Most of my DIY projects make use of a 3D printer. The big advantage is that you can design and make your own 3D objects. In a previous instructable I've assembled and improved an Anet A8 3D printer. And after a few improvements, this printer gives a nice result. In addition to a 3D printer, it can be useful to use a CNC machine or a laser cutter.
I've already attached a dremel to the Anet A8 3D printer. And this is also documented in a previous Instructable. This is the third Instructable with the Anet A8 3D printer. And this time I've altered the 3D printer into a laser cutter. This project starts with a working 3D printer.
And it is not necessary to read the previous parts. The laser used is a 5 Watt diode laser. This makes it possible to cut or engrave cardboard, fabric and wood.
I opted for a separate 12 Volt laser. Without the controller and power supply. The 3D printer already contains a 12 Volt power supply and the laser is controlled by the mainboard of the printer.
The omission of these parts made it possible to choose the slightly more expensive mW laser, instead of the mW laser. Converting the 3D printer to a laser cutter is relatively easy.
It can be done by anyone who has assembled a 3D printer. First, the nozzle is replaced by a laser, using a self-made 3D printed holder.
Then the laser is connected to the power supply and the mainboard. The laser circuit is optically sepparated from the 3D printer circuit. This makes the modification mainboard independend, so the laser can be mounted on almost any 3D printer.
Did you use this instructable in your classroom? Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson. There are two types of laser cutters: CO2 and diode semiconductor lasers. The C02 laser have a much greater power than diode lases, but these are also a lot more expensive.
Therefore this Instructable is about a diode laser. You can remove a diode laser from any DVD burner and use it as a laser engraver. However, these lasers have very low power. It is therefore not possible to cut wood with these. There are also various DIY packages with a diode laser.
Or combined CNC and laser machines.Not a member? You should Sign Up. Already have an account? Log In. To make the experience fit your profile, pick a username and tell us what interests you. We found and based on your interests.
Choose more interests. View project log. Create an account to leave a comment. Are you sure? I could use a little help, I'm pulling an image off the internet for testing as I wanted to see how well it would shade but what I was getting was almost a complete black shape. The preview that the code generates looked amazing and I thought my real results were going to match. I was wrong. It currently had a white background.
Any help would be great. Excellent extension, great job Engineering! If you want to share your changes, you can contribute on github or you can send me the codeI would be happy to share them. Answer my own question here: Yes it works because I somehow didn't move the correct unzipped files! I moved the files where you are told too and it shows up now. Will Raster 2 Laser Gcode work with Inkscape 0. I downloaded and installed the files into the "extension" folder and when I run Inkscape it doesn't show up.
This is the directory that the plugin is looking in.
Convert a 3D PRINTER to LASER ENGRAVER | Under 40$
Thank you for creating this extension. Add Z-axis coordinate. One other suggestion: could there be a different speed setting when the laser is off?
Thanks for the suggestions. The projects I'm working on require the use of raster as well as vector. For raster I just started using Raster2Laser. I'm having a problem with a 1mm difference between Gcodetools and Raster2Laser. I am using the same template for both with a 1mm grid for positioning. I get the exact same offset every single time. The end result will have the image touching the top and right sides of the box with a 2 mm gap at the bottom and left sides.
You can try to generate gcode from Pixel from a known position with both the plugins, to see which one have the wrong offset. I've been trying to use your plugin on a Mac and while the extension shows up I also tried copying and pasting it to a gcode file Obviously I replaced the extruder with a laser head I get G00, G01 and tgerefore doesn't recognize thoseSenior Editor for Make: I get ridiculously excited seeing people make things. I just want to revel in the creativity of the masses!
My favorite thing in the world is sharing the hard work of a maker. Upgrading your 3D printer is a fantastic way to improve performance and print quality, as well as learn how the machine works. Often the upgrades are simple things to make it run quieter, get better cooling, control the environment through an enclosure, detect filament jams, and other things of that nature.
This upgrade however adds a whole new function to your printer. Instructibles user Marzsolt shares an extremely detailed guide on adding a diode laser to a Prusa MK3.
This tutorial does a few things really well, but foremost they are sure to warn people adequately. It can be easy to feel like these lasers are harmless, but they are actually very dangerous and should be handled properly. Disclaimer: Lasers are very dangerous, so you need to use proper care and basic common sense to not get in trouble.
I warned you, I will not be responsible if you shoot down a space pirate… or lose an eye. The quality that they managed to get out of the machine is fairly impressive, just check out the example images! With the proper precautions, a laser is actually a fantastic addition to a 3d printer.
Just follow along with the instructible and be safe! Latest Caleb Kraft. By Caleb Kraft Caleb Kraft. Related Stories from Make:. Send this to a friend Your email Recipient email Send Cancel. Thanks for signing up. Please try again.It was great fun to put the many pieces together into a relatively complex working machine. Putting it together by myself helped me a lot to understand where problems in the print could come from.
And it also reduced the fear to constantly change parts to improve quality and reliability of the prints. Now the time felt right to take another step by adding a new tool to the 3D printer mechanics: a 2. And you can engrave and etch many materials for instance leather.
After watching many youtube videos and reading blog posts about the topic I came to the conclusion that a 2. The beauty about the module I chose is that it comes with just one barrel jack power connector. No additional regulator board needed. You just connect it to the part fan pins of your printer driver board. Also the laser module has a focus ring which is great to adjust the focal length to the currently set Z height of the module.
The voltage on fan pins can be regulated by software. Sometimes you want the fan to cool the part as much as possible and sometimes a light breeze is enough. This also is great for our little laser module: we can adjust the intensity of the laser from the driver software! Here is the shopping link. You can buy them on Banggood for just a couple of dollars: shopping link. But they both use the same pins on the driver board. I then soldered a female barrel jack to the part fan cable. Now to switch between the laser and the part fan I can just switch the barrel jacks which takes less than a few seconds.
There are many clever designs out there to easily replace one tool head with another. There you usually remove the hot end to add another tool. The sophisticated designs use magnets to do this quickly. So I decided to mount the laser module and other potential future tool heads to the back of the X carriage.Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson. I found that mw laser is just right for this project due to its low price and capability of engraving in almost every material with exception of metals and glass.
Stop Driving Laser Cutters With 3D Printer Software!
I will explain why we did this step later in the video. Connect the fan on the laser to the cooling fan port, laser to the laser port and those 2 wires from the 3d printer motherboard to the 12v power port. Leave the TTL port unplugged because we won't need it.
That would be all, thank you for reading this instructable, If you like it please also consider clicking on the video below of how I do it and enjoy the great music. I have an anycubic i3 mega which i followed the tutorial and fitted a mw laser.
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It lasted about 5 seconds before It burnt out the transistor for fan0 on the board : so i bought a J3Y transistor, replaced this on the motherboard and its working again. So there is lesson 1, make sure the motherboard is up to the job of the power required of the laser. I then bought a mosfet board see image as i thought i could trigger the mosfet with the fan0 signal and have 12 volts to the laser, but as soon as i connect the Gnd line to the mosfet it switches on the fan supply.
It appears to be a ground issue as when i soldered the line while it was plugged in it managed to get enough of a ground from the soldering iron. It won't work without the driver, I guess Now, what? I tried following your guide to converting my printer to a laser cutter, but I seem to be stuck.
I have almost the same exact printer as the one you use in the video, Mine is a Prusa i3 M so this should be pretty straight forward. I have my laser mounted, but when I connect the laser power to the same spot as you did in the video and turn the fan on, there is no power to the laser.045 - Ender 3 - Laser
I tried plugging it into the second extruder port and turning on the second extruder my printer doesn't actually have two to use anyway. So I looked up the manual for my printer and noticed that the port which you plugged the laser into is the "extruder 3" port according to the manual, but you said it was the motherboard fan port in the video.
Could you clarify? If it works to plug it into the second extruder port, then I don't mind doing that, but I don't know how to adjust the gcode to make that work. Reply 1 year ago. You need to connect it to the extruder fan port. The wiring on my laser was reversed black wire where red wire should be and vice versa so be sure to check the polarity. I had to do some cutting, soldering and shrink tubing and it works great!
Raster 2 Laser GCode generator
You'll know if it's right if a green light comes on the laser control board. When the laser is active, a red LED on that board will light up. Hello, I am having a problem where my. Then do the "Object to Path". Finally, run the laser tool. I edit my G code to home the printer first G 28 then G4 P0 and set the height in the first line that sets where the print head will go first.Hopefully, this post will pull all the details into one place to help others wanting to do the same.
I bought mine on Amazon disregard the bad reviews — it works fine…I suspect the lack of instructions in its use are the main reason for the reviews but there are lots of places that sell something similar. I paid a little more to get it faster via Prime but you can likely find one similar at your favourite online shop.
I bought a mw model but you can get them up to 2.
I knew this would be just used to play with etching and I have access to more powerful laser cutters so I opted for this cheaper module…and honestly, the mw does the job just fine…it may just take longer to get the results of the higher powered modules. A long wire comes out of the laser module that goes to a box with a 12V power connector.
Inside the box I also got a set of green laser glasses and a small supply of wood sheets to use with the laser. There were no instructions provided. Turn it upside down and unscrew the cover.
This video goes through the process if you want to see it before attempting it yourself. Using the supplied cable, attach to the unused fan connector see the yellow box in the image below for where on my CR control board. There are a number of variants on this board — see this link to find your version.
In my case, I have the original CR board in black. This Reddit thread has more info and links. Once the bottom is screwed back on, the rubber feet provide enough clearance. But in this case, it worked fine for my purpose. In my case, it just barely fit onto the left side of the shroud although the wire coming out of the laser module rubs against the gantry a little…I may disassemble it and rotate the cable to come straight out to the side.
I used Inkscape a free and open source version of Illustrator and a free plugin from J Tech Photonics. The one downside to this plugin is that it only does outlines of your object and not fills.
J Tech also sells a few different applications that I may also try out. The J Tech link has very detailed instructions on preparing your image or text for etching but the TL:DR is that you need to have a vector graphic ideally an SVG or create something inside Inkscape like text.
I used these settings after a bunch of experimentation:. Your object will also show the path moves.
The other variable that can affect the amount of burn you get is the distance between the laser and the material aka as the Z height on the printer. Then, with the printer off, set up your material and manually position the X and Y axis to have the laser module at the lower left corner of your material. Now is a good time to put on your laser glasses while everything is off.
An example etching on cedar plank of too slow a laser speed so the detail got a little overcooked left and an example where I got the settings pretty good right :. Keep in mind that some materials can really smell when being etched wood smells great…like camping!
Check out this video for some fun experiments with different speeds and materials including cutting paper and foam as well as some other software options including Fusion for use with the laser module. It has the ability to fill in any vector graphic you want to etch, not just outline like the tools mentioned above. You can import just about any image type and trace right in the app or simply burn a greyscale image:.
I also moved my laser to the front of the fan shroud…much less in the way and the wire is better orientated. Powered by WordPress. Viewport Theme by ThemeZilla. Despite having safety glasses, I try to avoid spending too much time looking directly at the etching process…just to be safe.
I also usually have my phone recording the process so I look at the screen instead of directly at the etching. Like this: Like Loading Find Me Here. Recent Posts Is this thing [still] on?What is up guys, In this instructable I am gonna show you how to conver any 3d printer into a powerful 2.
Did you use this instructable in your classroom? Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson. Furthermore, With higher power output lasers you are able to engrave deeper, quicker and also cut some plywoodand that is the reason why I chose a 2. SO, I firstly detach a fan and extruder and remove the mainholder so I can drill 2 holes for the screws that are gonna secure a laser to the printer.
Secondly, we are gonna need 12v to 5v voltage regulator which is necesarray to control the power output of the laser. So, after soldering that together, I connect laserd diode, fan, ttl port and main power input to the smal motherboard that you receive with the laser. For the main power source I am gonna use this regulated dc power supply but you can use any 12V power adaptor capable of providin at least 2 amps. Now I would suggest you place a piece of paper on the bed and reduce the power to a minimum so we can better see if our point is in focus or not.
You can simply adjust that with a small knob on the laser itself. After you manage to do that, lets hop to the computer and download the needed software for engraving. After installing the inkscape, extract both plugins and copy the content to the written location. Also, dont forget to resize the image to the final dimensions and place it in the left bottom corner. So now, the first plugin we are gonna use is the one that are going to fully engrave the whole image on our material.
Set the speed around and click apply. The g-code will be generated in the txt file so open it and replace txt ending with. As you can see that method is pretty slow but it can engrave some really nice logos and also greyscale images but I will cover that up in the next tutorial. So the second methond is almost the same, you need to set the right engraving speed and how many passes you want which is very practical if you want to cut some plywood.
And yea if you are into electronics you would also be able to create your own circuits and many other things If you have any questions about the build, I would love to answer them and help you with problems that occored during the build process. Thank you for reading this instructable, I also made a video tutorial on youtube, so you are welcome to check it out. Question 5 months ago. Question 10 months ago on Step 5.