Should I remove the protective film/paper before laser engraving?

Laser Q&ACategory: Application QuestionsShould I remove the protective film/paper before laser engraving?
Serena Staff asked 11 months ago
1 Answers
Jordan Staff answered 11 months ago

Generally yes, but there are some cases where you may choose to leave it on.
 
The protective film is usually either paper or plastic and is there to prevent scratching or damaging your material.
 
Plastic films must be removed before engraving or cutting otherwise it can melt into your material and ruin it, whereas paper films are ok however they can have a negative effect on your results if left on resulting in uneven engraving or missed areas especially for small detailed designs.
 
If you are engraving larger filled areas some customers choose to leave the protective paper on which acts like a mask and prevents all the engraving residue from settling on the surface during the process, so once the job is complete you simply remove the paper to find your perfectly clean job below.
 
Same applies to cutting where you can leave the paper on as a mask which will give you a much cleaner finish once the cutting is complete.
 
One thing to keep in mind though is that if you are cutting a large number of smaller parts it can be very time consuming to remove the paper from each individual part if left on!