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Maintenance of a Laser Cutting Machine

Proper maintenance of laser cutting machine is essential and has many benefits like:

  • It enhances the longevity of your laser machine
  • It ensures that the laser can perform at an optimum level
  • It saves your money with less need for replacements

Maintenance is important to keep the laser machine clean of fumes, debris, smoke, and other dirt. Because that accumulation will cause system failures someday, and maintenance is the key to preventing it. But investing in good quality laser parts like amada laser parts is equally important to prevent damage. So, in this article, we will have a look at some tips you can follow to maintain your laser machine regularly.

How to Maintain Your Laser Machine

General Maintenance

You need to carry out general maintenance tasks on your laser machine regularly. Dust with the debris is inevitably going to form in every laser machine. But you can minimize its effect on the machine’s efficiency and final output by cleaning up your machine’s cabinet, bed, and everywhere. This intense cleaning can only prevent the effect of debris on the final product. You need to ensure that you let the machine cool down completely before starting any cleaning process. You should also ensure that you have invested in all the necessary spare parts for each laser part. Here, choosing quality spare parts like amada spare parts is important to boost the performance of the machine.

Laser Cutter Cleaning

Some hard materials such as woods, acrylic, and MDF release more residue and flammable oils. This dirt can affect the machine’s components and can potentially initiate fire if not taken care of. Cleaning the cutter is as important as the cleaning the whole machine. This dirt gets accumulated most on the cutter and the surface where the cutting is done. 

So, ensure that you do regular cleaning of the laser cutter with suitable solutions to prevent the dirt from getting on the products and enhance the laser machine’s efficiency. For laser cutter cleaning, you need some supplies like a suitable liquid solution, soft brushes, paint scraper, pipe cleaners, stiff bristle brushes, and napkins.

Air-assist Compressor

You need to check if the air-assist compressor is working correctly. For this, you need to check for any obstruction in elements of filtration that might be present in the delivery hose from the compressor. You need to ensure that there is no obstruction from the starting point to the nozzle. Reduced airflow towards the nozzle often increases the risk of the flame breaking out on materials of the laser cutting machine. So, you must check the airflow of the entire machine.

Maintaining Optics

Dirty optics has the potential to reduce the laser beam’s strength. You can visually check if the optics need cleaning or not. You need to check the optics regularly, otherwise, you will notice poor results such as untidy cutting, blurry lines, etc. It is important to clean the optics because dirt can combust or burn into the optic’s surface. This will permanently damage the optics. Cleaning them after every 10 hours is ideal, but it also depends on what type of material you are using. You can take an IPA solution or acetone solution on gentle cotton buds for cleaning the optics by yourself.

Winter Maintenance

Did you know that the drop-in temperature during the winter months in your area can change the results of your laser machine? In extra-cold weather or surrounding, your machine will require extra attention and proper regulations. You can ensure that the room where the laser machine is kept is between 0°C-5°C. You can even use a good antifreeze to maintain the temperature of your machine. Here, you will need to avoid using any colored automotive colane as it can rust the coils and damage the seals of your machine’s chiller. Here, using quality parts like amada laser parts can prevent damage from weather. 

Maintaining Chiller

The heat produced by laser machines needs regulation. You can choose water chillers as they are an effective method of keeping the temperature down. This will ensure that the tube does not overheat. It is important to keep a close eye on the chiller’s temperature. You need to locate the filters in the chiller after every few weeks. You also need to check if the water has started contaminating, and if it has, then you need to change it. You can use distilled or deionized water. Avoid using regular water as it can encourage bacterial growth that can clog the piping area. 

Sodium hypochlorite (also known as bleach) is corrosive to some metals like copper and stainless steel. Thus, this solution needs to be avoided while maintaining any laser machine accessories. There is a chloride ion present in the bleach, which is an oxidizing agent. It attacks the passive layer on the metal, which causes localized damage. Even the trace amounts of bleach can form rust as stainless steel gets corroded gradually. This disrupts the efficiency of the machine. 

Conclusion

I would like to conclude this article by offering you a checklist to maintain your laser machine. This information may vary according to the material you use.

For weekly maintenance, you can:

  • Check water level
  • Clean lens with Acetone/Alcohol
  • Oil runners with light oil
  • Clean optics
  • Remove debris from the machine base
  • Clean machine bed

For monthly maintenance, you can:

  • Clean mirrors
  • Oil rise and fall of laser bed
  • Clean impeller on the fan unit
  • Change the water if contaminated
  • Clean filter in chiller

You can get your machine to a service store for full machine/s service annually. Also, you must keep quality amada spare parts for each laser parts in case of any last minute requirements. Good quality parts ensure to give your output the same finishing as that of the original.

Source: https://www.sooperarticles.com/business-articles/manufacturing-articles/maintenance-laser-cutting-machine-1829442.html

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