I want to add a 20W (or higher) laser to my LongMill - which one?

I just ordered my MK2 and am planning to put a laser on it. I’ve had a 10W laser in the past and would like something more powerful for better cutting. I’m curious who among you may have put a 20W laser on your LongMill. What brand and model did you get? How much rewiring or modification did you have to do? What other issues/regrets did you have?

Thanks!

Have you heard back from anyone yet? I’m also interested in getting a laser, but will most likely get the Sienci Labs model, as I’m new to lasing and want to go with one they support directly.

Thoughts on this?

Marty from Kingston, ON Canada

I was about to post a similar question when this thread popped up on the side. I’m concerned having a 15 or 20-watt laser on the longmill might be a waste of a laser. Many of the speeds I’m seeing seem to be much higher than the longmill cap.

Like the original poster, I too am wondering if anyone went this route and if they would still do the same or differently now that they’ve had some time with one.

Open to anyone who uses a laser…

I’m wondering the same thing. I was trying to cut some ornaments for a friend and couldn’t get through 3mm MDF with the 7W Sienci laser.
Looking on line I came across the Laser Tree units which advertise 20, 30, 40 and even 80w optical outputs. I’m interested in either the 30 or 40 and it appears that they’ll work but I’d hate to spend $800 and find out I’m wrong!
I thought I’d read post about folks adding 3rd party lasers but can’t seem to find them now.
Has anyone successfully added a more powerful laser to their Longmill MK 2?

Sorry for the long silence, everyone. I ended up buying the Neje E80 20W LED laser module. It came with a circuit board that has a few different options for wiring so as to be adaptable to multiple machines. I’ve been using it successfully for a few months now with great results. I’ve mounted it on the front of the router mount and use Lightburn to control the unit. A definite success for me after a few tweaks of the firmware to get the settings just right. It is cutting through 3mm plywood in one pass at 400mm/min and definitely works through thicker stuff as well.

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Hi Gavin, I’ve been looking for a more powerful laser as the Sienci 7w quite literally isnt cutting it. The NEJE 24w seems like a good fit. Did you go with the air assist they offer as well?
How extensive was the tweaks you had to do to the firmware to get it up and running?

Minidb, I ended up getting a standalone aquatic pump off of Amazon, which has worked fine. I have plugged it into the IOT unit that Sienci recommmends (Amazon.com) which plugs into the Longboard. That allows it to switch on and off as regulated by the air assist setting on the layer settings in Lightburn.

As far as the firmware adjustments, the main one that was wrong initially and changed the power was the $30 setting. Putting it to 1000 did the trick. Here are the settings that worked for me:

$$

$0=10

$1=100

$2=1

$3=1

$4=1

$5=0

$6=0

$10=0

$11=0.010

$12=0.002

$13=0

$20=0

$21=0

$22=1

$23=3

$24=25.000

$25=3000.000

$26=250

$27=1.000

$30=1000

$31=0

$32=1

$100=200.000

$101=200.000

$102=200.000

$110=4000.000

$111=4000.000

$112=3000.000

$120=750.000

$121=750.000

$122=500.000

$130=816.000

$131=866.000

$132=122.000

Hope that helps!

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Thanks Gavin, appreciate your input. I’m pretty sure I’m going to order the NEJE E80 and have narrowed it down to that or the LaserTree 30w. I was working with 1/4" aspen plywood today and it REALLY would have been easier to cut it with a laser as opposed to the router!

Gavin, I ended up going with a LaserTree K30 and am just about to install it. When you installed your NEJE laser, did you continue to go through the Sienci laser driver module or directly to the longboard?

Minidb, I used the pigtails that came with the E80 laser that connected from the two Spindle outputs into the driver board that also came with the Neje laser. That driver board also receives the separate external input power for the laser itself. I don’t have any of the Sienci laser parts at all, just the Longboard that came with the MK2.

@Minidb did you get the Laser Tree to work? If it works, I might get one.

Is this the one you got? https://a.co/d/7x3NkEB

Morning Jim, I did get the Laser up and running without much trouble. It was pretty much plug and play.
I went with the K30, a 30w optical output and the 20w you’re looking at is probably the better choice.
The K30 is a beast at cutting but for engraving it’s too powerful in my mind. I find im working beloww 10% most of the time when working with wood and at 2000mm/min. I tried speeding up to 4000 by bumping up $100 (I think) to allow faster speeds but it started skipping and the Longmill really shakes.
The 20w will give you a wider working range.
Cutting is great, 6mm ply at 300mm/min and 80% in a single pass.
Feel free to ask with any more questions
Doug B

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Thanks Minidb for the post, I went with the laser tree K 20 based on what your experience and glad
I made that choice, K 30 would have been to much for my needs and the speeds I can get out of my longmill…

I got a K20 and wired it up last night. Glad I got it, it’s a beast! The edges of an engraving on anodized aluminum aren’t as sharp as they were with my laserbeam, though. I think I need to tweak the Z offset a touch. Did you run into this?

This was 1000mm/min.

I haven done much experimenting yet, I’ve been doing a family tree for my parents and the learning curve on Lightburn has been steep!
Ive done a couple of small size fonts that were really sharp. Ive been using the built in focus guage. If your using LB, maybe try the focus test to see if it makes any difference.
Are you using any air assist?

Hello! While I understand this is a thread which is fairly old, I would like to ask a question instead of making a new thread. For those who added a laser from Laser Tree, any regrets? Been happy with the results? It appears that their upgrade is reasonably priced and could work well for what I am attempting to do.

I have a customer who wants walnut “dog tags” for a group that is starting up where I live. They won’t ever be on a dog collar, but sized for dogs. I carved it last night out of a scrap piece of hickory using a very small v bit, and while it did turn out decent, it wasn’t stellar. It was a 2 tool process and took 12 minutes a piece.

I appreciate folks input and thought a testimonial from those who have purchased a Laser Tree product would be good. Thanks!

Jake

The only regret I have is I could have got away with a 20w rather than a 30w. The limitation is the longmill itself. It’s limited to 4000mm per min, i tried to bump it up to 6000mm/min but theres a “whole lotta shakin going on!”
For small text on mdf the k30 is clean and sharp but I’m engraving at 15% or lower at 2500 mm/min
Cutting is great, 6mm aspen plywood 300 mm/min at 85% in a single pass.

I can’t try on walnut or hickory for you as I’ll be away from my cnc for a bit but all in all it was a great upgrade!

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Appreciate the advice. I wonder if my SLB will impact speeds. I believe in the information I read it will as the drivers for the stepper motors are much better. Did you need a special mount or did you use the dovetail mount on the front of the router?

Id be interested in how the SLB works with the laser. My impression was that laser/router head unit wasn’t keeping up due to inertia and loosing its place . If the stepper motors themselves are smoother, maybe you can speed things up without any issues. I found anything faster than 3000mm/min was just to quick.
Interesting…
As for the mount, i just duplicated the Sienci laser mounting plate and mounted the K30 to that.

Its a lot bigger then the Sienci 7w laser and I’ve considered figuring out a quick removal for the router to reduce the strain on the gantry. Anothr project for another day…

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Little late to the party but I don’t think the LongMill will ever be able to reach the speeds of a dedicated laser machine because the parts have to be so much stronger/heavier for when your using the router.

I’d like to be wrong about this but it’s what I think. The LongMill goes plenty fast enough for my 3.5Watt optical but I can’t cut a marshmallow in one pass never mind 6mm aspen. :laughing:

Are you able to make a ‘sleeve’ type mount that can fit the laser into the router mount?

My laser is square in cross section, 33mm if I remember correctly, so it fits in the notches and the whole thing replaces the router when needed. I cut the cord on my router 6-8" back and put in electrical connectors for easy removal. If you use connectors that only do one wire at a time put one on backwards from the other so you always connect them right. As a bonus, if you scavenge a cord off from something broken, you can make a cord to use the trim router for other work.

Edit: @Minidb I thought of a way to replicate my mount in wood with the LongMill but then I looked up your laser and it’s 66x66mm in cross section on their website so I guess it’s way too big to mount the way I did mine. :frowning_face:

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