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60 Watt Epilog

Last modified 01/25/2015

Overview
The laser cutter is a machine that takes 2D vector files or picture files and uses a high power laser to cut through, or etch into, a wide variety of materials based on a user's design.  It's used to cut materials into precise shapes or detailed designs and it's useful for quickly prototyping ideas or applying a finishing touch to a project.
  • The laser can cut materials into shapes that would be difficult to cut by hand or with the power tools.
  • It can etch images into materials.
  • This makes it a great tool for quickly prototyping designs and smaller scale mechanisms.
  • Some materials cannot be cut on the laser due to their toxicity when burned.  Look at the list of useable materials before designing for the laser cutter.
  • Always consult the 60 Watt laser's approved materials and settings list when using this laser cutter.
  • DO NOT WALK AWAY FROM THE LASER WHEN IT IS ON.  IT IS A FIRE HAZARD.
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Features

  • The laser must be ventilated when in use.  Always Turn on the Filter and the Air pump before starting a cut.
  • The 60 Watt Laser has a maximum bed size of 24 inches x 12 inches.
  • It can vector cut through materials as thick as 3/8 of an inch.  
  • It can can raster etch materials up to 8 inches thick.
    AVOID FIRE & HEALTH HAZARDS:
  • Do not attempt to vector cut thicker materials, it is a fire hazard
  • Never cut unapproved materials on the laser.
  • Never walk away from the laser when it is cutting or etching.

Interfaces
  • To successfully run a job on the Laser you must:
    • Design a file and save it as an Adobe Illustrator .ai file.  The laser will accept other file types (e.g. .dxf, .dwg, .eps, .svg, .pdf ) but they may need to be reworked after being transferred to the laser's computer.
    • Turn on the Filter (located under the spray booth in the back of the power tools room)

    • Turn on the Air Pump.
    • Turn on the Laser
    • Open your file in Adobe Illustrator.
    • Make sure your design is at the correct scale and your lines are the correct colors and stroke widths.
    • When you are ready to cut go to "File -> Print -> Settings -> Preferences." 
    • Make sure the autofocus box is CHECKED and enter the correct settings for your material.
    • Hit Print to send the job to the laser
    • Carefully place your material inside the laser.  If it is too thick to fit in between the bed and the laser use the focus button to bring the laser in to "Focus Mode" then use the down arrow to lower the bed down further:

    •  if your material is too long or wide to fit in the machine you must first cut it down to at least 24 inches x 12 inches.
    • Put on the safety glasses

    • Hit the "Go" Button

    • The "Stop" Button will pause your job.

    • The "Reset" Button will bring your job back to its beginning.

    • Once you are finished cutting leave the material in the laser for a minute to allow the fumes to fully ventilate.
    • Remove your material, close the laser.  If no one is waiting to use the laser turn off the air pump and the laser as well.

Materials

All approved materials and there setting for the 60 Watt machine can be found on this materials list.

Resources


ITP's laser cutter Illustrator template.

Tutorial on setting up your file at ITP.

Here is a guide to cutting various plastics, and the results which happen with each type of plastic.
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David Rios,
Feb 2, 2015, 5:58 PM
ċ
David Rios,
Jan 30, 2015, 1:49 PM
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