Setting up your k40 laser – First run

This page is work in progress, suggest changes or addons to it in the comments.

Step 1: Install Corel Draw 12, X4, X8 or similar version.
Step 2: Install CorelLaser

Open CorelLaser. You can use this template to start with, it has one engraving layer and one cutting layer.

When CorelLaser is installed you will find this menu.
Click on the green pen icon.


Control your settings so its identical to this screen.


Most important setting is the mainboard, you may need to change this later if your machine operates very slow (a first sign of wrong mainboard selected)
You can find information about wich board you have on the controller board in your machine.

Next setting is to check your hardware device ID, you can find this on the controller board, se image below

Check out the other settings and make sure you have the same on your settings.

You are now ready to start your first test with the machine

Start with the “rectangle tool” in corel, make a box with the size of your choise, i made a 54x40mm box.

Select the box as shown in the picture, and in the top menu you see a line width set to “hairline”.
Change this to 0.001 and hit enter.

You are now ready for your first cut test.

Select CUT in the corel menu, the icon marked here

Click OK on the data setting, we did this in a earlier step.
Make sure the settings are still there.

Now you have this setup box (click to expand)

To explain some of the settings
Company and model is just the data about your machine.
Rotate: if you need to rotate or flip your design for mirrored cut/engravings.
Style: Cutting, engraving and marking. For this test we choose CUTTING.
Inside first is a good option if you make parts, the machine will cut the inner parts first and then the outer, preventing the part to fall down without the inner holes are cut.
Speed: I have a 3mm acrylic piece in my machine, you may have to test the speed and the power on your machine when testing your cut.
I would suggest 12mA power and 10mm/sec to start with.
Method: If you have combined engraving and cut in the same file, you can choose here.
In the template before, we split engraving and cut in two different layers, this will help you to run the engraving first, and cut later.
Pixel: set this to 1 step, and Repeat to 1 times

You are now ready to hit STARTING

More tips and tricks
Test similar design to learn how power and speed relates on your machine, this is different on most K40 and you cannot use the same settings someone else has. You need to find your optimal combo.

Comments (28)

  • Michelle Reply

    Thank you so much. This fixed all of my issues I was having!!

    7 April, 2018 at 07:13
  • mirko Reply

    hello, i have some problem with the setup of software. when i first connected the printer (just the electricity) my laser boot up and went to the origin (when there are the limit switches top-left). all normal but when i go inside the software and say inizialize machine it start going on bottom right corner searching for i think limit switches. i checked my parameters and they are all ok, do you have some suggestions?

    the laser when i inizialize the machine go for some time at nearly 45° than he rapid for like 5 cm to the right and it stopped.

    11 May, 2018 at 08:15
    • HP Persson Reply

      Make sure the end stops work, try activating them before the gantry goes to top left corner and see if it stops. Also check the cables to the end stops.

      11 May, 2018 at 10:17
      • mirko Reply

        found the problem. was a faulty connection of the main power supply to the board. i just rebuild the cable and now is fine

        15 May, 2018 at 08:26
      • Paul Reply

        Hi. My k40 does what it wants could really do with some help when I switch it on it stops somewhere different every time and makes a hell of a clattering noise .

        I only just bought it and I am beginning to think it’s a duff one ….any ideas please .

        27 January, 2019 at 15:03
  • anurag Reply

    Your explanation about the laser was very helpful. But I have a doubt about few parametes. What does it mean by pixel in the software? Is there any relation between the pixel and the DPI?

    11 May, 2018 at 14:10
    • HP Persson Reply

      It´s a bit diffuse, it can be used to interpret 2 or more pixels per motor step, which will make the outcome smaller, or leave bigger gaps in engravings. I have not tested this enough to know exactly what it does when cutting/engraving.

      11 May, 2018 at 14:14
    • Mike Rehmus Reply

      A pixel is a single dot in an image. It can be of any color. DPI or Dots Per Inch is a measure of how many pixels (dots) are found in a single linear inch. So, for example, 300 DPI has 300 pixels in that inch.

      10 January, 2019 at 02:59
  • Luca Schlegel Reply

    Hi! I just recently bought a K40 and what I’ve observed is that my machine seems to cut vertically without any problems. Horizontally however the machine pretty much refuses to do anything, even on cardboard at 50% power at 10mm/s. The machine itself seems pretty weak to begin with. Have you experienced this before?

    23 May, 2018 at 20:30
    • HP Persson Reply

      Make sure the laser is aligned properly, if you hit a edge on the mirrors or on the lens you will lose a lot of power. Try that first!

      23 May, 2018 at 20:33
  • Marcus Coons Reply

    I had no idea that you needed to consider the pixel when looking into laser cutting. It is important to remember that doing some research can help you understand how laser cutting works in order to get the best results. A friend of mine was talking about how he wanted to do some laser cutting, so I wanted to look into it for him.

    9 August, 2018 at 00:50
  • razvan Reply

    hallo My k40 cut and engrave bigger than the actual drawing and i dont know how to fix it …Any ideea what i do wrong ?

    1 September, 2018 at 14:45
    • HP Persson Reply

      Try to change the mainboard to something else, when it stops doing this – you have the correct board choosen. Other problems might be it running very slow on the wrong mainboard.

      3 September, 2018 at 13:58
    • Kevin Reply

      When i first made a cut part with my K40 laser it also came out bigger. I had to change the resolution to1002. That made the parts come out the correct size.

      12 September, 2018 at 20:55
      • HP Persson Reply

        Did you create the file in inkscape? newer versions of inkscape has changed the DPI settings, so some stuff might be larger than it should be. Google for “inkscape wrong dpi” to find more and how to solve it.

        12 September, 2018 at 22:20
  • Melinda Bowd Reply

    Feeling like an exhausted and frustrated idiot at the moment, and this is the first of what feels like a million searches that actually makes sense! So thanks!
    I do laser engraving on wooden items.
    Everything was working nicely with CorelDRAW 12 all set up, file new; file import; laser running; start! All good!! Now I’ve had to replace machine… so everything’s the same set up in corelDraw, but coming out as just badly burnt lines. Please help me??

    11 September, 2018 at 10:40
    • HP Persson Reply

      Make sure you are properly set in focus, to me it sounds like you are either too close or to far away. check out the article about proper focus.

      12 September, 2018 at 22:19
  • roger neilsen Reply

    A query about setup material in laser in sync with computer drawing if that makes sence
    IE where to put matererial in laser so that the drawing starts at same place on meteria as computer kind regards rogar1

    14 October, 2018 at 04:26
    • HP Persson Reply

      For pens, and other stuff i need to engrave on both sides i use jigs. And in the corder of the bed i have a L-shape where the jigs are “zeroed”. I cut the hole in the jig and then use the same template to know where to put text or symbols to engrave on the pieces. Check out the facebook-group and serch for jigs and youll see a bunch of examples.

      14 October, 2018 at 21:42
  • Glenn Midkiff Reply

    I installed the Corel draw that was on the cd that came with the k40 but it asked for a key code to install but I can’t find a key code anywhere on the cd or in any of the programs on the cd. Where did y’all get the code key or Corel draw without paying big bucks?

    4 January, 2019 at 05:33
    • HP Persson Reply

      Most corel versions are cracked and do not need a serial at all. Do not upgrade the version you install, it will need a legit serial if you do.

      4 January, 2019 at 12:28
      • Glenn Midkiff Reply

        Without the key code it won’t let me go any further

        4 January, 2019 at 16:25
    • Styxbb Reply

      The serial number is buried on the cd. On mine the file is called sn.txt

      10 January, 2019 at 16:02
  • Vanessa Vera Reply

    Is there anyway to adjust the thickness of the material it will cut? I have wood that is 3.302mm thick, but it wont cut, just engrave.

    20 March, 2019 at 18:59
  • Hanif Reply

    Hello sir… my machine is very slow when engraveing. Can you help me?

    7 April, 2019 at 18:58
    • HP Persson Reply

      Change mainboard in the settings of your software, when you have the correct mainboard it will be fast.

      7 April, 2019 at 21:13

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