Orienting Material for accurate cuts

Hello, I am sure this question has come up before, but I cannot find it. I may not be using the correct terminology since I am very new at this. If that is the case, feel free to tell me or point me in the right direction.

I am trying to figure out a good way to accurately place material on my machine so that I know exactly where the laser will be cutting or engraving. I do not have a camera (yet) but understand that is the best way to accomplish this. The one I think I would want is out of stock so I will need to do whatever method that comes up for a while.

Thank you!

My preference is to lay down a piece of cardboard that will sit flat, and engrave whatever boundary line would help me line up the actual work piece where i need it.

If I need to make many cuts in the same place, I will make the cardboard mark or boundary (an engraving line), and then put metal straight edges down referenced against and actual peice and then clamp or magnetize those straight edges.

I tend to put the work piece on the bed, either with or without a holding jig. I mark on the work piece either a corner or the centre, which ever works for the design. If I want to use as much of the material as possible I’ll often use the bottom left corner so I get close to the edge of the work piece. I drive my laser over to the pencil mark using the red laser attached to line up with. Then I use the “move to laser position” option to move the job. Then I can use absolute coordinates. Then just keep putting the work pieces in the same place. You do of course need homing enabled to use absolute. But for jig work it is the best for me. If it’s just one piece then just use the “Current position” option for starting the job and again drive the laser to the pencil mark and press go.

Hope that helps,


Make a jig - the simple solutions are best

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Thank you all for the great help. I will give the techniques a shot tonight to see which one I like best.


Tried some cutting tonight using David’s method of marking a point and lining the laser up to it. Got my cuts right where I wanted.

Thank you!

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