Red laser is losing steps I Y axis

Ruined 2 sheets of material today because the red laser is losing steps in the y axis, no raster 15% speed

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Machine is red tagged until this is fixed, there’s something knocking around in the Y axis.

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alrighty, will take a look. no idea yet

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Blew a bearing have spares on hand


Replaced bearings- wow, a LOT of bearings- all the bearings- on the right side Y.

It’s nice and smooth now. However, I didn’t have time to do a super thorough leveling and orthogonality calibration, and that’s stuff I disassembled and there is intentionally play in the screw holes so they can be shifted into alignment. It seems pretty good though.

If you have any difficulties like the focus not being even across the bed or a large square coming out slightly like a parallelogram, let me know. The rails and belt timing may need minor adjustment. I generally need a large piece of stock to measure this, it was dead-nuts before.

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Wow just reading this. Thanks for fixing that @dannym!

As a laser newbie, I have a general question - is it typical for lasers like ours to be high-maintenance tools? Alternately, are we using them particularly hard (hours run, environmental cleanliness, other factors) or perhaps are we dealing with the enhanced needs of geriatric equipment?

Whatever the reason, I appreciate all the work that goes into keeping our machines running! I’m just wondering what perhaps our long-term options might be to reduce the number of hours they demand from our shop volunteers.

Both of our machines are indistrial models, they’re made for tens of thousands of hours of work before major maintenance is required. Generally we do service the lasers regularly, but if I recall correctly, this is the first time that entire set of bearings has been replaced since we got the machine 5 years ago. I think that’s a reasonable life considering the hours these machines get.

It’s been a very low-maintenance industrial machine, we put crazy high hours on our machines and they just keep going. They’re tanks.

Those particular Y bearings had never been replaced. I had to do the bearings on the X axis and had a tube of them on-hand. They used the exact same bearing on every type of shaft in the machine, so it was pretty straightforward. They will probably never have to be redone.

There’s another smaller set on the left, I could see them, those actually look fine but I’ll put them on a to-do list. .

Cool, thanks for the background – I was assuming that having spares on hand meant this was a regular thing. Handy that they were the same parts as an earlier job.

Props to @dannym for burning that midnight oil last night to fix the laser. I left at midnight and he was still working on it. This didn’t appear to be a minor task and I am super impressed that he managed to pull it off yesterday!


Thanks @dannym . I haven’t used the lasers yet, but am looking forward to it. But as a community member, I really appreciate all of your hard work, and all the things you seem to do at the shop.