Two Inkscape Quirks

Recently Jon ran into two¬†problems printing to Retina Engrave 3D from Inkscape. We don’t understand all the ins and outs, but there would appear to be some bugs somewhere. I’ll describe the symptoms and the workarounds we found. Maybe that will be helpful if you happen to run into similar problems.

Problem 1 manifested as missing vector objects. That is, some of the stuff that was drawn in Inkscape mysteriously didn’t make it onto RE3D’s vector screen. What we found was that one of the vectors had been drawn with partial transparency. That is, its A (alpha) setting on the Stroke Paint tab of the Fill and Stroke palette was set to a value other than 255. Apparently this made that vector block out other objects in its vicinity from being printed.

Problem 2 was that the raster screen in RE3D only showed part of the drawing. In this instance, a yellow vector rectangle had been drawn around the entire drawing with the express purpose of forcing the raster and vector screens to have the same extent (a useful trick that allows you to print subsets of your drawing and keep everything in perfect alignment). However, the vector rectangle was being ignored for raster purposes, even though it showed up on the vector screen. A workaround for this was to fill the rectangle with yellow, and move it all the way to the back of the drawing so it didn’t interfere with any of the other raster data.

So, if you use Inkscape:

  1. Don’t use transparency in drawings for the laser, and
  2. Fill objects you need to see on the raster screen.

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