View Full Version : Laser not cutting "all" of a vector

Nick Andraka
04-20-2019, 10:20 PM
Vector cutting simple circles and rectangles testing out the Epilog radius.

Coreldraw 2018
Epilog Radius

I made some small ovals in coreldraw - RGB red, "hairline" pen. and one with a .007 pen
work are set to 24x18
in printer driver work area set to 24x18

The .007 oval raster etched,
The hairline vector cut but left a very small "Teet" on one side, easily snapped the oval out.

Then I made son hair line boxes, only 3 sides cut, it is leaving off the right side every time, no matter where I place the rectangles.
Watching the laser it cuts the top side, jumps down and cuts the bottom, then the left, but never the right.

Any ideas?


Kev Williams
04-21-2019, 12:26 AM
rotate the boxes 180 and see if the LEFT sides then don't cut, or if the right is still not cutting-- post the results--

Nick Andraka
04-21-2019, 7:34 AM
Drew the box as I have, right side did not vector,
Rotated the box 180 deg, the left side did not vector.

I also noticed depending on how I form the box, weather I pull up left, down right, etc for form it with the rectangle tool,, changes what side does not vector.


Nick Andraka
04-21-2019, 9:12 AM
I made 4 boxes in Corel with the rectangle tool,
pulled 1 down right, 1 down left, 1 up right, 1 up left.
when I vector printed them, the all vectored missing either the left or right side (2 where missing the left side, 2 missing the right)

I then drew a box in corel, exported as PDF, opened and printed in Adobe viewer, it only vectored the top and bottom lines.

So close,, yet so far away, very frustrated :(


Nick Andraka
04-21-2019, 9:18 AM
Just a thought, this is running on the approx 15-20' parallel printer cable that came with the machine.
Ordered a new 6' cable, just in case.


Mike Null
04-21-2019, 9:38 AM
You may be on to something with that length of parallel cable. Just curious, what does your print preview show?

Nick Andraka
04-21-2019, 10:01 AM
If i hand draw individual lines, using the free hand tool, they all vector.
If I make a polygon with the free hand tool, connecting individual lines, one side does not vector, typically the 1st or 2nd side I made.


Nick Andraka
04-21-2019, 1:05 PM
The Print preview shows the complete objects, all sides even the ones not vector cutting.
So I am assuming this is somewhere in the printer driver, cable or engravers MB.

Have 20 people coming over for Easter, I'll have to work on this tomorrow evening once the new 6' cable shows up.


You may be on to something with that length of parallel cable. Just curious, what does your print preview show?

Kev Williams
04-21-2019, 1:57 PM
As to long cable runs, my vinyl cutter is connected using five 12' cables for serial, two of my 3400's are using four 12'ers, and my LS900 is using three... some of cables are male/female extensions, most are male/male with female extenders I got off Amazon...

--I've been told over the years by several people, including my Gravo rep, that long cable runs won't work... ;)
I don't remember the last time I had a connection problem. I HAVE had cables that plain didn't work right, but no issues for years now. MANY years ago due to a shortage of computers I used to use printer switches. They worked, but usually not for long.

So in the meantime, a cable change wouldn't hurt to try, but my thoughts are leaning darker I'm afraid...

The same side not finishing is telling-- whenever anything is done with a laser, there's 3 specific things happening, that I admit I'm no expert at, but they are:

from full stop to accel speed and power gradually, until-
head reaches full speed and power, where it remains until-
the head reaches a predetermined distance (dictated by firmware or user) from the point of full-stop that the head and power gradually decline until full-stop...

With your machine not finishing the final segment, I'm thinking it may be a tickle issue, causing the controller to not fire the laser during the last segment, and as you noted, could prevent other segments from finishing..

Or, could be a left-right overrun alignment issue- My Gravo machines have an alignment test where it engraves 12 rows of small hashmarks spaced about 3mm apart; the first row engraves beyond the extreme left and right hash marks a TON, and this effect gradually reduces with each engraved line, where rows 5 thru 7 are the best, and then from 8 thru 12, the opposite effect happens, where by line 12, the last 10 or so hash marks on either end don't engrave at all... its MY job to pick the best line and tell that to the software :)

There's also a tickle adjustment- "tickle" is where the laser occasionally fires at low power briefly, to keep it 'excited', proper setting is required so the laser doesn't over-fire or mis-fire on the turn-arounds. Case in point, I found out the hard way the tickle setting on my new-to-me LS100 was set WAY too high; I had some silver metallic Rowmark in the machine, and while slewing the head diagonally to find the lower-right corner of the piece, I noticed it had actually engraved a line across the material! Most materials it wouldn't be noticed but this silver stuff is very sensitive... Anyway, I had to change the tickle setting four increments to avoid the over-burn!

The good news is, your Epi's software should have tests and adjustments for tickle and alignment, and I suspect they may be WAY outta whack, and can hopefully your machine can be put back IN whack ;)

But I haven't a clue where to look, so contacting Epi CS may be in order...

Could also be a tube issue, but hoping not-- Question, how fast are you running these boxes? try different speeds from full blast to barely crawling and see if anything changes, I'm curious if going slower will finish the boxes...

Nick Andraka
04-21-2019, 2:39 PM
Slowed it down to 10% speed, 10% power.
made 4 squares with the rectangle tool, pulling each one into the center of the group to create the square.
here is a video of it:

when vectoring, it always leaves the 2nd line segment out,, it completely skips over it, I dont think it is a laser firing issue,, looks like the engraver just does not see that line segment.


Nick Andraka
04-21-2019, 2:40 PM
Print preview DOES show all 4 sides.


Kev Williams
04-21-2019, 6:05 PM
That was telling too-- exactly as you say, the machine is literally skipping those segments as if they're not even there, the giveaway is the machine goes into 'space' mode (speeds up) between the corners...

This would be a pain in general use but for test purposes, do this: click on any box to select it-- in Corel click on the 'arrange' tab, then 'convert to curves'. Now, double-click on the box (or click the 'shape' tool, right under the arrow tool on top and click on the box) to put the box in edit mode... then, anywhere in the middle of a side, double click the side, this will add a node there. Try that for the right side, and run it, then add a node to the other 3 sides and then run it.

I'm just wondering if the machine will open a side(s) between the nodes, open the whole side(s), or actually finish all sides...

Question, does the machine skip sides regardless of the color you're using?

Nick Andraka
04-21-2019, 8:13 PM
I'll try this tomorrow PM,, Wife has me on "double Secret Probation" the rest of the day :)

Mike Null
04-22-2019, 11:25 AM
Way back when I had my 1997 ULS I had issues with corrupted files which were solved with a new cable.

Nick Andraka
04-22-2019, 4:30 PM
Epilog tech solved it in 3.5 seconds, they are good :)
In Coreldraw he had me go to:
Tools>Options>Global>Printing+driver comp>and UNCHECK "Send Beziers and Paths to drive"

It now works like a charm, I now have a fully functioning 24" x 18" Epilog laser with less than 1200.00 into it.
And the laser appears strong, I am cutting through ~1/4" birch ply 25% speed/ 70% power.

I know this machine wont last forever, and if the Y motor or MB goes out I am SOL,, but right now, enjoying it.

I do miss a "modern" printer driver, but this is working fine and in the end does the same thing, just you have to "think" while setting things up

Now, anyone have a rotary for an Epilog Radius ?


Mike Null
04-23-2019, 7:45 AM
Glad you got it solved. What a deal!!

I had an issue a couple of weeks ago and the Trotec tech logged into my machine and had the problem fixed in 10 seconds. Sometimes things happen that way.