Engraving settings on Clear acrylic with a xTool D1

I am new to the laser world! I am loving it but it can be a bit frustrating. Can someone please let me know what are the setting for light burn to engrave clear acrylic with an xTool D1 laser

Blue diode lasers cannot directly engrave to clear acrylic as the material is transparent to the laser wavelength. There are some techniques that can be used to get a marking that involve heating an adjacent surface that then transfers or concentrates the heat to the acrylic. Typically this would be done by placing the acrylic onto a steel or aluminum plate. The laser would pass through the acrylic and get etched on the bottom surface. Depending on if you want the etching to be on the top or bottom surface of the finished product you may need to mirror the design.

You would need to experiment with settings depending on your conditions.

When you lase something the material has to absorb the energy for it to ‘damage’ the material in some way.

If the laser frequency easily passes though a material, you cannot engrave on it as the laser cannot excite the molecules (heat) and damage it.

You must use an ‘indirect’ heating method to damage the acrylic. You can find lots of these on the internet, but it’s common to place paper under the acrylic and lasing the paper heats the paper, and that heat damages the acrylic.

Metals reflect a high amount of energy off them and they are good ‘heat sinks’. Both attributes makes lasing them difficult without special lasers. I’d suggest something other than metal for the indirect heat method.

There have been a number of them claiming success using the ‘dull’ side of aluminum foil… cheap and something you could quickly and easily try…

Good luck


I’ve not tried clear acrylic yet with my d1, but I put a piece of light blue paper under 4mil(.004") clear mylar when I cut stencils. I have my power at 85, speed 30mm/sec and it takes 4 passes. I also have air assist on. When I tried to cut a 15mil(.015") piece with the same blue paper it was a total fail. I speculate if one used dark blue, black ,or maybe red- it may have better results for thicker materials.

Take your time with it and run test plates before to get the best for you rig

I run as follows

Black poster card on the bed
I paint the acrylic with some kids tempera paint and let it dry. Note this goes face to the card painted side, you engrave on the unpainted side not forgetting to remove the clear plastic transport sheet. You can spray it with special marking paints such as Ceramark but they are hellishly expensice for a tin. The black paint is extremely cheap but takes little more time to dry.

I run at 1000M/M
13.3% power on a 10Wd1pro

Place the finished item in a bowl of warm water and let it sit for a few minutes, then wash off under the tap or agitate. Be careul not to rub with anything or it will scratch.
Pat dry and clean with isopropyl and then polich with glass cleaner

If I’m following you, this is for acrylic… isopropyl alcohol is a solvent for acrylic and will cause lots of small fractures over time…

These are two condiment cups made of acrylic… one had alcohol in it for only a few minutes…


Appreciate your input, but the IPA is on a sponge wiped on as an extremely thin coat, that evaporates immediately. It’s not sat soaking.

I used the sane principle spraying car bodies, where the thinners would rake the paint off, but it’s on fir such an extremely fraction of time, that all it does is ensure grease is removed, but the substrate does not soak and soften

It’s a solvent for acrylic…


Yeah. Ok.
Let’s leave it there

Hello, I’m new to this and having issues engraving 1.5/2mm clear Acylic.
I have a D1pro 5w.
I have tried black poster board under the material and it kind of works.
The issue is, in some spots, the poster board sticks to the acrylic and leaves behind a whiter mark.
I’ve got settings at power 30% and speed at 70mm/s.
Any suggestion and help will be appreciated.
Thank you.

I’ve read that simply leaving the adhesive paper (not clear!) on the bottom side produces good results on a 450nm diode. I haven’t tried myself.

Black tempura (prang, et al) on the underside is nearly universally mentioned. Again. I havn’t confirmed myself.

Go back and read the first pair of replies…

I thought it was pretty clear you cannot directly engrave/cut clear acrylic with a visible light laser.


Go back and read my question.
I thought it was pretty clear I said I put Black Poster Board underneath the clear acrylic to work as a transfer. MY issue is the cardboard sometimes sticks to the acrylic and when removed, there are white marks that cannot be removed. Resulting in an engraved look with white patches.
I’m very grateful for the help from everyone on here but your comments is of no value nor use.

ATOM_Engineering, cggorman, Bryon, berainlb have all made great suggestions, settings on things we can try.

Thank you, I’ve tried paint on top side but never thought of underneath.
I’ll try it out and report back. Thankssss :sweat_smile:

All the best diode results I’ve heard about involve a gapless interface layer…ie, paint or adhesive film of some type. I’m assuming the little air gap from posterboard creates a problem.

I’m sure getting the settings and focus just right also make a huge difference.

I’ve read that focus should be set to the interface layer, be it top side or bottom side.

All hearsay. I haven’t tried clear acrylic myself.

Thank you for your advice. Will try again.
I’ve done test below:
*Black Paint on the top side
*Black Paint on aluminium base
*Black cardboard base
*Black aluminium business card base
Most consistent is the black cardboard bar the white patches.
Trying to find the most efficient/easiest way that looks the decent.
I will try the paint on the underside and make sure minimum air pockets in between.

Wishing you the best luck. I don’t have any direct experience yet, but I plan to go there in the next couple months. Please report back if you find a good “recipe”.

Since the black paperboard seems to work well other than the scorching (or whatever), I wonder if an adhesive black paper would be the ticket… Would need to be a removable adhesive, like a masking or transport film. I know I heard Rich (LA Hobby Guy) say he gets the best results by just leaving the scratch/transport film on his. I know I heard him say it, but I’ll damned if I can find it now. Maybe a YT video…

I have a roll of Avery masking film that works great for it’s purpose, but it’s yellow and plastic, so it would probably suck for this specific use. I use it mostly with my vinyl cutter for firearm cerakote jobs. Never tried to lase it.
Maybe there is a dark paper alternative?

I’ve had some success with 6mm clear acrylic engraving (Vectoring) using black craft paper under the acrylic and focusing the blue laser on the paper. Just make sure the paper is perfectly flat. 24watt diode blue laser.