Wood is one of the most affordable natural materials for laser cutting or engraving. Custom cabinetry is a popular laser processing application. This tool can make stunning inlays that will personalize your project and truly spark the imagination. Excerpts: The choice of wood you choose will have a great deal to do with the kind of piece you intend to create .So choose your texture carefully before beginning your upcoming wood laser engraving project.
Two Key Factors
When working with a material like solid wood, the inherent inconsistency of the material can lead to unpredictable results. Finding the most uniform wood type with the right amount of resin and fewer streaks is the best way to use a laser engraver with this versatile material.
What Is Texture?
Mineral streaks are areas of wood that appear to be dark stains staining lighter woods. Some carpenters avoid this by cutting or bleaching the stripes because they interfere with the design. Others believe it adds character to wood and incorporate it into their designs. Choosing the smallest fringe when using a laser ensures greater detail.
The content of wood resin or sap has a significant impact on the type of combustion. Because the laser beam burns the sap, wood with a high resin content burns more deeply. Lower resin wood burns less and thus requires a lighter cut. It's worth noting that the season and location of the tree's cutting can have an impact on the resin content.
Sap is responsible for transporting nutrients and water throughout the plant. It drops into the trunk during the cooler months to prepare for winter, then redistributes in the spring. If the wood you're using was felled in the fall, it may burn deeper during one session and lighter during the next, depending on where it was felled. The upper parts of fallen trees had lower resin content and burned lighter, whereas the lower felled parts burned more deeply. It's a good idea to test the wood first so you know what you're up against.
Difference Between Hardwood and Softwood
Without molecular analysis of the tree's structure, the best way to tell the difference between hardwood and softwood is to remember that hardwoods, like oaks and maples, have broad leaves and are flowering plants. These trees are deciduous. Cork trees, on the other hand, are evergreens like pine and spruce.
Because of its natural weather resistance, hardwood is darker and heavier and can last for decades. It is used in the production of high-end furniture. Softwoods, on the other hand, are lighter, less expensive, and require a weathering treatment to last for a decade or so. When cut, cork has a lower environmental impact and can be used as a building material.
There are always exceptions to the rule. Some softwoods are harder to work with than many hardwoods, and vice versa. Three kinds of wood are easier to work with and produce excellent results when selecting the best wood for laser cutting and engraving.
Best Wood for Laser Engraving and Cutting
Cherry (Prunus serotina) is one of the most popular woods for cabinets and furniture. Although it is pink when the first cut, over time it develops the rich reddish-brown that many recognize. Cherry wood is easy to work and cut. Cherry finishes not only outlast other wood, but the richness of their color and texture grows over time
Alnus rubra looks similar to the cherry in that it darkens over time. It is a softwood that is considered one of the best woods for laser engraving and produces a dark burn.
Hard maple (Acer saccharum) is an off-white, tan, or yellowish wood. Although it is more difficult to laser engraving machine than cherry wood due to its density, it is ideal for laser engraving and fine finishes.
Other Woods to Consider
Basswood (Tilia americana) is a soft and workable wood that is lightweight and ideal for easy and quick engraving. Basswood often finds its way into the walls of antiques because it is durable and easy to work
Balsa (Ochroma pyramidale) is a softer wood with a rougher texture that is suitable for laser engraving. The sapwood is off-white or tan, and the heartwood is reddish-brown. It is not particularly gleaming, but it stains and finishes well. One disadvantage of balsa wood is that it is easily scratched and dented.
Sculpfun S10 laser engraver can cut 15mm plywood, 20mm light wood, 10mm teak and walnut. It can also cut many kinds of wood. It is a popular model of Sculpfun. If you are interested, you can go to the HTPOW website to buy it.