Have you ever been in this situation?
The likely solution is to switch your laser's lens. As a matter of fact, the correct lens is just as important as the parameters and focus setting. The following factors should be considered when choosing a lens:
- Laser power
- Material type
- Material thickness (when cutting)
- Design resolution (dpi)
Generally, the smaller and more detailed your design, the smaller your lens' focal diameter should be. For instance, we recommend using a 1.5" lens for engraving lettering on paper.
On the other hand, thicker material cutting typically requires longer lens focal diameters to achieve clean results. An application example is cutting 1/2" acrylic using a 7" lens.
|1.5" CO2|| |
|2.0" CO2|| |
|2.0" CO2 clearance lens|| || |
|2.5" CO2|| |
|2.5" CO2 clearance lens|| || |
|2.85" flexx™|| |
|3.2" fibre|| |
|3.75" CO2|| |
|4.0" CO2|| |
|5.0" CO2|| |
|5.0" fibre|| |
* see section below
|7.5" CO2 (for SP1500)|| || |
|Lens||When to use for engraving/marking||When to use for cutting|
The following are a few terms that are often used to describe laser lens characteristics.
The focal length is the the distance between the lens and the point of the laser beam having the smallest diameter (i.e., the focus).
Focus Plane (Focus)
The focus plane, or simply the focus, is the area where the laser beam converges to the smallest possible beam diameter.
A laser beam doesn't have the same diameter across its entire length. Instead, the diameter of a beam becomes increasingly larger before and behind the focus plane.
The energy of a laser is channeled by the lens to a defined point. The greater the focal length of the lens, the greater also the surface onto which the energy of the laser is applied. This may mean that if you use a large lens, your material may be heated rather than cut.
Focal Depth (Focus Tolerance)
A lens' focal depth, or focus tolerance, is the stretch of the beam having the smallest diameter. A larger lens has a longer focal length. In turn this means that the lens has a longer focus tolerance. For instance, the focus tolerance of a 5” lens will be exponentially larger than that of a 2.5” lens. This fact is especially important if you want to cut through thick materials.
Contact our technical service department for assistance with choosing the best lens for your application.