Darkly Labs Community

How to hold boards

on my em2 I find my 3mm board need something to hold them down

otherwise they move on the second pass

anything better for hold downs than tape

There’s posts around here where people are using strong magnets


Love my magnets.

Love my magnets.

Me too, except my puny IT contractor fingers are too feeble to pull them off of the steel base - I just slide them around…

Ha ha…me too.  Mine are ex IT fingers with rheumatism thrown in.  Sometimes I can’t even slide the little buggers!

So a clue to what size and strength to magnets

Photo be nice

image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg

Hmmm… thats less than I paid!

Seems everything is better in Vic - (except Opera Houses, Harbour Bridges and AFL teams!)

These magnetic hold down boards look awesome! I also saw in another thread that some people just use the metal base of the E2 and sandwich the plywood between magnets. My question is about the laser reflecting off the steel, or making marks in it, or causing burns or smoke staining on the underside? Daryl what thickness MDF is that hold down base you made? Looks like you pocketed that piece of steel into the MDF…what is the overall thickness of the hold down base…more than 10mm? I need to make one and buy some magnets, because I think most of the issues I am having with the plywood is from it not being flat.

Ha ha Chris - I think the magnets shipped from QLD.  NOTE that price was for 2 That’s 200  :slight_smile:   I don’t use screws for anything any more. 

David, there is some marking on the steel - mainly moisture coming out of the ply/glue it wipes off with Methylated spirits. However you could paint it but, it’s really only an aid. . Yes the steel is pocketed into the MDF and the work height with magnets is 11.5mm.   Very important for consistent cutting that your material is as flat as you can possibly get it -  otherwise affectively, the laser is not in focus where your material has lifted.

Thanks Daryl. I am going to order the magnets and make a hold down board like yours. I knew most of my ply issues are from it not being flat

David when using the steel plate, use magnets under the ply as standoffs so the ply is above the plate.  Also, if you don’t want magnets on top of the ply on a particular job as they may be in the way of your engraving work, simply stick the magnets on the underneath of the ply with double sided tape. I use picture framers tape which is super thin so doesn’t alter your height calcs.