After trying the xTool M1, I was so excited to try another from the xTool laser line-up! xTool sent me their F1 portable laser engraver to try out – it’s smaller than the M1 but can engrave on more things! In this xTool F1 review I will tell you about features of the F1 and show you this cool project I made with it – custom leather tags for hats, bags and clothing!
The xTool F1 is portable, which means you can bring it to craft fairs. It’s also portable in that you can lift it onto larger object to engrave things that don’t fit in it, such as large wooden signs.
It’s also really fast at engraving which is so cool!
xTool F1 Laser Engraved Leatherette Tags
These tags are so fun to add to projects and clothing! They are leatherette material that can be engraved in the F1.
The leatherette tags come in a few different colors and have a layer underneath of another color. My brown and black tags both have gold underneath so you can see some of the gold showing through the design.
I included these designs that you can download and use on a laser cutter machine. They are super fast and easy to make with the xTool F1 – they took between 20 seconds and 2 minutes for each tag.
I thought this process would be neat, especially after engraving things with the M1, but these tags are beyond cool! I learned a few things as I was making them.
There is a settings guide in the package of leatherette tags. It will tell you what power and speed to set the F1 laser to. I had the settings wrong for the first few and burnt them a little more than I should have. Once I got the settings right the designs come out so nice!
Here are the supplies I used for this project:
I made my first couple of tags without the Desktop Smoke Purifier and quickly decided I needed to set that up. It made a huge difference in the smoke smell in my house! I wouldn’t use this machine without it, although I didn’t notice any smell when engraving metal.
You can download these designs here:
Upload your design to xTool Creative Space. Then resize it to about 63.5mm which will be a good size for the leatherette tags.
Now you’ll want to trace your design.
Set the design to Engrave and then Laser flat> Artificial Leather and the settings will be calibrated for you. Then hit “Framing” at the bottom right to get an outline on your project space.
This is what the framing function does, it outlines the design so you can place your materials correctly below the laser.
Then you can go to Process. The software will prompt you to push the start button the machine (top right). Now sit back and watch it work!
The laser is pretty fast! It did this design in a little over a minute.
When you’re done you can lift the case to see your results!
You will want to make a whole bunch more! (If you give a crafter a laser engraver…)
I also learned that thinner lines will show the gold better. I love them all, even the ones I think I may have overexposed but the floral ones turned out so pretty.
After you laser a design on them, you can peel the back paper off and use an iron to attach it to your project!
I used a layer of cotton between the iron and the tag to prevent damage.
Between this project and a DIY Pom pom, you can customize beanies however you want!
These Leatherette tags will be great for backpacks, jackets or even homemade zipper pouches. I’m not sure I will be able to stop, it’s too fun!
xTool F1 Review: xTool F1 vs xTool M1
Overall, I both of these machines are amazing tools that will elevate your crafting.
I think the M1 is a bit easier to use because of the scan function. The M1 also has more capabilities as it cuts with both the laser and a blade. However, it is slower and projects are limited to what you can fit inside. The M1 is also cheaper with a price point closer to $1000.
The F1 is perfect for the business crafter since it’s so fast and portable. You can take this to a craft show and create customized works on the spot! I also love it because it’s much smaller than the M1 setup and truly fits on a desktop without a lot of extra space needed. The technology in the f1 is a bit more expensive and machine will cost about $1600.
Both machines are incredibly easy to set up and the software is intuitive. I love how easy it is to use the xTool materials and can solidly recommend them as great machines!
More crafts to try
I hope you enjoyed this xTool F1 Review! For more fun crafts check out these tutorials: