View Full Version : Cutting PVC with a laser

matthew knott
12-15-2011, 11:15 AM
Cutting PVC with a laser (epliog ext36) is this a bad idea with toxic nastry fumes or can it be done?

Larry Bratton
12-15-2011, 11:16 AM
Don't do it..period. It can damage your machine and kill you in the process.

Rodne Gold
12-15-2011, 11:19 AM
Depends what you doing , kiss cutting sign vinyl now and then isnt an issue , too little Chlorine given off to create any trouble if you use air assist and the blower , cutting 3mm thick PVC all day long will ruin the machine.

Larry Bratton
12-15-2011, 11:27 AM
I don't think sign vinyl qualifies for much caution. I have tested a good bit of sign vinyl using the hot copper wire test and I have yet to find any that has sufficient pvc to change the flame color. I cut sign vinyl in small quantities without concern but I would never cut or engrave anything other than a small piece of something like 3mm. I also have a good exhaust system with air assist.

Martin Boekers
12-15-2011, 11:41 AM
Stay away from anything with Clorides. (creates Clorine gas) with the exception (as stated) with thin vinyl.
Remember there are many products that are PVC in sheets under different names such as Sintra, always check MDS

Mike Null
12-15-2011, 2:33 PM
I'm not recommending it but I engrave about 25 pieces of pvc tubing weekly. It's a relatively small amount of engraving but I haven't seen any damage after more than a year of doing it. Total time running the machine per week on this job is less than one hour.

matthew knott
12-15-2011, 3:51 PM
thought it was a bad idea,cheers guys!

Craig Matheny
12-15-2011, 6:46 PM
Ok the vinyl thread is started so lets go back to vinyl records for a second they're 3mm is the thickness are records safe or not I want to just do some simple cutting on them for clocks.

Michael Hunter
12-15-2011, 6:55 PM
A while back someone posted a photo of a machine that had been used to cut PVC. It looked like it was full of fungus with all the wild corrosion that had taken place.
Presumably, your lungs would look the same if you breathed in the fumes.

Is cutting some old records worth the risk? Only you can say.

Larry Bratton
12-15-2011, 7:15 PM
thought it was a bad idea,cheers guys!
It is, but it's your risk...you asked.

Kevin Huffman
12-20-2011, 11:57 AM
The worse part about doing this chlorine gas is the only substance I know that rust stainless steel. If you want to continue to have your machine in good running order, I would suggest not engraving or cutting any amount of PVC or Teflon. Ever.