Fitting a laser onto a Shapeoko

Found this story encouraging for how easy the install was:


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I’ve learned lots about these diode lasers thanks to the Ortur purchase and then learning how to repair them. Amazing how these high power lasers have gone form thousands to just over $100 for a full 7W uinit and Laser power supply(LPS). It’s mostly a mounting and wire routing task to add these to 3D printers and routers with the one ‘got-cha’ of finding the right PWM signal to connect the LPS to.

And good for Carbide3D for adding the extra spindle PWM pin for things like diode lasers. And one advantage of having a CNC with a mini-router for the spindle is that the on/off switch is right there front and center. Which has me wondering if Carbide3D really did provide 2 spindle speed PWM signals… Those mini-routers don’t come with PWM speed control so you manually dial your spindle speed but when you mount a VFD powered spindle you will tap the PWM and gain GCode spindle control. Maybe that PWM signal pin shown in the JTech laser thread post is for VFD or laser control.

I’m deep into Spindle control PWM right now as I’m driving my K40 with LinuxCNC/Remora and the PWM Remora originally supported was Pulse Density Modulation instead of fixed frequency Pulse Width Modulation. And like the Shapeoko and many other GCode controlled laser cutters, we use spindle control for Laser control via M3, M4, M5 and Sxxxxx GCodes.

I wonder how many CNC’ers freak out a bit when they smell the wood burning when they’ve add a laser? When an end mill starts smoking you generally want to hit the E-Stop.

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LOL, I hadn’t thought about that psychology. :blush:
Doug, are those power ratings now of output power?
Used to be input but at these prices perhaps this changed?

Some vendors post output power rating and some post input power rating. The more ‘engineering’ focused witll post output power rating as that’s been the standard in lasers for years. I’ve heard some of the ‘cheaper’ diode laser vendors will even mount “uncapped” diode lasers which can be ok as long as you don’t remove the lens and THEY were careful to keep the assembly area clean.

But in general, you have to kinda guess at what they are rating and I expect those posting output power ratings will state that and the others will not state if it’s input or output rating.