Over time, I intend to write a series of articles on what I'm up to in my shop. They may just be ramblings about my frustrations, to which some of you might relate, or I might be trying to pretend I actually know something that could be helpful to you. Either way, I hope most of it, at least, will be enjoyable "library" reading.
Let the insanity begin!
Now that you have your laser mounted and fired up, what can be more exciting than using it to cut something? Anything! But what if we've never had one before? What can it cut, and what settings do we need? In this article, I go into the testing I did, the settings I used, my observations, and some practical tips for cutting through five different kinds of common wood.
If you're a long time laser engraving pro, you might want to pass this one by, but, for relative noobs like me, you might find a good starting point to get going with laser engraving on wood. Here, I use two types of commonly available materials, Baltic Birch Plywood and solid Bass Wood, to engrave a photograph using various settings in LightBurn on my Endurance and JTech lasers.
Air Assist is critical for efficient laser through-cutting, but the source of the air (compressor, aquarium pump, lungs) is only half the battle. What will you put at the laser end of the hose? There are many good choices available, and room for many more.
Here, I discuss my uneven through-cutting problem and the solution I crafted with materials on hand which eventually became the prototype for a 3D printed version as well. I've included explanations with loads of pictures and instructions to help you to make or print your own!
Do you have a powerful Endurance Laser, but can't get it to through-cut as well as you would like? Do you wish it could cut a little faster, sharper, cleaner? Well, maybe you need a different lens or two.
I recently got Endurance's Lens Pack, bringing my count to four lenses. I was curious as to which was best at what, so I ran some tests and assembled the results here, complete with photos and explanations of my attempts. I hope you will find it useful.