Studio Laser Cutters

Reserve Equipment Online

Learn how to set up and send a job to the laser cutter with our tutorial.

Adjust power and speed settings for your material using this tutorial.

These laser Cutter are located on the studio floors.  Two laser cutters per floor.

4th Floor Laser Cutter Room - Live
5th Floor Laser Cutter Room - Live
6th Floor Laser Cutter Room - Live
7th Floor Laser Cutter Room - Live

You need to watch a safety video and register for laser cutter access in order to use this equipment.

Cutting Volume-
Studio Laser Cutters
32” Wide x 18” Long x 4” High Focal Point
Training/Tutorials An online tutorial is available here. Print tutorials are posted in the laser cutter rooms.
Approved Materials to Cut

Laser Cutters on the 4th -7th Floors:

You Can Cut the Following Materials on the Laser Cutters:
Chip Board (matte Board/Press board)
Wood (only raw, untreated, stock)
Acrylic Plastic

You Can Not Cut the Following Materials on the Laser Cutters:

Composite Wood Products: MDF, OSB, Particle Board, etc.
Corrugated Cardboard
Any type of Plastic (except for Acrylic)
Foam or Foam Core
Highly Flammable Materials
Reflective Materials

If you are unsure, about cutting a specific material, please see a DM staff member FIRST!

4. Material Cutting Guidelines

General Notes:

  • Laser power will change over the course of the day. The settings above are for reference, and you may need to adjust them according to the laser’s current power level. You can adjust the settings on the laser cutter while it is cutting to fine-tune your cuts.
  • Increasing the power causes deeper cuts but reduces detail. Likewise, reducing the speeds causes deeper cuts but reduces detail and increases cutting time.
  • Increasing the PPI (pulses per inch) increases the burning or melting effect, and can produce finer detail if the speed is not too fast. PPI has no effect on running time and very little effect on depth. Very low PPI settings are used to perforate material.
  • When cutting plastic, remove the original clear masking, as it does not react well with the laser.
  • If cutting material 1/4” or thicker, use the laser to score the material, then do the actual cutting with a band saw.

5. Safety Guidelines

Rules of Operation - Failure to follow these rules WILL result in Disciplinary Action AND can lead to extended loss of access to this equipment.

High Risk of Fire - Do not leave this machine unattended while cutting for ANY reason.
If you have to leave, pause cutting by lifting the lid to the laser cutter.

DO NOT use the laser cutter outside of its operating hours of 8:00AM to Midnight, 7 days a week.
Laser cutters need a minimum of 8 hours each day to recharge the laser. Using a laser cutter after hours is also in violation of the University Fire Marshal requirements.

Wait 1-2 minutes BEFORE opening the laser cutter lid when cutting plastics.
This gives enough time for the exhaust system to remove all potentially harmful gases from plastics.

DO NOT Stare directly at the laser cutter beam while cutting.
If you stare directly at the laser cutter beam for any period of time, it can cause retinal damage to your eyes.

AVOID repeated visible flames while cutting.
If you see repeated flare-ups while cutting, stop the laser cutter and adjust the cut settings, increasing the speed
and/or decreasing the power.

Laser Cutter Reservations: 1 Hour Per Day Per Laser Cutter for a Max of 2 Consecutive Days
You can only reserve a laser cutter for a maximum of 1 hour per day per laser cutter for a maximum of 2
consecutive days.

DO NOT Cut on Top of the Laser Cutters - Use the provided cutting tables in the room.

Cutting on top of Laser Cutter = Required replacement of laser cutter top = Increase in Laser Cutter Costs to YOU!
If you see someone cutting on top of the laser cutter let a DM staff person know.

If you see a Fire, USE THE FIRE EXTINGUISHER located right outside the laser cutter room!

6. Access to Machine Refer to the Laser Room Lab web page