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Project Requests

All information, prices, instructions, and DRC/CAM files are contained in the form below. Please read it carefully.
PCB files and settings have changed.

Eagle Files:

Please download the following files and place them in their respective folders within the Eagle directory (something like “C:\EAGLE-7.7.0”). If you’re using Eagle through CAEDM Citrix then the files are already there. Just remember to use them!
CAM (5-22-18)
Design Rules (5-22-18)
These files have been updated, so even if you have downloaded them in the past please re-download and replace them.
Make sure to use the DRC file and fix all possible clearance issues before exporting your gerber files, otherwise your board may be delayed or milled incorrectly!

Single-sided boards: $0.40/sq. in.
Double-sided boards: $0.80/sq. in.

KiCAD Settings:

KiCAD settings can be found here . The important settings are boxed in red. Although most of these can be changed if necessary, they provide the best default settings for our service. When applying the settings to a pre-made board, make sure to check everything after applying the new settings to make sure your board is compliant.

3D Printing:

- Acceptable File formats are *.stl or *.obj
- The Shop has two Raise3D Pro2 printers. They print using PLA.
- All prints must fit within an area of 12x12x11.8 in (304.5x304.5x299.5 mm)
- Layer thickness is .05mm-.25mm (Typicaly .20mm)
PLA- Strong, harder (and more brittle) than ABS, though printed objects will generally have a glossier look and feel than ABS. With a little more work, PLA can also be sanded and machined. The lower melting temperature of PLA makes it unsuitable for many applications as even parts spending the day in a hot car may droop or deform, however, it can produce much larger prints without warping and requires less support. Not soluble in acetone.
Softening Temperature: ~140° F
Melting Temperature: ~320° F
PLA costs $0.18/gram
You need to select a fill level for the solid objects. Understand that most projects only require Low levels of infill to be structurally sound.

Laser Cutting:

CUTTING AREA: 22" x 34"
RASTER/ENGRAVING AREA: 22" x 34"
MAX MATERIAL SIZE: 22" x 34"
REQUIRED FILE FORMAT:

  • .DXF (2D only)
  • .SVG (standard vector file) (preferred)
  • .BMP (for image engraving)

Laser cutting costs $.06/min cutting/rastering runtime

Never Cut These Materials

WARNING: Because many plastics are dangerous to cut, it is important to know what kind you are planning to use.

Material DANGER! Cause/Consequence
PVC/vinyl/artificial leather Emits chlorine gas when cut! Don't ever cut this material as it will ruin the optics, cause the metal of the machine to corrode, and ruin the motion control system.
Thick ( >1mm ) Polycarbonate/Lexan Cuts very poorly, discolors, catches fire Looks identical to acrylic but does not cut or engrave well! Polycarbonate is a different type of polymer that tends to char rather than vaporize.
ABS Melts Does not cut well. It tends to melt rather than vaporize, and has a higher chance of catching on fire and leaving behind melted gooey deposits on the vector cutting grid. It also does not engrave well (again, tends to melt).
HDPE/milk bottle plastic Catches fire and melts It melts. It gets gooey. Don't use it.
PolyStyrene Foam Catches fire It catches fire, it melts, and only thin pieces cut. This is the #1 material that causes laser fires!!!
PolyPropylene Foam Catches fire Like PolyStyrene, it melts, catches fire, and the melted drops continue to burn and turn into rock-hard drips and pebbles.
Fiberglass Emits fumes It's a mix of two materials that can’t be cut. Glass (etch, no cut) and epoxy resin (fumes)
Coated Carbon Fiber Emits noxious fumes A mix of two materials. Thin carbon fiber mat can be cut, with some fraying - but not when coated.
Neoprene Noxious fumes It can be cut, but produces dirty smoke and noxious gasses

Safe Materials

The laser can cut or etch. The materials that the laser can cut materials like wood, paper, cork, and some kinds of plastics. Etching can be done on almost anything, wood, cardboard, plastic, marble, stone, tile, and glass

Cutting

Material Max thickness Notes WARNINGS!
Many woods 1/4" Avoid oily/resinous woods Oily or resinous woods may catch fire.
Plywood/Composite woods 1/4" These contain glue, and may not cut as well as solid wood.  
MDF/Engineered woods 1/4" These are okay to use but char more easily when cut.  
Paper, card stock thin Cuts very well on the laser cutter, and also very quickly.  
Cardboard, carton thicker Cuts well but may catch fire. Watch for fire.
Cork 1/4" Cuts nicely, but the quality of the cut depends on the thickness and quality of the cork. Engineered cork has a lot of glue in it, and may not cut as well. Avoid thicker cork.
Acrylic/Lucite/Plexiglas/PMMA 1/4" Cuts extremely well.  
Thin Polycarbonate Sheeting (<1mm) <1mm Very thin polycarbonate can be cut, but tends to discolor badly. Extremely thin sheets (0.5mm and less) may cut with yellowed/discolored edges. Watch for smoking/burning
PET film thin Cuts OK, but tends to leave smoke marks.  
Delrin (POM) thin Delrin comes in a number of shore strengths (hardness) and the harder Delrin tends to work better.  
Kapton tape (Polyimide) 1/16" Works well, in thin sheets and strips like tape.  
Mylar/Polyester 1/16" Works well if it's thin. Thick mylar has a tendency to warp, bubble, and curl. Gold coated mylar won’t cut.
Solid Styrene 1/16" Smokes a lot when cut, but can be cut. Keep it thin.
Polyurethane thin Cuts pretty well.  
Depron foam 1/4" Used a lot for hobby, RC aircraft, architectural models, and toys. 1/4" cuts nicely, with a smooth edge. Monitor it constantly.
Gator foam/Foam-core   Cuts pretty well, but foam core melts inside at edges Watch it! – may catch fire.
Cloth/felt/hemp/cotton/nylon/polyester/felt/ velcro   All cut well. No plastic coated or impregnated cloth!
Leather/Suede 1/8" Leather is very hard to cut, but can be if it's thinner than a belt (call it 1/8"). Real leather only! No imitations!
Magnetic Sheet   Cuts beautifully.  
NON-CHLORINE-containing rubber   Fine for cutting. Check for chlorine!
Teflon (PTFE) thin https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polymer_fume_fever        Make sure the laser is fully vented and exhausted.  
Carbon fiber without epoxy applied   Can be cut, very slowly. No coated carbon fiber!
Coroplast ('corrugated plastic') 1/4" Difficult because of the vertical strips, but can be cut (very slowly).  
Phenolics 1/16” Tends to char, but cuts OK if thin.  

Etching


All the above "cuttable" materials can be etched, in some very deeply.
In addition, you can etch:

Material Notes WARNINGS!
Glass Green seems to work best...looks sandblasted. Only FLAT GLASS can be engraved in our cutter. No round or cylindrical items.
Ceramic tile    
Anodized aluminum Vaporizes the anodization away.  
Painted/coated metals Vaporizes the paint away.  
Stone, Marble, Granite, Soapstone, Onyx. Gets a white "textured" look when etched.  
Melamine Etches nicely.  

Marking

We have a marking coating called 'cermark'. It must be diluted with ethanol and applied to metal (not ceramics or stone) before being etched to leave behind a semi-permanent dark black mark.