Need help before buy co2 laser

Hello to all here! I’m new member and today think to buy my first laser co2 cutter.

I make musical instruments, I live in Greece and because I make their decorations by hand, I decided to buy a laser for cutting from aliexpress. The amount I can allocate is at $ 1500,dollars as well as I have found some machines. I have come up with an 80 watt machine. The materials I will cut are celluloid paste of 1mm, acrylic 2mm and plexiglass colored. I did not have a similar machine in the past, so I said to write here. Note that I do not want the machine for production, as I want to make decorations for my own instruments and work at most 1 hour a month.The glass tube co2 from what I have seen lasts for 4000 something sellers write 7000 hours. What I want to ask is this. This machine is suitable for the use I want; The power is great; Could I get it with less power?Is there anything else I need to look out for or take into for this machine? I see three editions. Red, blue and yellow/black. Thank you all in advance for your help.

Sincerely, Bill

I can cut all of those with my 50 ‘watt China Blue’, like butter.

$1500 seems like a low priced for an 80 watt laser, be careful. I paid $2000 for mine from OMTech.

With 80 watts it should cut 12mm acrylic, I do pretty well with 6mm on my 50, which measures 44 watts.

I think for that fine work a much lower power laser would work fine.

Probably get away with a K40 type in the $500 range, but it has no safety switches and the supplied controller will not work with Lightburn.

A ‘China Blue’, with a Ruida type controller like mine would give you everything you need plus the use of Lightburn.

With those types of materials, you don’t want too big of a machine. Most co2 lasers will only lase down to about 10%. Higher power laser, less control at the ‘bottom’ end.

If you wish to engrave you usually need lower power.

If it gets warm in Greece, you will need to cool the laser…

Good luck


Thank you very much my friend for the answer. Because I want a useful surface of 30x40 cm I chose to go for 80 watts, and from what I have been told it was better to choose at 100 watts. I find this power excessive, however …At first I was between 50 and 60 watts but because I have no experience in choosing a laser, I am hesitant if it will cut my designs properly and well. From what I saw in the table with the cutting thicknesses the seller states that at 80 watts he cuts 7.5 mm plexiglass and 13 mm acrylic. Your opinion is to choose a lower power than that of 80 watts?The materials I want to cut do not exceed 3 mm in thickness. Also something that is important is that a spare co2 glass tube in these watts has the price of almost half the machine, while for 60 and 50 watts it is much lower … I am stuck with the issue of choice …

If all you wish to do is cut, a 50 watt or less co2 will easily cut 3mm.

Your seller is blowing hot air, plexiglass is the ‘registered’ name of acrylic, they are the same. There is extruded and cast types.

He’s ‘pushing’ his machine, way too much power and cost.

My machine is a 5030, less power but much more than what you need. Basically like this

If you can get an 80 watt for $1500 you should be able to get this for much less.

Do you want to engrave any of these items? Or do you wish to only cut.?


I agree with Jack that $1500 (assuming US dollars) is too low. You need to have a decent chiller for a machine that big which is a third of your budget.
If your only going to use it a maximum of 1 hour per month are there other options? Find someone who can make you parts? Do they have what we call ‘maker space’ organizations where you can get trained on and use their equipment?

I just want it for cutting. So 50 watts will cover me, I do not need to go to something more; I just had 80 watts in my mind because usually sellers from China “inflate” them in terms of power. So I thought that 80 watts would not be as much as it says but much lower. Is this true or not? Unfortunately my finances do not have a larger amount to get a better brand like the one in the link …

There are some who have a laser and do this job but because they are never consistent in delivery time and every time a whole process has to be done to make a plan for me, I prefer to be autonomous and make it myself when I can. The purchase amount of the machine is not large, so it will be easily depreciated. On the island I am on, there is no one to do it and they have to send it to me from somewhere else, so I decided to do it myself …

Maybe galvo laser engravers are better for engraving and cutting. It has a higher speed, but the cost will be higher as well.

I had a 50 watt unit where I used a 12v water pump, a small radiator in a cooler of ice water for cooling. So that would help on the cost.
I would imagine that life on an island would not make it easy to find services like this but have many other advantages.

Thank you my friend for the comment. So you also say that a 50-60 watt machine is better? I have a small refrigerator in my workshop. Does the water that the laser wants have to have a certain temperature? I mean it’s cold I imagine to do proper circulation. How much thickness of acrylic does your 50 watt laser machine cut and how easily? With one pass is possible?

I’m trying to get you to understand that the 50 watt, like I showed you should be a lower cost. If you can find an 80 watt for $1500 then I think you should be able to find a 50 watt much cheaper. All of these, including the one you are looking to buy are basic ‘Chinese’ Government designs.

Like everything else, the bigger it is the more it costs, 80 watt will cost more than a 50 watt

Here is what he’s trying to sell you for $1500… Does it include shipping, customs? Will they drop it 50 miles or more from where you need it?

It is 3 times your stated cost, normally… How is it possible for him to sell it at such a low cost.?

If you are planning to keep a ‘spare tube’ around, don’t. If yours runs for 4 years and fails, the probability is that the one you stored will already be degraded. If you are speaking about having to replace it, yes, higher power tubes cost more money…

The machine you called too expensive is about the lowest cost one you can get with the size of bed (it’s bigger) that you stated you needed. You can find these for ‘your price’ range, but be careful.

Where you live, you will need a chiller. The preferred temperature is about 68 F, 20 C is what a lot of us run. Mine is set for 22 C.

I think you are underestimating these machines costs. So ensure you know what you are getting and how you are getting it.

Good luck


The water circulating inside a laser tube should be held around 19C. But that’s using a chiller where you can set to temperature. No idea what it was with ice but it goes thru quite a bit of ice when you are doing long cuts.
I think the 50 watt unit was a nice size and was able to cut a range of materials. I didn’t do a lot of acrylic cutting but depending on the speed you can cut pretty deep. Acrylic tends to melt back on itself which I think is worse with thicker stock and at slower speeds.
Keep in mind that over the past dozen years tubes have gotten larger. I think manufactures figured out that a larger tube doesn’t cost much more to build however they can charge more. From the users end they cause the machine to be bigger, optics bigger, chiller is bigger and power supply are bigger. So they are an unnecessary expense unless you really need that power.

Yes I have begun to understand it. The amount of money for an 80 watt machine is not commensurate with how much it really should make, so it would be pointless to pay for an 80 watt machine and get something that actually will not be, while giving how little money to get one with how little power to be “honest” right? Also the seller cuts an amount from the total so that as he says I pay the taxes and the customs upon the arrival of the product … The shipment is free

For glass tube I have not thought to get a spare as it can as time goes by as you rightly said it will be damaged due to uselessness

I will look for this when it comes as I have to train and deal with it. Indeed the sizes are large and may not correspond to reality in relation to other branded similar machines. I think the Chinese have a tendency to “inflate” them to impress !!

Some of the Chinese lasers advertisements have the output greater than the input…

You have never mentioned if you wish only to cut. For what you want to cut a $500 K40 would do that, but it has a smaller work area and a few other things that make is a little more difficult to deal with.

If you only want them to cut, I think you are missing a very large ‘artistic’ area that most of us enjoy.

As I thought. He probably doesn’t even have the machine. Your money will go to another distributor that will ship it to you or somewhere in your country. He will never have to know anything about the laser, except how to sell it.

Don’t know about Greece, but… One of the people in the US bought one like you (100 watt), free shipping, had to pay the taxes… He lived in the middle of the US. The shipping was free, They meant the USA and in reality San Fransisco, which is 1500 miles away from his city. He had to hire a customs attorney $400, to deal with the paperwork in San Fransisco to be able to get it to another shipper… That shipping cost him another $900. Would have cost more if his friend didn’t have a warehouse so they could drop it off, requiring a forklift and picked it up with a friends moving truck…

Keep in mind that laser will weigh in at around 330 lbs or 150 kilos. Can’t just slide them off the truck.

That’s why the machines I posted are more expensive.

Good luck


Yes, for sure, the K40 would do the same for me, but the desktop is small, so I will definitely go for a larger surface. He deducts an amount of about $ 500 from the total price to offset it with taxes and customs when it reaches me. But there are also sellers in Europe, but it costs a little more. Maybe it would be better to get it from such a seller to avoid taxes etc?

Most of us spending this kind of money ‘pick’ someone they have faith in, hoping that they will actually help them is they need it. That’s a big problem.

At some point you put your money down and takes your chances, like everyone else…

So your $1500 is really $2000 by the time you pay all the stuff.

What if it costs you $1000, not $500?

What if it’s ‘vaporware’, just never shows up?

You need to take these possibilities into consideration when you buy from out of your country. It’s difficult to do much if they are just out to ‘take’ you…

Unless you have some reason, I’d steer clear of this guy…

Good luck


I understand that such long distance shopping carries a risk, but it has never encountered a problem so far. Surely $ 800 will become $ 1200 with all the stages until it reaches me but buying from my country that machine paying $ 1000-1200 more because it has already introduced it I consider it a joke. Do you have in mind how the machine reaches the recipient? Can you come by postal office or by a courier company?

It would be a freight company. I don’t know of any postal types that deal with 300lb mail…


I think you answer is correct. It’s too big for the postal service