Laser engraving machine CNC (Producing Laser Engraving Machine by Using Wasted CD-Drive or Printer)

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Picture of Laser engraving machine CNC (Producing Laser Engraving Machine by Using Wasted CD-Drive or Printer)

Are you still worried about what gifts are best suited for your friends? Do you want to choose something creative to express your sincere wishes? With the advancement of the economy, higher requirements on presents become more necessary. Gifts with innovative ideas are coming into our sights.

Some people want to print their favourite pictures or cartoon characters on some small ornaments. People who are keen about DIY wish to make pcb at home to make their own electronic works. Based on these requirements, I sprouted the idea of making a laser-engraving machine. The machine is made from discarded materials, which saves the money and put the concept of “recycling resources ” into practice as well. However, the first generation of laser-engraving machine can only satisfy the want of printing pictures. Thus, I expand the framework in my second version and propose the innovative method of circuit-board-etching in order to broaden the uses of the machine.

The machine is basically made from unwanted materials that you can easily find in second-hand markets. I use the old CD driver and printer to make this machine and it is shown later in my article.

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Step 1: Demo Video


This is a demonstration of the process of carving

Step 2: (first generation) Using the CD-ROM production -- get laser and stepper motor

Picture of (first generation) Using the CD-ROM production -- get laser and stepper motor

I took two wasted CD-drives apart because we need the steppers and lasers from them.

Step 3: (first generation) Assemble the circuits and the drive frames

Picture of (first generation) Assemble the circuits and the drive frames

This is my first-generation product, using the wasted CD drives and Arduino.

Let’s start assembling! This is the specific making process: solder the circuit board by Arduino Nano and a4988 stepper driver; use the waste wood slats and the disassembled drives’ stepping motors. Wood is not only easy for making changes, even with a saw or utility knife, but also environment-friendly. Always remember to keep the stepping motors on the x and y axes perpendicular to avoid printing crooked or skewed pictures.

Step 4: (first generation) The design and improvement of machine frame

Picture of (first generation) The design and improvement of machine frame

Here is the process of designing and optimizing the machine frame, though many of my attempts failed. But these trials were to let more people make simple and interesting laser engraving machines using their discarded CD drives more conveniently and economically. I will attach a design sheet in the next section.

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So the laser from a cd player is powerful enough to engrave metals?
salar naser1 month ago


thank foryuo

but the software wasnt install

pjaupoe3 months ago

Very cool

Brunomaster4 months ago

que raro, tenia que ser un chino...

Eldglay4 months ago

Very good, could make a circuit tutorial PCB?

344185151 (author)  Eldglay4 months ago
yes But it doesn't very useful because it too slowly
0penbook4 months ago

I would like to know exactly how this was made, please, so that this can be reproducible by others and myself. And please list the exact components used, which printer motors, which model's lasers, etc. It's great that you made this. But an instructable should tell the reader how to duplicate your results on their own.

344185151 (author)  0penbook4 months ago
I have already relize this problem .I will add the steps soon .(I will have some exams ,But I will add them as quickly as I could)
GWSC4 months ago

Great project, a great pity it cannot be made with the instructions supplied. I'm not sure how this became a featured project without full instructions being made available.

I'm glad I'm not the only one that felt this

In its current state it's informative, but without instructions it isn't an instructable!

344185151 (author)  GWSC4 months ago
I will change it into a good instructables.Thanks to you let me know what we need to share with(I am a Chinese student,and not good at English.I didn't really understand what'sthe mean of instructables before.I know we need let everybody DIY instead of share my DIY now)
344185151 (author)  GWSC4 months ago

I will improve it in the near future

DarkDecko GWSC4 months ago

Have you tried turning the page at the bottom before the replies can't miss it... where it says "(View all steps) (Next>>)

Good day,
Do you still have model numbers of the CD-ROM drives?
We are thankful for such information.

344185151 (author)  The Lightning Stalker4 months ago

All kinds of CD-ROM drives which use the Stepper motor is OK

I see now that you are using the 435nm laser diode and not the original CD-ROM diode.
Thank you for providing the information.
It will help a lot of people.
344185151 (author)  The Lightning Stalker4 months ago
the CD-ROM laser only can carve deep color's things.But it doesn't means we couldn't use it.If you doesn't have enough money, you can also use it.
jocman4 months ago

Great project. I tried to download the Desktop.RAR file, but it just opens a web page full of characters. Can you fix the link someway?

344185151 (author)  jocman4 months ago
I am sorry about that.I am a Chinese student.So I cannot use this network well.I will solve this problem.
ysokolov4 months ago

When I try to dowload it, my kaspersky antivirus found HEUR:Trojan.Win32.Generi. Could you check your archive? I read your message about antivirus, but I can`t download (

344185151 (author)  ysokolov4 months ago
let me have a look
Raitis4 months ago

Hi, it's nice to see what you've done and I appreciate, but more details would be so great, especially since I'm looking into making a similar machine. :)

What is the power of the laser? What is the working surface size?

344185151 (author)  Raitis4 months ago

working surface size is A4, the power of the laser is 200 mw 435mm

angelhut4 months ago

That is a Singapore $1 Coin. Are you studying in Singapore. Great work.

344185151 (author)  angelhut4 months ago

I am a chinese high middle student.And I'm not good at English (laugh)

akn14 months ago
everything you said there but you didn't explained the procedure of building the device using lasers and motors... I want to build this for myself... please tell the procedure of building step by step
344185151 (author)  akn14 months ago

I am so sorry about that.I write it so quickly so that I didn't do it well.

I will improve it in the near future

raypsi4 months ago

Despite the nay sayers gr8 job merci beaucoupe for sharing

That laser must get mighty hot, even with a fan cooling the laser head.

344185151 (author)  raypsi4 months ago

a fan can solve this problem

U_eriksen4 months ago

And by the way, the author here did not use the laser from a CD-ROM drive. Some 16+ speed DVD burner drives have red or UV lasers that are powerful enough to be focused into a burning beam, but CD-ROM drives do not.

Not sure about the laser actually used.... From the pictures it looks to be UV, which would be invisible to the eye (but picked up by digital cameras). PLEASE be careful with these lasers! You don't have to see the beam to ruin your eyes.

344185151 (author)  U_eriksen4 months ago

my laser is 200mw 435mm.I have not use the cd laser because it too low power .

Pay attention to the protection is important

rkrishnan74 months ago

Thank you for a fine 'ible!

One of the most important problems with designing a system like this is to be able to focus the laser diode to a fine point. Most scavenged laser diodes need special optics to achieve this. Can you explain what you have done?

344185151 (author)  rkrishnan74 months ago

it is only a Magnifier which made by plastic

He can't because he didn't use the laser from the CD. I would find his .rar download very suspicious also. I call this project half-baked. And I'm being constructive!

U_eriksen4 months ago

For those wanting more details, you can probably find some in a more original 'ible from 2011:


344185151 (author)  U_eriksen4 months ago

You are righe,I did this after reading it

manohar4 months ago

Circuit around arduino plus code and driver circuit of laser lens recovered from CD drive needs to be given to understand the project.Please provide.

Darkangeel_hd4 months ago

Rar file here


this instructable:
but in original form:


video here


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