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Messages - ggallant571

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General Discussion / Re: Eleks L7 Schematic
« on: August 09, 2016, 09:20:57 PM »
Attached are the 3rd rev of Eleks Maker l7 schematics along with a stab at a PCB. The PCB is NOT an exact copy. I think it is cheaper to purchase an assembled board than build from scratch but I was interested in what the guts looked like. OshPark wants $33.00US for 3 boards.

General Discussion / Re: Eleks L7 Schematic
« on: August 07, 2016, 09:07:36 PM »
Revised schematics:
  1. Removed unused signals on Nano
  2. Added laser power jumper
  3. Revised power.
  4. Corrected A4988 symbol

I think the text on the PCB for the MOSFET has the wrong pin labels. S should be G.

General Discussion / Re: Eleks L7 Schematic
« on: August 07, 2016, 07:38:10 PM »
Thanks. Easy fix. I think the Vdd is wrong. There should be separate logic and motor power going to the A4988 board.

General Discussion / Eleks L7 Schematic
« on: August 07, 2016, 03:29:17 PM »
Attached are pdf's of my first pass at reverse engineering a Eleks Maker L7 laser controller. I was done using an Ohm meter and examining the grbl code cpu map include file. I would appreciate feedback!! You cannot hurt my feelings by pointing out errors and or omissions.

Trouble Shooting / Re: Laser Stopped
« on: August 06, 2016, 05:01:03 PM »
No. It shuts off at 60. When it was working properly 60 would be hot enough to set plywood on fire at a low feed rate. I think I fried the electronics by turning the "weak" on when I wanted to turn power off. Any idea about how the "weak" circuit works?

I have started a schematic. Looking at the trace it should be quite trivial to reverse engineer the board. I think there are a few models with slightly different connectors and features.

Trouble Shooting / Re: Laser Stopped
« on: August 05, 2016, 05:21:52 PM »
The new controller is labeled"Eleks Maker 2.0". No evidence of heat sinks. Behavior is similar to prior controller except the laser is now off at PWM 60 and the laser power is minimal at that. Broke out the scope.

Trouble Shooting / Re: Laser Stopped
« on: August 05, 2016, 11:25:57 AM »
Thanks for the quick replies and suggestions. Does the controller supply a voltage level or a pulsed 12V signal? Schematic would be very useful.

The mail contained a new 2.0 controller with z-axis option so I have a path to isolate controller from laser.

Trouble Shooting / Laser Stopped
« on: August 05, 2016, 09:44:48 AM »
My laser has stopped working on any power setting greater than 5 (out of 256). Unit is a 5.5W A5 from GearBest. Does anyone have pointers to schematics and/or what the signals leaving the controller should look like? Prior to this behavior the laser did go full force so I expect a hardware fault but it would be great if it was firmware related.

The laser spot button seems to be providing a stronger beam than the PWM function.

General Discussion / Re: Gearbest wants more shipping
« on: August 04, 2016, 02:17:46 PM »
I also purchased from GearBest thru Paypal. They held up my order, after getting paid by Paypal, for 5 days saying I wasn't a verified Paypal user. They needed bank info and / or scanned passport to prove my identity. Turns out the unit was magically already in shipment when I contacted Paypal. Then it sat at a US airport for 10 days waiting for "my" agent to process the item. Some of this may be language problems but they are off my approved vendor list.

Projects / Re: Started Upgrades tonight
« on: August 02, 2016, 04:15:28 PM »
Thanks for posting your grbl controller settings. I had my accel values at 10. Suspect that these parameters are documented in multiple places but my cuts just got remarkably better.

General Discussion / Re: Which upgrades were the most effective?
« on: August 01, 2016, 04:44:48 PM »
Sounds like a Z-Axis add-on is contagious. A friend built a slide mechanism for me. Have yet to add the motor, lead screw, and nut. Waiting on controller that supports the additional axis.

My base laser cutter setup and user skills are insufficient to report any coherent results when I manually adjust the height.

Cutting / Re: Getting started
« on: July 31, 2016, 12:07:27 PM »
I think the focus is set OK because if I do a single pass with low laser power there is a sharp narrow line cut in the work piece. Plus there is a lot of smoke.

I asked about the distance between laser and work piece because it seems to me the further away the better.

Adjusting the focus between passes is iffy on my setup as the laser dot moves in both X  & Y. I have built a slide mechanism (no motor yet) that holds the laser and I can "adjust" the laser height manually. Controller does not have a Z Axis option but have ordered one that does.

Cutting / Getting started
« on: July 31, 2016, 09:45:44 AM »
I am very new to lasers. Purchased a 5.5W from GearBest. Unit arrived and was assembled with few problems. Test cuts are not very good, actually very poor. Quite comforting to find users on this site experiencing similar problems and then reporting success.

My initial purpose in purchasing was to cut 3mm ABS. Have since expanded goal to other plastics and wood.

I wrote a Linux (my primary environment) program that parses SVG files and generates gcode for the laser. It is OK for now. Work flow is openscad export to SVG then import to cutting tool.

I then found and downloaded BenCutLaser. Played with it without connecting to the laser. I have read the document at least 5 times and find the problems detected and solutions implemented quite interesting. Also have read the "what can be cut" forum posts and will order similar materials.


1. What is the "ideal" distance from laser to work peice?
2. 3mm cuts thru ABS seem to melt and fill in the slot once past 1mm in depth.
3. W\Plywood is charring and the ash remains in the cut. Again at the 1mm depth.
4. Am considering modifying the grbl code to
    a. Automatically reducing the laser power during deceleration to avoid deep burns at 90 degree corners.
    b. Adjust the feed rate based on the angle to the next point (currently doing in host software).

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