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Thread: CO2 Laser Power Meters

  1. #1

    CO2 Laser Power Meters

    Hello,
    I wanted to see what folks are using to monitor output CO2 power (80Watt Speedy 300) and how much you had to spend to get reasonable output
    power measuremnets to monitur tube degredation over time?

    Thanks,
    Joe

  2. #2
    Joe

    After 20 years in the business, that has never been a concern of mine. When the tube degrades it has been very rapid and you know it's time for a repair. You can rent power meters if you need to do that.
    Mike Null

    St. Louis Laser, Inc.

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

  3. #3
    My 'power meter' is simple- Back when I bought my machine(s) and ever since, I've saved the settings that work for certain jobs. 14 years ago I found that 2 passes thru 1/8" Rowmark Ultramatte at XX power and XX speed just ever so barely cuts thru. To this day, the same settings cut thru exactly the same- as do all other settings over the years. If ever the laser DOESN'T get thru in those 2 passes, I know the tube is heading south
    ========================================
    ELEVEN - rotary cutter tool machines
    FOUR - CO2 lasers
    THREE - fiber lasers
    ONE - vinyl cutter
    CASmate, Corel, Gravostyle


  4. #4
    Thank you for that input. I have a new Trotec Speedy 300 that I bought with an 80w head, but the tube says 156F. If you go to Iradion's website it says it is a 60watt head. Trotect says the head can be programmed for 60W or 80W and it is a proprietory thing. I want to be able to measure th output to make absolutely sure I have an 80w output with some headroom. Does anyone know about the 156F vs 158F and the claims that the 156F can be programed for 60 or 80W. To me it looks like they are trying to save money by not using and iradion 158F (80w) tube and maybe taking advatage of a 60w tube that say has 25 watts of headroom so it looks like an 80w head?

    Thanks,
    Joe

  5. #5
    Joe
    I can't address that issue but my 80 performs like an 80 watt should. I previously had a Speedy 300 45 watt so I have a pretty good yardstick.
    Mike Null

    St. Louis Laser, Inc.

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

  6. #6
    I use one of these:

    https://www.2laser.com/laser_power_m..._laser_monitor

    You blast the laser at the block for some certain amount of time (30 seconds or so, it tells you in the instructions) then wait 30 seconds, and read the power off the gauge. I've found it very helpful troubleshooting things- you can get calibrations between mirrors, so you can tell exactly how much power each bounce takes off, compare lens types, etc.

  7. #7
    I seriously doubt anyone is trying to pull a fast one on you. They are doing exactly what they've always done with them. You are the first person I've ever seen question it and there's a lot of Iridion 80w tubes out there and no one's questioned it or had any reason to. I'd let it go. They aren't an organization known for trying to bait and switch people.
    Lasers : Trotec Speedy 300 75W, Trotec Speedy 300 80W, Galvo Fiber Laser 20W
    Printers : Mimaki UJF-6042 UV Flatbed Printer , HP Designjet L26500 61" Wide Format Latex Printer, Summa S140-T 48" Vinyl Plotter
    Router : ShopBot 48" x 96" CNC Router Rotary Engravers : (2) Xenetech XOT 16 x 25 Rotary Engravers

    Real name Steve but that name was taken on the forum. Used Middle name. Call me Steve or Scott, doesn't matter.

  8. #8
    I have an 80 glass RECI that I can run some cut tests with a little later, it's output is pretty linear so it should be close; I can run a full power and 80% power test on some plex, I'll find the speeds to where the laser just barely makes it thru. I'll even shoot video so you can stopwatch the cut time and get your Trotec to match.. if your tube is at or near 80 watts, your cuts should be pretty close.

    I'm pretty sure yours will match up pretty close, if not best my results... check back later
    ========================================
    ELEVEN - rotary cutter tool machines
    FOUR - CO2 lasers
    THREE - fiber lasers
    ONE - vinyl cutter
    CASmate, Corel, Gravostyle


  9. #9
    Bert,
    Can you share your methods, meaning what type of laser test do you run and can you do it with a closed cabinet?
    Thanks,
    Joe

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Lanucha View Post
    Bert,
    Can you share your methods, meaning what type of laser test do you run and can you do it with a closed cabinet?
    Thanks,
    Joe
    Yeah, you do it closed cabinet. I usually do it with the beam defocused onto the black square part a bit. Send a line to the laser and set the speed to something crazy slow so it doesn't move much- you just need to keep the beam hitting the black square for a solid 30 seconds. After 30 seconds, stop the test, wait another 30 seconds until the needle stops moving, and you have your reading.

    To check between mirrors, use some tape or zip ties or a dial indicator stand or something to hold the black square somewhere in the beam path you're trying to measure and run the same test. As long as the beam hits the black square (it's about 1.5"x2") for the target amount of time, it'll work fine.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Medina Ohio
    Posts
    3,660
    Doesn't Trotec have a meter to rent

  12. #12
    On new machines speedy 300 (80w) are folkes seeing 80w, or is there typically some headroom, meaning more output on new tubes?
    Thanks,

    Joe

  13. #13
    Joe
    If this is such a concern why not spring for a meter?
    Mike Null

    St. Louis Laser, Inc.

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

  14. #14
    Johnson Plastics lists it as available for rental. Laserbits used to rent them, JP bought LB and now they appear to offer it.

    I still don't understand the concern. Some wording on some decal has led you to question the power output level. You are misreading the meaning behind the label. The 80 Iridion tubes run about 10% over when new, so it's likely near 90W. You have no reason to doubt that based on actual performance, only a decal. If it performs as an 80W would, then what's the issue?
    Lasers : Trotec Speedy 300 75W, Trotec Speedy 300 80W, Galvo Fiber Laser 20W
    Printers : Mimaki UJF-6042 UV Flatbed Printer , HP Designjet L26500 61" Wide Format Latex Printer, Summa S140-T 48" Vinyl Plotter
    Router : ShopBot 48" x 96" CNC Router Rotary Engravers : (2) Xenetech XOT 16 x 25 Rotary Engravers

    Real name Steve but that name was taken on the forum. Used Middle name. Call me Steve or Scott, doesn't matter.

  15. #15
    Joe
    To add to what Steve says, I've found that the material settings provided by Trotec are pretty accurate. Try engraving and cutting some laminated plastic using their settings. If the work is good then I would say you got what you paid for.
    Mike Null

    St. Louis Laser, Inc.

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

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