CO2 Lasers....

Okie dokie here we go.

I have, as I am sure most of us, have wanted to play with the big lasers. I got a little more serious when I started cutting out more flat parts. I started looking into a laser cutter and the prices are outrageous when you get into anything bigger than 8"x8", same laser power just larger build platform.

So I looked for parts, that sucks, super expensive for a tube, power supply, optics, optics mounts. So I think I am going to get the cheap ebay model, rip it apart and mpcnc it. That means an enclosure of some sort but worth it.

Any experience with these lasers, recommendations? Keep in mind I just want to cut out parts with the same tolerances I am getting with the router.


You should probably make a mount for the low rider :slight_smile:

A laser cutter is next on my list. I can’t imagine needing a huge platform, but I would love to be able to work on huge pieces. The wife expects me to make several more projects with the low rider before I can build my next machine. I am thinking sometime around winter.

I saw the corexy post and I wanted to respond with the same thing. I would love a CO2 laser setup that could cut at about 12x12, but hopefully more like 24x18, and it would be awesome if I could mount it on top of a large piece of plywood, either to cut out parts with less waste, or to engrave on larger projects. It’s also possible I don’t actually need 40W…

Does the enclosure have to be metal?

Most likely not. If a stray laser hits it, the beam will be out of focus. Enclosures are mostly for eye protection.

There is a 40w on ebay shipped from a local spot, so I put in an offer to pick it up to save some dough. Might have one Monday. I think it was a “40” watt so I figured it would be safe to drive it at 30W all day.

Lowrider might work kinda depends on the speeds needed to cut, say 1/4".

I will try a wood enclosure painted in white or something first, Lined with aluminum foil? it should not ever actually hit the box so, who knows. I am fearful of a 30W laser though so I will do some test to see haw fast it can ruin my day if I get one.

This all just kind of fall in line with the sand table, corexy, standalone laser build like dkj4linux idea. Some many projects, summer is a bit slower so I am messing with them all simultaneously. In a month or so biz picks back up and hopefully we get 1 or more good projects out of it.

I think that, indeed, purchasing an el cheapo CO2 laser machine is probably cheaper than purchasing all the CO2 components one by one, so I suggest you to go for this solution.

About the enclosure, I don’t think you actually need to enclose the whole thing. Just enclose the laser paths and make a small box around the area where the laser will meet your work surface. It can be made of some semi transparent acrylic, as long as it meets your laser wavelenghts specifications. Building a whole enclosure is possible, but it will be bulky and make maintenance harder, your choice.

I have a 40W and an air assist pump on the way!

Dui, I think that is the way I will start with just a small shield (and safety glasses) but I am worried about stray reflections so I am pretty sure I will find a way to enclose it. The 2.8W is crazy bright, I can’t imagine the damage a 40W could do with a minor mistake. I had lasik done…no more lasers in my eyes or anyone else’s.

Nice thing about co2 lasers, you can’t see them. /s The tube will glow, 'cause it’s a neon tube around the laser chamber, but the laser is invisible, right up to poking holes in your retina. If you can put like a 4" shield around the target area, parallel with the work, then have the whole assembly surrounded by a short “wall” of laser resistant material you should be good.

Can’t wait to see how this project goes. I’m interested in doing the same.

So do I give it a test run or just rip it apart?

Well, you gotta make sure it works, you’re not AvE…

You can’t prove that can you???

So the focus is extremely touchy, I think this is going to be tough even with stainless rails.

Yeah maybe he is AvE…My neighbor’s name is Ryan, too bad he isn’t the vicious one :frowning:

Yea, you guys don’t sound the same at all!

I’ve been wearing safety squints all day try to get the laser to chooch so I can post some pics in the dooblydoo… Any better?

I’ve been wearing safety squints all day try to get the laser to chooch so I can post some pics in the dooblydoo… Any better?

All day I have been screaming "fucus you fack!

Super awesome worth $360,up and running in no time took 20 min to align the mirrors. The software doesn’t even suck, I’m not sure what everyone complains about.

Now I gotta rip it apart.

Gentlemen welcome back to the shop. Today we have a treat especial, we are going to be looking at the EMMMPPCNC.

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