Blowing Smoke

I may have a chance to do some LASER projects for profit. The opportunity may not develop, but it’s making me think of how I should manage such opportunities if the door opens.

My present LASER is 5.5 watts output, diode type. A baby for doing any kind of commercial work. The penalty for low power is slow speed. It has most of the capabilities I will need but at a very slow production pace. 

Time is money in the business world. If I get too much work, I may have a huge problem with the time required to turn it around. 

But, the project may never develop. I am only thinking ahead. It’s a zero concern at the moment.

I took a brain scan of the available hardware on the market.  Nothing has changed, bit I did notice a few more Chinese brand names.

The LASER equipment market is very similar to the 3D printer market. A bunch low price basic “hobby” machines falling all over each other. My LASER is one of these.

A few mid priced CO2 machines in the $1K to $2K range. Then the $4K and up Prosumer and business machines.

I am talking decorating and craft type LASER. Not the industrial manufacturing type.

At my age I don’t have much interest in gearing up a full blown professional LASER engraving business. Maybe if I had someone to whom I could pass it to in a few years…

The reality is it will probably be nothing more that a few pick-up projects, fully within the scope of my hobby-class hardware. 

I saw a new 10 watt Diode open frame LASER on the same design of my present LASER, so that could be an upgrade if I have to replace my 5.5 watt unit. Result would be a bit faster engraving speeds. Peaked my interest before I noticed is was more than double the price of my present system.

Only if the entire world (as I know it) starts beating a path to my door, will I take this project to the next level. 

It will probably just feel good to occasionally have something to create that someone already wants. And will make it worth my time and effort. One never knows what’s behind the next door… maybe just smoke. From an operating LASER engraver!

3 thoughts on “Blowing Smoke”

  1. Clifford Barnes jr

    Hi Daniel,
    I met your son Steven today and asked him some electrical questions as I am setting up a shop with a laser engraver. He told me about your projects and steered me to your website looks like you have some neat things going on. You mentioned upgrading your laser at some point well I do not have mine operational yet I hope to next week but you are welcome to come check it out when I do. It is a 80 watt CO2 red and black machine.

    1. Red and black sounds like one of those Omtech machines from Amazon. 80 Watts CO2 is a good power level to do whatever you want at good speed. Will use Lightburn software same as my toy LASER.

      I see there is a Diode 20watt LASER now available. No upgrades yet for me, though. I can continue playing and testing the waters at very slow speed until demand exceeds 5watt diode machine abilities. ~ Dan

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