View Full Version : Premature death of a Laser tube

Ernie Martinez
10-10-2012, 3:14 PM
Has anyone experienced premature death of their laser tubes. I ran a job last night of about 14 wine glasses with no problem.

Came in this morning to run a new job and no laser output. Trouble shot the machine with Epilog support confirmed all diagnostic lights were correct and that signals were being sent to the tube. Their conclusion is that my tube died. Epilog was real good about it, and they're rushing me a tube overnight for morning delivery with no deposit charge, so I'm happy with their response, but I hope this is the exception and not the norm.

My machine is about 8 weeks old with no more than 10 hours on it. Has anyone else experienced this or heard of this happening so prematurely?

Mark Sipes
10-10-2012, 3:22 PM
Welcome to the norm... for the Epilog owner

Kim Vellore
10-10-2012, 4:47 PM
I wonder if only Epilog owners voice out here if their tube fails? or....


Doug Griffith
10-10-2012, 5:15 PM
I've had my machine for many years now and put it through some serious abuse. Never had a problem. Tube is maybe 80% of new.

Steve Clarkson
10-10-2012, 5:39 PM
When I bought my laser (new) the tube died after a few weeks........but it was covered under warranty.........

Martin Boekers
10-10-2012, 5:56 PM
Welcome to the norm... for the Epilog owner
Yup, quickly defined diagnostics, finding the problem, then taking care of business shipping
the new tube overnight with no charge or deposit!

You are abosolutley right when you mention the norm for Epilog owners!

I run 2 - 75 watt EXT tubes on them have lasted 3 years plus. I run these quite a bit.
I have an Epilog Radius from 1999 and it still "cooks wood!"

Sandy Henry
10-10-2012, 7:01 PM
Same thing happened with my Universal PLS 75w. They fell all over themselves keeping me happy. VERY easy to swap laser tubes - no alignment or focusing required.

Mark Ross
10-11-2012, 9:42 AM
We have had our 45 Watt Epilog for years and I have replaced the tube twice, the last one being the Epilog brand of tube. I think their in house tubes have much better quality and that is why they moved them in house. For a tube to go out that quick, it almost sounds like a broken solder connection in the RF section or something along those lines. Normally you can tell when a tube is going bad, you have to slow your machine down more and more.

John Frazee
10-11-2012, 12:53 PM
I have a Chinese machine and recently had a tube go out after almost 4 years. It didn't just wear out though. A few years ago during some work being done the safety switches were turned off and not reset. I didn't know. My chiller was bumped and the switch was hit and turned off resulting in over heating the tube. Up until then the laser worked as well as new.

Ernie Martinez
10-11-2012, 9:16 PM
Well, this morning I received my new tube before 10:00am. I have to say that I am very impressed with the engineering of this machine. Very few products these days are designed with service in mind. I had the old tube out in 5 minutes and the new one in in the same amount of time. Another 15 minutes and I had the laser aligned. All in all, while I didn't enjoy the failure, the experience has reinforced my understanding of the machine, and I'm very happy with my purchase.

Mary Geitz
10-14-2012, 4:08 PM
Is there a way to tell if a tube is going downhill? I have started to notice a quality issue and after cleaning everything I can, there still seems to be an issue.

Steve Clarkson
10-14-2012, 4:30 PM
Mary, someone mentioned a 75 dpi test in a post a week or two ago.......search for laser tube posts and you should be able to find it.

Mary Geitz
10-14-2012, 4:38 PM
Thanks, Steve! :)

walter hofmann
10-15-2012, 5:36 AM
hi mary
if you did lots of cutting engrving without air assist I did find out that the exit lense of the laser tube ( thats where the beam comes out) gets kind of foggy and over time a big loss of power. just look at this end with a mirror if this is not realy clear send me a PM and I guid you thru the process.
another thing is look at your tube when its working the corona should be a nice dark pink or purple if it is pretty much white the this a sure signe that the tube is worn out.

Mary Geitz
10-28-2012, 12:19 PM
Hi Walt:

I use my air assist all the time. I haven't had time to do the 75 dpi test (which I guess is a good thing :). When I finish this job, I'm going to give it a go. I'll let you know if it failed the test.

Thanks Walt!


Vicki Rivrud
10-28-2012, 1:25 PM
Hi Ernie,
Happens to us too much! Here I sit waiting and hoping DHL will deliver my new tube unbroken!

I feel your pain,
Palm Harbor FL

Keith Outten
10-28-2012, 1:42 PM
My Epilog Legend tube died just after the warranty expired. I estimated it had about 500 hours on the tube when the electronics failed.
I had to pay for a replacement tube and I was not happy about it when the Epilog brochure advertised 20 to 30 thousand hours of tube life. I was told the life expectancy was based on the gas, not the electronics. The gas is just half the equation since the tube doesn't work at all when the electronics fail.