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Thread: lens longevity

  1. #16
    Robert
    It's more typical for me to clean twice a day if I'm doing a lot of cutting or engraving. When I did an order for several thousand pieces of wood I cleaned every hour or so.

    I can't speak to the quality of the lenses you're buying but this company is the supplier to Trotec. http://www.iiviinfrared.com/CO2-Lase...s/mirrors.html
    Mike Null

    St. Louis Laser, Inc.

    Trotec Speedy 300, 80 watt
    Gravograph IS400
    Woodworking shop CLTT and Laser Sublimation
    Evolis Card Printer
    CorelDraw X5

  2. #17
    So what do the lenses cost from iivi? And what type of lens is it that we use in a CO2 laser? They don't list lenses per application on their website, i.e. Trotec, ULS, etc. so it's rather confusing... I suppose a phone call would get the answers I need, just haven't done it yet. I'd like to get a back up 2" lens and a 3 or 4" focal length one for some rotary applications.
    Brian Lamb
    Lamb Tool Works, Custom tools for woodworkers
    Equipment: Felder KF700 and AD741, Milltronics CNC Mill, Universal Laser X-600

  3. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Lamb View Post
    So what do the lenses cost from iivi? And what type of lens is it that we use in a CO2 laser? They don't list lenses per application on their website, i.e. Trotec, ULS, etc. so it's rather confusing... I suppose a phone call would get the answers I need, just haven't done it yet. I'd like to get a back up 2" lens and a 3 or 4" focal length one for some rotary applications.
    Probably close to $150. You need to measure the diameter and thickness of your existing lens. Call them and they'll be able to work with that and determine the right lens.

    I'm with Mike. We have 4 or 5 lenses of different focal lengths and they look perfect. I know one of them is 7-8 years old and not a spec or pit on it. I think we ruined one lens once, by having air assist off and the nose cone on. Other than that, depending on what we are doing, we'll clean them a couple times a day to a couple times a month. Having said that, we check them every day. No dirt, no need to clean it, dirt, clean it. It's worked this long, so we'll keep doing that.

    I guess our ULS is 10 years old now and it has the original lens and mirrors. Not a spot on the lens.
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  4. #19
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    Fascinating thread, thank you all.
    Dumb person, aka me, forgot to clean lens (mirrors and encoder strips yes, lens, no) for a very long time. Finally noticed it, cleaned it, and I have two half-moon black rings (tiny) off centre of the lens. Vectoring improved as soon as I cleaned it, duh... Will I harm the beam if I don't replace the lens? Seems to be working fine. epilog legend ext, mature model from 2006. Airflow has been the bane of my existence, but it's the best we can do.
    Apologies for the stupidity of the question...

  5. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Barb Macdonald View Post
    Fascinating thread, thank you all.
    Dumb person, aka me, forgot to clean lens (mirrors and encoder strips yes, lens, no) for a very long time. Finally noticed it, cleaned it, and I have two half-moon black rings (tiny) off centre of the lens. Vectoring improved as soon as I cleaned it, duh... Will I harm the beam if I don't replace the lens? Seems to be working fine. epilog legend ext, mature model from 2006. Airflow has been the bane of my existence, but it's the best we can do.
    Apologies for the stupidity of the question...
    Post a few pics if you can.
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  6. #21
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    The cheap lenses do not engrave etc as well as the OEM expensive ones..ours in a VERY harsh environment last about 6 months , but at the price , they are considered consumables .. we have 9 lasers running almost continually , 8 of them use lenses .. so we keep quite a few in stock
    OEM lenses last a lot longer.. 2 years sometimes , but despite training my operators re cleaning , its pretty rough and ready (spit and the corner of a shirt) , so we hae moved over to the cheapy lenses for general work
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  7. #22
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jacob John View Post
    Post a few pics if you can.
    A few, as in one? EpilogLegendEXT60w_AbigailLensNov2017.jpg
    Abigail cut amazing yesterday. Thank you for asking, sorry it took so long.

  8. #23
    If I am etching mostly wood my lens stays mostly clean, due to the air assist. I mostly etch powdercoat which I do not use air assist. So it will put a film on the lens and then the laser will burn the lens. I go through a lens about every two weeks. I use the cheap $30 amazon 20mm lens on my 100w CO2. I am not very good with staying on top of keeping the lens clean either.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  9. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Hale View Post
    If I am etching mostly wood my lens stays mostly clean, due to the air assist. I mostly etch powdercoat which I do not use air assist. So it will put a film on the lens and then the laser will burn the lens. I go through a lens about every two weeks. I use the cheap $30 amazon 20mm lens on my 100w CO2. I am not very good with staying on top of keeping the lens clean either.
    Could you aim some air across the path of the beam

  10. #25
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    Why with cutting powder coating on stainless steel would you NOT use air assist? It shouldn't really stick back to surface. Nothing like engraving acrylic materials.
    I would expect even with no air you are having to clean somewhat.
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  11. #26
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    When I said to blow across the beam I didn't mean to blow down but sideways to move the smoke away from the lens

  12. #27
    I don't use air assist on powder coat either. I do one pass and clean with a magic eraser. Air assist is of no benefit in this operation.
    Mike Null

    St. Louis Laser, Inc.

    Trotec Speedy 300, 80 watt
    Gravograph IS400
    Woodworking shop CLTT and Laser Sublimation
    Evolis Card Printer
    CorelDraw X5

  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Null View Post
    I don't use air assist on powder coat either. I do one pass and clean with a magic eraser. Air assist is of no benefit in this operation.
    We are not talking air assist just how to keep the lens clean using air perpendicular to the cut

  14. #29
    Jerome
    The exhaust on my machine is quite efficient at removing the smoke above and below the work. I do a considerable amount of laminated plastic which is fairly dirty with residue. The exhaust handles it pretty well. Keep in mind, my lens is 11 years old so something is working.
    Mike Null

    St. Louis Laser, Inc.

    Trotec Speedy 300, 80 watt
    Gravograph IS400
    Woodworking shop CLTT and Laser Sublimation
    Evolis Card Printer
    CorelDraw X5

  15. #30
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    Mar 2011
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Bonenfant View Post
    Trying cleaning your lens and a quick mirror clean each day you use your machine and it should show great results right away.
    Robert we do the same thing but found cleaning them at the end of the day gives all night for any moisture to evap. Just a thought

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