Laser cut gift #1: nightlights

I bought a NEJE A40640 laser module a few months back. After playing with it for a couple of days, I decided to use it for my handmade gifts this year, partly because I was enamored of what it could create, and partly as learning experiences. I had big plans for a wide variety of items, but life started getting in the way. In particular I was only going to be in the same location as my laser for a limited amount of time, so I scaled things back to just laser cutting…the only thing I’d spent time doing with the laser to that point. I abandoned things that would take time to dial in like engraved tiles, edge-lit signs, and rubber stamps.

There is a huge number of files (both free and paid) for laser cut projects on the net, but I don’t like simply crafting things that others have designed. On the other hand, I have very little artistic ability, so I typically collage ideas together, or repurpose design ideas. That means my results are often inferior to the source idea, but I get a lot more joy out of the activity. And while I had limited time with my laser, I did have a decent amount design time.

When I was about 80% done with my laser cutting, my laser died. Near as I can figure, the air assist line got tangled and pulled out. Without air assist, the material flared up and caught the air assist nozzle on fire (3D printed in ASA). It was a 5-minute laser job, and I was in the shop at the time, so that is how fast it can happen. The result was a cracked lens in the laser module. It should be an easy and inexpensive fix, but NEJE laser replacement parts come out of China, so it will be January before I have the lens for a fix.

Since Ryan has asked for a single make per topic, I apologize in advance for the gush of topics. My first project was nightlights.

I love the thin detail on this hummingbird…almost looks like quilling. I had to do this hummingbird four times before I got the balance between detail and avoiding dropouts.


Several great projects. Very nice cad work and great results.

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