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Harrison Kayo
11-21-2007, 8:18 AM
I have a GCC-LaserPro Spirit 60W:
- CO2 Laser tube: Synrad firestar t60, air-cooled, OEM version (model FST60SFB-GCC)
- RF Source: RF600 Power Supply, fan-cooled. OEM version (model FST60SFB-GCC)

And the problem is that the laser is not continuous.
I was cutting MDF circles and when I changed the table this problem came up.
The laser cut looks like a broken line (see attached image...).
In a visual check, the LED “LASE” (Control I/O connector, back of the tube) turns on every moment during the laser cut. But, even with the LED "LASE" on, the laser pulse is intermittent.
The laser power measure was 61W, when it's not coming and going.

I've checked all the door's sensor and it's alright.
The power level is 30VDC.
Ive also checked the cables (RF, Power, User I/O...) and everything looks fine.

The laser's date of fabrication is June 2005. And it worked about 8 hours/day or less.

I was wondering if anyone had such a problem like this.

I'm sorry about all this problem, but i'm from Brazil (South America) and here we do not have many technical supports.

Thanks,
Harrison

Joe Pelonio
11-21-2007, 9:01 AM
Mine did this at one time, turned out to be an electronics problem with the tube, and it had to be replaced (was on warranty then).

Jakub Borowicz
11-21-2007, 9:02 AM
A month ago I had exactly the same problem like you. (GCC Explorer, tube 40W).
Technician from my laser supplier said that this is tube defect, and it must to be replaced. It cost 3500$ :eek:

Harrison Kayo
11-21-2007, 11:36 AM
Thank you Joe and Jakub,

This is exactly what I was afraid to hear...
Now I'll have to find someone that can replace the tube, here in Brazil.

Thanks,
Harrison

Rodne Gold
11-21-2007, 1:04 PM
Why not call GCC or synrad for advice - sure worth it if it gonna cost $3500 or more

Sandra Force
11-21-2007, 1:25 PM
I am with Rodne, call Synrad and ask about this. If you mention that you know of others who are having the same problem with the tube you may find that they will replace it for at least a discount. Even if it is out of warranty the issue is a manufacturing one and should be covered the same as a recall on a auto would be on a out of warranty part. Any of you who are having or have had this issue should post here and on the other forums so that there is a group dealing with this other than just individuals.

I had a laser tube replaced by another maker after warranty because of an electrical design problem that showed up on a nuber of lasers after about 18 months.

Darren Null
11-24-2007, 1:59 PM
Yes indeed- talk to Synrad. Their tech support has been beyond first-rate in my experience.

Harrison Kayo
08-17-2009, 11:44 AM
Here we go again...

Two years ago Ive introduced this problem, solved with the replacement of the tube and the RF power supply.
Actually Ive got a new one and kept the bad one.

Now, the problem is a little bit different.

When a job is started, after a few minutes, the laser stops fire and the led "RDY" blinks 5 times.
As in t-series manual, it's a RF cable interlock fault.
I've changed the cable and the problem persists.
It could be the connector...

Anyway... now I have bad RF power supply and laser tube, 2 of each.

I've tried to use the "old" RF supply and the "new" tube.
It all looks fine, all the led light up and the blink issue stops.
But the laser didn't fire.

Is it possible to do this combination?
Can Synrad "codifying" the signal between the RF supply and laser tube to not work separately?

I've read other threads that the most common problem are electrical problems, such as bad capacitors, transistors etc...

Does anyone have experience to help me in this electrical problem?

Thanks,
Harrison

AL Ursich
08-17-2009, 10:21 PM
Your 100% sure the Mirrors are good, no burnt or spots missing?

What happens if you cut the same pattern in 4 corners?

There have been threads about burnt capacitors here.

AL

Harrison Kayo
08-18-2009, 8:15 AM
AL Ursich (http://www.sawmillcreek.org/member.php?u=14776) http://www.sawmillcreek.org/images/statusicon/user_offline.gif
Contributor
AL,

Actually I'm doing the cardboard test, you know...
Put a cardboard right in front of the laser.

About the capacitors...
In that thread, the model of the laser is different.

I was wondering if the t-series synrad is safe to open just the top cover.
I'd like to see if there are bad components.

I've attached two pictures... of the RF Power supply and the laser tube.

Hope there's a way to fix it. Because the last 60W laser was about $15,000... that's all that i've earned....:(

Thanks,
Harrison

Rodne Gold
08-18-2009, 8:56 AM
I would send both tubes and RF supply to GCC...Im sure they are not totally messed up..prolly cost you 1/2 the price of a new tube to have all of it fixed.
Intermittent cut lines lines normally = tube broken or not 100% up to snuff.
Did you go into diagnostic mode and attempt to fire the laser?
Even if you did fix the RF boards , you need specialisedc equipment to tune em.
Have you called GCC or Synrad for advice?

Darren Null
08-18-2009, 8:41 PM
About the capacitors...
In that thread, the model of the laser is different.

I was wondering if the t-series synrad is safe to open just the top cover.
I'd like to see if there are bad components.
To be honest, I was a bit nervous about opening the cover too. I just made sure it was in a dust-free place, level, and made damned sure I didn't touch any components on any board (static electricity!).

I can't believe the designs are THAT different. In mine, the lid came off; the boards were underneath and the laser was further buried in the case, with just a couple of holes for wires. I can look up the photos if it would help (SMC seems to have cleared out the images in the intervening time, not surprisingly). In my case, the blown capacitor was easy to spot because of the scorch marks...but mine went all at once and stayed off.

I'd open the case; see if it's anything obvious (post pics if it is. some real eggspurts kicking around SMC); and otherwise email/phone Synrad. They were MASSIVELY helpful in my case.

Harrison Kayo
08-19-2009, 1:52 PM
Rodne and Darren,

I'll try to open the cover. From the tube and the RF supply...
And post some pictures of them...

Other issue...
Here in Brazil, technical support is very poor...
The GCC and Synrad offices are just import/export. They dont have a real tech support...

Thanks,
Harrison

AL Ursich
08-21-2009, 12:03 PM
Spent 20 years fixing Navy Radars, Computers and Power Supplies at the component level... Then a few years fixing Play Stations at Sony... This post has me wanting to get my Electronic Workbench set up....

Wish I lived closer to Synrad....

AL

Dan Hintz
08-21-2009, 12:13 PM
Al,

if you ever need a fix, you can stop by my place... Weller and MetCal/Oki soldering stations, pounds of solder and solderwick, SMD and through-hole components, microcontrollers and LEDs of all shapes and sizes, etc.

To paraphrase Apocalypse Now, "I love the smell of solder in the morning..."

Harrison Kayo
08-21-2009, 5:24 PM
Here are pictures of the laser and RF power supply (old=green circuit board and new=red circuit board)

I couldn't see any visual damage.
That's too bad...

1) The "old" RF supply is different from the "new".
In pictures "RF new 01.jpg" and "RF old 01.jpg" we can see that the "new" has a "code switch". I think that's why the combination of the "old" RF supply and the "new" tube didn't work.

2) The pictures "laser05.jpg" and "laser06.jpg" show some kind of a leak.
This part is the screw between the circuit and the tube itself.

Well...
This is it.

Thanks,
Harrison

Harrison Kayo
08-21-2009, 5:31 PM
continue...

AL Ursich
08-22-2009, 10:27 PM
WOW..... There is a lot or RF going on in that set of boards..... WOW....

The Postage Stamp size chips were the most fun to replace at Sony.... Either use the big heating tool or a sharp blade and cut the leads off at the chip... Slip and you roll over the lead breaking off the solder pad....

YA... I need my FIX..... Nothing like the Smell of Solder Flux in the morning.....:rolleyes:

Thanks for the GREAT Photos... In the old green board that white rectangular chip with the black and red resistor soldered over it, looks like a hard wired selection or mode switch.

AL

Dan Hintz
08-23-2009, 8:01 AM
In the old green board that white rectangular chip with the black and red resistor soldered over it, looks like a hard wired selection or mode switch.
I don't think I see what you see. I see two red crimp spade connectors connected to either a switch or a buzzer... left of that I see a heatsink connected to two (most likely) RF FETs.

AL Ursich
08-23-2009, 12:18 PM
I was looking at this chip and resistor thinking it was part of a mode selection hard wired.

AL

Dan Hintz
08-23-2009, 8:14 PM
Ah... the red wires made the board look red to me, so I ignored it when looking for the white thing.

Mike Lysov
04-17-2017, 6:23 AM
I know that's a very old thread but since nobody is answering my thread (http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?253874-Position-of-RF-unit-inside-Laser-Pro-Spirit-GX) where I am asking for help with repaired by Synrad parts not working I have had to search through something similar.

Anyway, thank you Harrison for sharing photos with the tube open,
Does anybody has any picture for the RF unit open and showing the wires for DB9 connector inside? Is it using the same white ribbon cable as in the tube?

Synrad suggests I have a bad connection for the interconnect cable or the cable itself is bad. I have tested the cable and it seems to be ok, now I need to be sure that Db9 ports on the tube and the RF unit are ok too. Since I have already put them both back into the machine and bolted to the frame I just want to know what kind of the cable runs to Db9 pins inside before I start taking the tube and the RF unit out for opening.

Bill George
04-17-2017, 10:44 AM
I know that's a very old thread but since nobody is answering my thread (http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?253874-Position-of-RF-unit-inside-Laser-Pro-Spirit-GX) where I am asking for help with repaired by Synrad parts not working I have had to search through something similar.

Anyway, thank you Harrison for sharing photos with the tube open,
Does anybody has any picture for the RF unit open and showing the wires for DB9 connector inside? Is it using the same white ribbon cable as in the tube?

Synrad suggests I have a bad connection for the interconnect cable or the cable itself is bad. I have tested the cable and it seems to be ok, now I need to be sure that Db9 ports on the tube and the RF unit are ok too. Since I have already put them both back into the machine and bolted to the frame I just want to know what kind of the cable runs to Db9 pins inside before I start taking the tube and the RF unit out for opening.

Just because you don't get a answer does not mean nobody cares, its more than likely no one has that knowledge. It would be cheaper just to replace those suspect cables first before going any further. If they tested what they repaired, then something in your machine is the problem, and cables can go bad.

What You decide to do however is up to you. Sometimes people come on here and ask for advice and then get upset when it still does not work!!

Mike Lysov
04-18-2017, 10:58 PM
Just because you don't get a answer does not mean nobody cares, its more than likely no one has that knowledge. It would be cheaper just to replace those suspect cables first before going any further. If they tested what they repaired, then something in your machine is the problem, and cables can go bad.

What You decide to do however is up to you. Sometimes people come on here and ask for advice and then get upset when it still does not work!!

Hi Bill, I did not mean "nobody cares" I was just hopping someone here would have a knowledge. It looks like nobody can help and I am on my own.

I have replaced the interconnect cable. Apparently it is just wired the same way as any 9 wire DB9 serial extension straight through cable. It did not help. The tube LEDs are OFF. I have removed the tube cover to see its DB9 port from the back. All pins seem to be good. Nothing looks blown. I removed the RF cover and I cannot see anything blown. Its DB9 port pins are hidden behind another cover inside so I have to put some effort to get it off to check the pins.

Synrad keeps saying it is that cable and also adds it may be because I have connected the tube to the RF via the interconnect cable while the power was supplied to the RF. I did not do it and I would not do it for safety issues. My machine was disconnected from a power outlet at the time I put everything back and connected all cables. Only after everything was connected I plugged it in and turn it on.


Basically an experienced guy with good knowledge in electronics and having a diagram should be able at least eliminate some faults quite quickly. I am not that guy but I can use a multimeter and if Synrad could point what to test I could probably find where it is.

The tube should get DC power from the RF via that cable and commands are sent via it as well. Voltage should be either 5V or 24V(it is not clear as Synrad manual is combined for different RFs and tubes. Since the LEDs on the tube are OFF completelly there must be no power coming to them(possible no commands coming as well). I am trying to get details from Synrad about how to check that power but I have no luck by now.



My understanding that this train(the RF and the tube) can be used standalone if you add a 30V power supply. No laser machine and its electronic is required to run them for just a test firing(you need some device to send commands). If I am right I can eliminate any fault in GCC Laser Pro electronics. GCC LaserPro power supply seems to have no problems and supplies 30V to the RF.

I am in Australia, so it is not easy for me to get all cables replaced. I would try to order them later but at this point I am just not happy that after significant spending on Synrad repair nothing works. It seems to be even worse than before repair as the tube was working firing from time to time but now nothing work at all.