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Zvi Grinberg
02-11-2008, 12:32 PM
Can anyone tell if polyester and vinyl are safe to work with lasers?
Can someone share experience with these? (Application and technical)

Thanks

Zvi

Sandra Force
02-11-2008, 12:33 PM
Anything with PVC is very bad for the laser. Stay away from it. :eek:

Brian Robison
02-11-2008, 12:41 PM
Polyester is fine.
Abby Road, my first album!!!!

Christian Kaplan
02-11-2008, 12:50 PM
I cut my first vinyl with the laser. But only with the air asist. Fine work!

Sandra Force
02-11-2008, 2:23 PM
PVC will cut and it looks nice. BUT the fumes that it puts off are corrosive to the machanics of the laser and will cause damage s in a short time. This is more so on an enclosed laser like an ULS or Epilog. The cost of fixing the problems that PVC causes is in no way justified by what you can make cutting it.

Vicky Orsini
02-11-2008, 2:38 PM
Very bad for the laser, and even worse for your lungs!

Mark Winlund
02-11-2008, 5:38 PM
I'm sure glad that this idea won't die... I get work from other shops that won't touch the "deadly pvc"! Given a decent exhaust system, and as long as you are not trying to cut 1/4" pvc, you will be fine. I'm going on 6 years with my laser.

Mark

Joe Pelonio
02-11-2008, 7:14 PM
I'm sure glad that this idea won't die... I get work from other shops that won't touch the "deadly pvc"! Given a decent exhaust system, and as long as you are not trying to cut 1/4" pvc, you will be fine. I'm going on 6 years with my laser.

Mark
Perhaps some lasers can handle it better than others. I have seen what an Epilog looked like after a guy cut just a couple of sheets of 1/8" Sintra PVC foam board. It looked like the insides had been filled with salt water. Since it does void the warranties I would never try it. Sign vinyl contains some PVC, but depending on the brand it may be very little. At 2 mil thickness for premium vinyl, it's possible that one could cut it safely in small quantities but again consider the possible outcome and don't breath the fumes.

From the Sintra brand PVC MSDS:

PVC will burn in the presence of supported combustion, and will
emit hydrogen chloride gas, benzene, water, carbon monoxide,
carbon dioxide and smoke. Self-contained breathing apparatus should be worn.

Now, from the MSDS for Hydrogen Chloride gas:

Toxic - may be fatal if inhaled. Severe irritant. Very harmful by inhalation, ingestion or through skin contact. Extremely corrosive. Skin contact with vapour or liquid can cause serious burns.

Larry Bratton
02-11-2008, 7:18 PM
Polyester Yes..Vinyl..No

Kevin Huffman
02-13-2008, 3:03 PM
Yea, what joe said.

There are vinyl's that are polyester based. They are far and few between, I think we only have 2-3 out of the hundreds of types vinyls we sale.

I have customer who use them for everything, mainly 1 time stencils.
On the stencils you do what is called a kiss cut. It is where you cut through the vinyl but not through the backing. You peel your graphic or lettering out of the vinyl, leaving the outlines. Use transfer tape to move it to where you want the stencil. Spray paint, let dry and then remove the vinyl.

I hope this helps.