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Basic tutorial for Cut2D-Laser

These are the basic steps to get a cutting file from Cut2D-Laser ready to run on your Emblaser.

1:
Start Cut2D-Laser and start a 'New' project from the 'File' pulldown tab.

2:
Enter the parameters for your Emblaser.
For A4 machines:
Width (x) = 300mm
Height (y) = 210mm

For A3 machines:
Width (x) = 420mm
Height (y) = 280mm

jobSetup


Make sure the 'XY Datum Position' is set to the bottom left position.

3:
Create your design using the Cut2D tools or import it from another program, such as Illustrator.

design


4:
Select the vectors you would like to create a toolpath for.
In this case we are creating three unique toolpaths to achieve the look we require. One for text we want to appear black, one for a slightly lighter text and one for the line work.

With the vectors selected, click the toolpath button in the 'Toolpath Operations' section.

selectToolpathMenu

5:
Enter your toolpath parameters and then select 'calculate'.

toolpathParameters

6:
Once you have created the toolpaths you need, select the 'Save Toolpaths' button as shown below.

saveToolpath

This will take you to the 'Save Toolpaths' menu.
You will have the option of outputting all the toolpaths or just what you have selected.

When ready, click the 'Save Toolpath(s) button.

saveToolpath2

You will now have a cutting file (.nc) that can be send to your Emblaser for cutting.

cutting

Comments

  • In paragraph 5 when I select toolpath parameters, I can cut (the boundary of the circle) or to fill. But if I choose a fill that still encircled the circuit. Can I somehow disable it?
  • Bogdan,
    Can you please explain your question with a little more detail. I am not sure what you are asking.

    thank you,
    Domenic
  • For example I draw a square
    if I choose to cut the laser simply passes through the square and all OK
    if I choose fill, the first laser engrave the entire area of a square, and then again passes through the perimeter of the square.

    Can I somehow disable this option? After engraving area, it is not engraved perimeter.
  • Unfortunately at the moment there is no way of stopping that.

    I will submit that as a request to Vectric for their next update.

    There is one option for you IF you are only using a square or simple shape. The outline is done right at the very end of the toolpath. If you open the .nc file, it is easy to see where it starts to do the outline and remove those lines of code.

    In the example below, the outline is drawn from lines N320 - N350.
    ....
    N260 G00
    N270 M5
    N280 G00 Y106.226
    N290 M3 S127
    N300 G1 F500.0
    N310 M3 S127
    N320 G1 Y31.509
    N330 G1 X98.726
    N340 G1 Y106.226
    N350 G1 X30.519
    N360 M5
    N370 G00
    N380 M5
    N390 G28


    If you remove those lines and the lines instructing the laser to come on it will look like this:
    ...
    N260 G00
    N270 M5
    N280 G00 Y106.226

    N360 M5
    N370 G00
    N380 M5
    N390 G28
  • ))
    thank you of course, but a square can and be patient)))
    While engraving complex drawings (such http://vector4free.com/vector/vector-ornamental-elements/ ) it takes a lot of time and sometimes engraved perimeter generally unnecessary.
  • Anybody else having the issue where instead of filling the vector with solid black it creates lines or cross hatch lines?? driving me crazy cause I cannot find info on how to make the inside a solid black color. importing eps or ai or ect. is the cut2d software just limited and need upgrading so i will be able to control the vector better?? help please.
  • Hi Tim,

    To make it solid you need to set the 'stepover' amount.

    The smaller you make this number, the closer the lines will become and eventually they will join and become a solid.

    The ideal value will depend on the material and you want the likes to just slightly overlap. Too small a value will take an unnecessarily long time to engrave.

    Hope that makes sense.
  • .001 inch made it a solid, thank you!!
  • Thanks for the tutorial, it helped me a lot!
  • Hi
    What is the top move speed the Emblaser can handle?
  • We have set the maximum move speed in the GBRL parameters to 10,000mm/min.
    This is much too fast for cutting or engraving with the current laser diode but is useful for rapid moves.
  • We did a raster image engraving feedrate test with the EmBlaser's grbl. The limits is not the EmBlaser's mechanics itself, it's how fast grbl can process the short incremental moves. We used a .006" (1524mm) Pixel Resolution (step over & step ahead) and the limit was 171IPM (4343.4mm/min).

    Any feedrate setting in PicLaser Lite or PicEngrave Pro 5 over this limit when using a .006" Pixel Resolution, it will not run any faster.

    This limit is faster then the laser diode's power can engrave an image at, as DL stated.
  • 4343.4mm/mim, wow!
    Great result Jeff.

    Is this with the default laser power setting or have you increased it?

  • I did this test without the laser on. I just wanted to know how fast grbl & PicSender could process the fast changing, short incremental axis movements on the EmBlaser.

    I created a 1" X 1" (25.4mm square) black box image and re-sized it for the .006" (.1524mm) Pixel Resolution, then started out at a 200IPM (5080mm/min) and ran at a 45D angle. I recorded the time it had taken to run. I kept lowering the feed rate until the time started to increase which determined the feedrate limit of 171IPM (4343.4mm/min).

    If using less of a Pixel Resolution setting, the feedrate limit may be slightly lower, but I did not test this. I just wanted to know where the limit was with the Pixel Resolution that I use.

    Our EmBlaser's driver amps is still set at the 1.8a default. Our testing has only been on the Poplar wood and the max feedrate we can engrave at using full max power of S255, is 120IPM (3048mm/min).

    I try to stay around a 110IPM (2794mm/min) feedrate setting for better results of the photo engraving.
  • Since you're discussing the limits of the laser, have you done any experimentation on the quality difference between fast and slow speed? Have you checked if images turn out sharper with less speed and less power compared to more speed and more power?
  • I always push any of our laser engraving machines to the fastest feedrate I can engrave, but still maintain image reproduction quality.

    Laser power/max amp setting, how defined/small your focal point is will effect the outcome and a test like your asking, will be material dependent also.

    You will need to do your own testing with the material that you are using. Everyone will have a different view on what quality/results they desire also.

    All I can do is give starting point suggestions. :-)
  • I was just wondering if the speed would affect the quality, like if the hardware was actually fast enough to engrave exactly as accurately at a faster speed compared to a much slower one.
  • edited August 2015
    After finally getting my Emblaser assembled, and my Illustrator file into Cut2D software.... how do I send the file to the Emblaser to print? Thanks!
  • Catherine, create and save the toolpath in Cut2D. This toolpath will be in the format of filename.nc. This is your gcode file and needs to be sent to the Emblaser via Universal G code sender or Picsender or a similar program. So in essence, you should save two files from Cut2D, the actual working file, filename.crv and the gcode file filename.nc. You cant send directly from Cut2D so the other program is used for this sending "printing" process.

    Cheers

    Daryl
  • Thanks so much, Daryl! More specifically, I tried to click on the .jar files from Universal G code sender and nothing happened.

    1) Is it one of the .jar files in the Bundling Tools folder that I need to run the program?
    2) I think I need to download Java runtime environment first, right?
    3) I guess it will be obvious what to do when I get the G-Code-Sender working, right? (in terms of selecting the .nc file and the output device(Emblaser))

    Link: https://github.com/winder/Universal-G-Code-Sender
  • Hi Catherine,

    I will PM you.

    Cheers

    Daryl
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