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Hello this is a tutorial used to create a GIS laser cut contour map.

Tools/Software needed

QGIS – Free
LaserWeb 4 running on a K40 40w Laser


  1. Download QGISA A free and open source Geographic Information System software from here
  2. Download your GIS data as im using UK coastlines ive used OS terrain data from here  i downloaded the ESRI shapefiles
  3. Sort through the different shapefiles until you find the correct data set for the location you are planning to plot
  4. Export the project to DXF and open in Illustrator/Inkscape – select all the artwork and ‘Fit Artwork to Selected Bounds’
  5. Select all artwork and give the contours a stroke of 0.01pt
  6. Then select the coastline – i had to delete the lowtide mark and join some lines due to the harbours and estuary. Copy the layer and paste into a new layer called ‘Coastline’
  7. Delete the selected coastline in the original layer then select the remaining contours and paste into a new layer called ‘Contours’
  8. You then need to clean up the coastline and contours so there is a clear definition between the two, i had a few island outcrops and odd small single lines i had to delete. It should now look like below
  9. Export or Save As SVG

Open LaserWeb for install instructions –


To be continued -im waiting for a dedicated PC to run the laser cutter