Buying your first CNC laser cutting machine? Before you order one, there are a few points you may want to consider. Take a look at these tips:
1. Test Out CNC Laser Cutting Machines
Using a CNC laser cutter is different than using a handheld cutting tool, and it makes cutting through many materials as easy as slicing through warm butter. However, there are a lot of quality variations on the market, and if possible, you may want to spend a little time playing with a machine before you buy it.
Consider looking for a Makerspace near you or finding a professional who's willing to let you at least look at their machine.
2. Read Reviews of the Software
CNC laser cutting machines come with software downloaded onto them. The user interface of that software has a direct impact on your experience with the machine. Before making your final decision, spend some time reading reviews, and in particular, look at what the reviewer says about the UX or user experience of that software.
3. Look Into Replacement Parts
Once you have the CNC laser cutting machine, you may occasionally need to repair it. So that's possible, look at the market for used parts or check out the manufacturer's warranty. If the manufacturer is willing to repair the machine for a reasonable span of the machine's life, or if you know replacement parts are readily available, you don't have to worry too much.
On the other hand, if you are looking at an imported cutter that doesn't have access to parts, you may want to consider other options. If that machine breaks, it may be impossible to replace.
4. Consider Auxiliary Cooling
If you opt for a machine on the lower end of the price spectrum, one of the issues you may face is overheating. Luckily, you can sidestep that issue with auxiliary cooling. You can add radiant chillers to some CNC laser cutting machine, or you can upgrade the ventilation. That can help you save money in the long run.
5. Think About the Future With That Machine
Finally, think about whether or not the machine you are selecting is likely to meet your needs for the long turn. In particular, can you upgrade it? Is the bed large enough to accommodate all the materials you plan to be laser cutting for the next few years? Does the website have ideas or offer customer support? Questions like that are important to consider.