Step 3: Installing the Cutter

For the Laser Cutter to run safely the cutter needs pressurised air, circulated coolant, and sufficient ventilation.

Luckily the Laser Cutter comes with all three, but they need to be installed before the cutter can be used.

Cooling& Pressurised Air

The laser is cooled by circulating water through the glass laser tube. The Laser Cutter has a flow detector whereby if there is no water flow the laser will not operate. The supplied water pump is designed for immersion in a water reservoir. In this case I have picked a 25 litre bin as my reservoir.

I will be using the heavy duty trolley that I used to move the Laser Cutter as a sub-assembly for the cooling system and air supply.

Step 1 | The bin needs to be well supported on the trolly. To help reduce vibrations, and noise, I will be resting the bin on a section of foam sheet. The foam sheet was used to pack the Laser Cutter for transport. I used some scrap wood as bracing for the foam padding.

Step 2 | The Air pump is mounted on two rubber brackets. Taking measurements from the brackets, and the pump, I have built up supports to mount the pump. The pump is bolted on using some of the bolts used to hold the crate together.

Step 3 | A feed pipe for the Laser cutter connects to the water pump. There is an adapter to do this but it needs sealing to make sure there is no complications with the water flow. They supply a tube of rubber sealant with the Laser Cutter. You'll have to supply your own tie-wraps though.

Step 4 | The return feed from the Laser Cutter will need a support. The last thing you'll want is for the pipe to fall free and then have water pumped all over the floor. I have modified an old wire coat-hanger. Luckily I had a metal bar with a similar diameter to the pipe. Wrapping the wire around the bar a few times make the perfect grip for the tube. I have angled the coil grip downwards slightly so the water is safely piped into the bin, and not on the floor.

Step 5 | Before connecting the air and water lines to the Laser Cutter it is always a good idea to make sure things work. I have filled the water reservoir about 3/4 of the way up.


Connecting the Laser Cutter to an outside vent is essential. There is a huge amount of smoke produced when cutting and making sure it is extracted correctly is a must.

The Laser Cutter comes with a length of 150mm (4") pipe. In my case this wasn't long enough so I had to pop down to the local hardware store and purchase a 1 metre extension. This then left me with the problem of extending the supplied pipe.

The solution was to modify a tin and use it as two connecting pipes.

Step 6 | I spend a few minutes hunting around the house looking for a tin of the correct diameter. I found a Tetley's Tea container of the right size. Firstly I cut the bottom off with a tin-opener. Then, using a sharp Stanley Knife, I cut it in half. Be warned, the edges will be sharp. To help protect myself, and the ventilation tube, I covered the edges with thick masking tape.

Step 7 | I chose to cut the supplied tube in half, and fit the extension in the middle. Using a sharp knife the tube was sliced in half. Into the first tube section is inserted one of the two tube connectors, it should go about half way into the tube.. I have wrapped some PVC Tape around the tube to help form a seal and hold the pipe in place. Repeat this with the other section of pipe.

Step 8 | The extension comes with two Tie-Wraps. Slip one end of the extension over the tube connector. Hold the extension in place with one of the tie-wraps. Repeat with the other tube section. The ventilation tube is now ready for use.

The ventilation pipe needs connecting to an external vent. In the room where I have the cutter there is no vent, only a window.

Step 9 | With the window open, and using some of the packing foam from the Laser Cutter I have filled in the space in the window frame.

Step 10 | Take a flower pot. Cut the top off. Make sure the ventilation pipe just fits over the pot.

Step 11 | Mark a hole in the foam using the flower pot top and cut out the hole.

Step 12 | Feed the ventilation pipe through the hole.

Step 13 | Place the flower pot top inside the ventilation pipe and secure it in place using a stapler.

Step 14 | Press the flower pot top, with attached tube, into the foam.

Step 15 | Re-fit the foam in the window frame.

Step 16 | Attach the other end of the ventilation tube to the Laser Cutter using the supplied jubilee clip. I used another wire coat-hanger to help support the tube.

Step 17 | Check all connections, cables, pipes and settings. Thoroughly check the entire Laser Cutter for obstructions, packing materials, and general detritus.

Step 18 | Power On!

The first time I power up the Laser Cutter there was some rattling from the access panels. To cure this I stuck some foam strip along the edge of the access panel hatches on the opposite side to the hinges. There's no need to put the strip all the way around the hatch, you might find the hatches won't close if you do.
<p>Thanks for posting this.</p><p>We're having some problems with our laser cutter. The cuts are no longer square but rather, more &quot;V-ee&quot; or &quot;wedge-like&quot; rather than perpendicular to the surface of the material being cut. This is most pronounced on acrylic cuts. We've checked alignment of the optics. The tube has been rough handled over the last while - the coolant system seems to have failed leading to coolant temps in excess of 80C. </p><p>Any suggestions?</p>
<p>Validate the height of the nozzle above the work is one possibility. </p>
<p>WARNING !!! </p><p>The CD disk that came with my 80W unit had an evil virus which is known to encrypt your data and lock you out of your computer unless you pay. Scan you disks prior to installing them. I ended up using a version of RDWorks on the internet and using it after scanning. </p>
<p>Hi all, I have been trying to set up the Chinese ebay laser cutter today exactly the same as yours Jimmy, thank you for your page! I have come across a really annoying problem, the machine is firing up fine but it is not connecting with my laptop, the laptop recognises something when the usb is plugged in but it cannot install the drivers for it. I have also tried putting a usb stick into the machines port and using the screen on the machine to make the machine print one of my designs but the screen is all in Chinese and I do not know what to click on!</p><p>Please can anyone help me? I would appreciate any knowledge as I have been trying to sort this all day and not getting any where :( </p><p>Thank you, </p><p>Sharne</p>
<p>Hello, </p><p>I had the same problems. </p><p>For the language, this works fine for me.</p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="281" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/9rl9bw7Gn7A" width="500"></iframe></p><p>I also get a dvd, there was an install video for the driver. It is a bit cumbersome, but it works for me. If you can't find it i can share it on youtube. Please tell me if you need it.</p>
<p>did you find the problem? If you did can you please share your knowledge with me</p>
<p>Hi Sanbel</p><p>I have a same problem of machine and laptop communication and also the screen in my machine is in chinese. did you found any solution to this?</p><p>thanks</p>
<p>Hi Shrane</p><p>I have a same problem, did you find any solution? If so can you please share your knowledge?</p><p>thanks </p>
<p>I have a 50W China Laser I purchased off of Ebay. The laser came cracked and the only thing I could get from America (which ended up being from china) not broken was a 40W tube from Buildyourcnc.com. So I installed that. The issue I'm having now is that it cuts all the paths and does not disengage the laser when its traveling to a new shape or character. So if I'm cutting any thing other than square or circle it show me all the paths thus slicing up my material. Is my power supply the issue. Is there two much power coming through my laser so when it turns down the laser it thinks its off because 50w require more volts and amps. Or is it a setting in RDworks? I have a very important project and I really need help.</p>
<p>i have been trying to align the mirrors, this is the best i can get if i try to keep adjusting the move farther apart, any ideas?</p>
<p>I was wondering, it cuts acrylic, but has anyone tried lexan/polycarbonate?</p>
<p>Hi I have a 60 watt laser I have been cutting 1/8 acrylic setting are 100 power 9 speed 5000 frequency no air. The problem is my skin feel like a minor sunburn when I use it, I not even close the the machine any ideas what it could be</p>
<p>Allergic reaction to fumes maybe. </p>
<p>It's pretty hard to imagine that the IR beam is at fault (assuming that the tube is enclosed) but it might be an RF/high voltage effect from the power supply.</p><p>Is that possible?</p>
<p>I am baffled</p>
<p>Has anyone figured out how to use the laser with a macbook?</p>
I have this exact laser cutter and was wondering how many amps is it pulling. I know it is 50W but that's the laser, what about the rest of the components too. In order to help control the fumes I am connecting it to the Harbor Freight 1HP portable dust collector which is 7 amps. I need to make sure I won't blow the breaker it is currently on.
<p>Hola I just bought a 50w co2 Lazer engraving machine but I can get my pc window 8 or 7 to communicate with the Lazer in order to cut or engrave can someone help me please</p>
<p>This is very useful for the newbie,thanks for your share about the laser cutting install!</p>
<p>This is a great guide, can we copy a link to it from the Laser Engraving and Cutting facebook group. We have over 250 members that would love to see it . https://www.facebook.com/groups/441613082637047/</p>
Here is inside and up I have a feeling they have left something off it . Went the machine is connected to the computer the top panel works and is functioning but that's it .
<p>It is a power problem. The fuse is near where the power cable plugs in (circled in the picture). </p><p>The power cable doesn't look like it is pushed in all the way either. Does the power cable go straight into the wall or does it plug into a travel adapter type thing?</p>
<p>The two bottom things beneath where you have circled are the power slots for the air filter and water pump to plug into the cord is going right in and straight to the wall .x i will have another look in the morning. Thank you so much for your time and effort in helping me . It is much appreciated. </p>
<p>ah lol. </p><p>Get a multimeter on it and follow the power route.</p>
This is what is in behind the switches . I have tried 5 different power cables. .
This is side panel and switch
<p>It is slightly different to mine but I think there should be a fuse holder which goes where the hole is.</p><p>Where do the wires go from the socket?</p>
<p>Hi Silver JImmy , I have just received one and mine won't even turn on, have sorted all the pumps and compressor but actual unit won't turn on at all , am I missing something ? I have contacted the seller and it is impossible to get answer. any tips would be much appreciated.</p>
<p>Hi,</p><p>Check the big red emergency switch hasn't been tripped. I had exactly the same thing and it turn out the switch was off. If I remember right you have to twist it to turn it back on.</p><p>Greg</p>
<p>do you mean the big stop button or there another one somewhere ? thanks greg having a slight stroke over this machine</p>
<p>I have pushed that up and down a few times and still nothing</p>
<p>twisted it etc</p>
<p>It should be in the up position. </p><p>Do no lights come on? </p><p>Do the switches on the side not work? Have you checked the fuse? </p><p>Did it come with the right plugs or do you have to use a supplied travel plug type thing?</p>
<p>Yes none of the red lights turn on at all . have tried different power supply leads still nothing. yes have tried in up position.I will look for fuse . it is the little switch is on 240 inside,. will look for fuse. thanks so much x</p>
<p>Have you checked inside the side panel to see if there are any lose wires?</p><p>Do you have a multimeter?</p>
<p>do you remember where the fuse is ? I can't see it and it isn't in the manual, My husband has a meter he couldn't spot the fuse.i have pushed all the backs of the switches to make sure everything is secured, nothing lose. on the main 240 page at the back of it there is one of the connecters left without a wire. but I don't know enough to know if thats correct.</p><p>Sorry to be a pest.x</p>
<p>The fuse is on the outside by all the switches on the side. It will be inside a little black fuse holder. You'll have to unscrew the top of the holder to get the fuse out.</p>
I don't have a little black box on mine I will try and send a pick I have a whole on the panel like something is missing
<p>How did you move the machine? It might have been knocked off. Check behind where the hole is and see if there any loose wires.</p>
Absolutely nothing there must be dodgy . Is it meant to be wher the hole is ?
How's the cutter doing today?
<p>I sold it about 6 months ago and bought a bigger machine in it's place.</p>
<p>The problem I am having is installing the software. The CD filenames are all in Chinese and the manual that the machine came with is translated from Chinese to English and stuff definitely got lost in the translation. UGHH... I wish I knew someone who could set it up for me.. It is frustrating for me and puts me off to the whole idea of continuing with it.</p>
<p>I suspect that the vendor has put the price up since he gets all the hits from this 'ible, &pound;9,739.90! Look around, a <strong>500% markup</strong> is not a good deal.</p><p>One criticism, 'PVC tape', this is an 'ible! You should have used Duct Tape!!!</p><p>But bonus points for the technique to secure the work-piece; two g-clamps (not in clamping mode) and a hammer ;)</p>
<p>lol wow, link removed!</p><p>and thanks for the bonus points :)</p>
Didn't know that actually. I can't spot any adjusting screw on my one. Must be a slightly different model I guess.
It should be on the cutting head. You can see the one on mine coming out from the head on the right side. Yours may well be in a different position.<br> <br>
Hey thanks for the great insight. Do you find that the air pump is adequate? I've got the same pump as you but I find that although it works fine in providing an air curtain, it seems to just fan the flame since the pressure is so low.
Just to check; you know it has a screw adjuster, yes?
Tip1: To clean the 'yuk' of the table use Astomish orange oven cleaner and degreaser. It is safe to use, does not smell horrid and cleans up a treat. <br>Tip2: Only use laser friendly materials Ply and MDF should be formadehyde free = less smoke, less yuk and no horid gasses. <br>Tip3: Make sure the extractor is running full speed before cutting starts. In otherwords let the extractor actually start sucking the fumes before you start produing them. <br> <br>I got my Laser through Thunderlaser in China no problems, excellent machine excellent service. Much cheaper than UK

About This Instructable




Bio: A passionate make of things. Chief engineer for the BigBox 3D printer and inventor of the MicroSlice Mini Laser Engraver & Cutter. I spend my time ... More »
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