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batjac's fault

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SOLD! batjac's fault

Post  fredvon4 on Sun Feb 12, 2017 4:32 pm

Mark mentioned (OK a little small) but reasonable priced Laser Engraver...that seems-- from my research today-- to easily cut small thin balsa

11.5" x 15.5" laser area

At $250 not out of the question as a low cost entry level machine

The have many different Mw from 5500Mw, 2500Mw, 1600Mw to 500Mw in the 30CM x 40CM form factor

I found a user group forum, and started asking questions after getting very discouraged reading the sale site reviews

I am seriously thinking about one of these just for rib cutting...leaning to the 1600Mw DYI kit

http://www.banggood.com/Wholesale-Laser-Equipment-c-3491-0-1-3-45-0_page1.html

To join the forum you have to send an e-mail to admin and get a one time registration Key

http://benboxlaser.us/index.php/topic,1623.new.html#new

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SOLD! Re: batjac's fault

Post  batjac on Mon Feb 13, 2017 12:11 am

Fred, I did a lot of reading before I ordered my kit a couple of days ago.  Most of the bad reviews seem to center on the software, I think.  The Benbox forum and Youtube videos are mostly positive if you get the software working good.  I went with the 2500mW A3 laser kit because it had the bigger work area of 39x40 cm, or 11½ x 15½ inches.  The A5 size, either 1200mW or 5500mW, only have a work area of 22x17cm, or 8½ x 6½ inches.  Inch dimensions being approximate.

Also, I’ve seen a few posts about the Benbox software you download from the manufacturer having malware and trojans.  I think I’ll skip the download and buy the Bencut software from the start.  There's also a guy who has a couple of good videos of his laser engraver cutting ribs and tutorials on using Bencut and the free Inkscape program to make the Gcode files to cut parts.




The Bencode forum also has several ideas for using fans to blow the smoke away from focal point for a better cut.  This guy could definitely use a fan of some kind.

Hope this is helpful,
The Approximate Mark

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SOLD! On getting a entry level LASER engraver to cut lite balsa

Post  fredvon4 on Mon Feb 13, 2017 8:46 am

Yep after the reviews on the sale site; I found the forum, joined, and already have two pages of questions answered... good helpful folks there

Haven't pulled the trigger yet.. I am asking more about minutia like new lenses to focus the laser better, the fans you mentioned and a lot of software questions as well as any controller board upgrades

Later today going to watch some recommended " scan a part and convert file video"

Still fussing back n forth on 1600 vs 2500....

I also read somewhere that saving the final file can be a pain in several of the programs.... lot of fiddly stuff to figure out yet


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SOLD! Re: batjac's fault

Post  fredvon4 on Thu Feb 16, 2017 10:34 am

For anyone following this

I am not new to computers or wood working

But Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) anything -----is a skill set I do not have.

And, until now, I thought the cost of admission was beyond my possible occasional use.

Same as the hobbyist size good Metal Laths or Mills.... and they still are far too costly to get and screw around with making small engine / airplane parts I.E. aluminum venturi type projects

As I am researching these small form factor CNC Do It Yourself low power diode lasers--- I find there is a crap load of different DYI kits out there Including a LOT of differing bed sizes as well and LASER power modules and controller boards. AND!!!! there are designs for a different motion method bed for a router spindle

All of these low cost DYI kits are based on Audrino chip board controllers and NO real standards. And with Nano (USB control interrupter) and Audrino being Open Sourced, the no( or low) cost software solutions, are NOT turn key

If you move up to the true turn key stuff --the price gets way out of range fast...and they are usually still based on the cheap DYI kits with a bunch of fancy enclosures (not needed) and very proprietary software

Then the next serious price jump is to commercial systems like our current kit maker guys use.
Of course that buy in price demands you use the machine to make money. They can easily save you time, material, and produce very precise repeatable parts...FAST...
However, we have all seen the forum postings where XXX kit maker, with a LASER cutter, tells us the wood and cutting is cheap the big deal is the accurate conversion of a plan to CAD then to a code the machine can understand... and the software to do all that is, or can be, rather expensive

Since there is a LOT of these kits I have decided to wait a year as I desire a big enough CNC Router and CNC LASER cutter and the DYI kits are crazy cheap right now... BUT the three or four guys developing software solutions are just now in their infancy but making daily progress and some actually have fairly sophisticated code but still clunky human interface that is not very intuitive... Requires you the user to know what the code is doing relative to any one of the non standard controllers boards MIGHT have been shipped with YOUR DYI kit

I do not desire to be part of his early development trail and error fiddling... but I think by years ends (just in time for my Xmass wish list) there will be two or more much better refined interface solutions in the $39 range....

Final info... the links we saw for the 2500Mw 30CM x 40CM (11.5" x 15.5") DYI kit at sub $250 cost is but one of many variations of therse type kit...

I find there are gantry frames as wide as 30" but narrow like 5.5" .... plenty big enough to cut a 3" or 4" sheet of 1/16th balsa into a lot of ribs instead of just one or two at a time. The same is true for the spindle routers ...big enough to cut 1/2" thick balsa sheet into a good Profile Fuselage like for a Ringmaster or similar

There are even hybrids with both the spindle router and Laser on same gantry... but I think I will stay away from them... The LASER need a speedy slew rate with cog wheels and stepper motors that are indeed fast but low torque... A spindle router needs slower slew rates at higher side torques so uses screw sliders for X and Y axis moving

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SOLD! Re: batjac's fault

Post  rsv1cox on Thu Feb 16, 2017 10:52 am

Yes, I'm following this Fred.  It was only a few months ago that I finally took the time to look up what CNC meant and was intrigued but not a player.  Laser cutters are a different story, attainable technology.  I'm a DIY guy, but when I can buy a laser cut P-38 kit for $24 the economics of buying one peter out.  

Hopefully for your benefit this Christmas you will find one in your stocking. Smile

Bob

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SOLD! Re: batjac's fault

Post  Marleysky on Thu Feb 16, 2017 11:23 am

Fred, Thanks for investing your time to research these systems. It is sorta like what I'd thought when I found that one. ....here's the frame, tires and steering wheel....now you just gotta build the rest of the car.   I suppose if you know code and programming it may not be so intimidating, but not me. I lost over four hours trying to get my printer to print 12 pages that "stuck" in the print spooler. "It" would not delete the print job, "it" would not print anything else. Followed the step by step on line instruction to open the computers system maintence tools file, open the spooler and delete the file manually. Then upon restart, it wouldn't recognize the printer. PHHHFFA!  I finally gave up and did a system reset to a earlier ( last week) safe point and it now seems to work. I know I'll have to remove any large hammer type objects from the room, the next time I try to print something, if it don't print. Otherwise I'll have the "Oh, well now, it's really busted. Guess I'll have to buy a new one."scenireo. I'll  try not to take my frustrations out on the poor printer, I know the problem is within Windows, not the operator, not the machine.

Im hoping that Mark, has better luck, or more of a understanding of the lazer cutters required software programming, that can be adapted to enhance our enjoyment of this hobby!  Popcorn    So many plans, So much balsa.....So little time.  Computer Issues

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SOLD! Re: batjac's fault

Post  batjac on Thu Feb 16, 2017 12:45 pm

Initially, I started looking at the Chinese 3040 milling machines a few months ago, but they were more than I wanted to spend, as reading about them made me think I’d have to dump a bunch more money into one past the initial purchase price to get it to run like I wanted.  Probably on the order of around $500-$600 dollars total to get the project going.  Too much for what I’d do with it.  So I’ve just been keeping my eye on Craigslist for a used one to mess with.  
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZEUOyCOycDw

When I read about the 2.5 Watt laser engravers a couple of weeks ago, I realized that these were better suited to what I wanted to do, and pulled the trigger.  I don’t want to have to make parts to pay for the thing like I would with a more expensive machine.  There are already several guys in my area that do custom short kits through the two local hobby shops.  I just want to use it to make my silly ideas in a more precise manner.  There are several ideas that I’ve been putting on hold because I don’t want to mess with the cutting and aligning to get things just so.  But the laser cutter would make things precise and repeatable.  For example, the 47 rib blanks I just cut out by hand and then spent a lot of time sanding to shape would have been nice to laser cut and have them all identical.

I don’t know anything about CAD/CAM or GCode or GRBL.  But from the videos I’ve watched, I figure I can get the basics down in a short time.  At least enough to take a .pdf I draw up and trace over it with the CAD software.  So for under $300 I can be trying out my ideas.  I figure I can draw something up, use the laser at low power to cut the parts from Dollar Store cardstock to see if the idea is feasible, and then cut the parts out without wasting balsa, which is getting ever more costly, or filling the room with sawdust that get everywhere and needs to be cleaned up.  It’ll also cut down on my No. 11 blade expenditures.  I’m even wondering how it’ll do on low power cutting Monokote trim sheets.

So, in a couple of months I may be able to show Y’all how I’m doing with it.  And, as Fred says, the software will only get better, and I can buy the rails to expand the bed if I desire later.

The Pathfinder Mark

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SOLD! Re: batjac's fault

Post  getback on Thu Feb 16, 2017 6:34 pm

Thumbs Up Way to go Mark sounds like you have everthing planned out to do what you want from it and get a learning out of the process at the same time , Hope things work out and you keep us a little informed it ya have time Beer Cheers This Site Rocks!

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