Problem running projects, it stops engraving/cutting near the top of the workarea

I have a Lasermatic 10, 10W laser engraver and I’m running Lightburn 1.4.00. Lately, the projects haven’t been completing properly. The laser seems to be turning off when it should be engraving/cutting. It previews correctly in Lightburn. I ran a project twice with pretty much the same results. I slightly modified the second one to see if it made a difference but it did not. I have attached the 2 Lightburn files and 2 images files of what actually happened. The top of the tree is missing and some of the hinge cuts are also missing. I am using 3mm Basswood. I’ve seen similar issues when engraving am image on white tile where part of the image is not engraved. Any idea what could be happening? The laser is connected to a Dell laptop.
AlbumCover2.lbrn2 (275.7 KB)
AlbumCover.lbrn2 (279.9 KB)

This can be due to the laser driver shutting down due to overheating, in which case the laser mechanics continue moving. It may cool sufficiently to engrave part of the remaining sections, then overheat and shut down again.

To diagnose that, lay down some scrap material / paper / cardboard and, using the same pattern, set the laser set to maybe 10% power: enough to be visible, but not enough to generate much waste heat. If the design completes successfully (perhaps without making much of a mark), then the laser head is running too hot at full power.

I’d also suggest looking for a partially broken cable or connector making intermittent connection due to strain toward the top of the machine.

If you burn something smaller only at the top of the machine do you continue to see the issue? If so, then likely something like what I’m describing.

After some experiments with lower power settings, I ran a different project that I was getting the same issue and I did as you suggested. I lowered the power from 90% to 70% and it was able to complete the job of cutting out the shape in the project. I ended up lowering the power to 60% and doing 2 passes to get the shapes completely cut out.
Thanks for the suggestion.

That’s an interesting data point: the laser cooling can’t dissipate 90% of the maximum (rated) power dissipation, but handles 70%.

The room temperature surely figures into those results. If their test laboratory ran full throttle air conditioning and you’re sitting in a pleasant room, then dumping that last 10% of the power into the heatsink would make all the difference.

Running at 60% shold improve the odds of finishing long jobs on summer afternoons!

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