuts of individual depths along a specific plane, repeat those same cuts for a length of space you specify, and then repeat or change direction to make similar cuts or change the cutting depth and pattern completely. 

Intricate, Detailed Cuts

In this case, the laser makes the most intricate cuts of all, creating multi-dimensional scrolls, whorls, knots, and slices that imitate the master diamond cutter's precision cuts. You can get the most beautiful of all pieces of work using a laser cutter this way, but you also have to take a lot of time doing it. Every depth you cut has to be pre-programmed into the machine, cut, and then the machine has to be reset for the next depth of the next set of cuts. Still, considering your example material here, you could get effects that look exactly like the difficulty level of cutting and affixing stained glass. If you were to add color to each depth of each cut, it would look like stained glass. 

Contact a company like J&E Metal Fabricators Inc to learn more.