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Author Topic: Has anyone cut Icarex on a laser cutter?  (Read 3559 times)
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inewham
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« Reply #15 on: December 07, 2012, 02:15 AM »

When I have hot cut on hardboad or mdf I found I'd get tiny fragments stuck to the melted edge which looks bad on black fabric. Metal can conduct heat away from the iron tip so it doesn't cut as quick and cleanly.

Glass for me every time, a big secondary glazing panel and a 12" sample of armoured glass for cutting little bits like reinforcements. It doesn't conduct away heat, it doesn't get scored, its easy to clean and it doesn't leave fragments stuck to your edges.
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misterbleepy
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« Reply #16 on: December 07, 2012, 03:05 AM »

if glass is impractical, then maybe Formica would do - it's very dense, smooth, and heat resistant.
Has anyone tried Formica?
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mikenchico
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« Reply #17 on: December 07, 2012, 08:08 AM »

I've gotten years of use out of hardboard/masonite, plywood does not make a good cutting board because blades or tips will follow the grain, it may be fine as a template but I would prefer hardboard there too. Here we can get what is called Muffler Repair Tape, there are also similar duct tapes available, they are thin aluminum foil with an adhesive that some people will edge the hardbaord with to keep from burning it.

A Teflon roller that you place the iron through that then follows the edge of the template is another option I've seen used, but you have to make allowances for it's thickness in your template.

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« Reply #18 on: December 07, 2012, 08:22 AM »

I've gotten years of use out of hardboard/masonite, plywood does not make a good cutting board because blades or tips will follow the grain, it may be fine as a template but I would prefer hardboard there too. Here we can get what is called Muffler Repair Tape, there are also similar duct tapes available, they are thin aluminum foil with an adhesive that some people will edge the hardbaord with to keep from burning it.
I found the metalized tabe at my local hardware store...i do cover the edges of my heavy oak tag paper templates with it and have had good results....

A Teflon roller that you place the iron through that then follows the edge of the template is another option I've seen used, but you have to make allowances for it's thickness in your template.
There is a thread about this on kitebuilder....somepeople use aluminum or steel washers....you can get a really consistent allowance along the edge of your tempates....
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Ara Ararauna
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« Reply #19 on: December 07, 2012, 09:40 AM »

Hi,

The sail pieces have been cut with the laser cutter. All went well apparently, although I have not tested them against the plan.
This is a sneak preview of them but I'm not showing it all because I don't want to disclose the colours and patterns I have designed for my version of Le Quartz.





The process was quite slow though. I don't really know if I got any benefit time-wise, by doing it with the laser cutter. But it was nevertheless interesting and fun.
I will document the build process but I will report on it only once I finish.
Cheers!
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« Reply #20 on: December 07, 2012, 10:07 AM »

Did you use autocad to make the file for the templates? If so would you be willing to share the file?  The laser cutter looks like fun. The accuracy is certainly higher the way you've done compared with using hardboard and a hot cutter.
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« Reply #21 on: December 07, 2012, 10:29 AM »

Hi sugarbaker,

I will put this in a new post in the "Links to Plans" thread for everyone to have this information and find it easily.
http://www.gwtwforum.com/index.php?topic=104.msg78402#msg78402
Cheers.
« Last Edit: December 07, 2012, 10:35 AM by Ara Ararauna » Logged

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« Reply #22 on: December 07, 2012, 02:50 PM »

The process was quite slow though. I don't really know if I got any benefit time-wise, by doing it with the laser cutter. But it was nevertheless interesting and fun.

Like the other laser cutter work I have seen done, the real time saving is in future cuts of the same pattern.

This will be a great option if and when you start designing and building your own line of kites.  Grin
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« Reply #23 on: December 11, 2012, 02:38 AM »

Another good material for template making are offset printing plates, which are thin flexible metal that can be cut with a good scissor easily.

As for laser cutters, i wish they wouldn't be so expensive, would love to have one.
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mikenchico
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« Reply #24 on: December 11, 2012, 07:46 AM »

Another good material for template making are offset printing plates, which are thin flexible metal that can be cut with a good scissor easily.

As for laser cutters, i wish they wouldn't be so expensive, would love to have one.


Sure many of us would like one, but large panels aren't usually a big issue for me, it's those small reinforcements that are tedious and often have to be redone because of a small error that just looks cheesy. I've read over on kitebuilder that the Cricut machines for hobby work are able to cut our fabrics, some will need a backing to stiffen them up. I haven't tried one myself, if I built more kites though I would look into one for sure.

http://www.cricut.com/shopping/products-Cricut-Machines-363.aspx



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« Reply #25 on: December 11, 2012, 09:22 AM »

the wife has a cricut machine for scrapbooking stuff. You basically take a sheet of paper and stick it to an adhesive backed board and run it thru the machine. It does say it will cut fabric but we havent tried. I could see if wanted to make a bunch of small items it would work.
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« Reply #26 on: December 11, 2012, 09:53 AM »

Another good material for template making are offset printing plates, which are thin flexible metal that can be cut with a good scissor easily.

I've read over on kitebuilder that the Cricut machines for hobby work are able to cut our fabrics, some will need a backing to stiffen them up. I haven't tried one myself, if I built more kites though I would look into one for sure.

http://www.cricut.com/shopping/products-Cricut-Machines-363.aspx


Those plates might just be perfect. If you need to dull the edges a bit, those green scrubbies made by 3M work great for sanding metal.

Mike, at one time you stated that ripstop would take a hot iron. If so, then freezer paper coated with plastic on one side can be ironed on (plastic side down) & used as a stablizer. Should work fine for Cricut. Also works great to run a piece of fabric through a printer. The lightest adhesion you can get away with, the easier it will peel afterwards.

Just throwing this out there - you never know when something used for one thing might come in handy in another realm:  I used to use freezer paper for quilt-making templates. One thing that worked well was to iron several layers of paper together, then draw the pattern piece on the top layer.... then cut the stack, then peel the layered templates apart. 

You have to experiment to get the correct iron temp. Too hot and the pieces are impossible to separate. Not hot enough and they won't stick well, then will shift around resulting in inaccurate templates. Smaller pieces work better than large, but large can be done.

Ironing layers together retains template accuracy better on a cotton fabric-covered surface, as opposed to the usual thick cushy ironing board cover. Finally, four or five layers works way better than say 20 layers.

Nancy
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Ara Ararauna
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« Reply #27 on: December 11, 2012, 01:49 PM »

Another good material for template making are offset printing plates, which are thin flexible metal that can be cut with a good scissor easily.

As for laser cutters, i wish they wouldn't be so expensive, would love to have one.


Sure many of us would like one, but large panels aren't usually a big issue for me, it's those small reinforcements that are tedious and often have to be redone because of a small error that just looks cheesy. I've read over on kitebuilder that the Cricut machines for hobby work are able to cut our fabrics, some will need a backing to stiffen them up. I haven't tried one myself, if I built more kites though I would look into one for sure.

http://www.cricut.com/shopping/products-Cricut-Machines-363.aspx


Hmmm.... very interesting!
Which model would be sufficient?

You guys in the US that form big bulks of hobbyists can buy one and share it by placing it at someones garage!  Wink

Not my case...  Sad  only flies fly around here... and me...
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