Choosing a machine

I have experience using the 60W laser at the local makerspace.
Additionally, I spoke with the owner/developer of LightBurn at the MRRP festival this year.

After watching the training videos on the software, I’m impressed with the capabilities / features of the software. Unfortunately, the makerspace isn’t interested in deviating from RD_Works.

As a result, I’d like to get a laser of my own.
Considering the K40, but I think the working area is a little small for my needs.
I’d like at least one axis to have no less than 16" of travel.
As long as I can cut 1/8" wood, that’s all the laser power I need, speed isn’t super important.

From what I can tell, the 50W machines have a good working size, 300x500 mm (11.8"x19.7)

Any advice you have on the most cost effective route would be appreciated.
I’m very comfortable working with wiring and boards and such, so if picking the right solution means a board upgrade, I’m cool with that.

Why wouldn’t they want to use LightBurn? Did you show them the trial? That’s textbook masochism to want to stick with RDWorks.

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There are a few places to buy these:

Pricing mostly depends on the reputation of the seller and the included stuff.
The Amazon link is from Orion Motor Tech, which is a fairly reputable seller, but it’s more money:

I had the same thought, but what it boils down to is support. Unfortunately, the typical user/member can too easily get themselves and potentially the machine into a situation where they are stuck.
As a result, the training and expected use is pretty basic and they don’t want to deviate from that situation.

Appreciated, I’ll study the details and search for the solution that matches my parameters.

All these machines / controllers will work with LightBurn out of the box?
I found this link through the forum as what will work with the software:

Some of the listings, it’s not entirely clear if the provides controller will work…
Sorry, I’m sure you’ve answered this question a million times…

That’s funny - LightBurn has a feature where it will reset all internal settings to a known starting point on restart, specifically for shared environments where this kind of thing happens regularly. If someone leaves the origin mode changed, or turns off optimizations, etc, the next run will put them back to whatever space wants them to be. It’s not a lockout, but it’s handy.

That sounds very useful.
Unfortunately, it’s not my toy to make changes to …

I received a resounding no from the owner/maintainer of the machine.
Kind of hard to explain, but many folks who are not even computer savvy using the machine.
And maintenance has been a point of contention.

Hence my wanting to get my own…
The size of the 50w is perfect for my needs, just wish it was in the ~$800 range.

A large form factor 40w would be great…

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