Not had a great deal of time with it yet, just getting used to the software (100 page manual)and put the laser on the network etc.
I haven't checked the beam path alignment yet either.
Then I'll need to make a test file up, to cut at different powers and speeds, to get to know how this machine handles .... apparently, they are all slightly different in personality, and you have to get to know them.
I also need a proper water tank, might need a chiller as the summer comes. Will have to get an air filter for the workshop compressor, so I can ditch the silly little air pump that came with the cutter and run a decent PSI through the air assist ... etc.. etc...
Just Ordered some ally honeycomb to make a bed... lots to do !
Mike all laser cutters will cut with a draft angle on the edge and not 90 degrees to the surface. this is down to the focus lens. The lens takes the 1mm wide co2 laser beam and concentates the beam down to a focused ~0.1mm dot. There is only a narrow range in which the beam is in focus, so with your 6mm sheet fir example maybe only 1mm is in focus then the beam starts the spread apart. Its this spreading of the beam that causes the non straight cuts. Hope that made sense?
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Last edited by Lee Roberts; 13-05-2014 at 12:54 PM..Me
I'm just learning, but it depends a lot on the material being cut, then the thickness, and the focal length of the lens.
I'l post more as I learn, but for thin material a short focal length give a narrow 'pin point' for the 'z' if you like.
For thick material, you want a long focal length which gives a narrower 'pin point over a longer 'z'
Think of the beam as a triangle from the lens to the cut. then follow the lines through to make a cross (X) .
A short focus gives a stubby triangle (eg. 90deg V bit in CNC)
a long focus gives a tall pointy triangle. (eg. 60deg V bit in CNC)
Must get on with work now !!!
BTW ... I wasn't laughing at you ...
but at the whole laser thing.
It seems most 'newB's inc. me, think you'll draw on the screen, then cut it on the laser ..
I found the learning curve like walking on a beach .. nice and gentle gradual rise until you buy a machine.
This just happens to be at the base of a cliff !!!
Sure, it 'might' cut something out of the box .. but to use it properly, is something else completely !
Nice machine, I've almost finished my build(700x600) and have kept the cost under £800. If you need any help, let me know. I've been using them for around 4 years now for business :)
Also, the little pump that comes with it is better than you think, the idea is to keep the lens clear and the smoke out of the way of the cut. Too much pressure and you will cool the cut and it wont cut through :) I ditched my air compressor for a pond pump and it saved my sanity.
As for cooling, if your not short on space, get a water get a water butt and fill it. At 50w you will barely change the temp of the water.
Last edited by Isaac; 15-05-2014 at 10:14 AM.
What are you using for a controller ?
As for cooling .. I thought a couple of freezer ice packs a day in the bucket will do for a bit.
I just bought some honeycomb for the bed.. I bought from here ..
9.1mm (3/4) 3000 Alloy Aluminium Honeycomb to Buy Online - Easy Composites
as it was a lot cheaper than buying from the people selling it for laser beds ! .. I should get 4 beds out of this piece :)
A small bucket like that is similar to one I used a few years ago. In the middle on June I was using 3-4 icepacks every hour :/
The honeycomb is cool stuff, I use it in this machine but want to try the mesh too.
I use a self built controller with mach3 and LinuxCNC, is that the AWC608 DSP with yours?
the controller is from these people
SHENZHENREADER TECHNOLOGY CO.,LTD
it seems powerfull enough, and the software doesn't look too bad.
It's for windows, and I use Linux .. It loaded under wine ok in the house, but wont load so far on the workshop machine. so for now I dual boot to use it.
I can see me building a bigger machine, or extending this one. It looks like I could extend the Y axis out the front without much modification. But I need to build another CNC too .. busy busy !
What do you use your laser for ?
ok, after googling DSP .. yes, mine looks like it is DSP :)
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