small model house from a range of different materials

Modelmaker House

Step by step guide

Learn how to create your own functional as well as practical desktop organizer, using a variety of materials. This small scale model house can hold up to four pens, and features an extra compartment to hold business cards. To complete this project, you will need two different types of cardboard, acrylic, wood, TroLase, and your laser machine.


Materials required :

3 mm solid alderwood
2 mm transparent Acrylic
0.8 mm TroLase white/black
1 mm gray graphic cardboard
0.5 mm black cardboard - printed on one side (Max Bringmann KG)

Trotec Laser Used:

  • Speedy 360
  • 80 watts
  • 1.5 inch lens

Step by Step

Step 1: Laser process

For your reference, you will find the individual parameters of each step listed throughout. At the bottom of this page, our template for this tutorial can be found in a downloadable PDF format, which features all of the parameters used in an .xml file. Be sure to import the parameters into JobControl® to save time, and avoid the need of retyping each individual value!

Step 2: Black cardboard – body of the house​

It is very important to ensure that the table’s exhaust system is set to its maximum when laser engraving and laser cutting the body of the house. For the best available results, layer the remaining processing area with cardboard or paper.

Laser Settings

Engraving 1 (black): Power: 24% - Speed:40% - Frequency: 500 ppi- Air-Assist: ON
Engraving 2 (red): Power: 7.5% - Speed:5% - Frequency: 500 ppi - Air-Assist: ON
Engraving 3 (blue): Power: 30% - Speed:40% - Frequency: 500 ppi - Air-Assist: ON

Cutting 1 (aqua): Power: 9% - Speed:2% - Frequency: 1000 Hz - Air-Assist: ON
Cutting 2 (lightgreen): Power: 11% - Speed:1% - Frequency: 1000 Hz - Air-Assist: ON


When removing this portion from the laser machine, be cautious of the little bird perched on the balcony as it can be susceptible to bending.  

Step 3: Gray cardboard – masonry front

Be sure to apply double-sided tape against the cardboard backing prior to starting the laser cutting process. This additional step will produce adhesive surfaces that fit perfectly, making the assembly of the model house quick and easy later on.

To achieve maximum extraction, it is important to cover the entire processing area around the cardboard during this step as well.

Laser Settings

Engraving (black): Power: 30% - Speed: 10% - Frequency: 500 ppi - Air-Assist: ON
Cutting 1 (red): Power: 10% - Speed: 2% - Frequency: 1000 Hz - Air-Assist: ON
Cutting 2 (blue): Power: 19% - Speed: 0.8% - Frequency: 1000 Hz - Air-Assist: ON

Alder wood – roof, balcony, window frames

Also apply double-sided tape to the alder wood.
The roof, balcony and window frames are cut out of the wood.

Laser Settings

Cutting 1 (black): Power: 20% - Speed:1% - Frequency: 1000 Hz - Air-Assist: ON - Z-Offset: 3
Cutting 2 (red): Power: 50% - Speed:0.8% - Frequency: 1000 Hz - Air-Assist: ON

Post laser processing, clean any smoke residue from the edges by using a damp cloth or mild detergent

Step 4: Acrylic – two windows

For optimal processing, we recommend using the acrylic grid when laser cutting the acrylic to prevent unsightly back reflections. Additionally, in order to direct the extraction performance solely onto the processing table, we advise closing the air flow shutter. Read more about air flow shutter adjustment here.

Laser Settings

Engraving (black): Power: 30% - Speed:50% - Frequency: 500ppi - Air-Assist: ON
Cutting (red): Power: 45% - Speed:0,2% - Frequency: 5000 Hz - Air-Assist: ON

Once you have laser cut and engraved the two windows, clean any smoke residue from the edges by using a damp cloth or mild detergent.

Step 5: TroLase white/black – two little windows

TroLase can be ordered with pre-applied, adhesive foil backing. All that is required is the placement of the material into the laser, followed by using our prepared parameters for the Speedy 360 (see downloads).

Laser Settings

Engraving (black): Power: 65% - Speed:80% - Frequency: 600 ppi - Air-Assist: ON - Z-Offset: 1
Cutting (red): Power: 25% - Speed:1,2% - Frequency: 1000 Hz - Air-Assist: ON

Read more about Trotec Materials

Step 6: Assembly​

As detailed as this model house is, it couldn’t be easier to assemble!

Start by gather all of the parts together:

  1. The cardboard body
  2. The cardboard front (2 x)
  3. Three wooden parts (rood, balcony, and window frame)
  4. Two small TroLase windows
  5. Two small acrylic windows

The video shows you step-by-step instructions of the simple assembly process:

Step 7: Step-by-Step

With the black cardboard body in hand, begin folding the base frame utilizing the prepared fold lines. Be cautious of the small bird on the balcony to not cause any damage.    

Once the body of the building is established, proceed with attaching the roof by removing the protective foil backing, and applying it to the upper edge of the body.

There are two parts that makeup the masonry, i.e. the front of the house: A simple front and back which has been laser engraved with a masonry pattern. Start by gluing the two parts together, making sure that the engraving is left visible.

Prior to adhering the front piece to the body of the house, put the large acrylic window in place, which will then assist with the overall positioning. To ensure that all parts are properly adhered, be sure that the acrylic is clean on all sides, and that there are no visible fingerprints. Upon completed assembly, the back side will visibly show fingerprints, scratches, and dust, which is a natural for this type of material and assembly. Proceed with removing the protective film from the gray cardboard, and place the entire front against the body.

Take the second long window, and insert it into the recess. The window can be fixed into place by using the wooden window frame. If applied correctly, the window will cover the edge between the acrylic and cardboard exactly.

With the model house nearing completion, adhere the wooden balcony in place by positioning it above the round window on the black cardboard body. Lastly, insert the small TroLase windows into the large acrylic window slots.

Do you have a different Speedy or a different wattage?

No problem! Our material database is available to assist you configure, download, and import into JobControl® everything from parameters, to the various Trotec engraving materials for your particular device.

Trotec Material Database