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Thread: 50 watt and 1/4" Alder laser cuts

  1. #1

    50 watt and 1/4" Alder laser cuts

    Hello everyone! I'm new to the forum and to lasers. I have a specific project in mind that got me searching for the right laser machine purchase.

    My research so far has resulted in the top contender for my budget being a Thunder Laser Mini60-Plus with a 50 watt laser tube. I'd like to get some advice from the experienced folks here on this question:

    Do you think I can cut 1/4" alder boards with this 50 watt machine using a low speed (such as 10) and 90% power? Would this low speed when cutting wood be advisable? Or even necessary? Will it be too likely to catch on fire at such speeds? (This machine is using servo motors and the company rates the max engraving speed at 1000mm/S.)

    My understanding thus far is that a 50 watt system is borderline capable of cutting 1/4" wood without forcing the tube to 100%. My hope is that, because my project is using alder wood instead of a denser hardwood, I wouldn't need to get the larger 60 watt system.

    Thanks for any advise!

    Adam

    ------------------------
    No laser yet
    Just basic wood working tools, a very nice Veritas Bevel-Up Jointer Plane, and a fancy computer setup

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Adam,
    1/4 inch alder should not be a problem for a 50 watt laser, it was my understanding you wanted to cut 3/4 inch and that would be a problem. 1/4 should cut fine at about 10 speed 90%pwr without setting the house on fire. Looking at the mini 60 its 600x400 working area not engraving area, I would check and just make sure of the engraving area as I know you need 23.5 inches . I think I mentioned Rabbit, Boss and Auto Tech to check out. Don't know much about Thunder, maybe someone else does.

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Aron View Post
    Hello everyone! I'm new to the forum and to lasers. I have a specific project in mind that got me searching for the right laser machine purchase.

    My research so far has resulted in the top contender for my budget being a Thunder Laser Mini60-Plus with a 50 watt laser tube. I'd like to get some advice from the experienced folks here on this question:

    Do you think I can cut 1/4" alder boards with this 50 watt machine using a low speed (such as 10) and 90% power? Would this low speed when cutting wood be advisable? Or even necessary? Will it be too likely to catch on fire at such speeds? (This machine is using servo motors and the company rates the max engraving speed at 1000mm/S.)

    My understanding thus far is that a 50 watt system is borderline capable of cutting 1/4" wood without forcing the tube to 100%. My hope is that, because my project is using alder wood instead of a denser hardwood, I wouldn't need to get the larger 60 watt system.

    Thanks for any advise!

    Adam

    ------------------------
    No laser yet
    Just basic wood working tools, a very nice Veritas Bevel-Up Jointer Plane, and a fancy computer setup
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    Rabbit RL_XX_6040-60 watt Laser engraving/cutting machine Oh wait its a 3D Printer my bad LOL
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  3. #3
    Hey Bert!

    So you think it is no problem? Ok...

    My design and viewpoint changed. The part that was 23.5 inches is now 21.6, so I believe that it would fit well in this machine. The 3/4" thickness will be cut with a jigsaw and trimming router bit with a laser cut plywood template. At this point, the only thicker cut I'm wanting to make is the one described above.

    Thank you again for the gracious demo of your Rabbit laser. Rabbit is still in my top choices. I'm really looking for the best deal on a laser from a company with a good reputation and Rabbit is just barely pushing the cap on my budget, as well as my requirements on machine body dimensions.

    Adam
    Last edited by Adam Aron; 05-04-2015 at 2:18 AM.

  4. #4
    Go with the HX Laser Adam (Rabbit) you will be more than happy you did
    You did what !

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
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    I might add, get a 60 Watt, instead of a 50 if you can afford it. A 50 watt may be the peak reading and may only be just a 40 watt tube.
    Retired Guy- Central Iowa. , LightObject 40w CO2 Laser and Chiller , WorkBee 1000x750 CNC Router - Mach4 - Windows 10

  6. #6
    Other than Coherent made in the US there are no real 50 watt Chinese tubes (or 45's for that matter) they are usually over stressed 40's that have been tested at above average output. Some do put out 50 watts, they just don't do it for very long

    I see all the usual sales claims.... "Gold catalytic" "50 watt base power" "new design" and pretty much all of them are just sales hype produced hoping the end reader doesn't understand laser resonators.

    A good example is the "45 watt gold catalysed" tube..... PVD coating the inside of the resonator has nothing to do with power, it's a method used to reduce return to flatline time of the gas molecules in wide body tubes, on a normal narrow body tube it achieves nothing apart from liberating customers of more money !!

    The way of generating a laser beam in an closed system like a DC tube hasn't changed much in the last 20 years other than better quality glass, better optics etc, the actual methodology is exactly the same. Much of the time it's a comedy of errors perpetrated by sellers who shouldn't be trusted with scissors (No, you don't go taking a 500 watt fiber to a public show and running it open bed around members of the public who would like to keep their eyesight intact, Take note Boss Lasers when you screw up it gets round the world in minutes)
    You did what !

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Sheldrake View Post
    Go with the HX Laser Adam (Rabbit) you will be more than happy you did
    Really what I'm looking for is a desktop laser with a 600mm x 400mm engraving area. The dimensions of the Thunder Laser Mini60 are 42" x 30" x 20". The Rabbit HX4060N is 44.5" x 40.5" x 34". That is a big difference in size for what offers very similar functionality and working area.

    May I ask why you are recommending Rabbit over the Mini60?

  8. #8
    I've owned and used a lot of different machines Adam, from mid price western made stuff ($80k or so) to the top end industrial stuff (Mitsubishi etc) right down to the god aweful cheap Chinese junk like the K40 and of all those lower priced machines the HX King Rabbit (RabbitlaserUSA's supplier) have been indestructible, easy to maintain, reliable and well made. Thunder tend to be in the "general Chinese Junker" kind of class along with the basic Weike, Redsail, Shenhui type machines. A LOT of direct imports when they arrive aren't legal to operate in an industrial environment (at least over here) but a Rabbit supplied machine will conform to US safety requirements right off the bat.

    Don't get me wrong, I love Chinese lasers but have little time for the lack of aftersales provided by Chinese vendors of those machines.

    I guess to sum up how I feel? Imports for hobbies and tinkering, home grown for work and reliability (home grown includes Chinese machines imported by a reseller)
    You did what !

  9. #9
    I'll probably get the usual "But I run an import for business use" etc etc and that's fine, try running 12 imports and keeping them all going with no after sales to fall back on.
    You did what !

  10. #10
    If you do a search for Rabbit Laser on this forum, the answer should become apparent.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Sheldrake View Post
    Thunder tend to be in the "general Chinese Junker" kind of class along with...
    Dave, I can see that you have lots of experience with lasers, which is impressive. However, I'm not impressed with the style in which your experience has been expressed. Your sweeping denigration of an entire grouping of Chinese companies because you favor others for your own purposes and budget is not was I was hoping for. It seems to me that some people have been satisfied with their experiences with the Thunder staff and their machines, that is, within the context of their own requirements and expectations, including budget.

    If you want to stand behind your effective denouncement of the company I was inquiring about, please provide some elaboration. I have not discovered any reports of flagrant, substantial, or even moderate blunders, carelessness, deception, or mechanical "junk" when it comes to Thunder Lasers. The closest of such things I've seen is your hinting that their claim of using a 50 watt laser is actually false, and they are actually using 40 watt.

    As I said, I am new to lasers. Most of the specifics of what I am looking for are elsewhere in this discussion. If I am misunderstanding what you were trying to say, please clear it up for me with some explanation. I'm here to learn about lasers and give back in any way that I can.

    Adam

  12. #12
    "General Chinese Junker"

    Used to express run of the mill Chinese machines that are all just small variations on a theme. Junk not used as a derogatory term.

    I have not discovered any reports of flagrant, substantial, or even moderate blunders, carelessness, deception, or mechanical "junk" when it comes to Thunder Lasers.
    Much like any lower priced Laser there will be problems, nature of the beast, Thunder are not exempt from this and this has been demonstrated more than once both on here and by email. That's not singling out Thunder, Chinese lasers are made to a price , not a standard.

    However tell ya what, buy whatever laser you want, there is very little difference between any of the far eastern machines.
    You did what !

  13. #13
    i would suggest you go for more power as you will always find it useful
    I bought my laser direct from China its a fine machine the support is good but I would love if the operating manual was in better English and was clearer and it would be great to have someone you could pick up the phone and chat with
    having said that Rabbit have an amazing reputation for service and quality and if they were an option for me I would have bought from them

    good luck with what ever you decide Frank
    Shenhui Laser G570 80W RECI

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    I am from the West coast of Ireland thus I chatter a lot

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Aron View Post
    Dave, I can see that you have lots of experience with lasers, which is impressive. However, I'm not impressed with the style in which your experience has been expressed. Your sweeping denigration of an entire grouping of Chinese companies because you favor others for your own purposes and budget is not was I was hoping for. It seems to me that some people have been satisfied with their experiences with the Thunder staff and their machines, that is, within the context of their own requirements and expectations, including budget.
    I don't think you'll find anyone as knowledgeable and honest about Chinese machines on this forum than Dave. Most Chinese machines come from 1 of a couple of factories in China and then are rebranded many times. Dave knows the source of the machines and knows which machines are reliable, which one's use problematic parts, and which one's that are use quality parts. If you ignore his advice, you'll do it as your own expense. There's been no better advocate for Chinese lasers on this forum than Dave, and there's been no better troubleshooter for problems with Chinese machines than Dave.

    My guess is that Dave fields a 100 questions a week, privately and publicly, based on problems with various machines. If he says someone's not up to par, then you should probably listen.

    As a side note, there's a US based company that's importing Chinese machines and rebranding at a trade show recently and they've gotten some decent press on this forum. They were running a fiber laser, class 4, with no eye protection, with people walking by and watching. When asked about it, they told people "We were told it was okay to run". If you think running a 1064nm laser, class 4, cutting metal, with no eye protection is "Okay", then I truly question your knowledge about what you do for a living. That's the difference. Reviews online don't always reflect reality.

    Dave speaks in reality.
    Last edited by Scott Shepherd; 05-05-2015 at 8:35 AM. Reason: corrected the autocorrected correction
    Lasers : Trotec Speedy 300 75W, Trotec Speedy 300 80W, Galvo Fiber Laser 20W
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    Real name Steve but that name was taken on the forum. Used Middle name. Call me Steve or Scott, doesn't matter.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Aron View Post
    Dave, I can see that you have lots of experience with lasers, which is impressive. However, I'm not impressed with the style in which your experience has been expressed. Your sweeping denigration of an entire grouping of Chinese companies because you favor others for your own purposes and budget is not was I was hoping for. It seems to me that some people have been satisfied with their experiences with the Thunder staff and their machines, that is, within the context of their own requirements and expectations, including budget.

    If you want to stand behind your effective denouncement of the company I was inquiring about, please provide some elaboration. I have not discovered any reports of flagrant, substantial, or even moderate blunders, carelessness, deception, or mechanical "junk" when it comes to Thunder Lasers. The closest of such things I've seen is your hinting that their claim of using a 50 watt laser is actually false, and they are actually using 40 watt.

    As I said, I am new to lasers. Most of the specifics of what I am looking for are elsewhere in this discussion. If I am misunderstanding what you were trying to say, please clear it up for me with some explanation. I'm here to learn about lasers and give back in any way that I can.

    Adam
    If you spent more time Searching and Reading you will find Dave has given good solid advice on lasers, both Chinese and Western. There are so many knowledgeable people on here to learn from but they can't always take the time to answer your specific questions. More than likely its been asked and answered numerous times before.
    Retired Guy- Central Iowa. , LightObject 40w CO2 Laser and Chiller , WorkBee 1000x750 CNC Router - Mach4 - Windows 10

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