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Old Nov 09, 2012, 07:49 AM
Dr. Wylam
Rochester, MN
Joined Jan 2005
23 Posts
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DIY Laser Cutter

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/...n-laser-cutter

I am going to build this 40W laser cutter. Though it comes with a breakout board to run Mach3/CAM, I will upgrade to a DSP controller for PWM for the laser.

Thoughts.
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Old Nov 09, 2012, 03:00 PM
Registered User
Denver, CO
Joined Dec 2005
6,255 Posts
There are laser resistant plastics, I don't think they would stop a direct hit, but could help from a reflected laser beam.
http://www.professionalplastics.com/LASERFILTER
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Old Nov 09, 2012, 06:31 PM
CPA 30, SPA 523
Timthetoolman's Avatar
United States, TX, Fort Worth
Joined Nov 2009
434 Posts
It seems like a good deal. I'll be hinting to my wife. We were looking at Universal lasers since there was a dealer that's in the Dallas/Fort Worth area but the price was $15k and you can get one of these for $1.5k or $2k assembled.
The nice thing with a comercial version is the support but if you're familiar with CAD programs and such it would be a lot cheaper.
Have you used Mach3 yet? I'm not sure what the other controller was you mentioned that will take it's place. I'm also curious what CAM program you'll use or does the other product you mention take place of this?
I was going to buy Mach3 today but settled on GMFC for a CNC hotwire.

Tim
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Old Nov 10, 2012, 07:30 AM
Dr. Wylam
Rochester, MN
Joined Jan 2005
23 Posts
From lightobject.com .....the 2012 Commercial DSP CO2 Laser Engraving/ Cutter Controller = $450.00.

(http://www.lightobject.com/2012-Comm...oCad-P321.aspx).

This includes LaserCAD as the software. This type of controller has a microprocessor built-in for high frequency pulse width modulation (PWM) of the laser for graduated power control. It is not as necessary for vector cutting, but is certainly needed for raster-controlled engraving.

Also includes a LCD control panel.

Alternatively one could use CamBam + and Mach 3 bundled cost = $315.00 (http://sites.fastspring.com/hexray/product/cambam_mach3), i.e. the CamBam store.

Mach3 is standard CNC software, but not truly software for laser control. Best used for 2D or 3D milling. CamBam is a necessary software to turn design code, such as a DXF file into G-codes. Mach3 is essentially a G-code reader to run stepper motor controllers or TTL devices. I.E. it will turn laser on/off.
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Last edited by mew09; Nov 12, 2012 at 08:53 PM.
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Old Nov 10, 2012, 09:09 AM
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United States, FL, Miami
Joined Jul 2012
2,144 Posts
I've played with a laser cutter and it was installed as a plotter on a XP machine so you could just "print" to the "printer" using AutoCAD.
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 05:37 PM
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Brian76239's Avatar
Nashua, NH
Joined Nov 2008
184 Posts
This is a Seriously Cool Project

I'm teaching myself how to Use Turbocad for making Laser cut files.

Having My Own Laser Cutter would be totally Awesome.

Many thanks for posting the link to the Kickstarter Project.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 06:51 PM
Dr. Wylam
Rochester, MN
Joined Jan 2005
23 Posts
I ordered mine. The kickstarter project did not get funded, BUT buildyourcnc.com will be selling the Laser Kit. $1500 to kickstarter supporters, and I think $1800 to the rest. Stay tuned, I plan on doing a build log.
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Old Dec 08, 2012, 12:38 PM
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RCWorks's Avatar
Joined Aug 2003
1,628 Posts
The laser aiming would not be such a task with a simple design change.

The X axis moves the part, the Y axis moves the only mirror and the lens.

The laser never moves.

Just a thought to make it easier to build.
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Old Dec 08, 2012, 06:46 PM
Registered User
Denver, CO
Joined Dec 2005
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Like just mentioned that is an odd design for a laser engraver/cuttter. I think they move the Laser tube to make the footprint smaller. Laser tubes are rather fragile, I would not want mine moving around.
Most machines place the laser tube in the back, stationary. That makes the gantry lighter, and able to move fast for engraving, or light cutting work.
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Old Dec 12, 2012, 09:02 PM
Dr. Wylam
Rochester, MN
Joined Jan 2005
23 Posts
You are referring to the fact that this is a gantry based system, i.e. the laser tube is mounted on the x-axis. The top of the line KERN Lasers are built on this design. Moreover, the proof is in the pudding. The design holds up, is simple to align, and maintains alignment over a larger area better. BTW. I suspect most on regroups.com are less worried about engraving performance.
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 02:31 AM
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Denver, CO
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I looked up the Kern, looks like it works fine.
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Old Apr 08, 2013, 06:16 PM
Dr. Wylam
Rochester, MN
Joined Jan 2005
23 Posts
Update on Blacktooth Laser

Finally received the kit and completed the build. The quality is outstanding and the performance exceeds expectation.
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Last edited by mew09; Apr 09, 2013 at 09:14 PM.
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