Author Topic: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun  (Read 7955 times)

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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #25 on: May 20, 2019, 05:15:22 am »
Quick job on some 4.5mm Acrylic and something practical to help set the Laser height instead of the single block it came with. Text is viewed through the Acrylic at 2mm high and engraved (might work better as a vector cut). 50% Power @ 6mm/sec seems about the sweet spot and the edges are square and nicely flamed.

As to accuracy I didn't make any allowances for kerf on the design and each of the steps is consistently 0.15 - 0.18 mm under the drawing. It looks like the Laser cuts at this sort of width which depending on the job may or may not need to be accounted for.
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #26 on: May 21, 2019, 07:38:12 am »
Needs Back lighting or leave it subtle  :-//

I have Clear, Red and Yellow Translucent in stock but no just no on classic and classy HP and there is only Aluminium inner panel under the sides so apart from the engrave no point in seeing through.

Visible in person and under a flash photo but otherwise fairly invisible. Front side engraving while not to bad cosmetically I would rather not.

3mm Smoke Gray Acrylic. 10% raster engrave @ 300mm/sec. Cut is a conservative 50% power and 8mm/sec a bit faster would be fine too.

https://youtu.be/6wgNL6HqI9Y
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #27 on: May 22, 2019, 11:07:52 am »
So I changed my mind after a daylight look. 8% very fine glass type front side engrave and almost no depression from the face.

Other little job tonight was a cheapy RF Generator I got a while ago that arrived with a broken front face.

Measure with Callipers, 30 minutes in Fusion 360 and export as a 2D Cad file, import into Inkscape and add some colours for K40 Whisper software to know what is cut and what is engrave. The file shuffling is a bit of a pain but so much better than attempting to use the junk software provided initially. Quick Cardboard test not really needed as there isn't much plastic in the job then hit the 2mm Acrylic with the Laser peel and screw in place.

« Last Edit: May 22, 2019, 11:14:21 am by beanflying »
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #28 on: May 25, 2019, 03:31:15 am »
And some edge lit engraved testing. I designed up a 3D printed lightbox that takes a 100mm strip of LED Tape up to 10mm wide. 3mm Acrylic very lightly engraved with about 0.5W in the attached pics. Zero refinishing of any surfaces off the laser other than a wash to remove the Acrylic engraved dust.

More than enough power available from the 6 5050's even in Daylight so I will do some more playing with a 5V/USB version. The Base is parametrically modelled so changing it up or down in length or width is easy and even a sliced Ply or Acrylic base could be easily made from the model without a lot of changes.
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #29 on: May 25, 2019, 06:10:21 am »
I needed a lightweight enclosure for an R/C project. A little playing with correcting for the kerf of the Laser and no screws even needed to keep it together. 1.5mm Acrylic 40x40x10mm internal size just over 10grams and either glue or screws if needed.

Couple of resource things

Russ has a great channel here with some really good Engineering analysis and tweaking of Lasers, not all the software stuff is applicable but the Hardware stuff certainly is. https://www.youtube.com/user/SarbarMultimedia/videos

K40 Whisperer software/inkscape plugin from Scorchworks and some other Laser Videos https://www.youtube.com/user/scorch1974/videos The software is an absolute must have if you are running a K40 in particular as the software Laserdrw blows and sucks all at once.  :horse:
« Last Edit: May 25, 2019, 06:23:23 am by beanflying »
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #30 on: May 28, 2019, 07:30:48 am »
If anyone else gets to owning one of these or a similar one start adjusting the mirrors and lenses with either a bottle of Scotch or a bucket of Coffees at the ready. The main reason I have noticed a possible issue was on the deeper Acrylic cuts that were not even on all sides.

So a Rainy miserable day and after watching a heap of videos on the subject thought I would tackle seeing how far out of Tram and Trim the axis, mirrors and lens were.

How I tackle this sort of job on any of my Printers or my baby CNC router in the past is check for square mechanically adjust then tweak, tweaking first with a machine not squared is doomed to failure. Due to length considerations it isn't practicable to fit a low power laser pointer in the path so 5% power from the main laser with all the covers off but with the  8) fitted firmly on the face for the afternoon!

The Y axis mirror assembly was set nearly 3mm high on a mirror of about 16mm in diameter and the laser spot is getting close to the sides.  :palm: and the final mirror and lense holder was set about 2mm to far away from the X axis. While the Laser works fine as is getting everything more square mechanically makes setting the optics easier. with the trim screws on the mirrors. Both the intermediate Mirror and Lense holder and mirror were a few degrees skewed from the frame as well.

With everything mechanically now as close as possible time to breakout the masking tape to 'correct' the now incorrect mirrors that were covering up the misalignment to a degree. So it seemed like 1/2 a roll of masking tape later and everything is now fairly close and time for a final  :-/O

The SVG Target file is in a zip for anyone it might help and suits 16mm apertures. These are what I am now using instead of the tape which tends to catch fire  :o
« Last Edit: May 28, 2019, 07:47:10 am by beanflying »
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #31 on: May 28, 2019, 08:09:33 am »
All four corners and the centre with test spots. Time for dinner but it is now very close.  :)

Fairly normal for the Laser to be slightly fuzzy here as it hasn't been through any collimating lenses yet just the mirrors.

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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #32 on: June 04, 2019, 04:07:55 am »
Back to some mods to fix the airflow across the bed which will help with fume extraction and also help with debris when engraving.

The unit as stock has a bunch of seemingly random 'speed holes' in strange places meaning the air comes in and swirls with little airflow over the job being cut so first job is block them up. I chose some Acrylic panels with simple magnetic catches, not that important to make them air tight just heavily restrict any air being drawn from them.

Next job is open up the front removable section and fit a shroud as shown. This opening will see most airflow being drawn evenly over the bed to the fan at the rear with no restriction or twisting paths. First serious go at using the Laser to mark out a job for manual work, 10% power at 20mm/s made short work of the powdercoat and far more accurate than I could mark it out. The shroud is a multi piece 3D Printed one. Now for the Drilling and the Nibbling while the printer does it's thing.  :phew:
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #33 on: June 05, 2019, 09:17:16 am »
Time to get back to some Electronics again this beasty has absorbed to much time over the last week or so ::) Tomorrows job metal nibbling and some wiring then it is about where it needs to be for on going easy use. Until the next upgrade that is  :palm:
« Last Edit: May 28, 2021, 02:05:09 pm by beanflying »
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #34 on: June 07, 2019, 07:33:02 am »
Buying a Laser has a down and an up side. People want jobs done  :-- People also sometimes pay with a box of BEER. 8 dozen Labels in exchange for 2 dozen :-+ :popcorn:

While this is OT people will try and throw work at you that may not be what you want. Cutting timber in particular oily or glue bonded stuff is messy and smelly. Quick cleanup after with Acetone is highly recommended or you next jobs will also be messy.

Also while I had some ply on the go I have been playing with a Living hinge design on Fusion 360 mainly for gifts but also maybe to sell some items based on it. This 8 section hinge is designed to go around a 12mm Radius corner but would easily go tighter if needed. Amazing taking it out of the blank and seeing it go floppy with no additional work. It could easily be adapted for a dressy Electronics enclosure without much work.
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #35 on: June 16, 2019, 11:14:37 am »
Learned a new skill today in Fusion 360. The sheetmetal section. There is a few good youtube videos (Brad Tallis in particular) on it but I hadn't bothered before.

Limited run packaging with Laser cut boxes might be a good use but also if you need to get a folded metal enclosure made by someone else it works well and takes into account offsets with corner radius bends and material. I have local Water, Plasma and Big Boy Laser cutters available for $ if needed nearby but the setup costs were always the killer for low volumes.

These were only made with cereal packet card so the Raster etched fold lines were a bit deep so there is a little delamination. Better card would sort this out.
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #36 on: July 04, 2019, 09:59:03 am »
The stock Nano M2 board has been working really well when teamed with Inkscape and K40 Whisperer compared with the more or less abandoned and useless LaserDRW. But to get some extra control over it in particular for engraving time for a controller change.

The board I settled on is a 5 channel Chinese version of the open source one normally available here http://smoothieware.org/getting-smoothieboard in the case of Oz we don't have a local seller and some of the others had no stock. So off to Evilbay Link for a board to have a look at. For those of you without the up to $50 USD postage deal in my case buy from who you feel appropriate.

I had no definite plans for the board when I ordered it but I have three 3D printers and a small CNC router plus the Laser that are worthy candidates for an upgrade as a plaything. I decided to have a glance at Lightburn and see if it would speak to the board for a start so I downloaded the trial version and installed the Smoothieboard drivers and seems they like each other.

So over the next few weeks/month depending on life the plan is to swap the controller in my Laser over to the Smoothieboard. Nothing more for now but it's going to be a work in progress with details as it gets played with.
« Last Edit: July 04, 2019, 10:01:28 am by beanflying »
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #37 on: October 10, 2019, 06:33:49 am »
Long overdue job out of the way this afternoon. The Honeycomb table is a bit of a PITA to keep clean in particular when running Ply so a pin table is the solution.

Quick to make, the 2mm pin holes were Lasered to circa 1.9mm then reamed out in 10-15 minutes with a sharp 2mm in a cordless drill. The pin bed will be sacrificial over time but the Laser is well out of focus before it will get hit so it should last fairly well. The rest providing I don't run the Laser over it is a one off.

Other project that some of you will have seen is my Woody PC Case which is the reason to get the pin bed done.

Edit just added the final shot with the simple 3 point bed adjustment. Works a treat  :)
« Last Edit: October 12, 2019, 07:27:08 am by beanflying »
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #38 on: January 27, 2021, 08:28:24 pm »
Defpom assembles his new laser and has a play at engraving:

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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #39 on: March 06, 2021, 04:54:02 am »
Moved this from 'Other Products' as it maybe suits Mechanical Eng and materials processing more  :)

Todays and for a current project cut some samples to get a Power and Speed idea on EVA foam to make some case inserts. Hp Logo -Just because  8)

The EVA is 10mm thick clip together floor mat.

30mm/sec @ 40% power left some slight snags below the ripples so the better option was 25mm/sec at the same power. Focal point is below the upper surface to reduce the cut slope a little.

Slight odor post cut but very minor and the resultant cut is clean when rubbed.
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #40 on: May 06, 2021, 04:51:06 am »
Not that is has been shown before but I have been using a 40+ year old Tupperware cereal container for water to cool the Laser. If I was using it for longer production type runs then its 3.5L is a bit small in particular for an Aussie Summer. The 3D printed lid shown fitted the old lid and was made in August 2018 and as it was fine I reused it.

Anyway the original main lid failed as there is a bit of prolonged load on it I guess from the pipes and 4 decades of general use. A Beer and some Fusion produced a stacked Acrylic design with 5 layers of 4.5mm glued with Scigrip thin Acrylic glue.

Fairly major upgrade of the control Panel and stepper drivers over the next little while to finally get rid of the Nano M2.
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #41 on: May 18, 2021, 01:24:53 pm »
Bean, the enabler has struck again.



Yes, I am now a member of this club.   :palm:
« Last Edit: May 18, 2021, 01:27:00 pm by Brumby »
 

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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #42 on: May 18, 2021, 01:40:08 pm »
 >:D

When you are a bit unpacked and ready to look at a few upgrades let me know. A pin bed is well worth it for most jobs. Currently working on the design for an Stepper based lifting table for mine but the pin bed part is done and well tested in mine if you want the plans for it.

Still very much a WIP for the auto lifting bit.

« Last Edit: June 02, 2021, 07:55:59 am by beanflying »
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #43 on: May 18, 2021, 02:59:25 pm »
The story of acquisition was a real rollercoaster.

1. Bean notifies me of this eBay listing.  It was an Auction with Buy It Now.
2. I put it on my watch list and consider how I would approach.
3. Sent seller a number of questions - most answered.
4. Item ends - someone else nabbed it.  Damn!
5. Seller responds answering outstanding questions and tells me he's been screwed around by the buyer and offers it to me for the BIN price - $300.  Pick up is from a storage unit.
6. I say I'm interested, but need to organise the trip (two hours each way) so we discuss options.
7. I then ask about a possible demonstration of the unit and he's against the idea because potential damage to a laser that doesn't have cooling setup.
8. I ask further about a demonstration and he reiterates the cooling concern - and he adds that there's there's no power available at the storage unit.
9. He then suggests I might be better off doubling my money and buy new - with warranty.  I now realise I've gone too far.
10. I then explain that buying used is a punt and that I was trying to increase my confidence
11. He responds by saying he wanted to avoid trashing something that had only been used to make two signs - but that with the time consumed in emails, he was even further in the red.  He signs off with a clear indication that he's had enough.
12. I respond by saying I understand, but am still interested, offering to take the unit.  As he's already done the hard yards, I'm offering him the cash - if he wants it.  No more questions.
13. I wait and wonder if there's any hope - which is fading as time goes by.
14. No response until 21 hours before the earlier planned collection time where he sends me photos and an offer of "Yours if you want it".  This happens half an hour after I started work and was flat out - but I wanted to respond quickly ... which took me all of 10 minutes - but it seemed like an eternity.
15. Arrive as scheduled and take delivery of everything.  His concerns in dealing with me were allayed and he referred to me as a decent guy.  This is always nice to hear - but he was a more than decent guy.  We chatted for a bit and found out he was into electronics - with a test bench he was looking to dispose.  One item mentioned was a 150V 60A electronic load.  Sorry - I didn't get any further details of this or anything else, but his indication was that it wasn't cheap gear.  I mentioned the EEVblog - so if he turns up here, we might have the opportunity to find out.  Important note: he takes great care of his gear.  For example, the K40 cabinet has a couple of very minor blemishes - and they could have been there from new.
16. Further in the conversation the subject turns to cooling and he did not recommend the demineralised water from Bunnings.  He then offers me a filtration system to make my own for $50.  I accept and he ducks off to bring it out.  He shows me the bits included with extra cartridges and I can tell my $50 has been the best value expenditure I've made in a very long time.  (I'll keep you curious and give details in a photo or two.)

Setting up is a job for another day.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2021, 03:38:11 pm by Brumby »
 

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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #44 on: May 18, 2021, 05:40:30 pm »


Found this while fumbling aboot the internet back when I was bugging bean aboot his 'inator. Seems actually relevant now. ???

Just a word of concern here... everything I just read has alarm bells ringing in my head that this guy fucked up building his cooling system and fried his LASER. :palm: If so; was it still cheap enough that Brumby isn't going to be losing huge money if he has to rebuild...?

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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #45 on: May 19, 2021, 12:20:16 am »
Not impossible, but I think it unlikely.  The one mod made to the unit was the installation of a milliampmeter - the first thing any self-respecting owner would do to help protect the tube.  After chatting with the guy, I did not get any negative vibes in that respect, just a sense of caution.

If the tube is fried, then I'll find out soon enough and I had already checked on the price of replacement tubes.  So if it does come to that, it will be unfortunate, but not disastrous.  My one concern is how long ago the tube was manufactured as they do age on their own.  Here's the sticker on the tube which looks like it was made 2019.12.02, so that's not too bad.



The foam was put there (by the seller) for transport.  (The tube was supported like this in 3 places along its length.)
« Last Edit: May 19, 2021, 12:25:59 am by Brumby »
 
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #46 on: May 19, 2021, 12:42:17 am »
The do age a bit while not being used. It is the main reason I haven't ordered the Tube for my large build yet. I will be well into it before I order so I start with one as fresh as possible.

With the Pin or any other bed it is nice to be able to put in stock or an item repeatably to a known datum which is why I have a rear right corner based fence on mine. If I am doing a small run of say round coasters I can just drop one after the other to the fence and know where it is relative to the homing position of the Laser.
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #47 on: May 19, 2021, 04:30:09 am »
The do age a bit while not being used. It is the main reason I haven't ordered the Tube for my large build yet. I will be well into it before I order so I start with one as fresh as possible.
As will I when I get into my large build - which is very similar to what you are working on.  I will be watching your efforts with great interest - but I am still a ways off that project.  I am just now getting my feet wet - or at least I will be when I work out where I can put it.  I didn't make adequate consideration for the rear access, but I think a wheeled cart can address the issues.

Quote

With the Pin or any other bed it is nice to be able to put in stock or an item repeatably to a known datum which is why I have a rear right corner based fence on mine. If I am doing a small run of say round coasters I can just drop one after the other to the fence and know where it is relative to the homing position of the Laser.
Such a simple thing - and yet the value in daily operations cannot be overstated!

Some ideas can be implemented so easily in the design stage but problematic if retro-fitted on a built machine.  Keep these coming!
 
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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #48 on: May 19, 2021, 03:04:43 pm »
There's a part of me that still doesn't believe it's possible to have an actual LASER that I can stick in my shirt pocket, much less one that can actually do something;  and especially that I can buy it for the price of lunch at the drive-thru...  :o

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Re: 40W 300x200mm Laser Cutter Engraver - Vollerun
« Reply #49 on: May 20, 2021, 06:46:37 am »
So I felt a little Laser maintenance Guilt today and grabbed out the bottle of Acetone for a Cleanup of the Pin Bed. This is several months worth of grot so it was overdue and entirely @Brumbies shiny new machine photos fault ;)

Also while it was shiny and clean I drilled out some more of the holes instead of the minimum I did initially. Since I built this I am now back to being an owner of a drill press for 15 minutes work and a little deburring for plenty more pin holes instead of the cordless wobble. Back when I laid this out for drilling I taped the surface with some wide 3D printer tape I was never going to use and set a really low power and used the Laser to mark the holes for centre punching. No real need to drill all of them unless you are trying to support paper or are making a heap of tiny repeat parts.

So for anyone interested in making one it uses 2x25mm dowel pins eBay auction: #143344962872 I got a bag of 100 ages ago but pick your supplier. The bottom deck on mine is 4.5mm but 3mm would do you will just need to sand back the tabs for the fences or mod the SVG or DXF in the zip file below to suit. The 3mm Fence is to aid repeat cuts and provide a Physical refence for the XY Zero planes of the Laser. Make whatever adjustable mounts you need to tweak this to be the case but my 3 screw one is shown. Also on the fence it is not full of holes for looks it is there to aid cross bed airflow to help keep the cuts and engraves as clean as possible.

The main consideration before making one for a non adjustable bed Laser like a K40 is the height of the pins and base is 25+4.5 and you then need to allow for material thickness and whatever focal distance you need in front of the lens. You could use shorter pins but then you are likely to get increased more focused energy bouncing back at your material so don't and also you could use 4-5mm Cold Rolled Steel instead of the Aluminium I used to help absorb some more of that energy.

The DXF and SVG's in the zip file already allow for an 0.17 Kerf so should just go straight into K40 Whisperer as is and cut.
« Last Edit: May 20, 2021, 07:16:29 am by beanflying »
Coffee, Food, R/C and electronics nerd in no particular order. Also CNC wannabe, 3D printer and Laser Cutter Junkie and just don't mention my TEA addiction....
 


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