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Scott Clearman
08-24-2019, 11:35 PM
I've looked at direct imports and have decided it's about the same to just buy a unit already here in the US via one of the Ebay sellers. Just wondering if there is any last minute advice on what to ask or look for before committing.
I guess all the EZCad software is the same, even though some say it works with Corell and Adobe etc. I'm looking at a 20W with a rotary attachment. Last minute advice?

Kev Williams
08-25-2019, 1:18 AM
Read thru this thread, which I started:https://sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?269483-Ebay-fiber-laser-I-ll-be-the-guinea-pig

Short version: myself, I've had very good luck and communication with machines and seller.
But others have had issues, unfortunately. However, to be fair, so have buyers of Trotecs, Universals, GCC's, Epilogs and Gravographs.

For the money ebay machines are a bargain, and if you're the DIY type, reasonably mechanically and electronically inclined, many problems are easy to fix. For those who must rely on outside assistance to handle issues, it's a caveat emptor thing.

Read the thread, good info there :)

James Minick
08-25-2019, 2:04 AM
Yes, read the thread.
There are companies that buy China components and stuff cases in the US.
I have one built in China (100w CO2) with issues on arrival and one built here (50w Raycus fibre) with issues, but can be dealt with if you are the DIY type.
Make sure the lens/working area is what you require. Get specific lens numbers and do the research.
The rotary attachment option... Make sure it's wired in if you don't feel proficient in doing it yourself.
I have 3 different... hot dog roller(good for some things), 3jaw inside spring (great for rings), and 3 jaw chuck. Stick with the chuck option, but check the capacity.
Software is EZCAD2, that will be a given, but you can create in the software you are the most comfortable with, and import to EZCAD.
Read everything Kev posts!
You will learn much!

James Minick
08-25-2019, 3:53 AM
.....Having said all that, I just shredded a gear on my CO2 laser table. There will be stuff like this that happens with anything.
You have to be ready to do the DIY aspect.
The Chinese stuff is OK, but the do lack lack a few things. (limit switches!)

*****rant complete

Scott Clearman
08-25-2019, 2:41 PM
Read thru this thread, which I started:https://sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?269483-Ebay-fiber-laser-I-ll-be-the-guinea-pig

Short version: myself, I've had very good luck and communication with machines and seller.
But others have had issues, unfortunately. However, to be fair, so have buyers of Trotecs, Universals, GCC's, Epilogs and Gravographs.

For the money ebay machines are a bargain, and if you're the DIY type, reasonably mechanically and electronically inclined, many problems are easy to fix. For those who must rely on outside assistance to handle issues, it's a caveat emptor thing.

Read the thread, good info there :)

Thanks, I've been watching that thread since you started it, even posted in it when it started lol.

I guess what I'm asking is more along the lines of are there any hidden issues to watch out for? Things like "do all of the China lasers have the through the lens red laser alignment and tracing? or, "are there any new versions of the EZ CAD software to ask for or stay away from?"

Kev Williams
08-25-2019, 4:02 PM
The thing about the 'basic' Chinese galvo steered fiber lasers *for the most part* is this:

In China:
Some companies build desk cabinets
Some companies build power sources
Some companies build laser sources
Some companies build controller cards
Some companies build rotary drivers
Some companies build the rotaries
Some companies build the cases
Some companies build crank towers
Some companies build scissor tables
Some companies build scan heads
Some companies build lenses
Some companies build peripherals
Some companies build switches---- etc etc-

And then some companies acquire the cheapest of the above parts they can find, and assemble them into the fiber lasers we buy. That's probably what I got from ebay ;) Or maybe 'Vevor' did pick a few 'better' parts. But who knows? My first fiber I bought from Triumph (not to be confused with Trumph lasers!), and Triumph tries to build 'reasonably' high quality machines, as least in relation to China standards, and they're a little more money. Somewhat better machine (?), and some customer service from the mfr (definite yes)...

Another thing about galvo lasers that many might not think about, which Scott Shepherd made me aware of before buying my Triumph: There's only 2 moving parts! The mirrors! And virtually everything else inside the case is easily removable and replaceable. And for the most part, everything but the laser source is relatively cheap. Troubleshooting can be a nightmare, but not impossible, a good voltmeter can find many problems.

And as to the cost of Chinese lasers, "good" lasers can easily cost 10x as much. Same with C02 lasers, there's gobs of $3,000 Chinese 80w lasers, and the 'good' Trotec's, Universals, Gravographs etc will run you around $30,000. Of course there's many benefits to buying the good stuff. But if your plans are to cut plex and plywood pieces all day and maybe a few door signs in between, you don't need a $30,000 Trotec. But if you're engraving fighter-jet instrument panels or thousands of mass-production parts every week, then a $3000 machine won't cut it ;)

In similar businesses-- printing for example, offset printers can run100's of thousands. Color separators that are the basis for making the printing plates for them can run into 7 figures. Machine shops, sheet metal shops, all pay thru the nose for the machinery they need to do business. But I paid less than $8000 all-in for my last TWO fiber lasers, which made that money back within the first 2 months.

Many in this business consider Chinese lasers, fiber AND C02, 'disposable'. It's entirely likely fixing a busted $40,000 laser can cost more than replacing one of my Chinese machines outright...

If there's one piece of advice I'd give to anyone considering buying any cheap Chinese laser, and planning to use it augment their income or make a living with it? Buy TWO of them. Seriously. They're cheap! Almost everyone I know that a fiber has two or more. More production capability if things turn out well, and you can still produce and keep customers happy if one junks out. That last statement is exactly why I have so many machines.

So that's my opinions on cheap lasers, all based on personal experience. Take 'em for what they're worth :D

John Lifer
08-25-2019, 7:43 PM
I'll make one more comment. I've a 20 watt from Ray fine, direct import to me. no issues at all with it.
I posted about a customer a while back wanting me to help him mark with a 30 watt ebay machine. He wasnt nearly able to learn anything, and had pawned the work off on one of his IT guys wife to do the work. I did talk with her a bit, kind of like us here, and seems they got a knockoff version of the software or their main controller board has issues. They can't save settings, or files. and it crashes often. oh well.....

just be mindful of getting it up and running quickly in case there are issues and can have time to get Ebay or PayPal involved.
good luck

Scott Clearman
08-27-2019, 9:38 PM
Update and new question:

I'm strongly considering a laser from Ray Fine. My decision is down to getting a 30W or a 50W. Not sure, how much difference will the 50W make over the 30? I never really considered the 50 but the price is fairly close.

Advice?

Kev Williams
08-28-2019, 1:05 AM
IF the price is fairly close, then
(a) the 50 may be a good deal, or-
(b) the 30 may be overpriced a bit(?)
(c) you have a decision to make as to how you plan to use it vs. how much power you need

I'd love a 50w machine as about half my fiber work is deep metal engraving. But some things would be a bit delicate to engrave with a 50, since even at a 0 power setting these things fire at 10%, and there's been a few items I've done at 0 that was almost too much with my 30w machines. Delrin and Polycarb come to mind, and certain plated medallions. Power can be 'adjusted' with longer and shorter lenses, but every change comes with a compromise...

Personally, I've always been the Tim Allen type :D

James Minick
08-28-2019, 2:06 AM
Generally the Raycus Fibre laser source runs about $100/Watt, factor that in the equation.

The frequency range is also an important metric to compare.

I've seen tuned 20w with a good lens cut fantastic deep relief in various metals.
Your choice on what you want to work with and what you want to do

John Lifer
08-28-2019, 10:46 AM
Generally the Raycus Fibre laser source runs about $100/Watt, factor that in the equation.

The frequency range is also an important metric to compare.

I've seen tuned 20w with a good lens cut fantastic deep relief in various metals.
Your choice on what you want to work with and what you want to do

From what I've seen, I'd get a 30 watt today If I were buying a new machine. Agree with Kev, unless you anticipate only doing deep metal, a 50w is overkill.
The 30watt is MORE than 50% more powerful than a 20 as far as deep.

Scott Clearman
08-28-2019, 2:04 PM
From what I've seen, I'd get a 30 watt today If I were buying a new machine. Agree with Kev, unless you anticipate only doing deep metal, a 50w is overkill.
The 30watt is MORE than 50% more powerful than a 20 as far as deep.

Ray Fine is quoting me a 30w for $3600 or a 50w for 4600, including lens, glasses and rotary. The price is also including Ray Fine paying all shipping and import costs. I have it in writing, but it sounds too good for some reason. Thoughts?

Scott Clearman
08-28-2019, 2:06 PM
IF the price is fairly close, then
(a) the 50 may be a good deal, or-
(b) the 30 may be overpriced a bit(?)
(c) you have a decision to make as to how you plan to use it vs. how much power you need

I'd love a 50w machine as about half my fiber work is deep metal engraving. But some things would be a bit delicate to engrave with a 50, since even at a 0 power setting these things fire at 10%, and there's been a few items I've done at 0 that was almost too much with my 30w machines. Delrin and Polycarb come to mind, and certain plated medallions. Power can be 'adjusted' with longer and shorter lenses, but every change comes with a compromise...

Personally, I've always been the Tim Allen type :D

The 2 major plans I have for it's use right now are engraving guns (slides, suppressor tubes, and glock frames), and making challenge coins in small batches.

Kev Williams
08-28-2019, 3:48 PM
Ray Fine is quoting me a 30w for $3600 or a 50w for 4600, including lens, glasses and rotary. The price is also including Ray Fine paying all shipping and import costs. I have it in writing, but it sounds too good for some reason. Thoughts?
Ask Ray fine one more question:
"Do the shipping and import costs include the tariffs?"

I was quoted a price about a year ago from a US seller of shipped-in lasers, and their prices to me included shipping and import costs. But when I pressed, no, tariffs are not included...

IF Ray Fine is quoting you to-your-door prices including tariffs, both those prices are very good--

Scott Clearman
08-28-2019, 8:23 PM
Ask Ray fine one more question:
"Do the shipping and import costs include the tariffs?"

I was quoted a price about a year ago from a US seller of shipped-in lasers, and their prices to me included shipping and import costs. But when I pressed, no, tariffs are not included...

IF Ray Fine is quoting you to-your-door prices including tariffs, both those prices are very good--

Quote says including customs duty and shipping.

Chris DeGerolamo
08-28-2019, 9:57 PM
I had a whole lot typed and I deleted it as that it had no bearing on Ray Fine. I'll say this: see if they can cut you a deal on an additional/backup laser source. Power supplies and control boards etc. are cheap and likely already landed. Laser source warranty issues, especially when concerning mainland CH will be a nightmare.

John Lifer
08-29-2019, 3:17 PM
Quote says including customs duty and shipping.

But I don't think, as the manufacturer/ shipper NOT the importer, that they can pay US DUTY. I think that US Duty is YOURS to pay. Also Broker's fees.
If I recall, mine said same thing almost three years ago. And they cover All Chinese export duties.....

Just sayin. Please let us know if you go with them. Price is good Unless you have to pay 25% more

Scott Clearman
08-29-2019, 3:44 PM
But I don't think, as the manufacturer/ shipper NOT the importer, that they can pay US DUTY. I think that US Duty is YOURS to pay. Also Broker's fees.
If I recall, mine said same thing almost three years ago. And they cover All Chinese export duties.....

Just sayin. Please let us know if you go with them. Price is good Unless you have to pay 25% more

Thanks to all, I appreciate the concern for any extra fees. This is one of the reasons I posted here, because you folks are more experienced with this. This is a quote from one of the last emails I recieved from the agent at Ray Fine:
Dear S Clearman,
I am very happy to receive.
1.Thank you for your correction,You don't have to worry, it is really a 50W machine,Only last night I was too tired to notice this error(Please forgive me),The correct model is"RF-F-50W".
2.Yes, you don't have to worry, it includes all the fees.(import costs,including customs duty,tariffs, entry fees and bonds).no other costs.


I don't think there are any other hidden fees. I am about to pull the trigger, unless anyone has any other concerns I need to look into.
For those that have done business with Ray Fine, is there anything I need to know about the bank transfer?

Scott Clearman
08-29-2019, 3:46 PM
But I don't think, as the manufacturer/ shipper NOT the importer, that they can pay US DUTY. I think that US Duty is YOURS to pay. Also Broker's fees.
If I recall, mine said same thing almost three years ago. And they cover All Chinese export duties.....

Just sayin. Please let us know if you go with them. Price is good Unless you have to pay 25% more

Not arguing, but how then does a company ship things into US to be resold? How do they ship to a "US Based storefront for shipping and selling on Ebay as US stock?

Kev Williams
08-29-2019, 7:36 PM
This is just a complete total guess and speculation, but:

What if LaserA China Co. sells to LaserB China Co., then ships the paid-for machines to LaserC USA Co-- all owned by the same people BTW- to sell as US Stock...? They were paid for in China, so, no tariffs--? And depending on their shipping connections they could possibly be fast-tracked on the cheap...

Just conjecture, but I have to presume there ARE some loopholes in play ;)

James Minick
08-30-2019, 3:22 AM
I'll spill the beans on what I have learned about this...
USA company with contacts in China arrange for shipments of components to the US packed in the same crate as dog toys, dollar store stuff, as to avoid tariffs.
USA company assembles the machine, and posts for sale on Ebay.
That's why if you look at "other items for sale by seller", that's what's there, oddball non-related stuff.