Darkly Labs Community

3D Maze from solid piece of wood

The team has been experimenting with some 3D engraving lately.

Here’s a 3D maze they engraved out of solid pine.









Machine: Emblaser 2

Material: 19mm Pine

Software: Laserweb

Operation: Laser Raster

Power (min/max): 0-100%

Speed: 400mm/min

Passes: 2

Starting Height: 27.5mm (cutting mat was used)

Pass Depth: 2.5mm

Air-Assist: ON 




That is impressive.

That is very cleanly done. Where does the 27.7mm starting height come from given that its 19mm thick pine on a 10mm mat?

I got to try 3d engraving!


This was from a little trial and error.

Since the wood is soft, we were able to achieve a little more depth by starting the engraving slightly lower than the surface of the material (1.5mm down from the top).

Here is another one of our tests.

We attempted to make a maze game involving a ball bearing, and were pretty successful.


Machine: Emblaser 2

Material: 19mm Pine

Software: Laserweb

Operation: Laser Raster

Power (min/max): 0-100%

Speed: 350mm/min

Passes: 1

Starting Height: 27.5mm (cutting mat was used)

Air-Assist: ON 

That looks  very good. This  inspired me to  have a play with a bit of 19mm  Bunnings pine that I had and found that with the above settings one pass at 3mm/sec will engrave to a depth of  just under 4mm, which is very impressive.

A couple of things I noted, and these are  Laserweb issues not Emblaser ones  - firstly  the laser raster option leaves a bit of a pixellated edge, albeit that you have to look pretty closely to see it.  Wanting to get rid of this  I took the same bitmap, put it into Inkscape and converted it to a path, then sent that BACK to laserweb and created 2 toolpaths, one with the laser fill option using the  same above settings to do the engraving and then one set to laser cut but 50% power to clean up the edge. Comparing the two results the depth of  cut is the same but  the second one with the edge looks a lot neater - through a magnifying glass at least…

Here are some pics , apologies for the blurriness because these are pretty small, but the lefthand tail of the  'K" is obviously a bit more jagged in the top picture (laser raster) compared to the bottom one (laser fill and then laser cut)


.Secondly  the raster option had the laser head trundling back and forth across the whole work area, turning the laser off where it didn’t need to do anything, whereas the laser fill option just travelled along the path that needed burning. I didn’t time the two to see the difference, I wish I had.

I’m interested in trying the same thing on some hardwoods I’ve got to see how it goes there, but I’m really loving the Emblaser 2,

The fine detail it can do is just  amazing:



(and I love my my Emblaser 1 too, in case its reading this!)

Chris J

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Chris J,

The star looks very impressive The tilting of each layer works really well.

We had the same issue with the laser moving all the way over the entire workspace, where it turned the laser off (or very low) on white areas. The way around this is in laser web, when doing a Laser Raster, there is an option to “Burn Whites”, with that option turned off, the laser will move faster over white areas of an image.

Thanks Chris, I didn’t notice that option. 

(The option of cross-hatch would be nice too!)

Encouraged by others I had a play this morning.  I pocketed some pine and melted in some floor repair wax as an inlay. Sort of worked but it’s a bit too soft to work.  I have used 5 minute epoxies with paint added to colour for pocketing and this works well. Also, I will look at a timber inlay next.

Also I tried some Ash hardwood and it is also very good for pocketing. Pics below are as described.



I forgot to comment on the depth of cut. Pine - 2 passes 4.2mm         Hardwood  - 1 pass 1.8mm. 

Hi Daryl,

Filling the pocket is something we have discussed. We thought 5 min epoxy would not allow it to be smoothly sanded and polished flush. Do you find this?

We were wanting to test some casting resin but haven’t done that yet.

Thx for the info


Daryl, you stole my ‘K’!

Another technique is to use powered metals and super glue. You can buy powdered copper brass etc from craft supply websites.

Theres a bloke in the US that has a DVD out on the technique, though it basically just says to fill the pocket with runny CA and mix the powder into it and charges 30 bucks or so for the knowledge.


He also sells the powder which admittedly I have found  is finer then the stuff from the above mentioned websites and looks pretty spectacular.


Chris J



Hi Chris and Domenic,

5 minute epoxy works well. I mix it with acrylic paint, the stuff you buy in the tubes.  Really, any colouring will work as long as it mixes well.  You may get an issue with air bubbles but running a heat gun on the epoxy before it sets will work.  You could also use fibreglass resin as that’s all epoxy is.  Polyester resin would work well as it cures in about half an hour and gives you a bit more working time than the 5 minute stuff.  Bunnings sell it in small cans. 

The big issue with using a resin fill, is stopping it from bleeding into the timber outside the work. I usually seal the timber around the job first before laying in the epoxy.

Yes the epoxy sands back and polishes well. Just slop it in, overfill, allow to dry overnight and sand back.

Ha ha Chris I believe the K is open source. In fact I use that font a lot.  Just completed a couple of signs for my granddaughter using it.

Attached is a pic of a ukulele I made using epoxy infill around the sound hole - the black and red rings.


Well I did  a quick inlay job and I’m more than happy with the outcome.  I added a bit too much tolerance to the insert so it was a slightly loose fit as is evident by the kerf line. 

I will certainly be using the E2 for future inlay work.





Male inlay cut in Cedar



End Result 


Thats great.

 I guess you are creating the gcode in Vector2Dlaser  rather than Laserweb? If so have you played around with the cut inside/outside settings in  there to get the kerf down or do you factor it into the original artwork?

Thanks Chris,

Yeah it was created in CUT2D-L. The nature of what I do is predominately vector based.  I did tell the toolpath to cut inside which in looking at the job, I didn’t need to do. Over the weekend I will recreate the job using those toolpath settings to see what gives me best fit for future reference. Also, the fill was 50% 500mm/min and a single pass with the laser at optimum focus to give me a nice sharp edge.

Just more playing around while waiting for my new air assist pump to arrive!

This is cheap pine from the above post, with the pocket filled with powdered copper, flooded with thin super glue then  polished with 12000 grit polishing mesh.

The photo has picked up a couple of holes, but it was  just a rushed job in my shed so I could come back into the warm!


That’s a really nice effect. Certainly takes care of any roughness at the base of the pocketing from the laser.