4-Wheel Rotary Tool for Blue Laser

Wiki

Overview

Name: 4-Wheel Rotary Tool for Blue Laser
Location: Blue Laser
Status: Operational (Beta Testing)
Training: Required (Laser Training)
Slack Channel: #project-laser-rotary
Owner: denhac

Training

Laser Cutter training required.

Operation

Safety

All safety guidelines of the laser cutters apply here.

Setup

Location

The rotary tool currently lives in the laser maintenance cabinet.

Blue Laser Physical Preparations

The honeycomb (and its support slats) needs to be removed to allow enough vertical space to fit the rotary tool. Setting a wood board inside Blue Laser can be useful for putting the rotary on top of and leveling.

Cable Connections

The rotary tool connects to the Y Axis motor driver of the Blue Laser. Currently we must manually swap the Y Axis motor cable with the rotary cable.

Leveling and Alignment

Once the Blue Laser Y Axis motor cable is disconnected, the gantry can be slid by hand to a position directly over the rotary. The rotation axis of the rotary should be parallel with the gantry both front-to-back (Y Axis) and up-and-down (Z Axis).

Lightburn Configuration

To minimize material slippage on the rotary wheels, the Blue Laser machine settings must be adjusted to lower max speeds and accelerations on the rotation axis. A rotary machine settings file is available on denNAS. Once the rotary machine settings file is loaded to Blue Laser via LightBurn, the laser must be power cycled for the settings to take effect.

Usage

Usage in LightBurn is generally the same as with non-rotary engraving. Just keep in mind that rotational axis speeds (Y Axis) will be limited to prevent wheel slippage.

Monitoring

Monitoring is same as with general laser cutter use.

Shutdown & Cleanup

* Power down laser

* Unplug rotary cable and re-plug Y Axis motor

* Return rotary to laser cabinet

* Reinstall honeycomb in Blue Laser

* Power-up controller; Restore default machine settings via LightBurn; reboot controller

* Power-down laser and perform standard laser cleanup

Troubleshooting

SymptomCauseSolution
Incomplete engrave and an error on the controller about not enough material.The origin position chosen was too close to 0.00 on the Y Axis for the shape of the engrave and it attempted to move the wheel position to a negative number.Use the UP/DOWN buttons to rotate your material 360 degrees and set your origin there instead.
Engraved pattern is squished around the rotation axis.(Many) On light-weight objects, the rotary wheel may not grip well to the object and will have trouble turning it.Add a little weight to the inside of the object you are engraving.
Engraved pattern is squished or stretched around the rotation axis.(Many) The machine settings for the rotary steps/rotation or diameter are not correct.Reload the rotary machine settings file via LightBurn, then power cycle the laser.

Materials

Same material restrictions apply as Blue Laser generally. Double check that the kind of coating on your tumblers/mugs/whatever is laser-safe before you engrave them!

Files & Resources

Specifications

Name4-WHEEL ROTARY AXIS WITH 360 DEGREE ROTATION FOR 50W AND UP CO2 LASER ENGRAVER CUTTING MACHINE
ManufacturerOMTech
ModelLRA-GL49
MotorNEMA 23
Engrave Lengths2 – 14 inches (5 – 35 cm)
Engrave Diameters0.4 – 6.0 inches (1 – 15 cm)
Angular Precision+/- 5%

History

2024-06: Rotary tool available for beta testing

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