I'm adding a laser to my xcarve and need help!

I bought the 1000mm x carve cnc last year and love it. I’ve started getting in a lot of business on guitars and my fiance has been using it for wedding decor as well and it’s so much that I’m thinking about upgrading it to do laser cutting as well. I have no clue about laser engraving but I’m sure y’all do.
I started looking at jtech and wanted yalls input. I don’t need to cut anything over 1/8" inch.
What software would I need? What’s the best package from them, for what I’m needing? And what would I need as far as the computer part? My machine uses the x-controller. Would that run it? Again, I have no clue about anything in this department, as far as what I need.

I don’t own a laser myself, but I’ve been reading about them as I plan on purchasing one myself. I’m thinking this kit from jtech would best suit your needs https://jtechphotonics.com/?product=new-2-8w-laser-and-2-5amp-safety-compliant-driver-kit-with-us-style-power-adapter

The kit comes with the driver, as far as I know the driver controls the laser output and xcontroller would control the paths, I probably shouldn’t even be typing this, so I’d wait till someone with more knowledge steps in.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/40W-USB-DIY-Laser-Engraver-Cutter-Engraving-Cutting-Machine-Laser-Printer-CO2-/352004967142?hash=item51f5218ae6:g:XrsAAOSwSlBYx5Vo

I have the J-Tech 3.8W laser and while it is an excellent laser for etching materials, it is probably not your best choice if your need is cutting material. It will cut thin material, slowly, but it is really meant to etch.

For any serious cutting, you need more power than the JTech products offer. JTech lasers work fine for engraving.

I have a Full Spectrum 45 watt CO2 laser and 1/8" is about max for a clean cut in basswood.
I don’t think that will cut it, no pun intended :slight_smile: Also while cutting the wood does catch fire but there is a blower attached to the laser head the blows it out as it cuts. Need to think about that also.

I’ve got the J-Tech 3.8 watt laser and I am very happy with it. I use it a lot to engrave things like cutting boards and bamboo utensils etc. I have used it to cut and it will work it just takes practice and patience. It works as advertised just don’t think that it will be a works for everything every time solution. I have seen some post that users have unrealistic expectations for these things. But as a user with a good understanding of what I was getting I am very pleased with the product and the performance.

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I have to say. I’m in the same.boat as the OP… I want to add a laser to the xc… but don’t have a clue where to start. But. I don’t want cutting. Unlike OP. Still. The forums, I can’t seem to find a very good. Very basic, where to start. How to start. Etc…

I hope this thread can turn into some very good beginner tips?

@BryanSheets
Study this thread:

I guess I used the wrong term. What I meant was I won’t be ingraving any boards thicker than that, so I don’t want something overly powerful to cut all the way through that. Get what I’m saying? I just need it to laser etch pictures and vector images.

The JTech products should work fine for that.

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Very cool. What software would you recommend for small projects? Would their easel software work?

I don’t have a laser at this time. There are others on the forum here that can answer the software question better than I can.

I have a version of grbl that is nicely suited to laser and spindle work. If you get a JTech laser I would recommend that you use that version. It works with some other lasers as well.

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Very cool! Thanks for the info! I have a buddy that has a version of laserworks, but idk if it will work with this machine.