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Question #: 1090

Question: on the laser cutter and engraver, can it do steel and how thick

Current Solution

The laser engraver can cut steel to a depth of 1/4" (one quarter inch).

Additional Information:


Additional Information:
However, the CO2 laser cutters at 40 watts cannot cut steel.

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Other Possible Solutions to this Question

  • HOW DIFFICULT IS IT TO BUILD THE BLACKTOOTH LASER CUTTER?

    The blackTooth Laser cutter and Engraver can be built in a weekend. Take a look at the build instructions and try to determine if you feel you have sufficient capability to put together the laser system.

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    HOW DIFFICULT IS IT TO BUILD THE BLACKTOOTH LASER CUTTER?

  • WHAT SOFTWARE CAN BE USED WITH THE BLACKTOOTH LASER CUTTER?

    If you take the standard parallel cable BoB (Break Out Board), then you will need control software (Mach 3 or EMC2) and CAM software to make your G-Code (such as CamBam). Personally I use CamBam and Mach 3, they work beautifully but don't expect to turn them on and know how they work out of the box. Give yourself a few weeks to get familiar with the basics. CamBam is VERY powerful software for it's price. I'm surprised how much I keep learning on what I can do with it...I highly recommend it if you want as much control as possible.

    Mach 3 + CamBam as a bundle costs $310. EMC2 will give you a free replacement for Mach 3 and is exclusively for Linux.

    If you use the USB BoB, it will cost an extra $75 + $75 for the software. This is an all-in-one package so no need for Mach 3 or CamBam.

    For etching rasters (jpeg, bmp, tiff, non-vectors, photos), I highly recommend PicEngrave. It has been a labor of love for the past 9 years and John has done a wonderful job with it. It easily compares in quality compared to software that is in the $200-$300 range. John's software runs $40 and can be found here: http://picengrave.com/ (don't let the modest website fool you, this stuff can do amazing things). DotG and the Mach3 engrave plugin are two other options and instructions can be found on Dustans page in the gallery on buildyourcnc.com website.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    WHAT SOFTWARE CAN BE USED WITH THE BLACKTOOTH LASER CUTTER?

  • WHAT CAN ADD TO MY BLACKTOOTH LASER CUTTER MEASURE THE TIME OF USE?

    Hour meter. This will tell you exactly how long your system has been 'on' giving you a more accurate bead on the length of your tubes life.

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    WHAT CAN ADD TO MY BLACKTOOTH LASER CUTTER MEASURE THE TIME OF USE?

  • WHAT ARE SOME USEFUL MODIFICATIONS CAN APPLY TO THE BLACKTOOTH LASER CUTTER?

    Temperature probe monitor. Very valuable. This keeps you up to date on your coolant temperature levels.

    Voltage meter. This will tell you the exact level of voltage/power you are running telling the laser to run at instead of an arbitrary mark on a drawn wheel around your POT.

    Ammeter sensitive to 1mA. This will be sure your not over driving your tube and reducing it's life significantly.

    Hour meter. This will tell you exactly how long your system has been 'on' giving you a more accurate bead on the length of your tubes life.

    Exhaust fan upgrade. The current fan included is 100CFM. You can buy 120mm fans that push 250CFM and I have included a guide on how to go about doing this here. http://buildyourtools.com/phpBB3/viewto ... 8cdd1802bf

    To push the exhaust fan even further, if you have the room/power, I would highly recommend investing in a 600+ CFM "Dust Collector" system. 250CFM is still not suffice to draw all the smoke that can come off of 3mm or 1/8 MDF cutting job.

    A cutting surface. I bought myself a aluminum 'egg crate' mesh from my local HVAC company. They are used a cover for fluorescent lights and work great for low impact cutting surface. They come in 4'x8' sheets and are easily cut to fit. The other side is if you can find a steel honeycomb cutting bed to fit. These can be quite costly or fairly affordable depending where you are looking. The benefit of a steel honeycomb is you can use high power magnets to hold material down.

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    WHAT ARE SOME USEFUL MODIFICATIONS CAN APPLY TO THE BLACKTOOTH LASER CUTTER?

  • Can you supply a "KIT" to convert my 4060Z CNC to a Laser Cutter? What is the difference capabilities between the 40Watt and 80Watt?

    We can supply all of the laser components, but you will need to determine how to mount the components.

    Additional Information:
    Alternatively, you can purchase our greenBull machine that has the laser/spindle combo head. You can see the laser/spindle head here: https://www.buildyourcnc.com/item/cnc-machine-laser-spindle-combo-head

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    Can you supply a "KIT" to convert my 4060Z CNC to a Laser Cutter? What is the difference capabilities between the 40Watt and 80Watt?

  • Can you supply a "KIT" to convert my 4060Z CNC to a Laser Cutter? What is the difference capabilities between the 40Watt and 80Watt?

    We can supply all of the laser components, but you will need to determine how to mount the components.

    Additional Information:
    Alternatively, you can purchase our greenBull machine that has the laser/spindle combo head. You can see the laser/spindle head here: https://www.buildyourcnc.com/item/cnc-machine-laser-spindle-combo-head

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    Can you supply a "KIT" to convert my 4060Z CNC to a Laser Cutter? What is the difference capabilities between the 40Watt and 80Watt?

  • HOW COMPLEX IS YOUR KIT TO ASSEMBLE, AND MOST IMPORTANTLY - HARD IT SETUP CONTROL THE LASER WITH MACH3?

    The blackTooth Laser cutter and Engraver can be built in a weekend. Take a look at the build instructions and try to determine if you feel you have sufficient capability to put together the laser system.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    HOW COMPLEX IS YOUR KIT TO ASSEMBLE, AND MOST IMPORTANTLY - HARD IT SETUP CONTROL THE LASER WITH MACH3?

  • WHAT CAN USE BELOW MY WORKPIECE AS SUBSTRATE IN BLACKTOOTH LASER CUTTER?

    A cutting surface. I bought myself a aluminum 'egg crate' mesh from my local HVAC company. They are used a cover for fluorescent lights and work great for low impact cutting surface. They come in 4'x8' sheets and are easily cut to fit. The other side is if you can find a steel honeycomb cutting bed to fit. These can be quite costly or fairly affordable depending where you are looking. The benefit of a steel honeycomb is you can use high power magnets to hold material down.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    WHAT CAN USE BELOW MY WORKPIECE AS SUBSTRATE IN BLACKTOOTH LASER CUTTER?

  • WHERE ARE THE WIRING DIAGRAMS FOR BLACKTOOTH LASER CUTTER IN INSTRUCTIONS?

    You can find the wiring diagrams for the blackTooth on step 105 and 106 on the list of instructions on the blackTooth page. Step 105 pertains to the parallel breakout board and step 106 pertains to the USB interface board.

    Additional Information:
    wire size

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    WHERE ARE THE WIRING DIAGRAMS FOR BLACKTOOTH LASER CUTTER IN INSTRUCTIONS?

  • HOW CAN COOL THE LASER TUBE?

    Cooling is not as tricky as you might think. There is 3 ways to approach this, only 2 really matter for a low scale 40w setup. First one is the cheapest and easiest. The higher the temp of water the worse your performance will be, from what I understand anything in the 30C range is about the most tolerable it gets. Lower is better. But not frozen...from what I've been told a very experienced cutter, he found 8C was the highest power he achieved.

    1. Use a 5 Gallon resovoir system which gives you a fairly large space of water to heat up before you need to tend to it. Add about a cup of anti-freeze to the mix of DISTILLED water. You don't want ANY minerals in the water that might build up in your system. The anti-freeze works to keep algae and other ickies from growing in your water.

    2. Use a smaller resovoir system (or even closed loop) and install 1 or more radiators found in CPU cooling systems with 120mm fans attached. This will continously cool your water system to ambient room temperatures, but with a tiny resovoir it will be difficult to add things like ice-packs to drop the temps if the ambient is quite hot.

    3. Using an industrial coolant system. Overkill and unless your cutting A LOT, this is a very expensive option to take. You can also explore the idea of Peltier cooling but it is extremely expensive electricity/BTU wise compared to an industrial cooler.

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    HOW CAN COOL THE LASER TUBE?

  • HOW TO KNOW IF THE POWER SUPPLY OF THE LASER TUBE IS DAMAGED

    This video will illustrate how to test for laser power:

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    HOW TO KNOW IF THE POWER SUPPLY OF THE LASER TUBE IS DAMAGED

  • WHAT IS SHIPPING DIMENSIONS AND WEIGHT FOR THE VERTICAL LASER.

    Shipping crate size 121" X 36" X 92"

    Weight 511 LBS

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    WHAT IS SHIPPING DIMENSIONS AND WEIGHT FOR THE VERTICAL LASER.

  • WHAT MATERIALS CAN THE GREENBULL MACHINE CUT? LASER ETCH?

    The Greenbull machine can cut a very wide variety of materials ranging from foam to aluminum. We recommend the use of our 2.2kW spindle to allow the greatest flexibility. Aside from that, the most important thing is to use an appropriate end mill for the material you are cutting and to use appropriate speeds and feed rates.



    BYCNC Response:
    Our 40W laser can cut up to about 1/4" materials ranging from wood and acrylic down through lighter materials such as leather, fabric, foam, etc. Speed and final cut are greatly enhanced by an air assist upgrade. We also offer an 80W laser which has approximately twice the capabilities of the 40W.

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    WHAT MATERIALS CAN THE GREENBULL MACHINE CUT? LASER ETCH?

  • WHAT CAUSES RINGING IN YOUR EAR AND HOW CAN YOU STOP IT?

    Tinnitus . Learn to love it. No really you should see a doctor. Make sure. White noise will help you sleep when it gets loud.

    Additional Information:
    I learned, too late, that if a sudden loud event causes tinnitus, see an audiologist IMMEDIATELY. They can do something about it if addressed within a day or so.

    Wear hearing protection...always. Loud noises trigger my tinnitus, and headphones and ear plugs (when out & about or at the movies, subway, etc) help tremendously. Mine are rated 33dB.

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    WHAT CAUSES RINGING IN YOUR EAR AND HOW CAN YOU STOP IT?

  • WHAT THICKNESS OF MATERIAL CAN THE BLACKTOOTH LASER CUT?

    A standard 40W CO2 laser will cut up to 1/4" thick of material, be it wood, acrylic, card stock, leather, fabric, foam, cork, etc. (Decent speed and final cut are heavily dependent on a strong air assist upgrade)

    Metals cannot be cut due to the power level and wavelength of the CO2 laser. But it can be marked with special solutions like Cermark or Thermark.

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    WHAT THICKNESS OF MATERIAL CAN THE BLACKTOOTH LASER CUT?

  • WHAT IS D.O.F OR DEPTH OF FIELD FOR THE BLACKTOOTH LASER AND LENS?

    Depth of Field. This is how far the focal point goes before re-expanding again. With a 2" lens, you have approximately 2-3mm of DOF. This means that you'll have 2-3mm of perfectly focused laser before it starts to re-expand again. If you have a 4" lens, you will have up to 7mm of DOF.

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    WHAT IS D.O.F OR DEPTH OF FIELD FOR THE BLACKTOOTH LASER AND LENS?

  • HOW DO I DETERMINE THE AMOUNT OF SCREW WEIGTH THAT MY MOTOR CAN HANDLE

    There are two main questions that we can answer with respect to motor torque and the mechanical advantage of lead screws, 1) What torque motor do you need to lift a particular weight, or 2) What maximum weight will my motor torque be able to lift.

    This formula uses Newtons (N) as it's final unit. Use this with the included radius (R) to determine the torque. Newtons can easily be converted to lbs or ounces using online conversions.

    Effort = Sf + (Load/(2 x pi x (R/p) x Se))

    where:
    p = pitch of the screw
    Se = screw efficiency = Standard lead screw will be between 20% (.2) and 40% (.4)
    Sf = static force. This is the force that is needed to start the movement. The number may be eliminated, but it is good to use a number in the 5 N to 20 N range.
    Load = the expected load that the effort will need to carry (i.e., the router and the included axis assembly that the motor will need to lift)
    R = radius of the lead screw


    This formula is based on the "law of the machine"

    The final effort amount with its unit of newtons and R will be the torque. For example, if the effort comes to 100 N (newtons) and the R is .5 inches, then you can assume that the effort is 50 N-in since it would take twice the effort to turn form the one inch mark from the center of the shaft.

    Example:

    Load = 90 N (20.2 lbs)
    R = 1 inch since that is the length from the center of the shaft that the motor is rated
    p = 1 inch / 13 = .08 inches

    Effort = 5 N + (90 N / (2 x 3.14 x (1 / .08) x .2))
    Effort = 5 N + (90 N / (6.28 x 12.5 x .2))
    Effort = 5 N + (90 N / (15.7))
    Effort = 5 N + (5.73 N)
    Effort = 10.7 N = 2.4 lbs = 38.4 oz-in

    I am putting the oz-in on the end because the formula considers the distance from the center of the shaft to be one inch.

    Therefore, a 425 oz-in motor would be able to lift a 20.2 lb Router with its accompanying assembly. If the assembly and router is heavier, plug in the numbers and determine the effort required.

    With a bit of algebra, the formula can be rewritten to find the load:

    Load = (Effort - Sf) x (2 x pi x (R/p) x Se)

    Another formula that does not consider friction at all:

    Effort = (Load x p) / (2 x pi x R)

    Lets see if we get similar results:

    Effort = (20 lb x .08 inches) / (2 x 3.14 x 1)
    Effort = 1.6 / 6.28 = .255 lbs = 4.08 oz-in

    The results from both formulas appear to be very small because a 13 TPI screw will have enormous mechanical advantage.

    It is evident that the first formula that does consider friction that we are loosely estimating is far more conservative than the second formula. Either way, even the most conservative formula shows that the 425 oz-in motor will handle very large weights. If you are using a lead screw with only two turns per inch, .5 inch pitch, you can determine the requirements with the first formula.

    Example for a 10 TPI 5 start (2 turns per inch) lead screw:

    Load = 90 N (20.2 lbs)
    R = 1 inch since that is the length from the center of the shaft that the motor is rated
    p = 1 inch / 2 = .5 inches

    Effort = 5 N + (90 N / (2 x 3.14 x (1 / .5) x .2))
    Effort = 5 N + (90 N / (6.28 x 2 x .2))
    Effort = 5 N + (90 N / (2.512))
    Effort = 5 N + (35.83 N)
    Effort = 40.828 N = 9.18 lbs = 146.88 oz-in

    Customer Response:
    thank you so much

    Additional Information:


    Additional Information:


    Additional Information:
    how do i calculate torque of stepper motor if lead screw coupled to motor shaft and load applied by lead screw on plate is 100 kg by vertically

    Additional Information:
    Pls


    Additional Information:
    1m 16mmdiameter ball screws calculations

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    HOW DO I DETERMINE THE AMOUNT OF SCREW WEIGTH THAT MY MOTOR CAN HANDLE

  • I HAVE THE REDFLY SYSTEM AND A 2.2KW SPINDLE - 110V HOW DO CONNECT SPINDAL?

    It is not necessary to connect the spindle VFD (Variable Frequency Drive also called an Inverter) to the computer or CNC motion electronics. The VFD can be controlled independently using the control panel on the VFD. The control panel has the ability to control all aspects of the spindle including Speed, Torque, limits, etc. However, you can connect the VFD to the computer so the CNC control program can control the spindle during the CNC Machine operation. You will need to connect the VFD to the computer via a serial conection (in this case, it is the RS-485 protocol).

    The following are instructions on how to connect the VFD to Mach3 via this RS-485 serial connection.

    The first thing you will need is the dynamic link library to pair with mach3 called the Huanyang VFD Mach3 PlugIn. You can find this file at the mach3 support forum here: http://www.machsupport.com/forum/index.php/topic,14182.0.html

    You will also need to download the Microsoft .net 3.5 framework and install it: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=21

    Follow the pdf that comes with the library file, but here is a synopsis of what you need to do (I also added a lot more information that may be useful during this process as the manual does not cover the main connections that need to be done):

    You will need to program your VFD so that it knows how to communicate with mach3 and the computer (go into the programming mode of the VFD and change these parameters):
    - PD001 - value 2 - Enables with communication aspect of the VFD
    - PD002 - value 2 - Enables frequency control from the communcations port
    - PD163 - value 1 - VFD address
    - PD164 - value 1 - Baud rate of 9600 (speed of the communication)
    - PD165 - value 3 - 8N1 RTU - 8 bits (that's the size of the word that gets communicated), N (No parity or no error checking) and 1 (1 stop bit)

    Copy the dll file to the PlugIns folder of mach3.

    Connect the RX and TX lines to your computer. There are a couple ways you can do this, but the recommended way would be to use an FTDI USB device which converts a USB to a serial com port. The device will have Rx and Tx connectors to connect to the VFD terminals with the same labels. This method is recommended since serial ports are not as common in computers these days.

    Next, you will need to configure mach3 to use the plugin library. Start mach3 and click on Menu -> config ->Config Plugins. Enable the new plugin by clicking on the red cross on the left column next to the plug in. Restart mach3 after doing this.

    No you need to configure mach3 to use the HuanyangVFD plugin. Go to the ports & pins configuration and select the spindle setup tab. Make sure that the Disable Spindle Relays checkbox is unchecked. We don't want mach3 to output a signal for a relay since the spindle will start up and turn off within the VFD and not from an external relay.

    Next, go to the HuanyangVFD settings by clicking on Menu -> plugin control -> HuanyangVFD. Set the parameters to the same settings you put into the VFD programming. The com port will be shown as new hardward when you plug in the USB FTDI device. A little bubble will be displayed at the bottom right where it will notify you that a new device is being installed (be patient while windows assigns a com port). Alternatively, you can use the windows device manager to see which port was set for the new USB FTDI device). You may need to restart mach3 several times until you get the correct information displayed in the PD001 and PD002 fields. When the com port is correct and the other parameters, like baud and VFD address is the same as you entered in the programming, then the PD001 and PD002 will show the number 2, otherwise, a 99 will appear which means that communication was not successful.

    You can now control the on/off and RPM of the spindle using the RS485 communication between mach3 and the VFD.

    Additional Information:
    The question was how to connect the spindle to the redfy. I did not receive a VFD.
    I have the redFly system and a 2.2kW Spindle - 110V how do i connect the spindle?

    Additional Information:
    If you received a spindle without a VFD, please contact us asap. Our spindle will not work without a VFD.

    Additional Information:
    Hi, how is this setup in mach4?

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    I HAVE THE REDFLY SYSTEM AND A 2.2KW SPINDLE - 110V HOW DO CONNECT SPINDAL?

  • CAN BOOST THE POWER OF MY BLACKTOOTH LASER?

    Upgrade your mirrors to SI coated mirrors, using a HQ ZnSe lens and even pushing up to a beam expander will all boost power. The ideal order of experimenation for lowest cost would be changing out for a higher quality lens labeled HQ ZnSE lens. Next would be SI mirrors, which will absorb less heat and reflect better, the last would be to use a beam expander which expands the beam, reducing the heat signature on the mirrors and makes a tighter focal width.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    CAN BOOST THE POWER OF MY BLACKTOOTH LASER?

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