Weird Power Issue ? 5.5W Genmitsu CNC 3018-MX3, 3018-PROVer

Ok, here what’s going on. I am completely new and trying to get to grips with the machine, so any help is grateful. I am running a Sainsmart 5.5W Genmitsu CNC 3018-MX3, 3018-PROVer (Blue Version) on Woodpecker 3.4 CNC board on a CNC 3018 Pro.

In the device settings the S-Max is set to 1000 but if I set the $30=1000 even at 20% the test fire beam is not visible.

But If I set $30=255 then a beam is visible at 9%.

However if I set S-Max to 255 to match $30 then I can not see the test beam again not even at 20%.

Yet if $30=255 and increase S-Max to 2000 the beam appears to be stronger.

I have no idea on what this is doing and doesn’t make sense to me.

@LightBurn any suggestions ?

I believe the S max setting needs to match the figure at $30… Put the $30 back to its original number and then put that number in the s max value also.

That should be it.

@beamer3.6 Sadly I tried that but if I match the S-Max then even at 20% test burn no beam is visible.

Have you seen the forum thread for setting up 3018.

Try those settings and see what happens.

They need to match. What option do you have set for doing this test?

@Rick Hi Rick, I have set the test fire power up to 20% and still unable to see the beam.

Here is a good post worth review if you haven’t already:

After walking through those setup processes, let us know the results and we can go from there.

Silly question but is your laser on.

I have one of these setups too and turning the 3018 on does not turn the laser on… You have to turn the laser itself on with the little button on the top of the laser… Mine has a very bright blue led which comes on when I press the laser power button…

Also, is your laser wired correctly.

Mine had the GND and PWM wires the wrong way round in the 3 pin cable.

Make sure they match as the order of the wires is different at the machine end than the laser end.

@Rick Yeah already gone through that sadly no joy,

@beamer3.6 LOL yes, its own in the sense that I get a beam by setting it up incorrectly (as first mentioned), but other than that no real joy at the moment. ref wiring the laser wiring corresponds to the board i.e. PWM to PWM GND to GND 12V to 12V

I would try the laser with a different software… That will then ci firm if it’s the laser or the software.

Does it work with lasergbrl (free software often sent with the Chinese lasers)?

If it does then it’s a settings issue in Lightburn.

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Not tried over software as Light burn looked good and was available on Mac. But might be worth a try if only to rule out software.

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Yep, worth a shot as it rules out the laser bei g the issue.

Lightburn is great but if you can remove a variable from the possible list of issues then that is a massive step.

If we know the laser works we can then sort Lightburn

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@beamer3.6 @Rick

So tried again this time using CNCjs to control the laser test beam and I tried altering the pre-scaled PWM mode (I think that’s what I did) as below. At least it proves its not Lightburn. :laughing:

Also I updated to GRBL 1.1h while I was at it to see if that would solve anything.

Machine POS
Z POS -30

Only just visible at 23%
#define SPINDLE_TCCRB_INIT_MASK (1<<CS22) // 1/64 prescaler -> 0.98kHz (J-tech laser)

Only just visible at 34%
#define SPINDLE_TCCRB_INIT_MASK (1<<CS21) // 1/8 prescaler -> 7.8kHz (Used in v0.9)

Only just visible at 34%
#define SPINDLE_TCCRB_INIT_MASK ((1<<CS21) | (1<<CS20)) // 1/32 prescaler -> 1.96kHz

ALSO putting GRBL back to the default SPINDLE_TCCRB_INIT_MASK (1<<CS22) // 1/64 prescaler -> 0.98kHz (J-tech laser) and if I set $30=400 and leave S-Max at 1000 I can just see a focus beam at 15%

Sounds like the laser itself might be faulty, or something not matching between the board and the laser. For example, if the board is sending 3.3v but the laser expects 5v, or the board produces 5v but the laser expects 12v, that could be it too. Were the units bought together? As in, is the combination of controller and laser you’re using known to work?

Like you say I suspect that’s it doesn’t like working together. Purchased separately and according to Sainsmart when I queried the issue in March the said they work together. But I can’t say I have much confidence in what they are saying. I think I will return the laser and try another type. Especially as amazon uk has an extended return period at the moment.

Thank you and everyone else that has tried to help me on this matter.

All the best

Update @LightBurn @beamer3.6 a big thank you for your help. It turns out, that despite the seller saying the laser / module was compatible it wasn’t. Furthermore Sainsmart didn’t pick up on it either.

Long story short new laser and module both $30 and s-max set to $1000 and getting test fire beam at 4%.

Running a quick test engraving and the gradients look good with greyscale.

Thanks again so much for your assistance.

Glad you got it sorted.

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I was having problems with the laser firing on seting up le5040 engraver from sainSmart
(barely visable at 100% and not burning)
checked $30 there was a mismatch and changed the speed It now works
appears that even though it is a laser engraver machine it shipped with cnc settings
thanks for the insight
john l

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