View Full Version : Bad News

Patrick Dillon
09-12-2006, 4:47 PM
I have an older Epilog Express laser (100 watt) that has worked fine and
appears to have not lost any power. Now whenever I turn it on and enable
the laser beam (this is done by turning a keyswitch) I get a flashing yellow
light and a ticking sound that is in rythem with the flashing and the beam won't enable. I called Epilog who refered me to Synrad who informed me
to ship the tube and rf supply to them. I was forwarned if it was the tube
I was probably looking at 10,000.00. I had no idea a tube recharge would be this much. Has anyone ever encountered this problem? I am in a real quandry as I feel this is probably not the tube but something in the rf supply. Of course I live in Charleston SC and there are no basic electronic
repair companies here. Anybody got a gun with one bullet! Thanks
Pat Dillon

Joe Pelonio
09-12-2006, 4:53 PM

I logged on to share some good news, and was met with yours. I hope it turns out to be something simple. If it's going to cost that much, have you checked to see how much a new 100 watt is these days? They may have come down and the age may be having an effect on what they are going to charge you.

I sure hope it turns out to be a simple, cheap repair for you. Why are they all breaking down this week?

Bruce Volden
09-12-2006, 4:59 PM

Buck up cowboy as I'm sad to say it truly sounds like you need a new tube. I have been through that 3 times now (25 Watt) but not to the tune of 10K$!! Yikes. If I were to purchase a brand new 25W Synrad tube the cost on that baby is around $6500!! I have been sending them in to Synrad and having them repaired (ALWAYS electronics fried??) and the most it has run me is $2500 which is bad enough. These toys can be expensive but also can make one some money! Keep us informed.


Tom Radachi
09-13-2006, 10:55 AM
Holy Moly!
I don't know enough to help you with your problem... I'm just extending my condolences...

Rodne Gold
09-13-2006, 11:21 AM
$2.5k for an electronics repair is highway robbery , mostly the RF boards fail on the synrad and the component costs are like $15 or so .
Synrad will send you detailed instructions how to fix it too , however the fly in the ointment is you need an oscilliscope and a contoller to tune the one board to the other etc.
Its unlikely to be a total tube failure , that normally exhibits by power degrading over a while and then total failure. Instant failure is normally the RF board , a sudden drop to 1/2 power and then failure a bit later on is almost surefire confirmation its an RF board.
A recharge wouldnt cost 10 grand , that sounds more like a new or reconned tubes price.

Mike Null
09-13-2006, 11:24 AM
It's been a long time since I used that machine but as I recall I had a similar problem and it wasn't the tube.

I would contact Epilog service again and ask them to walk you through all the possible remedies. I seem to recall that we replaced one or more electronic modules on the right side of the machine. I may have replaced the motherboard (I think that's what it's called.)

It's possible that it could be as simple as a switch.

Rob Bosworth
09-13-2006, 12:11 PM
You might want to check on Laser Resale's website for a 100 watt Synrad laser. I am not sure what the model number the Synrad laser is in your Epilog Express 100. Laser Resale has a "6576.....$5500 Synrad 57-1 / rated 100 watts, producing 100 watts, CW & pulsed / includes: AC-DC pwr supply & controller similar to UC 1000 / mfrd '96 / gd cond, can demo" listed in their CO2 laser section. You might be able to get a back up laser for less than having your current laser refurbed. Good luck.

Moderator edited poster's signature line to remove direct links.-- TOS violation

Jeff Chumbley
09-13-2006, 10:19 PM
Well this is the 3rd post of problems and I started to say something in the 1st 2 but declined.


I have the same machine you do. Mine was manufactured in Mar of 04. Tube has a date of Feb 04.. I have been having problems with vector cutting and seemingly loss of power. Mike at CEM has made a power meter available to me since Laserbits has a 3 week backup. I ran tests all around the machine from the window in the upper left of the machine thru all the optics and get pretty much 30 watts at the xy home position

I should have a new tube here tomorrow a.m. I see the problems and fixes that you have gone thru. I am just a little bit upset that I am having these problems and the machine isn't even 3 years old!!

What do I do? I have been in electronics/computer industry for a long time and understand that things happen but I expect a little more longiviety than what I am experiencing.

If you dont mind I would like to talk to you about a few other things. Can I call you?


Rob Bosworth
09-14-2006, 11:43 AM
Jeff, I am confused by your post. I think your salutation was to Joe, but I didn't see where Joe was having a problem with his laser. The original poster was having trouble with a 100 watt Synrad laser that was in a 1997 Epilog Express.

What system do you have? How did you check the power output of the laser? Was it a digital power meter or was it a thermistor style power meter. If it was an Epilog laser system, how did you turn on the laser CW to test the power output?

I guess I am just confused.

Joe Pelonio
09-14-2006, 12:10 PM
I wondered about that too, but I did have a recent post about a bad motor, and have mentioned beofre my tube going out while on warranty.
I pm'd him my phone numbers in case he wants to talk but wasn't sure if he has a Legend 24tt like me or the 100 watt express.

Jeff Chumbley
09-15-2006, 1:21 AM
Sorry for the confusion, as I stated in my opening remarks it was the 3rd post that was concerning problems with lasers. I was directing this to Joe primarily because we have the same machine.

I used a Synrad power meter to check the power. I asked Epilog if there was a way to turn the beam on constant to check power but was told no. They have a test head that they use to check powers.

I was having problems cutting and rastering items. I checked the power with the Synrad meter and was only getting 30 watts. Vector a small circle at 5 speed 100 power at 5k hz.

When I swapped out the tube and realigned I was getting 42 watts on the meter. Epilog support faxed me the final test results that showed the tube at 48 watts.

I am able to cut like before and so far no problems

My only gripe was that this machine was manufactured in mar of 04 and the tube in feb 04. I thought that I would get much more use out of this machine before having to resort to this type of maintenance.

All is good for the moment.