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Topics - Finiousfingers

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T2 Engraving / New CNC for me
« on: August 04, 2019, 12:03:57 PM »
Ok got a dual Y Axis CNC with a Eleksmaker SE v3.1 board.
The motors are a 42HS34-1304A
When I take the gear off one of the motors and have the other unplugged, I click control laser then an up or down and the motor just does this pathetic vibrate with no real movement.
If I connect the drive gear and belt and plug both in, they both do the same vibrate.
If I unplug the Ys and plug the X into one of the Ys then that motor moves fine.

Also when I have it all plugged in and do the X it is opposite what I press. Left if right and right is left.


General Discussion / Old iPhone 5 and 6 retired uses?
« on: February 01, 2018, 08:52:27 AM »
I have a stack of 16 old iPhones that have good screens but might have bad chargers, batteries and such.
Anyone here have a link to ideas to use these for?
I would think that the screen could be used as an interface for something... sheesh its touch screen after all.
So, does anyone know what I might be able to turn these into?

T2 Engraving / oh great sages of the laser
« on: January 23, 2018, 07:27:55 AM »
So, I did a burn of a 3d puzzle, when I imported the dxf it brought it in at like 3Kx5K instead of 130ish...
When I looked at it on qcad and also printed it as a pdf on a page with 100% scale it was 130ishmm wide.
But in T2 import dxf it was huge. Sure I downsized to 130 and it was fine, but why? what am I missing?
also where is the setting to change what power for what color?
The file I am burning is black lines and red numbers, but it looks like red is 80% and at 200 speed with a 5.5w and 3mm plywood... the letters burn though, I would like to do 10-20% power maybe for the red.
Or is it easier to open in Inkscape and click on each number set and change the color to the lower scaled.


T2 Engraving / sigh, slate help please
« on: December 01, 2017, 05:36:41 PM »
I am trying to burn a pict onto slate. I have done a bunch of others and just need this one to complete the set of 5 for a friend. I have tried many things and keep coming back to not enough contrast in her pict to be of use. I have tried shading, burning, dodging... inverted, greyscale...
But I am missing something and its making me take a break tonight as its just going to ruin my sleep if I keep drinking as I try...

so. 5500 laser
Tried slowing down feed and power from 1800 - 800 speed and power from 130-80 and its all washed out. just a white blur. Maybe a little here and there but still crap ola on a cracker.
Attaching originals and then will up load my trials...some have various differences in same burn as I adjusted speed and power to play.

T2 Engraving / trace to bitmap?
« on: November 27, 2017, 06:44:59 AM »
I tried using Inkscape to do a trace to bitmap, but it did double paths, one on each side of the black line.
Is there a nice way to "grow" an edge so they overlap or something?
so the actual files are on my pc at home...
But here is the file I based it on, and on the outside ring it did 2 paths, one on the outside of the black line and another on the inside.
Then it did it on many of the other files.
I tried doing the trace in T2 but it was to complex for what I was trying to do, or I was doing it wrong.
sure, it did it fine but took 2x as long as it did each side of a black line.

T2 Engraving / Power supply?
« on: November 20, 2017, 05:22:05 PM »
So my Eleksmaker 5500mW lasef power supply died. Grr
Looked on the back and it was only 12v 2.5A. What???
So going to Radio Shack tomorrow and getting a new supply.
I looked online and it says that I should have had a 5A. Would that have made a difference?
Do I need a 5A?
Any advice on what you might be using?

T2 Engraving / Eleksmaker and Banggoods?
« on: October 04, 2017, 09:00:05 AM »
So did Eleksmaker finally sort it out with Banggoods?
I see the main store is missing most items and only has small stuff.
You have to go to Banggoods site and you can see the pretty blue eleksmaker items.
was thinking about getting this but I really only need the frame and motors instead of the lasers.
does anyone have a "kit" somewhere that is without the laser that I could do the light mill work too and maybe have a larger working area?
Should I just start from scratch and move past belts and do the screw rod movement?

wide open to ideas, I would love to do a 3'x3' area and would love to have it light cnc router capable. I dont plan on doing 1/4" titanium plate or anything just some engraves on metal or 3d carves on wood.

LOL sorry, was trying to do a teaser intro.

ok tried flat black paint on copper sheet. burned at 500 and it cut through the paint and looked promising...
Tried at 100 speed and it was amazing
or so I thought...
Picked it up and OW that sub mitz was hotter then a piece of copper heated with a 5.5w laser for 5 minutes...
Etch looks good, then took some thinner and wiped off the paint.
nothing. not even a discolored look to it... sigh.

oh well...
Didnt fail, just learned one more way to not do something.
But if you want to use a laser to solder a copper pipe, you might have a long day ahead of you.

T2 Engraving / dxf files
« on: August 11, 2017, 06:09:23 AM »
Anyone have a good site that has some dxf files to play with? Sure I can google and have, but if someone has a good site, pay or free for dxf files, that would be cool.

I am also looking for tips on engraving plastics. I seen the one post about the guy painting the back black and burning. Was wondering if anyone had other tips for it.

Like when I do clear plastic I paint or sharpie the back with the plastic film. then place the black side down on wood base and burn. the results are ok but not great yet.
I am using the 5.5 at 100 speed and 255 power. I get about 1/64" cut maybe... just enough to catch a finger nail in.

T2 Engraving / upgrade again
« on: July 15, 2017, 06:24:33 PM »
Looking to get an upgraded laser and want to do the 5500mW next.
BUT I don't want to run into a counterfeit or sub par laser.
So has anyone bought the Eleksmaker one?

T2 Engraving / dxf and questions
« on: July 12, 2017, 06:53:19 AM »
Oh great gurus of things hot and burning and masters of the 0s and 1s.

I found a Fokker plane plan to cut out with a laser.
it has detail lines as well.
If I cut as presented I would have parts with holes and detail lines burned through too.
Is there a way to cut the outline of things and holes but not burn the details with the same amount of passes as it takes to cut the outline?
I mean I can go in and delete all the detail stuff, then save 2 versions, one with cuts and one with details, but I am nervous it wont line up right.

I have had images and dxf load in various areas and not all completely on the visible workspace in T2 and I couldnt move it around or zoom out to see it all.

T2 Engraving / Bathymetric 3D Map
« on: July 06, 2017, 08:49:49 AM »
I am have seen the 3d lake maps that people are selling and thought that it would be a cool gift for my Dad, when I visit later this month.
Then when I looked, they dont have his location...
Then I thought, hey I have a laser CNC, lets fire this bad boy up and do something fun!

Here is what I am thinking I need to do, but am open to suggestions.
get some 1/8" balsa wood from Joann Fabrics to cut with laser.
Burn initial image with words and roads...
Load new file of contour lines 1, 3, 5... and cut, then burn image again and cut 2, 4, 6 and finally 3rd of 3,5,7...
This would give me a thicker layer of wood to use to stack on.
Then glue together, stain with water-based stains and frame and enjoy...

Thoughts on how to make this easier or how to get Inkscape to trace my contours easier then manually drawing the line?
I am open to suggestions and will post my progress as it goes.

T2 Engraving / Used gear
« on: April 30, 2017, 09:28:17 AM »
Do we have any interest in used or un needed gear?
I bought a 500mw laser for a project but never used it, ok I powered it on for 10 seconds with a power supply to play, but other then that not used.
I also have a 2nd 500mw that I doubt I would use.
Wasnt sure if people had extra gear that they would trade or sell or loan (with or without a deposit)

Surely some of you have some stuff that would be good for people starting or maybe trying before they do an upgrade.
I just started and I have 2 low power lasers and some dvd tray motors that can be used for 50mm or so moves, like maybe a z axis?

T2 Engraving / Laser power
« on: April 27, 2017, 05:39:23 AM »
I almost hijacked someone elses thread asking this but I think I worded it wrong.

I am looking at and the different lasers on the page.
I currently have the 500mw and have issues with burning on hard dark woods like Cherry or Apple.
I slowed it down to 1-300 depending on how dark it is but that will take forever to do anything.

I would like to go with a hotter laser but dont know what is to hot. I mean sure max power and just dial it back as needed but realistically speaking.

1600 is $80
2300 is $80
2500 is $60
3500 is $100
5500 is $240
7000 is $250

I would think the 2500 for 60 bucks would be nice, but would love the 7000 because its the hottest.
Right now I am playing with burning images in woods, but would like to engrave metals some time.
Any advice on what to start with?
Their sale ends this weekend, so I would like to order something, or if someone here has one they want to sell I am game for that too.
or maybe someone has a loaner that I can buy and return for a fee.

just tossing stuff out there.
Do we have a used section that I am missing?
I would think that we should have some used parts or extras that we could share to help others out with something.

T2 Engraving / New to "CNCs with Frick'n lasers on the head"
« on: April 18, 2017, 10:56:10 AM »
Ok im actually new to CNCs and to add a laser is just one more level of ooooooo.

I bought the SUNWIN 40x50 500mw laser cnc. I had to hunt to find instruction videos, but all in all it went together well enough.
The board didnt work or at least didnt come with pinouts so I dont know what to tell the controller.
So I remembered I had an Eleckmaker board for a DVD cnc I was trying to make. Popped that in and boom in business.
Downloaded the T2laser and liked it enough that I bought that license.
Initially my burns were taking wayyyy to long imo. like a 1.5" coin was taking 90 minutes to burn a simple image...
But now I have it sped up some and can do a 3" in an hour.

I have some questions and comments that I would like to get some input on.
1. Does a hotter laser burn faster/better?
    So if I get a 5mw laser can I expect something that takes an hour now to take 15 minutes or less?
2. is there a ratio of speed/power on burns that works or is it all trial and error.
3. how can I calibrate my steps per mm? If I do a 1.5" coin I have to use 50mm instead of 40.
4. How can I do a coaster that has a logo in the middle and words circling the outside?
    I tried doing sketch and got that to work right, then I have to do the image... is there a way to do it all in one burn?
5. is there a way to add multiple images to the page? So if I wanted to burn something 3x3 images.

Few things I have learned
1. Apple wood is to hard to burn on with 500mw.
2. grain sometimes burns way darker then you want
3. read more of the manual before you get grumpy.
4. using the colored glasses makes it hard to see your burn.
   4a. not using your colored glasses makes it hard to see
     4b. got a little flash burn I think... gotta start using my glasses before they call my the old blind guy at the corner.

Going to pick up some Cherry or other woods beside the basswood I have been playing with. Asking the local cabinet guy if he has some small drops he doesnt want.
attaching some pictures that I can use comments on for improvements.
1 is my wife and I side by side and that took 4 hours and is 3.5" wide
1 is my wife and I looking up and that took 30 minutes and is 3.5" wide
1 is an otter that is 2" wide and took about an hour...
1 is of some coins and a starting portrait of my kid but it was to pixely. the coins took 20 minutes or so but were streaky or not dark enough...

I have updated the firmware from the laser controller and seem to be having better results but still not quite right.
I am using this board EleksMaker® ManaSE 2 Axis Stepper Motor Driver Controller Board For DIY Laser Engraver from Banggoods.
I have tried finding some vector art to burn but have had mixed reviews, is there a decent site with graphics that I can use for some fun graphics?
Is there any tips on converting pictures into burnable pieces that dont take forever to do?
How do I calibrate my steps and upload that?
any advice on adding a zaxis and small router to do engraves in wood or metal?

Thanks again for the help and look forward to sharing some better burns,

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