Cosidering an ORTUR LM2

When I bought the 3018 (on a whim) I had planned to use it for woodworking, and it came with a laser, which was nice. Now, 3 weeks into my Lightburn trial I realize that the 3018 is not going work out as a laser engraver, and I need a dedicated machine. I will be buying Lightburn at the end of the trial, so the question I put to you seasoned veterans of this hobby (nay, obsession) is what to replace it with. I would like to stick with Amazon for the fast, free shipping and there are some discounts being offered on one or two of the brands they carry. I’m considering the Ortur LM 2 (LU2-4) with the 5.5W laser and a good sized working area. My question, is it worth considering for me as a beginner hobbyist, it’s in the $400 to $500 range of my budget. I’ve had fun with the limited abilities of the 3018 using Lightburn but I need something better.
The 3018 is very slow when using the laser. If I run the X axis any faster then 500 or 600 I start losing steps (as you may know it uses a lead screw not a belt), so anything of any size takes 4 or 5 hours. I would like to cut out 3D puzzles and animal kits for my grandson to put together. I want to engrave on tile and wood (like the lids on wooden cigar box’s) for gifts to family and friends. I’m a hobbyist who can no longer do the woodworking projects I used to (custom furniture and such) because of a back injury. I know I need a belt driven machine, I know I want to cut out projects from thin plywood, and engrave images & pictures on various materials. I watched a video of a guy assemble an ORTUR LM 2 and then do a lot of really neat things with it on tile, wood, leather and plastic. I’m not going to go into business with it, I just want something that I can enjoy using and not have to spend a good part of the day babysitting it (and possibly getting half way through and it starts losing steps and ruining a project). I was hoping someone who had some experience with these machines could chime in and let me know what they thought about their Ortur.

Sorry for the long post,

1 Like

If you want to cut wood (presumably 3mm birch plywood) I HIGHLY recommend at least 30W (power input) diode and the newer NEJE 40W would be a lot faster cutting. In both cases you will need to add air assist to cleanly cut wood. You will not be able to cut Acrylic (although some have said they can cut black acrylic). If that’s ok then either NEJE or Ortur would be good choices and offer a variety of sizes. I have an NEJE 30W Master 2S Plus and find it very reliable and useful.
If you go the diode laser route, you may want to consider getting the higher power laser in the base system and then maybe a lower power laser module add-on for wood/paper/chipboard engraving. Your existing laser module might work for this role.

I also went the 3018 route trying to use it for routing with two different machines and found both of them disappointing and one of them totally worthless (too much play in the gantry) for anything other than shallow engraving.

You can get free shipping from NEJE (and not wait 3 months) if you buy one shipped from US. They offer this on their website if it’s already in stock in the US.

The NEJE Master 2S Max 30W Engraving Machine was on my short list but I shied away from it after reading the posts in the NEJE section on the forum about zero customer service and lasers going bad. I can have one at my door on Thur from Amazon for about $450 ( they’re knocking $50 off reg price). NEJE claims it’s a 7.5W output laser, but I don’t know if that can be believed. I don’t want to put that kind of money into something and have it die just after the return period and then get completely ignored by NEJE. I was just minutes away from buying the Ortur LM2 Pro when I read your post. I’m just trying to get the most for the least.

About the 3018, I put the all metal Z axis carriage on it along with the bigger motor & power supply. We’ll see how that works out.


I also tried a 3016, but had mechanical problems. Returned it, and bought a cheap large scale laser system which also had mechanical/electrical problems. Finally checked comments about brand named units and went with the Ortur LM4. Very happy with it. Simple assembly. Updaed the GRBL file with the latest and works like a champ. Have been able to do most things I wanted.

How did you engrave the acrylic for the edge lighted sign? I haven’t tried engraving acrylic on my Diode laser since the prevailing comments have said it doesn’t work.

@bionicback321 , how did you make out with your all metal gantry. I tried that but the rails on my Foxalien 3018 were too thin and fit too loosely in the Genmitsu gantry. Total waste of money and time.

I did some research and found that if you take a sheet of metal (I used 1/8" thick), and paint it a dark color (I used dark Gray), lay it down and place the acrylic on top. The diode laser passes through the acrylic (due to lightwave) and engraves into the paint. The heat actually engraves the back side of the acrylic. Wipe it down after engraving and you see the results. An LED strip sets it aglow.
For the box, I used Sketchup (free to use) to document the box cut/build, then glue it all together.

Interesting. I’ll have to try it. I assume you took off the protective layers on the Acrylic?

Yes, remove protective sheets.