A few months back CNCROi.com showed a picture of laser cutting through 3/4 inch laminate, here is again to refresh your memory. This isn’t a material you’d want to CNC cut all day using a laser, it’s best done with a CNC router (which we also have) but for some applications, CNC lasers are pretty much the only choice for such things as hidden access panels.
With all the focus put onto cutting through this material using our Austrian Speedy 400 flexx, engraving was an afterthought, it’s easy compared to the testing required for a nice clean-cut, here’s what it would look like if we engraved right into this tough presswood laminated material!
Applying a mask over this 3/4 inch presswood laminate sounds like a good idea, especially with all the residue that builds-up on this material during the CNC laser engraving process but we’ve found that it’s more efficient to just wipe it off after production.
The engraving can be done at different depths depending on laser power and head speed but there is no point in going down half an inch if going down 1/8th is more than adequate. The slower the laser goes and more power required, the higher the production costs by the way.
It’s quite incredible how much soot is produced engraving into this material, especially when you consider that most of it is being sucked down through the vacuum table and the exhaust along the back of the machine. This stuff is sticky and doesn’t really smell anything near a camp fire, there is a lot of glue in 3/4 inch presswood laminate!
The result look pretty good though! There is a spot I forgot to wipe down right under the top part of the first big C but that’s easily resolved. I think this material would look great paint filled for extra contrast… that will be in a future blog post!
CNC laser engraving 3/4 inch presswood laminate can be used for an endless variety of applications such as interior signage, really cool office desks (paint filled with a glass surface or lacquered) or for use in hidden paneling. The precision you get out of a CNC laser is unparalleled compared to using a CNC router as you can get sharp inner corners which is impossible using a round bit. You can see this power more apparently in a Formica sample cut a while back using different settings, the Formica swatches were a little more than two inches long.
Looking for a custom CNC shop with the capability to engrave and cut 3/4 inch laminate with either a CNC laser or CNC router? You’ve found them! CNCROi.com!