Help choosing machine, advice needed

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Thread: Help choosing machine, advice needed

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2016

    Default Help choosing machine, advice needed

    Here i go again... Damn projects, all the time...

    I'm seriously contemplating of buying a laser cutter. Here are my initial thoughts...
    1. Looking at 100w (better have power and not need it rather than not have it when needed, amiright?)

    2. No metal cutting, but engraving/marking ? Mostly for cutting ply/foam/fabric/paper, but #1 stands, might want to engrave metals, etch glass at speed.

    3. Extraction, not much of a problem to pipe things out, but do cheap machines come with some sort of extraction solution built in ? Internal ducting/fans ?

    4. Water chiller. I have had my share of watercooling builds made in the past, including TEC, so i figure how hard can it be to make arduino controlled chiller ?

    4a. Not afraid of soldering iron, cnc, 3dprinting, so modding is most probable (instead of just possible ). For whatever parts of the cutter can/should be improved.

    5. Location. Self built 6x4m workshop, all walls can be outlets for extraction, electrical supply is 240v running via reused industrial 3ph cable, no current bottlenecking.

    6. Workpiece size. Looking for A1 sized surface (840x594mm). Foam/paper for modeling comes at this size and is convenient to me.

    7. Bells and whistles. Is autozoom is even necessary ? Is it used throughout cutting process as in bowed media ? If not, i dont think it is neccessary, correct me if i'm wrong. Bed frame raising/lowering would be nice, even if manual

    8. Can lamps be interchanged power wise ? I know that 60w is smaller than 100w. What about power specs ? Do i need to replace tube PSU if i change to tube of different power rating ? (Besides the obvious that 100w tube wouldnt output 100w on smaller supply, not looking to violate universal rules here). What would happen if i plug 100w tube into 60w machine ? And viceversa, 60w tube into 100w machine ? My thinking is i MIGHT want to upgrade power to 130-150w later on.
    8a. Mechanical tube mounting. IF swapping power of tube possible (#8). Again, if down/up-sizing, what are my mounting options ? I've seen someone cut open 60w laser housing and stuck the end of 100w tube out... How viable ?

    9. Do i need compressed air, inert gasses for anything in the work process? (To better things up)...

    10. Warranties. This is a sticky one, knowing that i'm dealing with China. What should i be wary about ? Lamp age ? Old technologies (selling outdated "new" crap)

    11. Accessories for the machine. What should be included in the purchase ? Additional mirrors/lenses ? What, if any, spare parts should be included ?

    12. Rotary table. Do all machines have a capability to accomodate cyllindrical engraving attachment ? Even if its aftermarket part ?

    13. I will be using coreldraw for prep, so thinking RUIDA ? Any suggestions on this ? What controllers work best with CDRx5. So far i see a lot of contollers need standalone post-processor software to actually run the machine ?

    14. This is a big one. About threefiddy. Really. At the moment my main criteria are 100W tube, A1 worksize and ability to interface with coreldraw (hence RUIDA). Looked at some machines at aliexpress, coming up with about 1000-1200gbp (1300-1500usd)...

    15. Ah, shipping AND customs ? Besides some sellers do free shipping, what about customs ? I'm in UK, btw...

    Its worse than when i started with 3d printers...Gah.

    Learning as i go here, please dont stone me just yet...

    Any advice / suggestions are muchly appreciated.

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    Last edited by baronpork; 03-11-2019 at 06:23 PM. Reason: readability

  2. #2
    Activation process peteeng's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2018

    Default Re: Help choosing machine, advice needed

    Hi Woof - What about the machine do you already have one? I build/sell cnc mechanical kits and I'll looking for a laser to add to the list. 100W would cut materials you mention so what speed do you envision to feed at? Regards Peter S

  3. #3
    Member CeliaB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2018

    Default Re: Help choosing machine, advice needed

    Hello Woof. I am not sure if this can help you...check the catalog here: You can leave online messages to their persons.

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Help choosing machine, advice needed

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