Lasercutter training requests

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Dave S

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Feb 7, 2019, 9:25:56 AM2/7/19
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Hi all 
 I am planning to offer additional training on the laser cutter. Things not covered by the induction.

photo engraving, Rotary tool, stamp making, keyring making, cutting without burning etc.

would members be interested in this and what other aspects of the laser would you like tutoring on?

Dan Spencer

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Feb 7, 2019, 6:52:45 PM2/7/19
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Photo engraving & Rotary tool training would be good!

Edward Podgorski

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Feb 8, 2019, 6:18:55 AM2/8/19
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I would be interested in the use of the rotary tool, also could do with updating my knowledge base on photo engraving.


On Thursday, February 7, 2019 at 2:25:56 PM UTC, Dave S wrote:

Matthew Little

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Feb 8, 2019, 7:17:03 AM2/8/19
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This is a great idea.

I'd be interested in rotary tool training.

Cheers,

Matt


On Thursday, February 7, 2019 at 2:25:56 PM UTC, Dave S wrote:

Arthur Moore

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Feb 8, 2019, 7:18:55 AM2/8/19
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Hi Dave,
Yes please  - photo engraving would be of particular interest, but also the other things you mentioned.
Looking forward to it, Art


On Thursday, February 7, 2019 at 2:25:56 PM UTC, Dave S wrote:

Ry's Pi

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Feb 8, 2019, 11:11:38 AM2/8/19
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I'm being inducted on the laser cutter on Tuesday. But I'd be interested in learning more after then. 


On Thursday, February 7, 2019 at 2:25:56 PM UTC, Dave S wrote:

Anthony McCourt

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Feb 10, 2019, 2:58:50 PM2/10/19
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Yes, all sound good. Going to book a induction in the week

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paul Meynell

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Mar 25, 2019, 5:43:41 PM3/25/19
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I would like more info on how to put something on the bed that you want to cut or engrave something extra.
The laser always seems to start in a different place so linking back up is difficult

Arthur Moore

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Mar 26, 2019, 4:31:49 AM3/26/19
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Hi Paul,
I have successfully engraved both sides of an object by cutting the part I wanted out of a larger piece which was securely clamped down.
i could then lift off the part, turn it over and replace it in exactly the same place.
My file had several layers and I switched off the ones for the second side while engraving the first side, then reversed the process for the second side.
Provided you do not remove your card the laser does not home, so the head will remain in the same place.
I think it is a great pity that the laser team made the laser automatically home every time you switch if on.  It used to remain where it was unless you pressed the home button, but now you have to waste money keeping the laser switched on with your card to avoid the automatic homing procedure.
I believe the team also speeded up the XY operation, so it is very difficult to exactly position the laser head in the desired position, but have to try to slide the work into position under the laser marker.
If you are coming back on a different day to add to existing work then I do not think there is any way to reliably zero the machine in the same place.
in theory you could align the top right hand corner of your work with the light from the laser marker, but it is not going to be very precise. 
Arthur

On Mon, 25 Mar 2019 at 21:43, paul Meynell <catdo...@gmail.com> wrote:
I would like more info on how to put something on the bed that you want to cut or engrave something extra.
The laser always seems to start in a different place so linking back up is difficult

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moop

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Mar 26, 2019, 4:57:52 AM3/26/19
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Just arrange some scrap to match the rough outline of your part - doesn't matter if there are gaps and it can just be two sides of the part.

Cut the outline of your part into the scrap and to make a frame that will perfectly align your part (for the duration of your session).

Now being careful to keep the scrap in place (better to weigh it down or use magnets) slot the piece to be modified into the frame of scrap pieces.

Cut your modifications into the part.

Repeat for any additional identical parts you want to modify.

Another trick:

Lasercut uses the top right of the drawing as a datum. If you add a single line above and to the right of the parts you care about the datum will not change when you enable/disable other bits of the drawing.

You can probably also just configure the datum in Lasercut, but I've never bothered.

paul meynell

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Mar 26, 2019, 5:48:39 AM3/26/19
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Thanks for that, I thought the laser did not go home automatically but it does now.
That was the problem I was having.
Will have to leave my card on.
Or get the laser team to switch off auto datum.

Cheers Paul

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Arthur Moore

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Mar 26, 2019, 8:06:42 AM3/26/19
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Hi Paul,
I am not sure why the team switched to auto datum?
You only need to do it once in a session and if you are doing lots of different jobs it is much easier if the head is always in the same place.
I also wish they would slow down the XY speed to what it used to be.  It is much easier to do fine jog the head than it is to try to shuffle the work underneath while keeping it square to the bed.
Arthur

paul meynell

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Mar 26, 2019, 3:23:07 PM3/26/19
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I'm not sure who to ask but surely we can request it be changed?

Alex Mann

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Mar 26, 2019, 3:29:28 PM3/26/19
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If you turn off Immediate mode then the laser works relative to the top right corner of the bed instead if the drawing, so you just have to reposition your material in the same place and you don't have to leave the laser on.

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social justice zordon

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Mar 26, 2019, 6:25:56 PM3/26/19
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As far as I know the team didn't make a decision to change to auto-datum, it just happened that way when the new PC was commissioned.

In fact I tried to change it back to not automatically datuming but couldn't figure out how. If some enterprising soul wants to try, as far as I'm concerned they can, though I don't speak for the team.

Ian Dickinson

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Mar 26, 2019, 7:09:20 PM3/26/19
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That's correct SJZ, it happened when the software was installed on the
replacement PC. No decision as such was made to change the setting.

However, I did leave it as it was, as I thought it was useful, as the
laser should be datumed every time it is powered up. If not done, it
does not know where the head is and there is a risk of crashing into the
side if a file is loaded that is bigger than the area between the
current position and the side of the bed.

However, I can see how it could cause a problem if someone wants to
power down, then later run the same job or another from the same
starting point.

I know where the setting is, and can change it tomorrow evening. I've
got a maintenance slot booked anyway as a couple of members have
reported poor cutting.

As regards not knowing how to contact the laser team, you've already
found us on here, we are on slack in #laser too, or you can email us at
laser[at]nottinghack[dot]org[dot]uk  This email address is also on the
whiteboard in the laser area.

Arthur Moore

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Mar 27, 2019, 4:02:18 AM3/27/19
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Hello Ian,
it would be great if you could put it back as it was before with no auto datum.
Is it also possible to slow down the XY positioning similar to what it was before, to make it easier to fine position the head accurately.
N.B.  I eventually solved my text reverse-engraving problem.  I had to convert each individual letter into a polyline and then it worked.
Thanks for your help
Arthur

Ancient and Wicked

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Mar 27, 2019, 7:21:14 AM3/27/19
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As someone who does do laser cutting on both sides of the material, I think leaving the rfid card on the machine between the job for the first side and the job for the second side does two things:

 Firstly, it keeps the origin of the job (I typically cut a frame for the shape I want, so I can flip the piece and keep it in place by weighting the material surrounding it) in the same place.

Seccondly, the second cut job can be downloaded without the machine needing to power down and power up again, so I think it's quicker.

To speed this further, I have both parts of the job open in LaserCut, but Edit,Cut the part I don't need, download the part I do need, then Undo, and Edit,Cut the other part and download that. 

Hopefully that offers another practicable solution.

I am for keeping the auto datuming, for the machine to be able to properly know where it is!!!

TomAndAHalf

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Mar 27, 2019, 2:18:03 PM3/27/19
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Another vote for keeping the auto-datum at power up switched on. I've not heard the tell-tale sign of the head crashing into the side of the machine since AD became a thing. I've had to mention the importance of the datum button to someone after a hearing that tell-tale sound of a crash a number of times over the years.

Also, a stepper motor will potentially step to a different position every time the laser is power cycled. Might not be significant, but between Alex+Ancient's techniques, I can't see any disadvantage to AD.

Arthur Moore

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Mar 27, 2019, 2:36:22 PM3/27/19
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It seems to fairly crash into the side of the machine when it auto datums.  Certainly not a soft landing! 

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