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Pic2Laser Image Location

I'm wondering how to place a picture of a particular size on an object that is placed at a specific location. Currently, this is very easy to do with Cut2D; one marks a piece of material (such as paper) to demarcate the origin or outline of the material being used to engrave/cut, then sets the material down onto the matching outline. If my material is 1.5"x1.5" and I'm trying to raster a small image onto this material, how does one locate it?


  • Hi Kathryn

    Early on I adopted a technique from CNC milling. On my mill table I have holes drilled on a 25mm grid that allow me to position stock very precisely.

    On my Emblaser I have done the same.

    Using double sided tape I fixed a sheet of plywood (3mm) to the base plate. I then drew up a 25mm grid in Cut2D and engraved it onto the board. Now as long as I correctly home the machine each time I know exactly where 0x0 is and the grid relative to that position.

    Hope that helps
  • any chance you could upload your grid file? I was thinking of doing some thing similar. But if you've already got a file... (okay, I'm lazy. :-) )
  • edited January 2015
    Here you go, make your board about 25mm bigger all round than you machine format (A4, A3) so you can have the zero datum nicely visible. Every time you scorch it too much, just make another.

    Edit: Hmm, looks like our board admin will only accept image files not DXF..
  • David,

    This is exactly the way we would recommend it to be done.

    If you have some useful grid files you would like to share, I would be happy to add them to the download section.

    We are currently finishing up some generic files to add there. They will help people get started and have something to test with.

  • edited January 2015
    Hi everyone,
    I have no problem finding the origin using cut2D, but my question was in regards to pic2laser and rastering an image at a specified location. Are you saying that pic2laser automatically rasters an image at the origin?

    Also, I highly recommend, if you have material of the same size, to 3D print a fixture for yourself and scale it in Cut2D. That is what I did and I can cut/fill multiple material of the same size at once. I was wondering if this can also be done using pic2laser though.

    Thank you for your input!
  • I have a grid file in DXF and NC, where can I post them ?
  • Hi Kathryn,

    If your talking about our PicLaser Lite software program that came with your EmBlaser, then the origin X&Y zero point is the lower left corner of the image then the size of the engraving is up and over to the right from there.
  • Yes, PicLaser Lite. So the software shares the same origin as Cut2D. Can you scale the image in the exact same manner? I haven't seen a whole lot of information on how to use PicLaser Lite. Can you offer some assistance, Jeffery?
  • Hi Kathryn,

    The origin is anywhere you zero the X&Y axis with the EmBlaser and that will be the lower left starting point of the engraving. I'm not familiar with how Cut2D sets things because I never have used it and it's for vector not raster engraving.

    Feedrate. You should set that between 90-100IPM to start. If it burns too light, lower it. If it burns too dark, increase it.

    For successful photo engraving results, you need to determine your focal point/burn line size.

    Pixel Resolution is how the gcode will be generated for the step over and step ahead incremental moves in the program when it generates the gcode.

    PicLaser Lite calculates at 100 pixels per inch (3.937mm) so if you burn line size of the laser diode is .01" (.254mm) then the actual Pixel size of the image should be used to insure correct engraving size. The setting for the Pixel Resolution in PicLaser Lite should be .01" (.254mm)

    This will be for engraving at a Horizontal or Vertical engraving angle. This is to insure the burn width will be laid down next to each other when it steps over so no un-burnt lines show up in your photo engraving.

    If a 45 degree angle is used, then a Pixel Resolution of .011" (.2794mm) should be used, but you will need to compensate the image's pixel size for this 100 pixels per inch (3.937mm) calculation. Engraving at a 45 degree angle with a .01" (.254mm) Pixel Resolution setting, will cause the burn line width of .01" (.254mm) of the Laser Diode's focal point to overlap to much.

    To calculate this compensation is to multiply your pixel size by .909 only if your laser diode's burn line width is .01" (.254mm) and you need a .011" (.2794mm) stepover (Pixel Resolution) for engraving at a 45 degree angle.

    Example: If you want your engraving to be a 2000 X 2000 pixel size, then multiply it by .909 and re-size or resample your image to 1818 X 1818 pixels and set your Pixel Resolution setting to .011" (.2794mm) in PicLaser Lite.

    This type of calculation of the pixel size is required based on your burn line width you get with your Laser Diode's focal point to insure photo engraving size and accuracy when setting your Pixel Resolution in PicLaser Lite.

    The DPI of the image needs to be more then 100 DPI to get successful results. When you change the DPI in an image editor, it will change the pixel size also, so you will need to change it back to the calculated pixel size to insure it engraves the correct size.

    Our PicEdit Lite software program does these calculations automatically to re-size the image based on the Pixel Resolution used in PicLaser Lite. It also has image adjustment feature for Sharpening, brightness, contrast and gamma and can Dither an image with 11 different Algorithms to choose from.

    We do all our image sizing/editing for our photo laser engravings with this simple image editor. Lite.htm

    With our EmBlaser, we are getting a .005" (.127mm) focal point/burn line, but the calculations need to be based on your focal point/burn line size.

    Max. Laser Value. determines how dark the darkest shades in the image burns. Min. Laser Value determines how light the lighter shades in your image burns. We have been using a Min. 10 and Max. 255 with a 120IPM (3048mm/min) feed rate.

    Laser Off Command. Use a M05 there.

    Laser Control Command. Use a S there.

    Set for GRBL.

    Engrave Outline. That is for burning a border around your engraved image and the No. Passes will determine how many times it will repeat around the the same border.

    Machine Setup Codes. Use a G90 G94 there.

    Thanks for being one of our new Pic Product Customers.

  • edited May 2015
    Thanks Jeff.

    As Kathryn asked originally and as you said "The origin is anywhere you zero the X&Y axis"

    So a question to the gcode and Darkly labs peeps, how can you temporarily set the origin to where ever you like?

    For example, the sort of process I'd like todo, say using Universal GCode sender and then use PicSender to send the engraving is:

    1. in UGS : Home Axis
    2. Use Arrow keys to move to my indented start point
    3. Set origin to where ever the laser is (e.g. some kind of code macro perhaps?)
    4. close UGS
    5. Open PicSender and the file
    6. start engraving at the 'fake' origin

    If all that can be done in PicSender then fab.


  • Hi Wayne,

    It all can be done in PicSender. Home the EmBlaser, then jog to where you want your starting X&Y zero point, then zero the X&Y axis.

    That is how it works on our EmBlaser with PicSender, but we have the Startup Blocks set different then the default. $N0=G20 (G21 for Metric) and $N1=FXXX for the default jog feedrate.

    It will save that zero position when exiting and will be still set at the same position when connecting to the com port again. When connecting again, Home the EmBlaser then select GoTo 0 for the X&Y axis and it will jog ($N1=FXXX default feedrate) back to the same X&Y zero position again.
  • Thanks, I will give it a go.
  • Just wanted to add that this worked for me to using UGS to send an NC file created with PicLaser Lite. In UGS, I had my NC file loaded (File Mode tab), next homed X&Y (Machine Control->$H), then used the X- and Y- buttons to move to the starting point I wanted, Clicked the "Reset X Axis' then 'Reset Y Axis" buttons on that tab. Went back to File Mode and pressed 'Send'. The job started from the new location.
  • We just answered a similar question in a different thread, although the UGS solution from b3nn seems a little simpler.

    Here is the other method:
    1: Start the Emblaser and home it as usual.
    2: Move your laser head to where you want your job to start from by either using the move keys in the UGS machine tab, or by typing the x & y position in the command window.
    3: Enter the command G92 x0 y0
    This will set your current position to the new 0,0.

    Any jobs you created should now run from here as the starting point.

    This change is temporary and will be reset once you restart the Emblaser.

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