Lazrfish is going to make it easy to replace the old electronics that are outdated/unserviceable in industrial laser machines found cheaply on the web, with more easily used reprap electronics, such as RAMPS, RAMBo, Sanguinololu etc... Most of these machines are stepper-driven, of higher quality than anything currently being sold/kitted as DIY, and can be picked up fairly cheap with sometimes working tubes even! The electronics are getting dated on many of the ~10 yr old lasers and they are going to be showing up more and more on places like Ebay etc... and that's where Lazrfish comes in. With a standard excellent reprap printer firmware, there are little changes needed to actually run a laser! We need to add the laser signal output (Usually 0-5V PWM) and use the heating mosfets on most boards as the arm/disarm to cut power to the laser power supply, as well as monitor door and shield safety switches etc...
Universal 50w CO2 laser circa 1996, finally went braindead for good in 2006. Ressurected with RAMPS 1.4 on 10/2012
Where to download the firmware
If you think you have a fix, please let me know and I can test it out on the 50w Universal hack
G0 non laser cutting move
Need to have the ability to move and position the head with G0 commands, while NOT firing the laser during any G0 move
G1 laser cutting move
Need to have anytime G1 is seen, the laser pulse be enabled, and set via M106 S(0-100) and fix 0-255 to 0-100 so it's a percentage. That will make it cleaner and easier to implement with non-technical types of people. These are the people who would have/want to return a dead old machine to life and pay you for it too!
Change the M106 S(0-255) to S(0-100)
Think this would make it make more sense. So, if you wanted the laser to be cutting at 50% power, you would have M106 S50, not S128
Add different pulsing options?
There are 3 types of tubes common in lasercutters
- Glass Tube, straight driven
- RF Tube, straight driven. Takes a 0-5V PWM pulse sent into it to finish "exciting" the plasma. The power supply is constantly powering the tube, so it's in a semi-ready state
- RF Tube, Tickle Pulse Driven. These seem to be on the highest end of the laser tubes. Basically, it's the same as the above, only they send a "tickle pules" (~2ms) when the laser isn't firing, and it sort of pre-excites the tube, so that when the full 0-5V PWM pulse comes, it responds much faster. Better for rastering maybe?
It would be nice to in the configuration.h file, define which type of tube you have on your machine, and the firmware sorts out the rest.