Pew Pew Laser Blog

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Blogs about laser-cut

Inkscape - Using Path > Difference With Text.


It turns out that Inkscape's error messages will appear in the status bar at the bottom of the application.

Part of getting my Glowforge laser cutter has been learning to use a new piece of software, Inkscape. I was having problems using Inkscape's "Path > Difference" option to combine (well, cut out) shapes and text elements. Here's what I had to do to get the elements merged:

  1. Optional: Disable any stroke styles on both objects. Use fills instead.
  2. Optional: Make sure the first element - the non-text - is a path. Select it and choose "Path > Object to Path".
  3. Turn the text into a path. Select it and choose "Path > Object to Path".
  4. Ungroup that new path. Right click it and choose "Ungroup".
  5. Bring the "top" element to the top layer (Home). This is what will be removed from the other element.
  6. Position / align the elements as desired.
  7. Select both of the elements.
  8. Choose "Path > Difference".

Makerhaus Laser Cutter Notes.


For about a year, I was a member of MakerHaus, a maker space which was reasonably convenient for me. Alas, they closed last year, shortly atfer I had taken the class to become certified to use their laser cutter. Since I am eagerly awaiting my Glowforge laser cutter, I thought I'd share my notes from that class. Note that while the general concepts should apply to the Glowforge, these notes were originally for a unknown laser cutter: shown in this video.

The depth of the laser's cut is a result of the combination of power, speed and material. Run a test grid of speed and power combinations to calibrate materials.


Maximum size is defined by cutter; 46" x 34" in this case.

Acceptable materials (and their max thickness)




Laser Cutter Operation



LaserCut 5.3: