Pier 9 Guide: Cleaning the Epilog Lens

Introduction: Pier 9 Guide: Cleaning the Epilog Lens

About: Gabrielle Patin reporting for duty.

This Instructable is for Workshop Users at Pier 9.

Requirements for cleaning the Epilog laser lens:

  • Take General Workshop Safety Class and Epilog Laser Class
  • Cut your first laser job
  • Read through this Instructable
  • Ask Shop Staff to check you off on cleaning the Epilog lens

The Epilog laser cutters use a focal lens to focus the laser. If this lens becomes covered in soot it can drastically reduce the power of the laser and damage the lens.

To avoid cutting with reduced power, read through this Instructable and ask Shop Staff to train you.

Users who are approved lens cleaners can :

  • Guarantee the maximum power out of the laser.
  • Make sure your projects leave the lens clean for the next person.
  • Gain access to the lens cleaning drawer and lens cleaning supplies.

Warning: Cleaning an Epilog lens is not for the faint of heart. It requires careful attention to the steps outlined here to successfully clean the lens and avoid breaking the lens.

Step 1: Locating Epilog Cleaning Supplies

Locating the Epilog cleaning supplies

The cleaning supplies are located in the top drawer by the Earth laser cutter. See attached picture.

Cleaning Supplies:

  • Lens cleaner
  • Q-tips
  • The Epilog Lens Cleaning Station
    • Lens tray for the four lens assemblies
    • 2 screw holders
    • 2 lens holders
    • 1 allen key
    • 1 Phillips screwdriver

Step 2: Removing Lens Assembly

Removing the lens assembly

1. Take the Epilog Lens Cleaning Station and place it in the bed of the laser cutter you want to clean.

2. Use the Phillips screwdriver to unscrew the two screws holding the lens to the X-axis carriage. (marked in green on the photo) This will allow you to remove the lens assembly.

3. Place the lens assembly into the correct slot on the lens cleaning station and bring it back to the Epilog cleaning drawer.

Step 3: Cleaning the Lens

Removing the Lens

Warning: Nitrile gloves must be used when cleaning the lens.

1. Use the Allen key to unscrew the four screws holding the lens down.

2. Place the screws, the metal lens holder and o-ring in one of the red bins.

3. Remove the lens by flipping the assembly over onto the palm of your hand.

If the lens is stuck in the assembly, get a piece of masking tape. Stick it to the surface of the lens and pull it out.

Cleaning the lens

Warning: Avoid touching the lens with anything hard like an Allen key or your fingernail.

4. Add a single drop of lens cleaner to the top surface of the lens. Use clean q-tips to clean the surface of the lens. There may be existing scratches or dings, but there should be no evidence of residue from the lens cleaning liquid once clean.

5. Repeat on the other side of the lens.

Step 4: Reassemble the Lens Assembly

Reassemble the lens assembly

1. Lens Direction: First look at your reflection in the lens. One side will reflect your face, that goes up and the other will be distorted, that goes down. (Attached picture shows what a reflection should look like).

Again, the side that reflects your face, points up when putting the assembly back together.

2. Lens: Place the lens into it's position in the lens assembly, reflection side facing up.

3. O-RIng: Place the o-ring on top of the lens. This will keep the screw plate from touching the lens.

4. Screw Plate: Finally, place the screw plate on top of the o-ring and tighten the four screws to be "monkey tight".

Step 5: Reinstall the Lens Assembly

Reinstall the Lens Assembly

1. Return to the Epilog laser cutter.

2. Take the lens assembly, and slide it back into position. You may have to jiggle the assembly for the metal arm in the back to seat correctly.

3. Once the assembly is flush with the x-axis carriage, use the Phillips screwdriver to screw the assembly back in.

Congratulations! You have finished cleaning the lens assembly. Perform a small cut test to make sure the laser is functioning properly.

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