Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Laser Allignment

In this post, we wil be looking at the best way to allign your work to the laser cutter.

The reason for this post in the first place is due to the miss-allignment of the table, especially on our Speedy 500, but the benifits of this are two fold:

1 - All your work fits onto the material as you planned.

2 - The laser cutters do not get damaged by cutting into the rulers.

The only thing that will differ from normal lser usage is the time spent alligning your job to the material, all done within Trotec, and using the arrow keys on the laser cutter. Spending the additional minuite in settining up the job can save hours in the long run by aliaviating the hasstle of recutting jobs!

Firstly, place your material in the center of the bed, and focus the laser as normal.

Using the red arrows on the laser cutter, move the laser head so that the allignment beam is on the top most right hand corner, as sort of seen in this picture!

Press and hold the right arrow so the red dot follows the materials top edge. If the allignment beam is off, move the material accordingly. Re check the edge after every time you move the material. If you deem nessesary you can fix the work to the bed with masking tape.

This video shows the process - look carefully for the allignment beam!

Happy with the allignment? Move the laser so that it is sat once again at the top left of the material, this will allow us to start the job from this position.

This image assumes that the image has been sent to print from illustrator, and our job is in the cueue in Trotec. Trotec has been opened and connected using the function keys.

Once that Trotec has conected, you get the red crosshairs appear in the same position that the allighnemnt beam is in - in this case, at the center of the laser cutter's bed.

This image shows the placement of the job once we double click it from the cueue, placing it in the default position of the top most left hand corner. You may also notice that I have activated the WYSIWYG command, which shows us a preview of the job.

This is more like what we want to see.

With the laser in the correct position, click and drag the job below the crosshair, Trotec is also pretty clever with this, and snaps the job to the crosshair!

Further to this, we can use the zoom tools to check and double check that the work will fit onto the material.

Make sure that WYSIWYG is active, and use teh zoom tools to focus in onto the area of the job that you are concerned about.

Use the arrow keys to find the edge of the material, and crossreference to see if the work will fit onto the material. At this point, some further adjustments may be required, moving the job fractionatly to the left or right,up or down!

What the laser looks like with you check the job via trotec!

Also - ensure you have a 10mm bleed on the job so you dont have this problem in the first place!

The laser running the job after all our hard work ensuring the allignment.

The completed job still on the laser cutter bed.

The job out the laser, completed with no missing edges!


  1. Here you can find some technical information on the Trotec Speedy 500

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