Did I Waste $2400 on a 60W Laser Cutter from China?
I did it. I took the leap and bought a 60w Orion Motor Tech Black and Yellow laser engraver/cutter on amazon!
Overall, I'm very impressed with this laser. The sweet spot for laser cutting and laser engraving is 60-80 watts. Higher watts and the engraving will not be as good because the laser is just too powerful. We're able to cut up to 1/2 material depending on the density. 1/4 material is easy to cut in one pass. We primarily use 1/4 birch plywood for our uses. Since this laser is a C02 laser, it will not cut ANY metal. You'd need a fiber laser for that, however it will mark on metal using thermal marking spray. It will cut cork, soft and hard wood, acrylic, cardboard, and paper. It will mark on glass, slate, stone, granite, and marble. Be careful you do not cut certain types of plastics as the release toxic gases and will kill you if inhaled.
Included with the laser:
Bottom Hatch - “The Guts”:
Power Plate (Back Bottom Left Corner):
Air/Water Hookups (Back Bottom Right Corner):
Front and Back Bottom Hatches:
Top Back Hatch:
Pass Through Ports:
What’s in the mysterious zipper package?
Some things that didn’t come with the laser:
Summary: This thing is awesome! So far, I’ve used it in making signs, home décor, 3D wooden models and so much more. I can cut through up to about 1/2” of wood depending on density and have started experimenting with etching on metal as well (you will need a spray to do so like THIS called Ceramark or Thermark ). Overall, this laser is a great buy, a great tool and all around fun to play with.
Purchase The Orion Motor Tech 60w Laser Cutter Engraver From Amazon:
Many of you know that I've had the J Tech 4.2w Laser add on for my Shapeoko XXL CNC machine for a while now. While it works great its just to under powered and slow to be a real workhorse. That's no fault to J Tech. It's fairly powerful for a diode laser, but diodes are not meant to be production mode devices.
After a lot of deliberation and internet research, I decided to purchase a Chinese Laser. I decided on the Orion Motor Tech 60 watt chinese laser yellow and black (upgraded version from the black and red version) color. An american made laser was just not in the budget so I took the gamble on a Chinese laser.
I know and have zero experience with a CO2 laser so I thought I'd do some blog posts to help others in my similar situation.
In this video I walk you through configuring a GRBL based hobby CNC (specificly a Shapeoko 3 XXL) for use with a J Tech Laser and Lightburn software.
The CNC and Jtech aren't your typical laser configuration like a standalone unit would be, so there's some extra steps to configuring Lightburn with the Jtech and the Shapeoko. These steps should work with most other hobby grade CNC units like the inventables X-Carve.
I'm using a Jtech 4.2w Laser.