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tragiktimes101 12 months ago

So, I have been toying around with the idea of having a clear acrylic sheet cut to say "TragikTimes" (I know, I'm vain). I didn't really think much of this, but I guess I emailed or signed up for some service and I got a random email about laser engraving. Well, I had forgotten about signing up (if I even did?). But, I took that time to shoot them a couple of questions, to which they replied pretty quickly. I will probably go through with this, and when done post the results here. If it goes well, though, they might be a pretty decent option for anyone else looking to do a similar project.

This is the brand: Ponoko, if anyone else has any experience with them please let me know.

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Merlac 3 Builds 2 points 12 months ago

I used Ponoko to create my Blues Brothers build

In my photos you can see the following pieces from Ponoko:

  • black acrylic side panel with clear acrylic as window
  • a name plate from clear acrylic (I think this is exactly what you are doing)
  • black acrylic front panel part with custom fan hole and laser etched logo

I was very happy with the whole process and materials, but shipping/taxes/customs are not ideal for european customers (more than 50% of total price). I used the free Inkscape program to create the vector files.

tragiktimes101 submitter 1 Build 1 point 12 months ago

(I think this is exactly what you are doing)

Close. I actually want the whole panel cut to my name. Then, I will set it in front of my PSU shroud and illuminate it with an LED strip.

Glad to head they worked well for you. They seem like they do pretty solid work. The vector file will be interesting, though (no experience).

Merlac 3 Builds 2 points 12 months ago

It was the first vector graphic for me too, but it's quite easy. Remember to double-check stroke thickness and color and there shouldn't be any problems. Don't try too small details unless it's attached to something bigger, or they will end up missing or burned away by the laser.

Good luck!

tragiktimes101 submitter 1 Build 1 point 11 months ago


Wolfemane 7 Builds 2 points 11 months ago

Since you're doing just your name, it would probably be easy to find a font you really really like and then convert to vector. I've used illustrator for that purpose. It's a one stop process.

I believe Adobe still has their free 30 day trial, so you don't need to pay for it and it's a one time thing. AND It's guaranteed to be in a final format that pretty much anyone with any kind of cnc is going to be able to use.

Otherwise there a few free vector apps out there. One of the better ones is called Vectr. I used to know a few prepress guys that preferred to use it over illustrator for non complicated busy work. Seems they've gotten pretty big too.

Merlac 3 Builds 3 points 11 months ago

While any vector software probably works, Inkscape or Illustrator is recommended because Ponoko uses templates based on the material sizes they have available.

Sculpteo for example is more flexible on the files, colors and maximum dimensions.

Wolfemane 7 Builds 2 points 11 months ago

Very good info to know. Thank you!

tragiktimes101 submitter 1 Build 1 point 11 months ago

Appreciate the tips!