I made another item for the Welsh Masters this year, this is their logo cut from 2mm mdf, there was another layer which went on top and brought out the details of the face but I've misplaced the photo.
Many people came through the Nottinghack tent looking to borrow tools or materials but these guys really stuck with it and decided to make their whole thing with us. When they asked if I had something pulley like I suggested we laser cut the whole deal. I wish I had a video of the final item but hopefully someone can link me over to it.
They were using an app on an I phone that could calculate the distance to a laser dot. They built this turret which would turn the laser dot and the iphone together and shine about waist height. The Iphone fed data back to a laptop which played a note based upon the distance. It worked really well and was very cool when people gathered around it to see what they were doing creating a tune (or at least a not that irritating noise)
I've read a lot about the two different methods over the years and I've always had my own opinions about the subject but now I actually have two different lasers with two different red dot methods I feel like I can publically add something to the discussion based on my own experience.
The red dot on a laser cutter is a single point of light that shines down onto the work piece to show you were the laser cutter is going to cut. It makes it a lot easier to line up scraps of material with where the laser intends to perform a cut. Because the laser head is cone shaped you can technically predict where the laser will be and some of the really cheap K40 lasers do away with the red dot entirely, but I think it's always worth paying a little bit more money to have it included.
There are two distinct methods for putting a red dot on the work piece, the first involves fixing a small laser diode to the cutting head to shine directly down onto the material. Most of the affordable las…
Here is the video of my two laser cutters cutting the same tile side by side. It prompted a few people to ask 'how come the 30W tube is much faster than the 100W tube?'
I picked the new laser cutter based upon speed. It had a few specification stats that suggested it was fast and the photos showed a fairly lightweight head etc. Now that I have the laser in my possession I can see all the design decisions that make it fast. In the case of these Carcassonne tiles I only need the full power of the laser when I'm cutting the tiles out.
The low power engraving lines are done with minimal power, only 8% of the 30W tube. The metal RF tube gives me much more control over the low end power, the head can fly around at 100mm/s, twice the speed of the larger machine. The engraving can be done at 1000mm/s, again nearly twice the speed and empirical evidence suggests that it is actually moving at that speed.
The 30W laser can easily handle the 3mm poplar ply wood at a sensible 35mm/s, t…