Monday, June 29, 2015

Using Inkscape with Turnkey Tyrannys plugin

If you've been following along you'll notice that I have been using Turnkey Tyrannys fork of an Inkscape plugin available here for my laser cutter design work. He has a nice set of instructions already wrote up on how to install the plugin, so I won't reinvent the wheel there. This post is more on how to go about designing and cutting your first part using his plugin, and a few things that I've picked up on in the last few months of using it.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Laser build log, part 3

I am so far behind on updating this.. I apologize. I've been focusing more on getting the machine running than I have documenting it. As it sits now, the machine is fully functional and pushing good test cuts. The past couple of weeks have been spent playing around in Inkscape using Turnkey Tyranys plugin.

I've also been using his version of Marlin, and the two play together very nicely. Turnkey is still working on the plugin, but its looking better every day.

I joined a google group (!forum/opensource-laser) to talk with others who have done the same modification to their machine. We've also been discussing starting a Wiki for the K40 style lasers in order to document as much about them as we can, ie, power supply pinouts and wiring diagrams for an Arduino/RAMPS or DSP system upgrades. It should be nice to have everything in one central location for anyone to browse.

Once I get some more time, I may go back and edit the first couple of buildlog posts to clarify things. Rough drafts aren't my style, and I have horrible habits when documenting things for others.

I'm also very active in the Laser Engraving and Cutting group on Facebook. It is a closed group full of great members who use these machines every day. Many still use the Moshi board, and several have upgraded to a DSP system. If you're looking for a place to turn, it would be a great start.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Laser build log, part 2

The postal service has been pretty nice to me the past week. So far the only thing I'm missing the get the laser up and running is a replacement tube, which should be here around the second week of March. As of right now I have some LED strip lighting installed in the cutting bay, and my RAMPS module is all wired in with a small quickie jumper board to get my endstops set.

I need a shark and some duct tape...

Some of the best toys come in boxes that you cannot read. It also helps when said box is rather large.
I do have to say, I've been rather anxious for this to arrive. Its the largest thing I've ever ordered, thats for sure. Inside the box, was another box. Surprise! I'll spare the details, but once I got past the Matryoshka doll packing job I was greeted with my brand new 40 watt CO2 Laser engraver/cutter.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Battery Backpack

A few months ago I built a small "backpack" for my rechargable battery pack in order to bring the 9.6v battery to a more microcontroller friendly 5v. Well, it lasted for a good while but then I ended up snapping the LM7805 regulator off the board. Instead of repairing it, I decided to make a new one. The new version uses binding posts instead of female headers, and also breaks out the source voltage. It's a bit larger then the last one, but still fits on the battery pack.

 As you can see, I had a cheap bent piece of aluminum for a heatsink before, and things were a bit crowded. I'm going to miss the female headers, but if it becomes a problem there is still room to add them on the new board.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Electronic Dice

 The past couple of weeks I've been building some electronic dice based on a project I read at The Electronics Club. Since I live in the US its pretty hard to find stripboard, so this project just sat on the back burner until one day I decided to toss it together on breadboard. My last order from Mouser had landed me enough parts to build 5 of these, so instead of letting it gather dust I mocked one up.

Santa-Pede Challenge

So Hack-a-Day is rehosting their Santa-Pede Challenge since there were zero entries the last time around. I figured I would at least pick up one of those annoying santas and tear it apart, just to see what I could do.