Laser Cutting Pocket into Book

Finished Design by Lusha Huang. This is a project by Lusha Huang, Product of Design department. We've developed a technique for laser cutting into a bound book to create a pocket for storage. One main concern was the multiple page thickness would trap the heat and catch on fire. Lusha came up with a great idea to separate and cut just a few pages by inserting a thin stainless steel sheet. We went with 4-page cut sections and incrementally cut to the desire depth. This worked well and prevented a potential fire hazard. One thing to improve from this method was an overall alignment, because we had to open the book to allow for the cutting head to pass the binding opens and tilts all the pages to a slant. But all in all it worked well, here's the step by step.

CIMG2107-800 First we start with a flat sheet of material, in this case 1/4" masonite. Measure the overall border dimension of your book. Vector cut a light line onto the masonite surface. This is used to align your artwork to the X,Y coordinates of the laser cutter.

CIMG2109-800 Tape the back cover of your book onto this outline. From this point on make sure to not move the book or masonite out of alignment.

CIMG2110-800 From the first page that you want to cut, count down 4 pages and insert the stainless steel plate. We've set the laser printer to Speed:80 Cut:20 Frequency:750. Do a test to determent these values for your selected medium.

CIMG2138-800 After a test run, this is the final book we'll cut into. Tape down both sides while the book is in the open position.

CIMG2140-800 CIMG2143-800 This is a very important step, make sure to bring down the laser bed before cutting. Otherwise there's a change the cutting head will run into the height of the book.

CIMG2146-800 And let the cutting begin!