Listed below are some of the most common issues when using the laser engravers and steps for troubleshooting.
Cause: While the laser cutter will never convert raster images into vector lines, it can convert vector lines into raster images if the vector lines are too thick. The exact thickness varies depending on the DPI settings used.
Solution: Make sure the vector lines you want cut are set to the below recommendations.
Cause: While a job is sent to the machine, it does not contain any actual data for it to work with.
Cause: The "Piece Size" in the laser settings do not match the workspace size in the design software.
Solution: Make sure that the piece size is set to match the exact workspace area from whichever program you are using. The name of the workspace can vary, but they all serve the same purpose.
Tip: If you see the lens move to an area where it shouldn't be, immediately stop the project and you might be able to cancel it before it starts cutting into your material.
Cause: Center engraving must be selected in the machine settings.
Solution: In the machine settings, select center-engraving, make sure the piece size matches the workspace size, and choose the correct type of center-engraving (center-center, left-center, top-center).
Tip: On the machine display, if there is an asterisk (*) at the end of the job name, it is set up for center engraving.
Cause: The laser cutter & engraver is connected to the computer as if it were a printer and, as such, can have the same issues as any printer can.
Solution: Most of the time simply unplugging the USB cord from the computer and plugging it back in after a few seconds will clear up this issue. If that doesn't work, open the print queue on the computer (ask a staff member if you don't know how), then delete the job that isn't sending and try again.
Problem: You hit "Go" on the laser, "500 DPI" displays on the laser's screen, and it does not start your job.
Cause: "Go" was hit before the file finished sending from the computer.
Solution: The green data light will blink while a job is being sent from the computer; make sure the light has finished blinking before hitting "Go."
Cause: Most commonly this happens when the laser was not properly focused before starting the job. Additionally, the lens of the laser may need to be cleaned or, if using the Zing 24, the mirror may need tightened.
Solution: Use the dongle (Zing 24 at East and Sand Creek) or focus key (Helix at Library 21c) to set the focus for your material before running the job. If the problem persists, notify staff so they can clean the lens and check the mirror.
Problem: The laser is moving but is not firing (no signs of cutting or engraving)
Cause: The laser may be overheating.
Solution: Notify staff. The laser may need a break to cool down or may require cleaning by staff.
Problem: The laser is engraving what looks like a white background of an image.
Cause: The background may not actually be pure white, as is often the case with .jpg images.
Solution: Remove the background from the image. See the tutorials below for help.