Build Thread New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread! - Page 4


Page 4 of 5 FirstFirst 12345 LastLast
Results 37 to 48 of 53

Thread: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

  1. #37
    *Registered User* mikemccand's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Posts
    39
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default Re: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

    OK nevermind! I figured it out: the big red emergency stop button was engaged, and I didn't realize it. You must rotate it a little for it to pop up and disengage and allow the machine to turn on. Once I did that I was up and running, could move the head around, pulse the laser, etc. Fun!



  2. #38
    *Registered User* mikemccand's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Posts
    39
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default Re: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

    So far the laser is working out very well. I already used it for a small project for the kids robotics team, and then also cut out a Hilbert curve from cardboard, and then this fun twirl from both foamboard and acrylic: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:389075

    I can see it will take some experience to learn the best speed/power for each material.

    I have a few questions/observations, in case anyone knows the answers:

    * I don't think I received any manual -- the CD seems to be just RDWorks; I've asked G Weike but likely won't hear back for a few days

    * Does this laser (G Weike LG900N) support ethernet/wifi connectivity? So far I've been using the U-Disk only (USB thumb drive)

    * The blower is crazy loud; I'd like to buy a quieter replacement. Does anyone have recommendations?

    * The little control panel draws a nice picture of what's being cut, showing where the laser head is cutting in real time, etc., however mine is flipped (mirror image) on the X axis (left is right and right is left); is there some setting on the machine to flip it back?

    * Cutting acrylic smells awful, even with the exhaust fan blowing out through a window; I'm wondering why I even smell anything, since the exhaust fan should be pulling all the smells outside

    * There is a little label on the machine saying I should keep the laser current at <= 25 ma to preserve the laser tube's life, but accomplishing this is somewhat tricky -- I see the max/min power 1/2, and reduce that, but then the speed that the laser is moving somehow also affect the current consumed.



  3. #39
    Registered GerryG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Posts
    71
    Downloads
    3
    Uploads
    0

    Default Re: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    So far the laser is working out very well. I already used it for a small project for the kids robotics team, and then also cut out a Hilbert curve from cardboard, and then this fun twirl from both foamboard and acrylic: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:389075
    That's a nice design - I'm faintly tempted to run off a copy of that for myself.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    I can see it will take some experience to learn the best speed/power for each material.
    Yup, that's part for the course. The software that goes with it (assuming you're using RDWorks or something similar) will allow you to save a library of settings, but I find it's best to write a hard copy, in case something goes bad with your software. That said, since you're using a RuiDa controller, I heartily recommend looking into Lightburn instead - it's a great software package that's regularly updated, and is very fairly priced, given the featureset.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    * I don't think I received any manual -- the CD seems to be just RDWorks; I've asked G Weike but likely won't hear back for a few days
    TBH, this isn't abnormal in my experience. Spend time learning the software features - the software manual can be found here.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    * Does this laser (G Weike LG900N) support ethernet/wifi connectivity? So far I've been using the U-Disk only (USB thumb drive)
    Ethernet yes, wifi no, unelss there's some weird extraneous hardware attached.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    * The blower is crazy loud; I'd like to buy a quieter replacement. Does anyone have recommendations?
    Not so much. BOFA kit is generally pretty quiet, but reeeeally expensive

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    * The little control panel draws a nice picture of what's being cut, showing where the laser head is cutting in real time, etc., however mine is flipped (mirror image) on the X axis (left is right and right is left); is there some setting on the machine to flip it back?
    I've never found a way of doing so, but to be honest, I've not really looked.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    * Cutting acrylic smells awful, even with the exhaust fan blowing out through a window; I'm wondering why I even smell anything, since the exhaust fan should be pulling all the smells outside
    You'll be lucky to eliinate all smells. That's a pretty significant amount of air to be cycling out in a short space of time, especially when we're talking about vapour dispersal from superheating material.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    * There is a little label on the machine saying I should keep the laser current at <= 25 ma to preserve the laser tube's life, but accomplishing this is somewhat tricky -- I see the max/min power 1/2, and reduce that, but then the speed that the laser is moving somehow also affect the current consumed.
    To be honest, I wouldn't worry too much about it - that's largely there to stop people from using the thing at 100% power all the time. Use the machine at the power and speed settings that you need it to be at - the worst ting that can be done to a glass laser tube (aside from smasking it of course) is to leave it idle. They slowly outgas over time, so get the most you can out of it while it's still good. To allay your next concerns, I've had a few years out of some tubes (under heavy daily use), so I wouldn't worry too much about the lifespan of them.

    Last edited by GerryG; 12-18-2018 at 08:46 AM. Reason: missing quote tags


  4. #40
    *Registered User* mikemccand's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Posts
    39
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default Re: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

    Thank you @GerryG!

    I am indeed already using Lightburn and loving it; I'll pay for it once the 30 day trial is over.

    The laser came with a small WiFi router, and when I emailed G Weike they did say it supports WiFi, but I don't yet know how exactly I haven't found an ethernet jack. Would be nice to be able to send files to it over WiFi instead of sneaker-net.

    Wow the BOFA blower/filters do look really nice (and pricey!). I will try a quieter blower and sound proofing from Amazon to see if I can reduce the decibels. Seems to be a large market for these 6" blowers thanks to grow tents

    OK I won't worry so much about the 25 ma hard limit; the laser tube was rated at ~120 W which is plenty for what we are using it for so far, though I have yet to test it on thicker plywood.

    Also, I tried using the "auto focus" from the Ruida control panel and it was a disaster! It punched straight through the foam board I was going to cut, and kept going. I had to push the big red emergency stop switch and carefully remove the head from the foam board. I suspect I'm missing the head mounted sensing device necessary for auto focus.

    I also don't know which focal length lens is installed on the laser; I ordered both 2" and 4". If I take the laser head apart, is the focal length written on the lens?



  5. #41
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Posts
    318
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default Re: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    The laser came with a small WiFi router, and when I emailed G Weike they did say it supports WiFi, but I don't yet know how exactly I haven't found an ethernet jack. Would be nice to be able to send files to it over WiFi instead of sneaker-net.
    The ethernet port should be on the back of the Ruida controller.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    If I take the laser head apart, is the focal length written on the lens?
    Unfortunately, no. You'll have to experiment in other to find the focal length. You will have to do that anyway if you want to determine the optimal focal distance. It varies a bit from lens to lens.



  6. #42
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Posts
    318
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default Re: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

    The system duplicated the message.



  7. #43
    Registered GerryG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Posts
    71
    Downloads
    3
    Uploads
    0

    Default Re: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    Thank you @GerryG!

    I am indeed already using Lightburn and loving it; I'll pay for it once the 30 day trial is over.

    The laser came with a small WiFi router, and when I emailed G Weike they did say it supports WiFi, but I don't yet know how exactly I haven't found an ethernet jack. Would be nice to be able to send files to it over WiFi instead of sneaker-net.
    Right- that probably means that you'll have to hook the router into the back of the ruida controller directly - they're usually mounted on the right hand side of the machine, behind the side plate. I imagine the SSID and password will be written on the router somewhere - I strongly recommend you change both of these once you've got it all set up and running.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    Wow the BOFA blower/filters do look really nice (and pricey!). I will try a quieter blower and sound proofing from Amazon to see if I can reduce the decibels. Seems to be a large market for these 6" blowers thanks to grow tents
    Funny how more questionable pursuits are always oddly useful to legitimate concerns, isn't it? Things to be aware of with other blowers: fan speed and m3/min transfer. If it doesn't cycle enough air, there's going to be a big smoke buildup. This can adversely affect yourself and your machine - smoke can end up dirtying the lens, which can then get baked on if not cleaned frequently enough. I'd say it's worth soundproofing the fan you've got. Am I right in assuming it's a nautiloid-style fan, as opposed one of the rubbish box ones? The nautiloids are genrally good, so it's worth hanging on to it. Anther thing worth noting with the BOFA is that they're air scrubbers as well, so they will generally clean most of the nasties out of the laser fumes, and are generally OK to vent to internal atmosphere.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    Also, I tried using the "auto focus" from the Ruida control panel and it was a disaster! It punched straight through the foam board I was going to cut, and kept going. I had to push the big red emergency stop switch and carefully remove the head from the foam board. I suspect I'm missing the head mounted sensing device necessary for auto focus.
    Yes, most likely - there's a push-sensor probe that you can get for them, which you then wire into the controller. Over christmas, I'm going to hook mine up, so if you want, PM me in a week or two to remind me to post the instructions. An item like this one is what you're after.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikemccand View Post
    I also don't know which focal length lens is installed on the laser; I ordered both 2" and 4". If I take the laser head apart, is the focal length written on the lens?
    Easiest way to tell is to put in some scrap ply, move the head a bit and change the Z height incrementally, and press the 'pulse' button - the smaller and neater the burn, the closer you are to optimal focus. When it's nothing more than a pinprick in the ply (that should reall go most (if not all) the way through some 3mm or 1/8" ply, you've probably hit the sweet spot. Measure the distance from the tip of the nozzle to the material, and cut a rectangle of that size - you now have a focusing tool for that lens. It'll be a bit shorter than 2" or 4", but that's because of the lens offset in the nozzle. In the case of my laser, it's about 38mm to get optimal focus,



  8. #44
    *Registered User* mikemccand's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Posts
    39
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default Re: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

    Thank you @GerryG for the pointer to the auto focus attachment -- I'll get one of those after I'm back from holiday break -- and @GerryG and @Storen for where the ethernet plugs in. I confirmed on the machine that there is indeed an ethernet jack. Only tricky part now is the TP-Link WiFi AP/Bridge that came with the laser is configured (through web browser) entirely in Chinese I'm using Google real-time translate on my phone to try to configure it in bridge mode on my existing home WiFi network.

    > Funny how more questionable pursuits are always oddly useful to legitimate concerns, isn't it?

    Yes indeed! Here's another example: in the past I struggled to find good 26650 Lithium Ion batteries for and underwater submarine (OpenROV) and discovered that the vaping community had done an amazing job weeding out the good from the bad batteries

    The new blower arrived and while it's rated to similar CFM (m3/hour) as the old blower, it doesn't feel as powerful, though it is much quieter. The blower that came with the machine is indeed a nautiloid-style fan and does seem to really suck!

    I found a nice YouTube video ( ) showing how to use a ramp to test the focus, and that worked perfectly! I discovered it's the 4" lens installed, and now have a piece of wood of the right height to quickly focus in the future.

    I was curious if i could cut through ~0.5" plywood, so I tried last night cutting that for the first time but it managed to catch fire! It wasn't a big fire: I was watching it closely and saw the fire unfold and stopped the print and pulled the partially cut piece out and dunked it in water. Unfortunately, the air compressor blower that it supposed to prevent fires instead seems to feed the fire in my case, once it gets just a little started. I guess this is a good reason to blow with Nitrogen instead of air? It was also just cheap plywood from home depot; maybe a good piece of baltic birch will do better.



  9. #45
    Registered
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Denmark
    Posts
    251
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default Re: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

    First thing I did on my LG900N was to bin the auto-focus. They are a liability and just get in the way. If it malfunctions you could end up bending the gantry.

    I run my W2 Reci tube at 30mA most of the time. As Gerry says, might as well get some use out of it. It's been in use for 2 years now with no noticeable drop in performance.

    If your material catches fire you may need more pressure on the air assist. That works for me. I use a silent type with 3x750W double heads. I ordered that with the laser and it was very affordable.

    Make sure you place the extraction fan away from the laser so it is sucking smoke from the laser rather than blowing it away from the laser. That way minor leaks in the tubing won't matter.as there is a partial vacuum in the tubes.



  10. #46
    *Registered User* mikemccand's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Posts
    39
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default Re: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

    First thing I did on my LG900N was to bin the auto-focus. They are a liability and just get in the way. If it malfunctions you could end up bending the gantry.
    Indeed when I asked the machine to "auto focus" (without any auto focus hardware installed, which I didn't yet realize!) it was terrifying! Luckily I had only foam board there, and it pushed right through that with a loud pop and kept going -- I think I was quick enough to push giant red stop button before it rammed into the metal below, but it was quite awful. I wish the Ruida controller could instead detect that the auto focus hardware is not installed and say so on the screen

    Yet, I thought once I install the auto focus hardware it would be reliable? Is it not?

    If your material catches fire you may need more pressure on the air assist. That works for me. I use a silent type with 3x750W double heads. I ordered that with the laser and it was very affordable.
    That's a good suggestion -- I'm just using the small and rather loud compressor that came with the laser, though it seems to have good air volume coming out; I could not find any identification on it to figure out its CFM specs. One strange thing that happened with that compressor was it sort of melted/crumbled holes in the silicone piping I had used (that came with the laser) to attach it to the cutter. The compressed air as it exits the compressor is quite hot and I guess it was too hot for the silicone, right at the exit point of the compressor. Or maybe the silicone pipe is too old and easily damaged; not sure. So I replaced it with some black EDPM tubing and that seems to be holding up well. It could be that was contributing to the fire since the holes would allow the compressed air to escape instead of blowing at the laser head; I'll re-test.

    I do already have my own air compressor for using random air powered tools, filling bike/car tires, etc.; not sure if I could just get the right hoses/adapters and use it instead? But, that is both an air compressor and an attached tank ... whereas what came with the laser is just a compressor I think. I guess I need to look at its specs as well.

    Do you have a link to an example link of a "3x750W double heads" air compressor? Google doesn't seem to do very well finding this.

    Make sure you place the extraction fan away from the laser so it is sucking smoke from the laser rather than blowing it away from the laser. That way minor leaks in the tubing won't matter.as there is a partial vacuum in the tubes.
    Yup I've got the blower pulling from the laser, so there's negative pressure in the cutting chamber. I also installed a 6" tube silencer right after the output of the blower and that made a surprisingly big improvement in noise; it likely also reduced CFM somewhat but not sure how much.

    Right- that probably means that you'll have to hook the router into the back of the ruida controller directly - they're usually mounted on the right hand side of the machine, behind the side plate.
    It turns out I have a wired ethernet port close to the laser and was able to connect ethernet wire to that, assign an IP to the cutter and talk to it from LightBurn. However, the computer I use for authoring is far away (basement versus cutter in the garage upstairs) from the laser. Is it possible to simply send a named file for the laser to store in its memory, and then I run upstairs and place my material and use the Ruida panel to then frame/cut, tweak laser power, etc.? Otherwise the ethernet connection seems designed for LightBurn to directly control the laser live, which is nice and maybe means I should just install a dedicated computer right next to the cutter.



  11. #47
    Registered GerryG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Posts
    71
    Downloads
    3
    Uploads
    0

    Default Re: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

    TBH, once you've got a library of settings for the materials that you tend to use, you won't need to adjust all that much in person.
    One of the nice things about lighburn is that you can install a camera in the lasercutter, which will allow you to align the job to the mateiral that's in the machine - it takes some calibrating, but it does work well.
    However, yes you can send files to the machine - there's a 'send' button in lightburn on the right hand side fo the screen, which will send the file for later running on a laser cutter.

    With regards to things catching fire, I always found that running it at lower power and a bit slower would usully negate the risk. Worst case, pause the laser and blow it out.

    Autofocus probes are OK - they work well until they get gummed up, so it's choice of whether you want it or not. I'm installing one on mine, becuse most of what I do is plywood and acrylic, and I keep the machine internals pretty clean. For soft/very smoky materials, they're a bit 'meh'. I had a bad experience with an autofocus probe on an old Epilog that had seen no love for a long time, but I've had good results on 3D printers - given that all they are is a momentary switch, it's entirely down to how well the bed is levelled and the sensor offset is set up.



  12. #48
    *Registered User* mikemccand's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Posts
    39
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default Re: New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

    Thanks @GerryG.

    LightBurn's "Send" function works great!

    I will think about whether I really need the auto-focus sensor...



Page 4 of 5 FirstFirst 12345 LastLast

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  


About CNCzone.com

    We are the largest and most active discussion forum for manufacturing industry. The site is 100% free to join and use, so join today!

Follow us on


Our Brands

New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!

New G Weike LG900N CO2 Laser purchase thread!