When it comes to using lasers for cutting and engraving, it is crucial to consider the materials you are working with. While some materials are ideal for laser processing, others can produce harmful gases that may jeopardize both your health and the integrity of your machine. To ensure a safe and effective laser operation, here is a list of materials that are generally considered safe to work with.
Some of Our Plastic Materials That Can Be Laser Cut
Acrylic (Also Known as Plexiglass, Plexiglas, Lucite, PMMA): Acrylic/plexiglass is a versatile material often used in signage, display cases, and architectural applications, and many other applications. The two most common types of acrylic youll come across when shopping for acrylic is cast and extruded. Both can be safely laser cut. Cast acrylic is typically used when engraving.
ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene): ABS is a commonly used thermoplastic and is known for its durability and impact resistance. It is widely used in the automotive industry, electronic housings, and consumer goods.
PETG (Polyethylene Terephthalate Glycol): PETG is a transparent thermoplastic often used in applications that require high-impact resistance, such as packaging, signage, and medical devices.
Comprehensive List of Safe Materials That Can Be Laser Cut
- Acrylic (also known as Plexiglas, Lucite, PMMA)
- ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene)
- Delrin (POM, acetal)
- Kapton tape (Polyimide)
- Mylar (polyester)
- Nylon melts badly
- PETG (polyethylene terephthalate glycol)
- Polyethylene (PE) melts badly
- Polypropylene (PP) melts somewhat
- Engraving Plastic (two-tone acrylic/plexiglass) top color different from core material, usually for custom instrumentation panels, signs, and plaques
- Depron foam often used for RC planes
- Gator foam foam core gets burned and eaten away compared to the top and bottom hard shell.
Materials That Should Not Be Cut
- Any material containing chlorine
- Polycarbonate (PC, Lexan) due to the fumes
- PVC (all PVC types including expanded PVC) contains chlorine
- Vinyl contains chlorine
The list above is not comprehensive.
Understanding the compatibility of materials with laser processing is essential. New materials are continuously being developed, and if the material you want to cut is not listed above or you are unsure about the laser ability of a specific material, it is best to contact the manufacturer of your laser machine.
Estreetplastics stocks several plastics that can be laser cut, such as cast acrylic plexiglass, engraving stock, acrylic mirror (clear and colored) and many other plastics. If you cant find the size you are looking for on our website, or if you need a custom cut-to-size sheet to fit your laser machine, contact us today at email@example.com or 972-722-2513.