New to laser... how to protect the table top

completely new to this. I have been doing CandC work for a while but new to laser engraving.
My question is: do I need to put something down on the table top to protect it from the laser? What should it be made of?

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I just went to Home Depot and bought a 3/4" smooth MDF board that was already cut 2’x4’ and it has been working great and have not burnt thru it yet.

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Your diode has almost no power outside of its focus point. Anything that won’t easily melt will do, but I would steer away from metal as the last thing you want is a reflection. It might not cut/burn, but can do damage to your retina.

A sheet of glass, big floor tile, MDF, laminated chipboard, slab of granite, even a piece of 3mm-5mm acrylic :slight_smile:

Thank you… makes sense

thank you…cheap enough.