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equipment:laser_cutter
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equipment:laser_cutter [2017/03/16 09:54]
mikeputnam Add walk-thru video.
equipment:laser_cutter [2017/03/17 15:28] (current)
mikeputnam Add notes from Chris Meyer
Line 107: Line 107:
 maybe you should think about adding a beam expander maybe you should think about adding a beam expander
  
 +*** Tips from Chris Meyer - Sector67 - 2017-03-07 ***
 +
 +Hopefully helpful, a couple of notes:
 +
 +25mA seems pretty high - what's the intended wattage on the laser that you bought? ​ Do you know who the company that made the tube is?  They'​ll tell you what to run for current for long life, do not run at the maximum number they give you.  Do you have an analog gauge on your machine?
 +
 +You need a halon or CO2 extinguisher to not damage the laser. ​ Never dump a powder extinguisher or it'll be easier to buy a new machine. ​ Get one, we've had a few small smouldering fires. ​ You should never see visible flames in the machine, otherwise you need a stronger air assist - get a better air pump or use an air compressor (clean the gas line going into it, IE: filter for debris and moisture otherwise they'​ll damage the lens)
 +
 +Maximum thickness is about 5mm, but redwood, balsa, acrylic you can cut a lot thicker (up to 3/4" redwood). ​ The less resin/​oil/​moisture in the material the better it'll work.
 +
 +Use trace bitmap in Inkscape, Corel Draw, or Illustrator - you can also draw by hand and then scan in the image to leverage this.
 +
 +I think I heard you talking about max power, mid power, and speed - mid power is when the machine is slowing down due to acceleration,​ typically should be set to at least 10% lower than the max power. ​ You can calibrate this generally by trying to engrave wood - the corners of your vector engraving should be as deep/dark as the middle of the straight lines. ​ In short draw a box with ~5" walls, the corners of the box should be the same darkness as the middle.
 +
 +You can set your machine to absolute coordinates or relative coordinates,​ origin works the way you've got it set up now but it can be changed :-)
 +
 +You can use acrylic to get a better sense for the maximum speed and power to cut a material. ​ Watch the flashes on the lower grate, when they'​re getting super faint you're getting to the maximum speed and power.
 +
 +If you cut ABS put it on top of cardboard, the cardboard will trap the debris from the cut and you can toss it after each cut to get the smell out of the machine. ​ Obviously you can also accidentally light the cardboard on fire, so be careful.
 +
 +Chris
  
  
equipment/laser_cutter.txt ยท Last modified: 2017/03/17 15:28 by mikeputnam