Material vs. Laser

How some materials react to laser cutting and engraving: Acrylic There are two types of acrylic, cast and extruded. They both can be laser cut extremely well. The laser flame polishes the edges as it cuts. Scored or etched lines are very crisp and show up well after painting. Cast acrylic is harder and can be machined well without getting gummy. On the other hand, extruded acrylic tends to get gummy when mitered or cut with conventional techniques. Thickness tolerance is better in extruded than cast, however. Acrylic thickness is produced in millimetre. Standard acrylic thickness are .5mm (1/64"), 1mm (1/32"), 1.5mm (1/16"), 3mm (1/8"), 4.5mm (3/16"), 6mm (1/4"), 9.5mm (3/8"), 12mm (1/2"), 18mm (3/4") and 24mm (1"). Most are available in clear, black and white. Some colors are available in 3mm and 6mm. We can cut acrylic with thickness ranging from .001 inch to 1 inch thick. The thicker the acrylic, the more polished the edges. Basswood and Balsa Cuts very well. Score lines and edges are darkened. Thinner sheets gets light brown edges when cut. Bristol Board, Matte board, Museum Board Cuts well with some browning on the edges. Scored lines are crisp but dark. Cardboard, Chipboard, Corruplast Cuts well. The edges are clean and sharp. Fabric Most cut well. Edge is sealed by laser. Fabric with backing cuts nicely. We can cut and assemble fabric used for trade shows and exhibits. Fabric inlay can be one of the most beautiful works produced. Foam Core, Gator Board Can be cut easily but, the foam layer melts more than the facing paper, causing concave edges. High Density Foam, Signfoam or Precision Board Cut extremely well. High Density Foam is light weight but porous. They can be painted well if other materials such as laminate, acrylic or Styrene can be used as face and back. Laminate Cuts well with edges required some cleaning. Lexan Cuts well in thinner sheets. Thicker than 3mm is not recommended. Masonite, Duron, MDF, MDO and plywood All cut well with edges turn brown to black. Some cleaning is required prior to painting. Mylar Cuts extremely well. Commonly used for custom stencils. PETG, Polypropylene, Polystyrene and polyethylene 3Form products, Polypropylene, Polystyrene and polyethylene are soft materials. They can be cut easily with the right settings. Material may shrink depending on the thickness. Mild Steel, Galvanized Steel and Stainless Steel Last Unicorn Creations can not cut Mild Steel, Galvanized Steel and Stainless Steel or any other ferrous or non-ferrous metals. We can, however, etch and engrave some metals that are anodized, painted or chemically prepared for a laser. Rubber Cuts well with significant blackening of the edges. Teflon Cuts well. Edges are clean. Wood veneer Cuts well and clean. Although the above list provides some information regarding the most common materials you can view a “Quick Guide”, below, to illustrate materials and applications. If you wish, you can provide your own samples of materials and, after testing, we can test cut your materials upon request. If you need more information, please contact us. WHAT WE CAN CUT “Quick Chart”:  
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