Tips and Suggestions for Laser Sign Making

 
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Tips for Using a Laser to Cut Plastics.


Article: When cutting acrylic for signs, display systems or other advertising and marketing display stands, you can improve your immediate quality with the following tips. Also available corrugated plastic signs that can be cut into shapes.

Corrugated Plastic cutting shapes

The laser output needed depends on the thickness of the acrylic sheet and the productivity required. The higher the laser output available, the faster the acrylic can be cut
In principle it is very easy to cut acrylic. Generally speaking, the maximum laser output is set and the speed is adjusted so that the material is cut through. High-quality cutting results, however, can only be achieved with carefully selected parameters.

At slow speeds, the cut edges achieved are rather more polished. However, if cutting is too slow, the resulting cut is wide and extends outwards towards the bottom. However, this also depends on the point of focus and the focal length used. Use a focal length of 2.5 inch for thicknesses between 3 and 8 mm, for thicker materials the focal length set should be 5 inch. The focus should not lie on the surface but approximately a third of the way inside the material. Striation increases with speeds that are too high. The gas flow should be set as low as possible to achieve the best possible quality. However, a higher gas flow allows faster cutting speeds.



Description: Tips for cutting acrylic.

Tips page for cutting acrylic plasticsThe acrylic used is also very important. Acrylic may be cast or extruded. Cast acrylic is excellently suited to laser cutting. With extruded acrylic, the cut edges become milky after cutting due to the stresses released. It is also important to achieve clean adjustment of the beam since the cut edges are not vertical if there is any astigmatism and exhibit different angles depending on the direction of displacement. Therefore, the selection of a laser source with good beam quality is particularly crucial.


Also, it is particularly important to prevent reflections of the laser beam as far as possible since they cause visible unevenness in the cut edges. For this reason, the material may not lie completely flat on the processing surface. Use a special cutting table for this purpose. As a result the beam will barely be reflected and you will get clean-cut edges.



Suggestion: Removing Dust:

dust removal and edgingSome jobs where a lot of cap material is being removed become coated with dust and residue. This can happen on pieces that contain large open areas of text or graphics, or on jobs where a lot of detail is being removed all across the surface, particularly as seen in photo laser engraving.

 

These dust particles can smear into the substrate and ruin the job if they are wiped with a dry or, even worse, a wet cloth. This dust contains colorants and is so fine that when mixed with any fluid almost immediately turns into a kind of paint. The best way to eliminate the dust without ruining the background is to place transfer or masking tape over the entire surface. Press it down and squeegee it in place several times. Peel it off, and the dust particles will adhere to the masking. Usually after one application of the masking, the sign can be cleaned using a spray cleaner and cloth. On some jobs, especially photos, two or three applications of masking may be necessary.



Suggestion: Laser Cutting Colored Acrylic or Colored Panels

Colored and translucent plastic perspexYour choice of color can also affect laser settings. Some colors (such as blue or red) contain more pigment. Depending on the size of your graphic, WE may have to adjust your path directions and cutting speed setting to achieve the cleanest marking possible. Call our sign designers anytime for advice.

Quality, speed and precision are the focal points behind every part we cut. Laser cutting should not stress or distort materials, allowing your components to maintain their strength and durability. Call us anytime for advice on laser cutting for the signage industry. WE CAN CUT EXPERT SHAPES AND LETTERS Computer aided laser cutting systems will cut out sharp corners and micro details, which are impossible to produce with other machines.

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