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Re: laser newbie

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 5:12 am
by Jan.vanderlinden
Good morning John,
How do I find that out?
Bought my X carve in late 2016 and it has the X controller.

Re: laser newbie

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 6:45 am
by Picengraver
Good Morning Jan,
Click on the $I button and let me know what is displayed in the message box.
You should also see the grbl version when PicSender connects.
PS grbl version.jpg
When first connecting
PS grbl version.jpg (77.12 KiB) Viewed 4124 times

You can also view the version with the "$I" button.
PS grbl version2.jpg
With $I button
PS grbl version2.jpg (50.72 KiB) Viewed 4124 times

I will load the same grbl version you have on my test machine for testing same as you.

Back to your original question, for engraving vectors you can use VCarve with the "Grbl" post processor and using a "Laser" tool bit setup. VCarve will not do images such as jpg and bmp files, but you could use PicLaser or PicEngrave Pro for those files. Your gcode will have "S" commands instead of"Z" commands for controlling the laser power.

After I see what grbl version you have, I will also be able to tell you what command to manually input to set the laser power. It will look like "M03 Sx" (where x is a value between 0 and 255).

Re: laser newbie

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 12:21 pm
by Jan.vanderlinden
John,
This is what pops up for me.
build info.JPG
build info.JPG (128.54 KiB) Viewed 4119 times

Re: laser newbie

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 2:34 pm
by Picengraver
Thanks Jan.
Grbl 1.0c does not support automatic changes in operating mode and it is not needed. It was compiled and released by the late Larry Mayberry before grbl 1.1 was released.

To manually control your laser click on one of the laser options and set the S value to 5 then click the M03 button. Your laser should fire at low power. To turn it off click the M05 button.

If the laser does not fire try an S10. I do not recommend trying higher than S15. If your laser does not fire up you may have a wiring or other problem with the laser. I do not have a JTech laser so you will have to contact Jay Johnson if you have an issue.

Please let me know what happens and be sure to wear safety glasses.

Re: laser newbie

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:14 pm
by Picengraver
Oh, and an S255 should give maximum laser power when M03 is clicked. S127 will be 1/2 power. Please always focus using the lowest value for S that will just light up the laser.

Re: laser newbie

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 4:59 am
by Jan.vanderlinden
Good morning John,
Yes the laser fires, but even if I set the power to 0 it still fires and cuts.
In fact, I currently have the laser about 3 inches above the focal point.
Doesn't look like its on low power at all.

Re: laser newbie

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 9:10 am
by Picengraver
As I understand, the J-Tech has a switch to set for PWM or TTL??? TTL is supposed to fire at full power? Best you contact J-Tech for setup info. Wish I could help. Maybe time for me to get one of Jay's units myself.

Maybe this will help you:
https://jtechphotonics.com/?page_id=8541

Re: laser newbie

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 9:38 am
by Jan.vanderlinden
will do thank you

Re: laser newbie

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 1:02 pm
by Jan.vanderlinden
Wait a minute...
I just went back and re-read one of your posts.
You mention picengrave.
Is that what I need to be able to do pictures and also vector files?
I just looked at lightburn and it is completely over my head.
I think its absolutely crazy that I cannot tell my machine where X Y zero is (like in picsender)

Re: laser newbie

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 2:23 pm
by Picengraver
No, PicEngrave Pro and PiLaser will only do raster files. You can use VCarve to do vector files, but not raster engrave images. I apologize for any confusion.