Item height and camera focus

I’m very interested in setting up a camera with my laser. I’m looking to use a camera with my xTool D1 machine. I’ve just started using a laser and trying hard to figure out the best way for me to setup the machine. I’ll be using this machine for engraving on items that are on the spoiler plate and also using a rotary. What I’m trying to better understand is that if I focus and align the camera to the spoiler plate, will I need to redo all this work when I use the rotary? I’m trying to figure out if I’ll be building an enclosure or not. I never expected so much smoke (again, brand new guy here) so some kind of exhaust must be considered when using this machine. But if I build an enclosure I’d like to better understand how the camera alignment works because after understanding this it could change how I look to build the box. I might go a completely different direction and just mount two exhaust fans on a support that hangs directly over the laser and hope that those remove the smoke and not build an enclosure. Regardless, understanding how the camera works is important for me to learn before I start building and I thank you for any help.

Camera alignment is directly dependent on distance to object. So not only do you need to account for the height of the spoil board you will need to account for the material height as well. Small height differences won’t dramatically impact the ability to use the camera for alignment but anything more could result in a sizable misalignment.

Needless to say a rotary will be well beyond the likely original height used in alignment. This makes it impractical to use the camera for the rotary as well as “normal” operation.

You could account for this by somehow allowing for a way of dynamically changing material height or possibly camera height in order to maintain the same distance to object. If you move the camera you would need to make sure to only affect Z-height and not X,Y in any away. Some people have height adjustable beds or you could raise the entire laser frame and camera to accommodate for material height differences. Maybe risers under the legs that match the height of your common materials. This would require that the camera be mounted to the frame or some other way of maintaining distance and location to frame.

Or if you don’t need sub millimeter placement accuracy then just use it as-is and deal with the misalignment.

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This is exactly what I needed to know and I thank you.

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