We have had a lot of fun with our Glowforge Laser Cutter! The other day thought it would be neat to make a puzzle with it. Turns out others have had the same idea, and there are already tools to do this!
Working with the Glowforge is super easy. You can use most image files for the graphics and you can use SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) files for cuts.
A fellow Glowforge owner named Draradech built a super handy tool for generating SVG cut files for puzzles. You basically just select some parameters and it spits out the SVG file...too cool! In this case, I made a 9x9 puzzle that was 240 x 175 mm:
You can engrave graphics into wood or acrylic with the Glowforge and then cut out the pieces, but on the first time I did this it made a puzzle that was way too hard. Instead, I took a picture from an old calendar and put it on some 3mm birch plywood with spray adhesive:
After gluing the picture to the wood, I let it cure for 1 hour. I then uploaded the SVG file into the Glowforge user interface. I placed the cut lines onto the image, allowing a 1/4" gap all around since the Glowforge has about a 1/4" tolerance in terms of where you place the image/cuts. Here are some pics from the Glowforge UI as well as video of the Glowforge running:
And here is the final result! After wiping off the smoke residue from the picture, it looked great! I glued the frame to an uncut piece of wood to finish everything off.
Total time invested was about 10 minutes, not including the runtime of 5 minutes on the Glowforge. Pretty awesome!