View Full Version : Nylon

Joe Pelonio
04-08-2009, 2:44 PM
I have a customer asking for a quote cutting 100-1000 parts from 3/8" thick Nylon 6/6.

Has anyone tried cutting this stuff before? Near as I can tell it's safe, but I don't know how cleanly it cuts or if I can cut 3/8" with 45 watts.

They are supposed to send me a sample to play with.

Michael Hunter
04-08-2009, 2:58 PM
I have cut 1/8" and 1/4" nylon on my 60W Epilog without too many problems.

The waste heat around the focus point does degrade the surface near the cut, but this is easily fixed by applying a layer of masking tape first.

It is a bit smelly - hope you have tolerant neighbours!

Doug Bergstrom
04-08-2009, 3:05 PM
I tried cutting some but had a problem with it melting back together before I could get it out of the laser.

Frank Corker
04-08-2009, 4:06 PM
I have worn nylons but they were very uncomfortable.

Peck Sidara
04-08-2009, 4:31 PM
^^^LOL Frank.

I've done a bit of cutting nylon. Edges aren't that great (low melting point, looks similar to a melted candle) and if too thick and if you don't have enough power, the edges can fuse back together due to the low speed/laser dwelling on one spot too long.

As far as I'm aware, no issues with toxicity.


Joe Pelonio
04-08-2009, 4:51 PM
Thanks, it sounds like with 45 watts I'd have problems cutting 3/8", but will probably go ahead and try a sample.

Frank, don't bother posting a picture of that! :eek:

Michael Hunter
04-08-2009, 4:58 PM
Here are two examples of nylon.
The more complicated shape was cut without surface protection - you can see the degradation on the surface and the warping of the thin parts.
The simpler shape was protected with masking tape and is obviously much better. Subsequent parts were cut with two layers of masking tape applied and were really quite smart - shame I don't have photos.
To give an idea of scale, the thin bits (in fact springs) are under 1mm wide and the holes are about 4mm diameter

Joe Pelonio
04-08-2009, 5:28 PM
Here are two examples of nylon.

To give an idea of scale, the thin bits (in fact springs) are under 1mm wide and the holes are about 4mm diameter
What is the thickness of that material, and also, how many watts is your laser?

Jack Harper
04-08-2009, 6:10 PM

I have tried with both my 1.5" and 4" lenses with little luck. The edge quality as everyone else has mentioned, was no very good. Don't lose the job though, just tell them you can waterjet cut them and I will wholesale it you. I just finished 2.12 miles of cutting on 3/4" nylon.

Dave Russell Smith
04-08-2009, 6:51 PM
I wore nylons on the last bank job and that did'nt work out to well at all :eek:

Martin Reynolds
04-09-2009, 2:21 AM
Delrin is a good (superior) mechanical alternative to nylon. I get decent edges on 1/4" material with a 30W laser. The material is very strong - you can make thin springs and small gears (1/4", 12 teeth) from it with the laser.

3/8" material won't cut for me.

Dan Hintz
04-09-2009, 8:25 AM
Here are two examples of nylon.

What were those made for? They look like 1:1,000,000 scale MEMS resonators...

Michael Hunter
04-09-2009, 1:33 PM
Hi Dan

The big one is a parallel-motion flexure for a micro-manipulator.
The smaller one is not parallel-motion, but the customer though it worth a try as it might be "good enough".

Hi Joe

These were 6mm thick and done on my 60W Epilog.