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Material Analysis, Feed Rates, Laser Strength & Passes.

Over the next few weeks I intend to perform a materials analysis and determine the optimal performance for the Emblaser with the 3 element glass lens.

You can find my results in the following table:


  • edited April 2015
    Rather then creating a .nc file with lots of different cuts I decided to create the following UniversalGcodeSender macro to help find the best settings for a given material.

    Screen Shot

    G91;M3 S255;G1 F300;G2 X-5 Y5 I0 J5;G2 X5 Y-5 I5 J0;M5

    The macro makes a small 5mm radius circle with the configured power and feed rates, but can be updated faster than changing a .nc file.

    To use it, do the normal homing and setting laser height etc.
    1. Position the head over the material to cut/engrave,
    2. Go through the safety checklist and then press and hold to enable the laser.
    3. Click the macro button to inscribe a circle, (click again for multiple passes.)
    4. Remove the material or move the laser to inspect. I like to record the settings for future reference by writing near the circle e.g. 255@300x1
    5. Change the value for S255 or F300 for power or feed rate respectively.
    6. Repeat the process over a different part of the material.
    The GCode broken down below is for reference only (do not use these steps one by one, always use the full macro above):
    G91Use relative coordinates
    M3 S255Enable laser at 255 of 255 (i.e. 100%)
    G1 F300Set laser speed 300mm per minute
    G2 X-5 Y5 I0 J5Draw a clockwise Arc from current location (6 o'clock) around to 9 o'clock with centre (I,J) 5mm north of start
    G2 X5 Y-5 I5 J0Draw the remainder of the circle (9 to 6) with centre 5mm East of start
    M5Disable Laser

    WARNING:The macro should always end with a disable laser "M5", otherwise it will happily stay burning without moving.
    Also remember if anything goes wrong pushing the laser button will disable the laser immediately.
  • I like this macro a lot. It is now so much easier to quickly test different settings, instead of creating new NC files for each setting.

    I have one suggestion: Add G21 at the beginning of it so the machine is forced to metric mode.
    When I just copy and pasted the above code, it made a 5 inch radius circle.
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