Now that laser cutters are available in smaller models at affordable pricing, it is fun to explore the applications of the machines. Desk top models for individual hobbyists, artists, crafters, and woodworkers can make intricate designs faster to cut with better precision. Any talented person who works with metals, fabrics, paper, or plastics will also get a great deal of use from small laser cutters. People have used cutters to turn hobbies into incomes.
There are also people who own cutters to create their own custom pieces for home and business decorating or gift giving. They can save a significant amount of money by making items at home instead of paying high prices for custom pieces made by someone else. It is also a way to tailor gifts to preferences and styles of special recipients. That sister who collects turtles will be delighted to get a one-of-a-kind laser cutter wood turtle painted in her favorite colors.
When the small laser cutter arrives, take the time to read all the instructions carefully before the cutter comes out of the box. Reread them again once the cutter is all set up and ready to go. This is wise for several reasons. The first is for safety. Lasers are powerful and must be used with caution and respect to avoid serious injury.
Another reason is to understand how the power and speed settings work. Once the concepts are learned, have fun discovering the looks and designs that can be created by adjusting those settings in different configurations. Getting the most out of the machine is the reason for the initial investment. Place instructions in a handy space so they can be used often for reference.
Before using the cutter on any projects, get scrap materials and play around to get a feel for how the machine operates. Materials will react differently depending on thickness, reaction to heat, and process utilized. Etching and engraving with the cutter, for example, will not feel the same as cutting with it. Build confidence and skill with scraps to avoid wasting materials when beginning actual creations. Do not rush, be patient, and enjoy the creative process.