Honeycomb alternative

Hey there, I have built a MPCNC that is 5x5 and I frequently laser engrave large 1/4in plywood, but no matter what I try to use to avoid markings, nothing does the job. I looked at honeycomb beds but they don’t seem to come very large.

What are informed people using to keep their workpieces level and flat, protected from falling through, and without marking the workpiece in a setup this size?

Thank you!

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I put aluminum foil on the spoilboard, and use miniature heat sinks to hold up the work piece. You do have to be sure that the heat sinks hold up the finished work, but I bought a package of 200, so generally it’s not difficult.


Nice approach!

@robertbu had some larger material. I can’t remember what it was called. It was steel screen material.

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I think you are talking about Steel Lath. I spotted this after I had purchased aluminum honeycomb and thought it would have been a better solution…cheaper and would cover my entire spoil board, but I have not used it. I use sheet metal under my honeycomb to protect my spoil board.

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That is what I was thinking of. Nice big pieces available at commodity prices!

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I use off-cuts of suspended ceiling grid… the ‘T’ shaped parts. Sprayed them black and they work a treat.

I am curious about how self extinguishing PETG would go in this use. I does burn while the flame is applied, but doesn’t continue to burn.

It doesn’t make sense at first glance, but plenty of peole use laser cut card grids which make even less sense to me and you could print an awful lot of grid with a kilo.

I made a box with clear acrylic rods as the support surface, aluminum c-channel around the perimeter and a thin steel sheet as the floor. I 3D printed supports for the rods to snap in to.

My thought was that the diode laser would not cut the clear acrylic so I would get minimal reflective burns. However the material being cut normally generates a flame and that lightly melt the rods. But it’s easy to swap out a rod if it gets too bad.

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I haven’t used this yet, but I also haven’t forgotten this as an option.
Talked about by several “tubers” like Louisiana laser guy (not sure I’m naming him correctly)


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These are all amazing suggestions. I like the Bowser spikes idea. I did go with the heat sinks and found that they did a great job.