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How to Create Connected Text — Inkscape for Laser Cutting

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When laser engraving, the use of connected fonts often helps us achieve stunning creative results. Connected fonts, where each letter seamlessly connects to the next, are not only attractive to look at, but also practical for laser cutting. They ensure that the entire text is cut as a single, coherent part. They're fantastic for things like signs, customized presents, wedding decorations, cake toppers, and other such things. Unfortunately, there are not many completely connected free fonts available. In this article, I will show you how to turn your text into one completely connected form.


There is no doubt that the easiest way would be to use a line at the bottom to connect all letters or to reduce the space between letters. But it's clear that this method of creating fonts can result in a less aesthetically pleasing appearance and, to a certain extent, make the words difficult to recognize.



So I'm going to guide you on how to make a beautiful connected font. The software I am using is Inkscape, a free and open-source vector graphics editor.


1. Choose Your Text

  • Select the Text Tool or press the "T" key on your keyboard.
  • Click on the canvas where you want your text to appear.
  • Type your desired text.
  • Use the drop-down list on the top left to choose your preferred font.


2. Turn the Text into Path

  • Ensure your text is selected; it should have a dotted bounding box around it. If not selected, hover over the text with your mouse and left-click once.
  • In the top menu, click on "Path" and then choose "Object to Path" (keyboard shortcut: Shift+Ctrl+C).

  • Initially, it may seem like nothing has changed. However, upon closer inspection, you'll notice two things: You can no longer select or edit the text with the Text Tool. Switch to the Select Tool (keyboard shortcut: S).
  • Once selected, check the info box at the bottom. It will indicate that the text has turned into a group of objects, with each letter becoming an individual object. The total number of objects will vary depending on the length of your text.


3. Ungroup and Add a Stroke

  • Ungroup the text: Right-click on the text group and select "Ungroup," or use the Select Tool to select the group, then click on the Ungroup Symbol (keyboard shortcut: Shift+Ctrl+G).

  • Add a stroke to the letters: With the letters still selected, hold the Shift key and click on a color in the color palette at the bottom of the screen to add an outline in your chosen color around each letter.
  • Adjust the stroke width: Click on the number next to the stroke color at the bottom left of the screen to open the "Fill and Stroke" menu on the right side. Edit the number in the "Width" field to change the stroke width.
  • Observe individual letters: With the stroke added, you can now clearly see that each letter is an individual object.
  • Zoom for manual editing: If necessary, zoom into areas where manual editing is needed to connect letters (e.g., if the “p” does not connect to the “l”). Zoom in Inkscape by pressing "+" (to zoom in) or "–" (to zoom out).


4. Add missing connections

  • Add the missing connection by drawing a short line.
  • Select the Bezier (Pen) Tool (keyboard shortcut: B).
  • Click within the "p" to establish the first anchor point, then click within the "l" to set the second anchor point.
  • To finish the line, right-click.

- Tip: To create a curved line, press and hold the left mouse button while dragging your mouse when setting the second anchor point.

  • Edit anchor points using the Nodes Tool (keyboard shortcut: N). To reposition a point, click and drag it. You can also adjust the line's shape by clicking and dragging the line itself.
  • After selecting the line, adjust the stroke width to match the font's appearance.


5. Stroke to Path

  • Select the line.
  • Go to "Path" in the top menu.
  • Choose "Stroke to Path" (keyboard shortcut: Ctrl+Alt+C).

  • After this transformation, the line becomes a filled shape.


6. Final Step

  • Select everything by using Ctrl+A (keyboard shortcut) or the Select Tool to drag a rectangle around all objects.
  • In the top menu, go to "Path" and select "Union" (keyboard shortcut: Ctrl++). This will transform your text into a single connected shape.
  • To remove the fill color, click on the white field with the red "x" in the color palette.

And then you get a connected font text that can be used to laser cutting.
There is an easier and quicker way if you are short on time.
Firstly, you need to find the right connected text from the material site.

Secondly, open the lightburn and paste the chosen connected text.
Then, Click the right mouse button and select "Trace Image".


Learning never stops!!!

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