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Author Topic: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans  (Read 11351 times)

carlmt

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #25 on: October 15, 2015, 10:28:31 pm »

My Christmas present arrived early!!!!!  :-)   :-)   :-)   :-)
 

 
Looking forward to having a play this weekend to get used to it, before using it 'in anger'.... :-))

Martin [Admin]

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #26 on: October 15, 2015, 10:47:39 pm »


"No Mr. Bond, I expect you to die!"
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Brian60

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #27 on: October 16, 2015, 03:15:32 am »

I'm looking forward to seeing parts cut on this very shortly :embarrassed:

Tug Fanatic

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #28 on: October 25, 2015, 06:27:01 pm »

What is the idea here? Martin suggests a grand plan in post one but what is it?

I like the hull & I can see it as a good basis for a lot of models that are easy, relatively quick & cheap to build- a bit like a Springer hull - but I am not so keen on the 50's-60's superstructure. 
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carlmt

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #29 on: October 25, 2015, 06:33:21 pm »

We wont be able to replicate the Thomas Tug exactly as it is copyright with the publishers, however I am looking to modify it a bit to avoid any issues like this - subject to Martin's agreement (will get my ideas over to you sometime this week  :-)) ), so if you have any preferences or ideas for a different superstructure lets see them!!
 
Don't make it too complicated........something simple along with the philosophy of the original idea would suit.

Tug Fanatic

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #30 on: October 25, 2015, 07:24:50 pm »

OK please remember that you asked!

I have gone for something that doesn't look quite as top heavy. I have recently spent a few weeks around Rotterdam & developed a taste for inland tugs that you rarely see modelled. Here are 4 examples which I think look nice - from the 000's of photos that I took - with clean simple lines and which should give a nice handling model.

What do you think?

   
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carlmt

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #31 on: October 25, 2015, 08:47:21 pm »

They look simple and straightforward!!!
 
Easy to design and laser out - will have a dabble during the week and post up some ideas next weekend if that's ok?

Tug Fanatic

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #32 on: October 25, 2015, 09:08:27 pm »

Sounds fine to me. I wait with interest.

PS I like Gepke III best!!!!!!
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steamboatmodel

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #33 on: October 26, 2015, 01:17:04 pm »

What is the idea here? Martin suggests a grand plan in post one but what is it?

I like the hull & I can see it as a good basis for a lot of models that are easy, relatively quick & cheap to build- a bit like a Springer hull - but I am not so keen on the 50's-60's superstructure.
It is the early superstructure that I like about tugs. How about a 20's steam superstructure?
 Regards,
 Gerald.
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Tug Fanatic

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #34 on: October 26, 2015, 02:46:32 pm »

This is what I meant when I said that like the Springer this might be a good hull on which to do your thing. I can see the 1920's interest but I could also see a fishing boat, motor cruiser etc. The aspect ratio is perfect for a Canadian Logging Tug.

I can also see the need for a basic design for beginners etc but I ask again what is the bigger plan envisaged here?

My own feeling is that the dimensions of the hull are that it is too wide relative to its length to make a nice looking older steam type tug - but that is just my opinion.
 
 
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TailUK

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #35 on: October 26, 2015, 02:50:37 pm »

My Christmas present arrived early!!!!!  :-)   :-)   :-)   :-)
 

 
Looking forward to having a play this weekend to get used to it, before using it 'in anger'.... :-))

Nice looking machine!  What's the working area?
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carlmt

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #36 on: October 26, 2015, 03:13:55 pm »

Nice looking machine!  What's the working area?
Just on 575mm wide x 275mm deep.  It could go to the full 600 x 300 if I made a different bed for the material, without the frame that this current one has.  Quite a few who have bought these have made their own 'pin' beds where the material to be cut sits on the pointy ends of large 'pins' (usually made from rivets).  This avoids the 'flashback' that is created when the laser hits the metal grid below the material.

Brian60

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #37 on: October 26, 2015, 06:49:21 pm »

I've been looking at the smaller cutters on ebay bed size 300 x 200 and in one of them the guy had removed the bed to get the full cutting area. For the pin bed he did it simply, down to B&Q or maybe a Hewsons, a proper builders merchant would be better. Go in and buy metal plates, they are perforated with spikes, made for joining roofing trusses etc. They are about 150 x 100mm (6 x 4in) with dozens of spikes pressed into them in place of nails--see photo.

Brian60

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #38 on: October 26, 2015, 06:51:10 pm »

Did I mention I expressed my interest in getting one for chrimbo and she who must be obeyed didn't object! :-))

carlmt

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #39 on: October 26, 2015, 07:51:09 pm »

Did I mention I expressed my interest in getting one for chrimbo and she who must be obeyed didn't object! :-))

RESULT!!!!!  :-)) :-)) :-))

Brian60

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #40 on: October 27, 2015, 05:12:11 am »

Carl I have been asking questions on the laser forums. Me being me thought hey what if it will cut thin brass? no need to offer or think about photo etched fittings anymore, just print them!

Anyway it seems to cut brass, even brass shim and certainly thickness up to 0.5mm you would need a co2 laser of at least a 100watt output, shame because you are in to mega money for one of those. But it might save time/cash in the long run for an operation like your ferry build when it comes to outsourcing parts.

mermod

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #41 on: October 27, 2015, 06:05:51 am »

I have had a bit of a play with metal on my 50watt machine, funny thing is the laser simply bounces off brass but i can put one heck of a deep mark into K+S stainless steel.


Phill
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Umi_Ryuzuki

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #42 on: October 27, 2015, 07:28:23 am »

You may need a different type of laser for cutting metal.
My friend built a 6 watt ultraviolet yag? laser cutter.
The laser tube and cnc frame setup sat around for years, then suddenly he
needed a shim for his cameras.  %)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aXjp3BwvNMg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W071IQhpCFA
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oaFdA8ix_ws


.




TailUK

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #43 on: October 27, 2015, 09:03:46 am »

I've been looking at the smaller cutters on ebay bed size 300 x 200 and in one of them the guy had removed the bed to get the full cutting area. For the pin bed he did it simply, down to B&Q or maybe a Hewsons, a proper builders merchant would be better. Go in and buy metal plates, they are perforated with spikes, made for joining roofing trusses etc. They are about 150 x 100mm (6 x 4in) with dozens of spikes pressed into them in place of nails--see photo.

I'd be very careful of these.  They are very heavily galvanised and exposed to a laser they could fill the cabinet with vaporised zinc.  I'm pretty certain that isn't going to do the mirrors much good!.
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Brian60

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #44 on: October 27, 2015, 06:21:21 pm »

I'd be very careful of these.  They are very heavily galvanised and exposed to a laser they could fill the cabinet with vaporised zinc.  I'm pretty certain that isn't going to do the mirrors much good!.

Well you learn something every day! You can get unplated ones though.

I have had a bit of a play with metal on my 50watt machine, funny thing is the laser simply bounces off brass but i can put one heck of a deep mark into K+S stainless steel.


Phill
Weird, it can only be the fact its a non ferrous metal. I did see that one of the users had a special paint type spray that he coated his stainless with before engraving, maybe that would work on brass? I don't know the answer, but I can't wait until November when I can order mine and start messing with 'burning' stuff :embarrassed: {-) Trouble is swimbo will insist on it being wrapped up and me not touching it until xmas day! {:-{

TailUK

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #45 on: October 27, 2015, 08:16:22 pm »

Unplated would probably work.  We used an aluminium honeycomb in ours and that works great.  Remember to organise a good extractor for your laser or you'll spend hours cleaning the mirrors, as it is count on cleaning them at least once a week or if it's stood unused for any length of time.
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carlmt

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Re: Laser cutting styrene sheet from plans
« Reply #46 on: October 27, 2015, 10:04:28 pm »

Unplated would probably work.  We used an aluminium honeycomb in ours and that works great.  Remember to organise a good extractor for your laser or you'll spend hours cleaning the mirrors, as it is count on cleaning them at least once a week or if it's stood unused for any length of time.

That is good advice - both the extraction and cleaning.  Extraction is not only needed to clear the fumes from the cabinet (which can become combustible) but also to clear the smell!!! Burning styrene, wood or acrylic is not good for the nostrils...not to mention your lungs!!! Just be careful that you don't extract straight into your neighbours windows!!!
Our machine came with a very powerful extraction unit and a 4" dia flexible pipe.  Additionally, the laser is cooled by water circulating through the laser tube.  It is paramount that this water is kept cool otherwise your laser tube will have a very short life.  Again, ours has a water chiller unit - like an air-conditioning unit - which keeps the water below 22 degrees C.  Using the laser for a number of hours at a stretch can heat the water dramatically.  If you don't have a chiller unit, then stand a large thermometer in your tub of cooling water and keep an eye on the temps.  As for water - use only distilled.  Again, any hardness in the water will shorten tube life.

For cleaning, it was recommended to me to use pure alcohol on cotton buds for the mirrors and focus lens.  Baby wipes for the rest of the machine. And a wipe over with 3 in 1 oil on the sliding bars.
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