INSTRUCTIONS:

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Friday, November 11, 2016

Click Here for the Index To K40 Conversion

Converting and Improving a K40

I have invested an inordinate amount of time converting my K40 to a better cutting and engraving tool. This post concatenates my K40 conversions posts into a build index. I am doing this with the intention of helping others reduce or eliminate their research, design and build time for K40 conversions.

There are many RIGHT ways to convert a K40 but the most often frustration I see from K40 owners is having a clear and as-simple-as-possible, but not simpler,  set of build instructions that result in a working configuration.
This build log should have everything you need to know to clone my design including parts. If it doesn't or something is missing let me know in the comments or G+ me at:

+Don Kleinschnitz

My approach in this conversion was to start with a clean sheet of paper and engineer the needed modifications. That means that I am analyzing each subsystem, understanding its operation, specifying a conversion design followed by build and then finally verification of performance.

This post pulls together detailed posts for each subsystem with the expectation that in the end it will give the community a specific configuration that works. 

My ultimate intention is for this information to be simple to use for most makers yet detailed enough to satiate an engineer.

Some of this content was designed by myself along with the associated testing and research. However a large amount of content linked in here came from the hard work of others. I just linked things together in a way that made sequential sense to me.

I thank and acknowledge the work of many other members of these communities that contributed in a significant way.

This is a work in progress so expect changes. I will keep this post updated as my analysis/design/build/test and usage evolves.

Donate:

Please consider donating (button to the right of this post).
Your donations help fund additional research, tools and parts that I will return to the community as build and design information and how-to's.

Status

BUILD COMPLETE
Machine in operation testing minor jobs and making repairs and improvements

Advantages of this conversion design?
This design adds the following improvements to the standard K40 experience:
  • Protocol: GCODE enables a better part design tool chain
  • Increased safety: interlocks, mains shutdown, grounding verification
  • Documentation: includes ENGLISH schematics and drawings for everything.
  • Cutting/engraving performance: Air & vacuum assist 
  • Robust DC power supplies
  • Open source software tool chain: such as: LaserWeb, SketchUp, Inkscape
  • Support: a rich G+ community with engineers and experienced laser builders and users willing to help.

DON"T IGNORE THIS!

CAUTION: LASERS AND THEIR HIGH VOLTAGE SUPPLIES ARE BOTH ELECTRICALLY LETHAL AND OPTICALLY DANGEROUS. THEY HAVE THE POTENTIAL TO KILL AND/OR BLIND YOU

STAY AWAY FROM THE HIGH VOLTAGE SUPPLY'S OUTPUT!

WEAR PROTECTIVE EYE WARE AT ALL TIMES WHEN OPERATING A K40!

DO NOT OPERATE A K40 WITHOUT THE PROPER LASER INHIBITING INTERLOCKS INSTALLED AND OPERATING PROPERLY!

BY READING THIS POST YOU AGREE TO USE THIS INFORMATION AT YOUR OWN RISK!

CHAPTER 1: A SIMPLIFIED WIRING DIAGRAM

If you want to get right to the core of the electronics here are the full Build Schematics and below is a simplified sketch of the Smoothie wiring. Pretty one coming soon. The lift table integration is not included on this sketch


CHAPTER 2: THE INTERLOCK SUBSYSTEM

CAUTION! Unmodified K40's are dangerous.

K40's do not come with interlocks however every K40 should have interlocks installed!

The K40 laser is dangerous and can blind you.

Interlocks should be installed on the main cover and the rear laser compartment.

Don't defeat them when your inside the machine. Its not that hard to make an adjustment and close the lid to check the results. 

Wear your safety glasses especially if you have defeated interlocks which I just suggested you do not do!

CHAPTER 3: ADDITIONAL SAFETY IMPROVEMENTS

  • Coming soon, keyed Laser enable switch
  • Coming soon, mains shutdown
  • How to  verify K40 grounds

CHAPTER 4: THE CONTROLLER ELECTRONICS SUBSYSTEM

CHAPTER 5: CONTROL PANELS

I have elected to use two control panels on my K40-S. The stock panel will server as the "K40-S Operations Panel" and the GLCD will serve as the "Controllers Operations Panel. My reasoning was as follows:
  • These two panels have no interconnections with each other
  • I needed more real estate than the stock panel could provide
  • I wanted to make the smoothie and its interconnects modular so I could reuse the packaging for other CNC projects and test it on the bench.

Controller interface panel 

Operations Panel

CHAPTER 6: THE POWER SUPPLY SUBSYSTEM

DC Power 

AC Power

The Laser Power Supply & PWM

Interfacing to the the Laser Power Supply

http://donsthings.blogspot.com/2016/11/k40-laser-power-supply-control-take-2.html#more

Laser Power Supply Test, Repair & Installation

CHAPTER 7: GANTRY SUBSYSTEM

Interfacing to the gantry electronics

Cable management on the gantry

K40 Motors

http://donsthings.blogspot.com/2016/06/k40-s-motors.html

The finder LED

I used a simple approach to implement the finder because I wanted to keep the head bracket simple. The disadvantage of this approach is that the pointer is offset from its true position when the table goes out of the focal range. To date I do not use the finder to locate anything accurately so I am using a single diode vs two with dot or line output. If I do need more accuracy I plan to move the finder so that it enters and exits the light path through the objective lens and therefore totally remove it from the head altogether (more on this idea later).
  • The finder diode is mounted on the head.
  • The finder uses a Laser diode that is mounted in a holder. The holder is adjustable with a screw.


Gantry parts

CHAPTER 8: CABINET MODIFICATIONS

Controller packaging

This packaging design mounts the controller outside the K40 and the DC supplies inside.

 
 

CHAPTER 9: Z AXIS SUBSYSTEM

CHAPTER10: LASER OPTICS SUBSYSTEM

CO2 Laser Theory and Operation

Basic Principles of Operation
How do CO2 lasers work
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_dioxide_laser

Laser Specifications

This is the best reference I have found for laser operating specifications.
http://www.recilaser.com/en/productInfo/fc9181e840aa427d0140aa55363800f1.htm

Laser tube mounting brackets

Mirror mounts and assy. changes

http://donsthings.blogspot.com/2017/01/k40-optical-path-improvements.html

K40 Optical Systems Modelling for Better Alignment

http://donsthings.blogspot.com/2016/06/k40-alignment-tools.html

Aligning, Cooling, Operating and Protecting The Laser

http://donsthings.blogspot.com/2016/07/k40-k40-s-tips.html

CHAPTER 11: THE DESIGN TOOL CHAIN

CHAPTER 12: AIR AND VACUUM ASSIST SUBSYSTEMS

CHAPTER 13: K40 & K40-S TIPS AND FAQ'S

http://donsthings.blogspot.com/2016/07/k40-k40-s-tips.html

CHAPTER 14: TESTING YOUR BUILD

Coming soon...
  • AC power and grounding
  • DC power and grounding
  • Interlocks
  • PWM
  • Endstops
  • Steppers

Appendix A: REFERENCE MATERIALS




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  2. Don, I am currently doing a liteburn AW708c dsp controller upgrade. My K40 has the zte laser myjg40w power supply . will this power supply work with the AW708c controller?.and do you have a wiring diagram for this upgrade?.
    thank you for your time.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi Don,
    I am not sure what to do with my machine. It works properly but I was going to install a ammeter but the neg wire from the tube is attached to the FG position and the ground wire from the machine is attached to the L-. Should I just switch the two wires so that the ground from the tube is attached to the L-? Thanks

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  5. Hello, my fuse just blew within the PSU.
    What is the amperage rating for the main fuse?

    ReplyDelete
  6. can anyone show me the circuit trace on x axis optical sensor on a k40

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