2. Pricing for Laser Cutting

The cost of a laser-cut part is determined by how long the parts take to cut on the machine, the amount of labor involved (unloading and verifying parts), and the amount of risk involved in cutting a part (multiple medium-sized pieces are less risky to cut than a single large piece that takes hours to cut).

Here are some factors that affect the price of laser-cut parts:

  • Laser cutting cost: The laser cutting charge is based on the time it takes to cut the parts, which depends on the material type and thickness. For example, cutting 1/8" acrylic starts at roughly $0.15 per inch. Please see the list of materials on our quote request form to see the cost per inch for cutting your material. There is a $3 minimum charge per unique part and a $1 minimum per additional copy of each part. We do lower these minimums for simple parts or for large quantities.
  • Laser engraving cost: Raster engraving and vector engraving start at $1.00 per square inch. Raster engraving larger areas starts at $60 per square foot. Long, continuous vector engraving lines cost roughly $0.10 per inch. We do provide discounts off of these rates on a case-by-case basis.
  • Material costs: We stock various plastics (acrylic, ABS, Mylar, PETG, and styrene), which we sell by the square foot. You may also mail us your own material or have a supplier ship it to us directly. Here are some prices for plastic we stock; we provide discounts if you require larger quantities:
    • 3 mm ABS: starts at $4/sq. ft.
    • 3 mm birch plywood: starts at $5/sq. ft.
    • 3 mm acrylic: starts at $5/sq. ft.
    • 6 mm acrylic: starts at $10/sq. ft.
  • Minimum order: There is a $25 minimum order per material type (the minimum includes charges for labor and materials). We do lower this minimum if your design is simple or if your quantities are large.
  • Shipping: We can add shipping costs or charge to FedEx shipping accounts.
  • Optional charges:
    • Expediting services: Rushing an order costs 20% – 50% more (on top of the standard-turn price) per expedited day, depending on what your standard turn time is. The standard turn time for most parts is 3-5 business days.
    • File creation: $60 per hour with a $15 minimum
    • Handling fee: Large or delicate parts that require custom packaging will incur a handling charge, which can range from $10 – $50.
  • Exceptions: We do make exceptions to our minimums and pricing depending on the parts. If your parts are particularly simple to handle and cut, we will provide more competitive pricing. On the other hand, we are less likely to discount our rates if your parts are more difficult or risky to cut, such as:
    • Single large or complex parts that take a long time to cut
    • Parts that involve a lot of careful or tedious handling (such as very small parts or fragile parts), which are more time consuming to verify and unload from our machines.
    • Parts that have many small, sharp, acute angles and small details (such as the frills in a dress), which tend to melt back into the scrap plastic and become difficult to remove from the sheet.
    • Parts that have many disjointed cuts (such as an array of small holes or a lace pattern), which take longer to cut since the laser cutting head has to stop and move from cut to cut more often than when it cuts along a continuous path.

Expediting costs for laser cutting

The standard turn time for most parts is 3-5 business days assuming you do not need many hundreds or thousands of parts. If you need the parts more quickly, we generally charge 20% – 50% more per expedited day depending on the standard turn time (the percentage is such that the minimum turn will cost double the standard turn price). Here are examples for cutting a minimum order of parts with a standard 3-day turn and standard 5-day turn:

Sample prices for expedited service on a 3-day standard-turn order:
Turn time Price
3 business days $25 base price for standard turn time
2 bus. days $33.25, added 33% ($8.25) to base price
1 bus. days $41.50, added 66%
Same-day service $50, added 100% (double the price of standard turn)

Sample prices for expedited service on a 5-day standard-turn order:
Turn time Price
5 business days $25 base price for standard turn time
4 bus. days $30, added 20% ($5) to base price
3 bus. days $35, added 40%
2 bus. days $40, added 60%
1 bus. day $45, added 80%
Same-day service $50, added 100% (double the price of standard turn)

To place an expedited order, fill out the quote request form, indicating that you would like your order to be expedited. After receiving your quote, you will be given a list of expedited options for the order.

File creation costs for laser cutting

If you are not able to provide a vector-format file of your parts for laser cutting (DXF, DWG, CDR, AI, SVG, or PDF file), we might be able to draw your part on the computer for you for $60 per hour with a $15 minimum.

To request a quote that includes file creation, please submit a standard file type in the quote request form that communicates exactly the part you need. The file can be any file type that we can read, such as a text file with a written description, a scan of a hand sketch (JPG, GIF, BMP, PDF), a mock-up in Word, Paint, or Excel, etc. For more information, please see Section 5.

Related Products

Custom Laser Cutting Service
Log In
Pololu Robotics & Electronics
Shopping cart
(702) 262-6648
Same-day shipping, worldwide
Shop Blog Forum Support
My account Comments or questions? About Pololu Contact Ordering information Distributors