Acrylic is a popular material for everything from signage and displays to DIY home decor and jewelry. One of the most efficient and precise ways to cut acrylic is with an Atomstack S10 Pro laser cutter. Laser cutting acrylic produces clean, precise cuts without leaving any rough edges or burrs, making it an ideal method for achieving intricate designs and shapes. In this guide, we will provide you with complete information you need to laser cut acrylic.
Types of Lasers Used to Cut Acrylic
The two main types of lasers used to cut acrylic are carbon dioxide lasers and fiber lasers. Both lasers are suitable for cutting acrylic, but they differ in the way they generate and deliver the laser beam.
CO2 lasers use gas-filled tubes to emit an Atomstack laser beam, making them versatile and capable of cutting a wide variety of materials. They are suitable for cutting thin and thick acrylic sheets and are commonly used in industrial and commercial cutting applications.
Fiber lasers use fiber optic cables to deliver a laser beam, making them more precise and efficient when cutting acrylic materials. They are best for cutting intricate shapes and patterns and are ideal for precision cutting applications.
Ready to Cut Acrylic
Before cutting acrylic with the Atomstack S20 Pro laser cutter, certain preparations are required for best results. The following steps will help you prepare your acrylic for laser cutting:
1. Determine Thickness: Determine the thickness of the acrylic you plan to cut. Laser cutting machines can process acrylic sheets of a certain thickness, so it is very important to choose a laser cutting machine that suits the thickness you need.
2. Clean the Acrylic: Thoroughly clean the acrylic to remove any dirt, debris or fingerprints. Clean acrylic with a soft, lint-free cloth or paper towel and warm water with a mild soap. Make sure the acrylic is completely dry before proceeding to the next step.
3. Choose the right cutting blade: choose the laser cutting blade that suits your acrylic thickness and desired cutting quality. Higher powered laser cutters require thicker blades for better results.
4. Apply masking tape: Apply masking tape to the cut area of the acrylic surface to protect the surface from any scratches, marks, or residue that may appear during the cutting process.
Laser Cutting Process
Once your acrylic sheet is ready, you can start cutting it with your laser cutter. The following steps will guide you through the laser cutting process:
1. Prepare the design: Use vector software such as lightburn or grbl to create a design or artwork to cut out. Make sure the design is free of any mistakes and is suitable for the cutting speed and power of the laser cutter.
2. Set up the laser cutter: Set the laser cutter to the correct settings, including cutting speed, power, and frequency. Make sure the laser cutter is properly calibrated for the thickness and type of acrylic you are cutting.
3. Place the acrylic sheet: Place the acrylic sheet on the Atomstack A10 Pro laser cutting table and secure it in place using the clamps provided. Make sure the acrylic sheet is level and straight before cutting.
4. Start the laser cutting process: Press the start button on the laser cutting software to start the laser cutting process. Watch and monitor the laser cutter as it moves across the acrylic sheet for accurate and precise cuts.
5. Remove the cut acrylic: After the laser cutter has finished cutting, carefully remove the acrylic sheet from the knife bed, making sure not to touch the cut edges or corners.
6. Remove the masking tape: Remove the masking tape from the cut acrylic surface and wipe clean with a lint-free cloth.
Laser cutting acrylic offers a precise and efficient method to cut and create various designs and shapes without any rough edges or burrs. Choosing the right laser cutter, preparing the acrylic correctly and following the correct cutting procedure will ensure a high quality, accurate and clean end product.
By following the steps provided in this guide, you can successfully cut acrylic with a laser engraver and achieve professional results. Laser-cut acrylic offers a multitude of possibilities, enabling countless creative ventures, from art projects and signage to industrial and commercial applications.