Inconsistent results cutting 3/4" ply on Tarkin and Dorian

This weekend, I had mixed luck getting 3/4" material cut on the big lasers. I was able to cut through a piece of scrap 3/4" ply, which looked less dense than my actual material, but I could not get my actual ply cut through nor a piece of 3/4" MDF scrap.

The last pass on Tarkin, I had 100% power and 2mm/sec speed, and I also tried 2 passes. The cuts were maybe 1/3 of the way through. I have been able to cut 3/4 on both lasers in the past, so I am wondering if it’s the material, some other setting I should be aware of, or is there some cleaning I should be performing.

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Cleaning for the lasers should only be done by trained stewards. This sounds like something @dannym needs to take a look at. I can’t remember the exact settings I used for the lasered 3/4" ply desks, but I was able to do 1 pass and I don’t think it was that slow.

One thing to note about MDF – in my experience (which includes lasering 1/8" masonite and all thicknesses in the 1/4"-3/4" MDF range), there is a lot of variability in the density of pieces you get that are all labeled “MDF”. I’ve purchased several sheets from the same stack that required different settings. Just something to note when lasering MDF and the thicker you go the more it matters.

Mdf is pretty tough to cut thru because it’s basically just glue and sawdust. Glue is what makes cutting thru plywood or mdf difficult.

You can cut thru a 2x4 because there’s no glue and pine is not very dense

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It’s definitely been done on Tarkin. Other than the blue backer piece on the Asmbly mural, I cut all the other pieces on Tarkin, primarily out of 3/4" MDF.

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The frame for the 2x2 comp was cut on Dorian, so I’ve definitely gotten it to work before. No idea what was different this weekend.