Gantry Company GrayScale artwork for laser engraving systems and CNC toolpaths

Gantry GrayGraphics Library


FAQs/Vendor Links

What are Gantry Company GrayGraphics file specifications?

       All 3D laser carving graphic files are fully linear at 300dpi resolution and 8-bit 256 grayscale gray levels. File format
       is lossless .tif. The actual size of each graphic is noted with it's ID number.

What kind of material engraves best?

      When engraving in grayscale 3D laser carving mode our experience is that maple, cherry, birch, butternut, alder,
       acrylic and MDF engrave well. Walnut, ash and faux marble may perform marginally and oak should be avoided.
       Don't try polycarbonate with a CO2 laser.

      Use a minimum of 1/4" solid stock. No veneer or plywood. Glue-ups can cause irregular engraving across glue lines.

      Keep the surface as free from defects - scratches, dents, tear-outs, etc. - as possible. Any defects will translate down
       into the engraving.

       Try to engrave cross-grain. It will usually produce a smoother cut.

What settings should I use?

      An engraving depth of 3/32" to 5/32" will give very good relief for the size of the images ordered from our Website.
       The larger the image is the more engraving depth is required to keep the engraving from 'flattening out'. Similarly,
       a scaled down smaller image will produce a greater relative engraving depth.

      Start with a 300dpi engraver setting. Smaller systems (less than 75watt tubes) may need to use full power and a
       slower speed than usual. A second pass may be required. Increasing the engraver dpi to something greater than
       300dpi may also help if needed. We use hard maple and a 100 watt system to validate our artwork for a single pass.

      Check with your equipment vendor to determine whether your system uses a bit-depth of 6 or 8 bits. Eight bits cuts
       to 256 levels of gray, while 6 bits cuts only 64 levels and may appear more stepped. All Gantry GrayGraphics artwork
       is provided at 256 levels of gray and is compatible with both 6 and 8 bit systems.

      We suggest testing the linearity of the modulated laser output energy versus the
       grayscale input. A white to black grayscale ramp should engrave as a nice flat
       ramp with no flattening out on either end. You can easily create a test file to do
       this or, if you request, we will be pleased to send you a small file that you can
       use - similar to the one shown here.

      If files using cutting vectors (CV) are rescaled, you may want to readjust the distance of the cut from the edge of
       the engraving to maintain an approximately 0.006" kerf (the width of the material removed by the laser). Lens/focal
       length is also a factor.

      Specific engraver settings are best gotten from your equipment vendor if needed, but usually a bit of trial and error
       can help you find the best settings for your system.

How can I clean the engraved piece?

      After engraving, the piece will have a coating of soot and creosote - how various vendors implement their exhaust
       system will affect how much of this residue remains. It can be cleaned using water and a toothbrush. On occasion
       it may help to use a wet/dry shop vacuum cleaner to suck out the remaining 'dirty' water and to dry the wood faster.

Who are some of the equipment vendors?

      You can use the Gantry GrayGraphics Eagle Evaluation file to test the system you already have or, if you are looking
       to buy a new system, you can use it to evaluate the equipment that's out there. Feel free to send it on to the vendors
       that you're interested in and have them cut a sample for you to compare.

      Specific equipment needed to do laser carving will vary with each users' application. Typically it is only the
       newer vintage systems and software that have a good 3D laser carving capability and is best demonstrated by
       each vendor individually.

Laser engraving system vendors that you can check with for 3-D capability are:

All file(s) will be e-mailed to the e-mail address provided with your order.
Orders placed using PayPal usually ship within 12 hrs except for evenings and Sundays.
 NOTE: Order ID's with a CV (Cutting Vector) suffix will ship by e-mail with two files,
one a grayscale .tif format file and the other a vector .cdr format file.

All engraving artwork on this Website is 1996-2014 Gantry Company.
Artwork remains the property of Gantry Company and is non-exclusive to Purchaser. 'Purchase' is License for non-exclusive 'Right to Use'.
No warranty as to the performance of this product on Purchaser's equipment is expressed or implied. All sales final.
Reference complete Terms of Service.

Gantry Company
Rural Bennington,    Nebraska    
Phone: 402/556-8893     

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