Help a Laser Dummy

DigitalDaze
Posts: 59
Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2015 4:54 am
Location: Houston-ish, TX

Help a Laser Dummy

Post by DigitalDaze » Thu May 12, 2016 10:51 pm

So I just ordered the XL expansion pack....but I also want to add a laser etched (or cutter).

Wanting to get the biggest bang for my buck, I am thinking 2.5 watt, 445nm is probably what I'll end up with. Although, for cutting purposes, I want the 3.5 watt laser.

I know that I need a laser with a TTL driver to accompany the laser, but (other than eye protection) what else do I need?

Also, is the only difference between a 5V and 12V laser mean that I can power it from the Shapeoko control board or have to have a separate power supply?

Also, how do I control it? Have a wiring diagram on how to wire it to the control board?

Also....where can I get protective sheets to surround the machine so anyone isn't accidently injured when they come onto the same room while it is working?

picengravertoo
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Joined: Fri Sep 12, 2014 3:23 pm
Location: Florida
Contact:

Re: Help a Laser Dummy

Post by picengravertoo » Fri May 13, 2016 1:55 pm

Shapeoko 2 Laser Diode Engraver-Analog/TTL/PWM
PicEngrave Pro 6 Image to Gcode for grbl/Mach3 controllers-Spindle/Laser
PicLaser: Image to Gcode With Editor
PicSender: Streams grbl Raster/Vector Gcodes
https://www.picengrave.com

WillAdams
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Re: Help a Laser Dummy

Post by WillAdams » Fri May 13, 2016 2:15 pm

FWIW, we do have a bit on the wiki on this --- http://www.shapeoko.com/wiki/index.php/Laser_Cutter --- but it would be great to have more.

Really need to find the time to finish up some pending projects (rebuilding my SO1, getting my Ordbot working w/ an Azteeg X5 mini v2 and Viki 2 LCD, clearing the basement to have room for the XL upgrade...) and then find occasion to do a laser upgrade on one of my machines.
Shapeoko 3XL #0006 w/ Carbide Compact Router w/0.125″ and ¼″ Carbide 3D precision collets
Nomad 883 Pro #596 (bamboo)

DigitalDaze
Posts: 59
Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2015 4:54 am
Location: Houston-ish, TX

Re: Help a Laser Dummy

Post by DigitalDaze » Fri May 13, 2016 2:29 pm

WillAdams wrote:FWIW, we do have a bit on the wiki on this --- http://www.shapeoko.com/wiki/index.php/Laser_Cutter --- but it would be great to have more.

Really need to find the time to finish up some pending projects (rebuilding my SO1, getting my Ordbot working w/ an Azteeg X5 mini v2 and Viki 2 LCD, clearing the basement to have room for the XL upgrade...) and then find occasion to do a laser upgrade on one of my machines.

I read that on the wiki, and while there is information about a few projects and about kits you can buy, there isn't anything really for the folks (like me) who need a detailed step by step on making this thing work..... there are some High Level steps outlined, but the details have escaped me.

I suppose what I was trying to do is piece this together myself to save some cash and get a stronger, more versatile tool for the cost. But I don't know what I don't know, and that's where I just didn't want to spend the cash on a laser I am looking at, if it wasn't going to work. However, sounds more and more like it might be easier and less involved that I thought, hopefully, that's true.

DigitalDaze
Posts: 59
Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2015 4:54 am
Location: Houston-ish, TX

Re: Help a Laser Dummy

Post by DigitalDaze » Sat May 14, 2016 2:28 am

How important is the focusable laser.

I am seriously contemplating a 3.5w laser, but don't find any that have a focusable lense (that I can tell). I find a bunch of 2.5 and 2.8 watt lasers that are focusable.

ggrif
Posts: 20
Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2015 7:51 pm

Re: Help a Laser Dummy

Post by ggrif » Thu Jun 23, 2016 2:32 pm

Any progress on your quest? I'm also considering options but know even less then you!

J-Tech now has a "NEW" 3.8 watt laser.

cozmicray
Posts: 115
Joined: Mon Feb 03, 2014 10:13 pm

Re: Help a Laser Dummy

Post by cozmicray » Sun Jun 26, 2016 8:44 pm

This is a matter of mounting a different spindel on your machine.
I don't know of any Shapeoko pit crews out there that will do it
or provide the first graders step by step guide!
Mount the laser head run the wires to the driver, wire up to trigger laser

you are going to burn your fingers focusing it --- make a geared remote focus

If you can't understand the Jtech Photonics pages then maybe you should NOT be doing this???

Beware lasers are dangerous wear eye protection right for laser your using


Need lots of power to cut
or
a high number of passes

High Power 15W Synrad RF Excited Carbon Dioxide Laser CO2 Cutting Engraver Tube
http://www.ebay.com/itm/231983616981?_t ... EBIDX%3AIT

will allow you to engrave your own tombstone!!!

Nichia 3.5W 450nm LD Built/High Power Buner Laser /3500mW Blue Engraving Laser
http://www.ebay.com/itm/231926990892?_t ... EBIDX%3AIT

May cut thru your base board

:?:
DigitalDaze wrote: I read that on the wiki, and while there is information about a few projects and about kits you can buy, there isn't anything really for the folks (like me) who need a detailed step by step on making this thing work..... there are some High Level steps outlined, but the details have escaped me.

I suppose what I was trying to do is piece this together myself to save some cash and get a stronger, more versatile tool for the cost. But I don't know what I don't know, and that's where I just didn't want to spend the cash on a laser I am looking at, if it wasn't going to work. However, sounds more and more like it might be easier and less involved that I thought, hopefully, that's true.

Plotter
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 5:49 am

Re: Help a Laser Dummy

Post by Plotter » Thu Sep 08, 2016 1:53 pm

Slightly different topic, but since I am also a "Laser Dummy" here goes -

What is the possibility to take the "laser part" of something like this - http://www.lightobject.com/Desktop-30W- ... -P939.aspx
and put it on a Shapeoko, or similiar CNC machine.
This machine's working area is tiny.
What are the disadvantages of a Fibre laser, compare to a CO2 laser?

WillAdams
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Re: Help a Laser Dummy

Post by WillAdams » Thu Sep 08, 2016 2:33 pm

AIUI, lasers are differentiated by:

- physical size --- some are so large that the laser is stationary, and the system moves a series of lenses and mirrors so as to focus the beam where cutting / engraving is desired
- wavelength / cutting characteristics --- this is the fiber/CO_2 differentiation --- different ones are suited for different materials (and certain types may be available only in larger sizes, see above)

There is a bit about lasers on a subreddit: https://www.reddit.com/r/lasercutting/wiki/k40 --- still trying to wrap my mind around it to see what applies or is suitable for a Shapeoko.
Shapeoko 3XL #0006 w/ Carbide Compact Router w/0.125″ and ¼″ Carbide 3D precision collets
Nomad 883 Pro #596 (bamboo)

Plotter
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 5:49 am

Re: Help a Laser Dummy

Post by Plotter » Fri Sep 09, 2016 1:17 pm

Thanks I had a look on reddit.
- CO2 laser need a series of mirrors&lenses to move the beam, since it is "open air" and it will be kind of difficult to mount a 1.8m tube directly on the Z axis. ;)
- Fiber laser have the laser beam contained in a optic fiber and can almost be compared to a plasma cutter(same idea different cutting mediums)


Fiber better suited for metal engraving/marking, but not so good on other material, although I don't know how it will cope with wood and leather.
BUT if I understand correctly, Fiber laser much easier to align, or install on a CNC. If you search for fiber laser 30-50W on Google, you only get the complete machine, but like I said is tiny.
I haven't spend days looking for the laser part of fiber lasers, BUT if you type in CO2 lasers, there is a abundance of sites who offer CO2 laser tubes and optics.

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