Technical, Techniques, Hints, and Tips > Laser & Water-Jet Cutting

Laser cutting machines etc.

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carlmt:
Thank you Sylvain  :-))
 
Yes, a CD containing ALL the photographs taken of the prototype construction will be included.
 
Unfortunately, due to copyright issues, I cannot include photographs of the real ship but these are plentiful on the web - after all, that is where I got nearly all mine from!

ballastanksian:
Sorry if you have answered this before but how do you vent the gases and fumes? Is there a filter in the extraction system in the cutter case or does it vent naturally from louvres? I am interested and assume that to prevent you getting overcome with poisonous gases that you have something to prolong your ferry kit developing life :}

jarvo:
How long does the lazer last??? you mentoned that the lens was replaced because of splatter, is this similar to welding???


Regards


Mark

carlmt:

--- Quote from: ballastanksian on November 30, 2015, 09:44:35 pm ---Sorry if you have answered this before but how do you vent the gases and fumes? Is there a filter in the extraction system in the cutter case or does it vent naturally from louvres? I am interested and assume that to prevent you getting overcome with poisonous gases that you have something to prolong your ferry kit developing life :}

--- End quote ---

HA ha - yes, I would like to live long enough to actually enjoy this hobby!!!
 
For extraction, there is a 4" dia flexible trunking that passes via a powerful extractor unit to vent outside.  Ours is vented through a panel in the personnel door of the garage/workshop into a side passageway (ours) alongside the house.  This passage acts as a bit of a venturi and so any breeze blows the fumes away quite quickly.  They do pong somewhat, and I really wouldn't use the machine without an extractor.  With the lid of the machine closed (it wont work with it open anyway), 99.9% of the fumes are contained and extracted to outside.  There is still a residual smell though - and unless there is a powerful room extractor as well, this is almost impossible to eradicate.  As for a filter - no, there is no filter on this unit.  You can get them, and with one the machine can be used in a closed environment without extraction, but they are eye-wateringly expensive and have to be replaced quite often.  Only really of benefit to large  concerns such as educational establishments.

carlmt:

--- Quote from: jarvo on November 30, 2015, 10:32:22 pm ---How long does the lazer last??? you mentoned that the lens was replaced because of splatter, is this similar to welding???


Regards


Mark

--- End quote ---

Hi Mark - I have been told that the laser can last up to about 2000 hours and our 60W tube costs 350 to replace.  This can vary with use/abuse.  They are cooled by water - de-ionised water - and if this regimen is not observed then the laser life will be short.  Another killer of lasers is the cooling water temperature.  They are best running around 18 deg C.  A decent chiller unit will look after the laser by regulating the temperature, whereas just dumping a pump into a bucket of cold water and expecting it to do the job (it does happen apparently) is asking for trouble!!
 
As for the lens - it wasn't splatter that killed it, it was shattered around the edge.  This must have happened at the factory before delivery as the technician noticed it when he was demonstrating to me the method of removing it fro cleaning.  So long as it wasn't touched, it worked fine as the focusing centre of the lens was OK.  It was only when I HAD to clean it that it finally fell to bits. If you don't try to laser something you are not supposed to , then there should be no splatter or any other detritus to affect the machine - but obviously the fumes contain particles in suspension, and these WILL damage the optics - hence the need to clean.
 
The key to having one of these machines working well is good set-up and a rigorous cleaning regimen.  Keep the optics clean, replace the cooling water every 3 months and lightly oil the sliders etc., ad it will last.  With the investment we have in this machine, that regimen is not difficult  O0 

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