Add laser to existing mill?

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03 May 2022 12:55 #241912 by Nitram
Laser for existing mill  was created by  Nitram
Hi.
I have a 3 axis mill. I need to engrave data on stainless(416)
barrels. 
What laser power and colour will do this??
Is there an existing product that fits easily onto say a bt40 toolholder to enable this?
 Thanks
Marty. 
 

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03 May 2022 13:34 - 03 May 2022 14:08 #241913 by robertspark
I have an Atomstack M50 (10W laser diode)

Here is a little bit of info on a similar (5W) laser
hobbylasercutters.com/10-extraordinary-materials/

basically there are tricks that you can do to improve the engrave such as using dry moly spray


I would suggest getting a laser head and putting it into the holder of your choice with an adapter.

there are other laser comparisons on the same site to show the effect of different laser heads (like 5W or 10W options about with finer beams or higher power ratings).

hobbylasercutters.com/atomstack-a10-x7-pro/

I would suggest that a laser diode is your only option.

But I'm no expert in this field.

Also at 19mins and 30 seconds there is a bit on the M50 laser (10 watts with stainless steel and some interesting effects)


oh..... I don't think it's technically engraving and it's more marking because the laser doesn't have enough power to heat and cut the material.
Last edit: 03 May 2022 14:08 by robertspark.

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03 May 2022 21:47 #241946 by Nitram
Replied by Nitram on topic Add laser to existing mill?
Some great info here, thanks for posting it up!!!

I wonder if you could expand on your thoughts for "I would suggest that a laser diode is your only option."

Without knowing a great deal on individual laser types as yet, I'm interested to get your thoughts.

Thanks
Marty.

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03 May 2022 22:13 #241951 by tommylight
-CO2 lasers use a long glass tube filled with CO2 gas with electrodes at both ends, to those electrodes a high voltage transformer is connected. Usually this is enclosed on the back of the laser cutter and the mirrors carry the laser light all the way to the moving head. Hence they are never big in size as that makes adjusting the mirrors nearly impossible on the cheap side.
-LED laser diodes are just that, a powerful LED inside a big aluminium case with a small control board at the top. These are small and limited in power, but very easy to use and can be mounted to anything, even 3D printers.
-Fiber Lasers use a very high power laser sources (not sure what exactly so i am skipping this) that go through an optical cable to the cutting head, the head has lots of optics inside and some of them move and are controllable by the PC/controller. This is the best solution for mounting to existing plasma/router/mill as the head is relatively lite and the optical cable is flexible so the power/laser source can be located somewhere out of the machine. They are quite expensive though, so be ready to plop 4 to 8K $ for a 750 to 1000W one, that is only for the source and the head with cable. Still i consider this cheap seeing as it uses less power than conventional ruby/helium-neon/unobtanium ones, and cut metal up to 8 or 10mm thick, not confirmed though, yet!

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03 May 2022 22:34 #241954 by andypugh

I have a 3 axis mill. I need to engrave data on stainless(416)
barrels. 


A high-speed spindle and an engraving tool might be better than a laser.

But, this was recently on Hackaday:

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