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Old Wed 10 January 2007, 09:51
Just call me:

I've been looking at the LaserMech small aperture beam delivery system and it has all the components that you would need for your system.

I still think that you would be better served by mounting the laser tube to either the gantry car or even to the table itself parallel to the rear x-rail in order to minimize vibration.

However, if you move slowly enough you may be able to mount the tube directly to the z-axis. This would have several obvious advantages: 1) needing to build a far less complicated beam delivery system; and, 2) being able to use the z up/down function to focus the beam on the surface of the substrate.

Looking at the ULS 60 watt tube, the bottom mounting holes (total of 4) are at the corners of a 3" x 23.25" rectangle. If nothing else, I would think you would need to use a longer z-plate - probably 30-36" - as you will also need to mount a red beam collimeter, lens holder and lens, and some short lengths of delivery tube. You will also need some sort of manual adjustment mechanism to tweak the focus.

Lenses can be had in various focal lengths - the most common in the engraving industry are 2" and 4". They're easily interchangeable, so you could experiment with both to see which provides the best mix of speed and cut quality.

Since the Y car has been designed to accommodate a spindle, I would think that a laser tube (at around 5" square) should fit without modification. However, if it won't fit for whatever reason, either a large Y car or a mirrored delivery system would be two options. It occurs to me that there might be a third, and better option, as well.

Instead of mounting the laser tube directly to the z-plate, it could be mounted in a fixed position to a second plate located at a small distance in front of and parallel to the movable z plate. In this way it could be solidly mounted to the Y car (braced as needed) to minimize vibration. The collimeter, tubing, and lens assembly could then be mounted on the movable z-plate. The manual lens adjustment system would then be used for setting the focus point initially, and the z plate could then be used to raise and lower the focus point of the beam (for various thicknesses of substrates).

While there might be a problem with decreased clearance because of the thickness of the added plate, etc., this might be the best option.

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Old Wed 10 January 2007, 20:54
Just call me:
Gerald, You comments on this topic is very much appriciated. After giving much through to the whole issue I have througgt of directly mounting the tube on the Z axis, at lest to start with.

The problem is that if I mount the laser elswhere other than the Z axis I will have to think of a flying optics system which is a bit of a messy job at least for a beginer like me. I according to what I hear aligning the beams is a tricky isssue and also we have to remember that we we are dealing with a 60 watt laser beam.

By Taking the Z axis option I would be compromising the speed. Do you think that a Speed of 15 IPS would be a safe speed to run this opration. If so I would be happy with this speed to start with.

Even the professional manufacturers of laser engravers have two options. The Gantry type systems which they recomend for bed sizes above 48"x24 they have Z axis mounted lasers and the speeds that could achieved would be around
15 IPS. For smaller machines they have a x axis mounted lasers which have flying optics and Galvo motors whcih could achieve speeds beyond 100 IPS.

Once I finish this I would be starting on a samller machine 24"x24" and on this I intend to try out the x axis mounting option wit flying optics.

I have a pfd file from the manufacturer of the laser I am thinking of which gives better mounting details. Since I do not kno the way to attach a pdf file on to this message I would be sending that to you as a persoenel mail. If you have the time can you please go through it.
To my Knowledge the laser could be fixed (bolted) at the top as well as the bottom and also it a a dovetail running through the lenth of the tube. This facility gives us some very interesting options.

Part 2 continues here
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Old Thu 09 June 2016, 01:05
Just call me: Pear tree cottage
United Kingdom
I would avoid Solustan at all costs. My company here in the UK spent thousands of dollars with them on their AGNI laser controller. It never worked properly and crashes constantly. I dealt with a guy called Dhiren, who is a pain to deal with as he never admits there are known bugs in this system - Avoid!
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