Large Laser Cutter Help

Hello, is anyone going to Hive13 today before 3pm who could help me laser cut pieces out of EVA puzzle mat foam?

Thank you,
Alex Constante

Can’t help with the laser cutter, but maybe you could make the same cuts on the scroll saw or bandsaw? Obviously you’re not going to get cool engraving and the like, but the cuts should be similar, and the laser cutter would probably be slower.

just curious, what is the EVA puzzle mat foam made of? is it approved to be cut on the laser cutter?

EVA closed cell foam. From what I can tell cutting it with a laser is done, but that doesn’t necessarily mean we want to do it. Could release some really nasty odors/chemicals. I know I’ve had that issue with other foams in the past.

The foam is made of ethylene-vinyl acetate. I know that vinyl can be toxic when laser cut, however I have found EVA mat foam on the approved material list of several other makerspaces.

Thank you for offering to help, do you think that the bandsaw would be more efficient than a hot knife?

Not sure, having never cut EVA, but I’m guessing it would be close.

I’ve dabbled with the band saw and Eva awhile back. I believe my results were that the wood cutting blade on it made the edges really rough. Using a hot knife made nice smooth cuts, and was great for cutting around angles that would be difficult with a band saw.

So I’d suggest a hot knife (never lasered it, haven’t used Eva for a project for awhile now) but laser seems pretty useful in cutting it out.

I will say if it does get laser cut, make sure to keep the ventilation on for a good amount of time. When I came in wed night, I saw laser cut Eva and the smell was pretty strong.

Wonder if he might get better results with the 4x6 band saw with it’s metal blade? Much smaller teeth, should yield a smooth cut.

We also now have a variety of scroll saw blades, most of which should be smaller than the current 6 TPI on the bandsaw.

Finally the 1/8" band saw blade should have finer teeth than the 1/4" blade. The 1/8" blade should be hanging up next to the band saw.

He laser cut some on tuesday with Ellie’s help

It cut really really well actually. I was pretty astounded. (I was expecting the cave in on the sides like foam board does, or something else that wasn’t a great finish.)

I was at work today, so I couldn’t have met ya down there in time. If you still need to cut stuff, I have the laser parameters, and can meet you a different time. Just let me know.

I am available anytime after 6 if it isnt an inconvenience

If Elly or Ryan is willing to spend some time to do a Train the Trainer, then I will volunteer to do atleast 1 training class each month over the following 3 months.

I’d also love to in on a “train the trainer” session :slight_smile: