View Full Version : Formica Type Material

Julian Ashcroft
02-01-2016, 2:39 PM
I have a free source for the top layer of Formica type sheet, they are off cuts from making up laminated work surfaces, mostly for shop fitting. The material is less than a millimeter in thickness and quick brittle, but on my 90w laser I cut a couple of 25mm square test tests at 70% power and 40mm/s and it cut very easily, I might well be able to go less power and more speed, but at the moment I don't want to as I'm not sure what the stuff is made of.

If if it turns out to be safe I might use cut out shapes that can then be fixed onto plywood. I make clocks with contrasting backs and fronts and this might be a good use of the material.

Anyway, does anyone know if this material is safe to use?

Dan Hintz
02-01-2016, 5:15 PM
Just make sure you exhaust the remnants properly... burning the resin is pretty nasty.

Clark Pace
02-01-2016, 6:26 PM
I used to cut loads of formica. Lasers good but you have clean the edges.

Joe Pelonio
02-01-2016, 9:07 PM
I also have used it a lot, mostly Wilsonart laminate for ADA signs.

Julian Ashcroft
02-02-2016, 2:20 AM
Thanks for the replies, sounds good, the laser has a very good exhaust, couldn't smell anything coming off the laminate as it was cut. I did another few test cuts, going upto 100mm/s still at 70% power and it still cut well. Slight smoke residue on edges.

I think I'll get a load more, not fully sure how I'm going to use it yet, I think it's glued down using contact adhesive onto a backing panel, at the moment on my two part clocks which are plywood I use superglue, which works well, but I'm not sure this will work too well with the laminate, time to get experimenting.

Joe Pelonio
02-02-2016, 9:22 PM
For most of mine, I mount it onto 1/4" black acrylic, then cut, and do the ADA letters and braille. It also takes vinyl lettering well, for office suite signs.