After a few queries and questions, had a long look at the laser last night with Matt C
I used a known job, (one i’ve run 10 or 15 times) as the standard and cut 3mm Acrylic from a sheet i’ve had in the car for weeks so lots of known knowns. The job is a mixed bitmap engrave and vector cut.
The first point to note is that no-one should have to be messing with the print settings for the laser, if there’s an issue its probably Not these settings. please leave them as you find them or as per the instructions on Laser Cutter - Trotec Speedy 300
Next, once we got it cutting (see next section for that joyful couple of hours or pain) it seemed to work well with the engraving being good and clean and the edges smooth. I didn’t see excessive smoke and what smoke I saw got extracted at a reasonable rate.
The lens and mirror also looked fine as did the extract vents at the back of the machine.
On to the issues.
Inkscape appears to be fundamentally broken and I ‘think’ we know why.
When we were sending a mixed mode job to the laser from Inkscape, it would not recognise the vector cut, only the engrave. this, as above, is a job that has worked previously loads of times.
We tried all sorts of settings and played with Inkscape but every combination appeared to send the vector (lines) as messy bitmaps. This is obvious by changing the Materials setting in the Trotec software from cut to engrave. in cut you get 0.00 no matter what you do but switch to engrave and you get 200.00 secs or some other daft number. the driver is not seeing/receiving the vector and it appears as a corrupt bitmap. Illustrator sends fine.
After a lot of playing and with Matt Goggling, it appear that Inkscape have changed the vector handling in the later versions and our theory is that the Trotec can’t understand this new format when sending multi mode jobs.
By way of a check, we fired up the job in Inkscape, ungrouped everything so each element was separately editable and then Copy/Pasted the job to Adobe illustrator.
From here, you can adjust each element (so we know Illustrator has understood the job) and if you Print, the job works fine on the Trotec with both Engrave and Vector cut working as designed.
Looking on the web, as above, Inkscape appears to have changed the handling of vectors (lots of complaints)
Unfortunately, the Inkscape download site was off line last night so we couldn’t test this further.
I think the next stage of testing would be to completely remove Inkscape from the laser pc and download/install the last known good version 0.92 - if we’re right, this version should work with the Trotec driver as previous.
This is an ongoing investigation but I think were getting close to the source of some of the issues. be good if we can use this thread to complete the investigation.
i’m not about this weekend, @lasertechs / members, can someone have a look at downgrading the software ?