DIY Laser Cutter/Engraver (CHEAP!)

SciCynical Inventing
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I don't know why most people don't go this route to build a laser cutter. Can't wait till I get my hands on a 80 Watt Co2 laser tube, image what kind of power supply I would need to build then.
ZVS INFO LINK: adammunich.com/zvs-driver/
QUICKJOINT: inkscape.org/~Jarrett/★quickjoint
ELEKSROM (to flash new arduino nano): wiki.eleksmaker.com/doku.php?id=eleksrom
N-Channel Mosfets I used in the final ZVS circuit: SD20N60
N-Channel Mosfet for Switch: 09N70P
EDIT: I fully recommend using the SD20N60 MOSFETS for BOTH the switch and the ZVS circuit. I used the 09N70P mosfet because I just had that on hand.
Optocoupler: EL817
1.8v Regulator: AMS1117
My Laser: 50 Watt
Laser Life Expectancy: From what I can gather, laser tubes in the 40, 50, and 60 watt range have a life expectancy of around 3500 to 4500 working hours. Thats roughly half a year until you would need to replace the tube, but its also very common for a tube to last much longer if you dont abuse it (over current/volt it) so dont quote me on this but I think you can safely assume a full year of service from a tube if treated right and used properly/regularly.
Control Board: Eleksmaker Mana SE
Cardboard thickness I cut: 1mm (100mm/min and 2 passes to cut. Note tube was not running full power)
Edit: According to people who have more experience than me on this matter, a 40 watt CO2 laser is capable of cutting 3-6mm thick acrylic in a single pass. This should give you an idea of cutting power.
Work area: About 9x15 inches or 22.86x38.1cm straight from the Eleksmaker frame they give you. It's also very easy to upgrade to longer t-slotted aluminum extrusions for a bigger size (bigger size would be better for more powerful/longer laser tubes).
I had to add a big heatsink to my Mosfet Switch because it would get so hot during cutting that it would stop switching the laser on and off.
Where did I get (certain item)?
Stop the video at 1:16 and look at my list of parts. I didn't include links to specific items because those links can either expire or simply not be the best deals out there and usually the best deals for things are found by doing your own research. I provided a parts list so you can simply type that part name into your favorite online store and see what prices there are for that item. However, I do get all of my parts almost exclusively off Ebay.
How did I connect the tube up?
Electrically speaking, the tube doesnt really have an orientation (positive or negative terminal) because it works both on HV AC and HV DC but as to which HV is better I'm not sure. I made sure NOT to SOLDER the wires on but just twist them on tightly with pliers and insulate with electrical tape, otherwise the heat from soldering could crack the glass. Physically speaking, the tube rests on a block of carefully measure wood that I attached garden hose clamps to with screws. I layered foam padding on top of that so screw is hidden and glass tube rests on something soft. The way the wood is attached to the extruded aluminum is with more pieces from the metal toy kits I mentioned in the video. I want to replace this construction because its still shifts around too much.
Help support me so I can make more videos:
Twitter: twitter.com/SirSpunk
paypal: Scicynical@gmail.com
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Ciencia y tecnología

Publicado el


25 nov 2018






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Comentarios 180
Joey Novak
Joey Novak Hace un día
Awesome project, thanks for the video. I am SO glad you upgraded the mirror mounts. Have you seen the video with the cow eye and a laser cutter? I was just imagining that mirror flopping around while the laser being energized. Anyways, way to go!
mass Hace 4 días
LMAO. ELECTROBOOM. I'm still giggling.
SciCynical Inventing
UPDATE! I made a recent video showing the improvements I made on this systen and also explaining the connections from the Arduino to the CO2 Laser PSU. esvid.net/video/v%C3%ADdeo-w7B12Cl_7gU.html
Darus_ Hace 9 días
This is bad ass! Love the Polish ;)
iKingRPG Hace 10 días
I'm thinking of modding my cheap -$200 3d printer with a laser, wish me luck
Rik DeBacco
Rik DeBacco Hace un mes
Nice. I just had the exact same idea lol. Funny I'd stumble apoun this. I was looking at the cheapo frames for regular laser engravers, and was like... well.. whats stopping me from upgrading the laser and driver and turning it into a laser engraver/CUTTER? Lol. See somehow beat me to it XD Well done.
Jacek Nowicki
Jacek Nowicki Hace un mes
Dobra robota chopie =)
hmx Hace un mes
It may have been the cardboard, but it looks like your laser may need to work on the focus/alignment a little. I also think you may have over-engineered the optocoupler portion a bit, but I'm not sure what mosfet you are using so you may have been working within those limits. The actual prints towards the end looked pretty good, but there was a bit of deviation I noticed when tracing over the same line. A really nice starting point for improvements and I think the first improvement I'd make might be with that power supply. Seems you had a few issues to over come there, but you did it. I'd love to see how things work out in the long term and with really long projects/high usage. And maybe a larger reservoir for the water cooler. Now I think I might go purchase my own Eleksmaker engraver and some other parts...and once I am done having fun lasing things, I might try my hand at making my own laser cutter/engraver. And that ending felt a bit abrupt, but still an awesome build.
Ben Phillips
Ben Phillips Hace un mes
Well, that is in fact the cheapest cO2 laser I ever done did see, but it is also the sketchiest. LOL! Good work.
Shawn1174q Hace 2 meses
Watched this video hoping a normal person like myself could build one. 4 minutes in I'm like..... Yeah I'll just buy one off of Amazon
Lis0v Hace 2 meses
Nawet nieźle
Roboticus Hace 2 meses
That's pretty cool. But *please* do something about the laser safety! I don't want to hear that you've blinded yourself one day.
Owen Anderson
Owen Anderson Hace 2 meses
No one has commented on the sound from 18:29 to 19:00? Is that a murder or a good time?
Richard Rousseau
Richard Rousseau Hace 2 meses
I really like the fact that you know how to make this all work, but you've quite evidently never been injured by one of your inventions... Lasers will seriously burn you and destroy your eyesight in a millisecond!! You need to practice being safer mate, for yourself and those around you, including the neighbours! One loose mirror, and the neighbours cat explodes.... Be safe first, not after the 'accident'!
Alex Buchanan
Alex Buchanan Hace 2 meses
Couldn't you also use a zener diode to isolate the back end?
Thomas Heisler
Thomas Heisler Hace 2 meses
do you have a fb group?
Thomas Heisler
Thomas Heisler Hace 2 meses
Woodsman & Wilderness
Very interesting man Wish I had your brain 🤗
Mr P ing
Mr P ing Hace 3 meses
As soon as i heard FULL BRIDGE RECTIFIER, i knew i was in good hands
xConundrumx Hace 3 meses
Next video ... Do a DIY fire extinguisher for when your house burns down. JK Nice work, but by god make this thing safer please.
Kris Knowlton
Kris Knowlton Hace 3 meses
I am impressed by your ability to make something like this. I am not trying to be derogatory in any way but I don't think your little jar full water is enough to dissipate the heat generated by a 50 watt laser. I hope your laser tube lasted longer than a couple of hours. A little advise from an old man, do what you do well to make money and buy things from people who do what they do well. I learned this way too late in life. If you did this to prove you could do it, fine, I understand that and applaud you for it.
SciCynical Inventing
I really appreciated this advice, thank you.
Arnold Chonai
Arnold Chonai Hace 4 meses
Why not add a fly-back diode in parallel to the load? This will shield your microcontroller from undesirable back-EMF and is common-place in many MOSFET switch circuits.
Modrih Hace 4 meses
Jesteś polakiem?
dot dot
dot dot Hace 4 meses
I want to make a laser cutting machine of size 4'/6'(feet).can it possible with this kit what u described. seggest plz..
dot dot
dot dot Hace 4 meses
how can i cantact u.
Waffle Modz
Waffle Modz Hace 4 meses
just wondering can your machine cut wood
Waffle Modz
Waffle Modz Hace 4 meses
lol i thought you were american until 17:28 i understand what you said regardless the subtitle because im polish too.
Damian Hace 5 meses
Inspirujące :o. Swoją drogą świetny akcent :]
Max M
Max M Hace 5 meses
I am in the process of designing my own laser cutter and I was just wondering how much grounding is really necessary. Also, is it ok to ground to the ground terminal of an outlet or should I run a wire directly from the machine to the ground outside my house?
Max M
Max M Hace 5 meses
​@SciCynical Inventing Thanks for the advice! I've grounded the frames for all my control boards and your video may end up saving me a lot of time and money. :D Thanks!
SciCynical Inventing
Grounding is important when you have sensitive electronics nearby or not isolated to a high voltage source. What I would first concern myself with is simple isolation of the sensitive electronics from the high voltage power supply. Of course high voltage can create static electricity on surfaces so grounding the chassis of the frame and/or HV power supply is always a good idea but may not be necessary if you connect the high voltage lines correctly. So what im saying is it depends how much grounding or isolation you need based on how you design it. I would start with isolating and putting the sensitive electronics as far as possible from any high voltage sources and see if there are any issues with simple testing. Thanks for the comment! Edit: Grounding to an outlet can be unreliable, but can work. Grounding straight outside may be impractical, but can also work.
Salvador Carrillo
Salvador Carrillo Hace 5 meses
Ok i need some guidance. If you have the time. I already have a cnc ive made running on a arduino with grbl. If i buy a 40w co2 laser case n all. Is there a way to adapt it to my cnc. Im new to lasers. Ive been cncing wood for over a year. Any help will greatly be appreciated.
Salvador Carrillo
Salvador Carrillo Hace 5 meses
@SciCynical Inventing thank you. I will investigate further.
SciCynical Inventing
Ive messed around with arduino and grbl before so If I remember you can attach a co2 laser to it but what you will need is a proper co2 laser driver which are maybe 80 bucks. Probably cheaper ones exist for lower wattage lasers. That laser PSU will allow you to connect it directly to the arduino and from there you will need to modify code or files to make the laser work properly with it. It might be difficult but I know for a fact its possible.
aretardridesmotard Hace 5 meses
hahaha oh my god. its so destructively and horrifically beautiful.
Mahdi Mohammadi
Mahdi Mohammadi Hace 6 meses
Jacek Walczak
Jacek Walczak Hace 6 meses
Dobra robota... :D
Jorge L. Pérez
Jorge L. Pérez Hace 7 meses
Fuck... Just watch 20 seconds of you video and I already regret about just buying the k40 laser
KW Daily
KW Daily Hace 7 meses
Im not sure if this had been covered, but using a regulator for your opto is unnecessary; being an LED, you can drive with 5v straight from ur micro through a current limiting resistor and that’s it. You can look up calculators or just use ohms law to figure the resistor value. Nice project though!!!
Dev Guy
Dev Guy Hace 7 meses
9:01 why not just use a relay? that would be a whole lot simpler and better.
Max M
Max M Hace 5 meses
Relays are way too slow for this type of application. They can take up to 10 milliseconds to turn on and 20 to turn off. The driver used has switching times in the nanoseconds, making it about 10,000 times faster. This makes a much cleaner cut because the laser can start and stop cutting almost the instant it receives a signal from the control board.
VileStorms Hace 7 meses
Just curious why not just drop the voltage before the controller instead of using an optocoupler? Seems more complicated the way you have it
Hamza Nallwala
Hamza Nallwala Hace 7 meses
That placement of resistor is a genius move 🙂
53rdcards Hace 7 meses
So if you were going to mount this to say a mpcnc machine, and have it where the machine can control the on off, would it largely be exactly the same as what you built?
SciCynical Inventing
Yeah basically the same thing, i dont know if it would be cheaper or more expensive though.
sergio urquijo
sergio urquijo Hace 7 meses
no whood cutting?? Really great video by the way. I have a solid diode one and it cuts 5mm mdf with 22pases at 700speed
Jarosław Król
Jarosław Król Hace 7 meses
What power?
area46241 Hace 7 meses
Fantastic laser video! I wonder how long it would take to cut an oak tree down...think it could?
Artur Hace 7 meses
Witaj masz moze jakis schemat do tego i spis elemetow jestem zainteresowany
Piotr Baja
Piotr Baja Hace 7 meses
Nawet nieźle :D Naprawdę się zdziwiłem gdy usłyszałem polski, masz świetny akcent! :)
Joel Roche
Joel Roche Hace 7 meses
18:17 damn your neighbors having a little mommy daddy time or what!??
Drew Gossett
Drew Gossett Hace 7 meses
Dude, what the hell was that... he didn't even hesitate either.
pahvalrehljkov Hace 7 meses
Michael Yount
Michael Yount Hace 7 meses
Man, this video really made me turn on my load.
BASTIEN747 Hace 7 meses
fuck you have an incredible english accent for a polish dude cudos bro and siema
Chad Shumaker
Chad Shumaker Hace 8 meses
So you spend $400 on a super sketchy home brew option with no enclosure rather than spend $400 on a enclosed known working system??? Seems like a logical way to waste money. One thing you will learn is that your time is worth money. You gave away your time and came out with a lesser product.
SciCynical Inventing
@Chad Shumaker being smart about it is breaking up a complicated project into manageable sections and doing that for a completed system is more or as complicated as my build. Often times for complete systems you are forced to use proprietary hardware/software which makes something hard to understand at the fundamental level. Each to their own though.
Chad Shumaker
Chad Shumaker Hace 8 meses
@SciCynical Inventing that's where you are wrong everything you listed as a positive can be done on the one that's ready made. You can educate yourself on one that already Works figure it out and then make it work better. But you wasted a lot of time to figure out something that already existed. And listing that it works is not a bonus for the same money or actually even cheaper you can buy one that already works. And upgrade it from there if you would like for all I care. This is where you're confused in life education is worth something yes but you don't always have to pay extra for it learn to be smart about it
SciCynical Inventing
I don't think you see the big picture, first this was a learning experience, I'd rather not spend a lot of money to learn if I don't have to. Second, it WORKS and there's lots of room for custom improvements and upgrades. Some value the educational experience but I guess you care more about results, good for you.
Özge Turan
Özge Turan Hace 8 meses
I need to contact with you for asking something for my project. Could you give me your instagram or facebook if you have ??
Giovanni csc
Giovanni csc Hace 8 meses
wanted you as my neigthbour friend
Teslaspecter Hace 8 meses
doing your own projects and quoting the great Eletroboom? You sir, have gained a subscriber!
Atoool K
Atoool K Hace 8 meses
Evan Paul
Evan Paul Hace 8 meses
Why couldn’t you just use a back emf diode on the original circuit on the input
karl albert
karl albert Hace 8 meses
never seen such an horror of DIY
john le
john le Hace 8 meses
Great and bold work
sitoru Hace 8 meses
maybe i missed it, but why didn't you just buy the $400 laser and the frame? then move everything to the frame
Weird Guy
Weird Guy Hace 8 meses
18:30 why does it sound like someone is being murdered somewhere near by lol
SciCynical Inventing
Because my little brothers like murdering each other while im recording
Vertiqo Hace 8 meses
"its a little sketchy" :D yeah, just a little... how are you still alive dude? :)
NW3D Hace 8 meses
Hope you don't burn your house down or melt an eye. That mess of wires is more than a little concerning.
Those 40w Chinese hobby lasers are $385 on Ebay. Why not just buy one of those, gut it, and use all the parts, lenses, power supplies, controller, etc. on your larger gantry table? As a bonus you'll also have working design and control software.
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