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derek noyes
05-06-2013, 10:09 PM
This thread is with regard to templates and more specifically getting my material placement with the red dot from the template.

*******my machine is a mercury***********

I will be burning on barrel heads (much smaller than 55 gallon heads). Smallest is 4.5 inches to largest 11 inches. i have created a template (4 across and 3 down - 12 circles total and all same size) that is set on layer 1 in my software. these 12 circles are sized exactly to represent the 12 barrel heads and visually lets me know where to set the design on each of the 12 barrel heads.

the 12 designs are placed on layer 2. Heres what i need to happen and have seen it done but don't know how:

i want to be able to advance the laser head w/ red dot "on", with a button on the machine, to the center of first position (barrel 1) and place the barrel on center of the red dot (every barrel has a divot in the center). hit the button again and head advances to position 2, place barrel on center of red dot, so forth and so on till all 12 are placed.

then start the print job and have all 12 designs burn on 12 barrel heads in one run.

sounds simple enough but i don't have a clue. if you have any ideas on this please offer insight.

a simpler way to ask is how do you advance the head to pre-determined positions from a template?

cheers,
derek

AL Ursich
05-06-2013, 10:17 PM
IF I were doing it... Don't have a red dot...

Make a file of just your circles and burn that on something that is placed in your machine with index marks so next time you place the hardboard, cardboard it goes into the same place, or just for this job lay down transfer tape or masking tape... Then you do the artwork remove the circles or make the circles non printing and place the blanks on the board centered on the circles....

AL

derek noyes
05-06-2013, 10:23 PM
thanks for the quick reply al. space is a premium for me in the z table. even losing 1/8 inch will keep me from doing one of the size barrels i have. i really need to do it with the red dot.

Scott Shepherd
05-06-2013, 10:26 PM
What laser do you have? The Universal and Trotec both have the ability to use different colors for positioning only.

Mark Sipes
05-06-2013, 10:56 PM
With the Trotec I just need to type in the XY coord on the computer and the head will move to that position.(red dot on or off)

derek noyes
05-06-2013, 11:53 PM
I have a Mercury. It came with really old software G-Soft. The "typing in xy coord", is this a function of the software or the driver? Im considering purchasing corel draw...would I be able accomplish with corel?

hugh bunker
05-07-2013, 2:03 AM
Design the entire template then just cut the circles for the barrels in 1/8 BB and then lower the table and set the barrels in the holes and then just do the engraving. If you reference the plywood to the machine you can use the same template for that barrel size over and over by saving the pattern on your computer. By cutting through the plywood you won't sacrifice the height in your Z axis.

derek noyes
05-07-2013, 2:58 AM
Sorry I am new and not sure what 1/8 BB is. This has potential if I have to do it this way. I know what im trying to do can be done cuz I seen it in action. While your suggestion is a good one with regard to z axis, the concern is that the barrels are handmade and there is some slight fluctuation in size(maybe a 1/8 INCH). if I make the holes slightly bigger to accomodate that then I run the risk of being off center on a smaller barrel. All the artwork is set on center of each circle. That is why I am trying to accomplish it exactly the way I proposed. I dont know the model of the machine is was being done on so it is possible that it cant be done on mine. I am holding out that someone smarter than me knows how to do it. Thank you for your idea, its probably what I will do if no one comes through.

Joe De Medeiros
05-07-2013, 3:50 PM
Sorry I am new and not sure what 1/8 BB is. This has potential if I have to do it this way. I know what im trying to do can be done cuz I seen it in action. While your suggestion is a good one with regard to z axis, the concern is that the barrels are handmade and there is some slight fluctuation in size(maybe a 1/8 INCH). if I make the holes slightly bigger to accomodate that then I run the risk of being off center on a smaller barrel. All the artwork is set on center of each circle. That is why I am trying to accomplish it exactly the way I proposed. I dont know the model of the machine is was being done on so it is possible that it cant be done on mine. I am holding out that someone smarter than me knows how to do it. Thank you for your idea, its probably what I will do if no one comes through.

Derek, like Scott asked, what machine do you have? it's difficult to answer questions when we don't know what you have.

derek noyes
05-07-2013, 5:21 PM
Hi joe,

I did put the machine name in a couple posts down but I guess its not being seen so I added it to the top post. It is a mercury. Technically, was sold new as a pinnacle so I believe that is a mercury 1.

Glen Monaghan
05-07-2013, 8:23 PM
1/8 BB refers to 1/8" thick Baltic Birch plywood. Basically, the idea is to cut a template from something (thin plywood is durable, but a piece of cardboard is cheaper and often readily available). You position (or "index") the template material with one corner at, for example, top left in the laser and cut out the shape(s) you want to work on... in this case the circles that are just large enough to set your barrel heads into the resulting openings you've cut in the template. You can set up multiple templates to work with different sizes or mixes of sizes as desired. Whenever you want to engrave barrel heads, pull up the appropriate template in your design software, edit the individual head(s), place the corresponding plywood/cardboard/etc template at the "index" location in your laser, drop the barrel head(s) into the cutout, and laser away. Makes for fast and easy position repeatability.

Chuck Stone
05-07-2013, 9:02 PM
make the templates as suggested .. cardboard or 1/8BB and set your heads in place.
Put your graphics where you want them in the software, but use a different color for
each one. That way, the Mercury will do them one at a time instead of doing one line
across the whole machine (skipping tons of blank real estate, but wasting a lot of time)

The ones that are 'off' .. you should be able to see those and position them accordingly.

But doing it this way, you'll send the order once and it will do all of them.