Laser buyers guide for schools

Published on: 03/16/2021

When looking for a laser system for use in education, there are many options available to you. It can be a confusing task to ensure that you make the right investment, which is why Trotec Laser are happy to assist you in finding the optimal laser cutting and engraving solution for your business. We are also happy to provide reference customers for you to consult with during your decision-making process.

To help you make an informed decision, the following buyers guide lists some key considerations that can help lead you to your decision.

  1. Speed and Reliability
  2. Ease-of-Use and Maintenance
  3. Laser Operator Safety
  4. After-Sales Customer Support
  5. Additional Equipment Requirements
  6. Versatility and Options
  7. See for yourself with a laser demonstration

1. Speed and Reliability

How many students’ workpieces would you be able to process per one hour class time?

If the laser cutter can not keep the pace, students will become disengaged, lesson time is not optimised and some projects may not be possible to create. In addition, a machine that constantly breaks down or requires replacement consumable parts means additional cost to the establishment as well as machine downtime meaning students are unable to use the laser to complete project work. Check that the laser supplier has a robust technical support and repairs service, and check online reviews or reference customers for an idea of machine reliability.

Why choose Trotec?

A Trotec laser provides engraving speeds up to 4.3 m/s and 5G acceleration, with the ability to process work over 10 times faster than other lasers. You can see just how fast a Trotec laser is at one of our six showrooms across the UK and Ireland.
Austrian made and built to last, Trotec Speedy lasers feature a Ceramicore® laser source which provides a long life span, maximum stability and the best cutting capability for years of trouble-free operation. 

Trotec laser machines

2. Ease-of-Use and Maintenance

As with all electro-mechanical machinery, a laser cutter requires care and maintenance. It’s important to consider how much cleaning the laser will require and how long this is likely to take. If moving mechanical parts are not protected these can become clogged with material residue and may be difficult to keep clean, this can be a particular problem when processing materials such as MDF and acrylic which produce a lot of residues. In the unfortunate event that the laser cutter does break down, what level of support and service is provided by the supplier? Is the support directly from the manufacturer and do they have a trained team of engineers that can be deployed at short notice toget the laser back up and running?

Why choose Trotec?

A Trotec laser is designed to reduce the time required for regular maintenance with fully enclosed mechanisms thanks to the patented InPack Technology™ which fully protects moving mechanical components from dirt and debris, making it easy to maintain and reducing the risk of a mechanical breakdown. Trotec believes in providing support for the lifetime of the laser system. Our team of UK-based service technicians have been trained to the highest standards to assure machine knowledge and technical expertise. With extended warranty and care packages available as well as free email and telephone support, we pride ourselves on offering excellent customer service and technical support from day one.

Trotec technical support

3. Laser Operator Safety

All laser cutters are not created equal. Consider where the laser is manufactured and what safety features are present. In industry, lasers typically fall into three distinct safety classes: Class 2, Class 3 and Class 4. The higher the number, the more safety protocols are required, and the more specialised the machine becomes in terms of applications.

Why choose Trotec?

Trotec’s series of Speedy laser machines are laser safety Class 2, meaning that no additional safety measures are required. The interlocked safety system means that when the laser lid is opened, the machine ceases to operate, preventing students and staff from coming into contact with the laser beam or moving components. All laser light and radiation is absorbed by the acrylic laser lid, ensuring safe operation 24/7.

Laser safety

4. After-Sales Customer Support

Making the decision to incorporate laser cutting into your curriculum means making a significant investment for your school. Manufacturer support is a key consideration for schools due to the heavy usage of the machine. Many entry-level laser suppliers operate only as distributors for the manufacturer who has no physical presence in the UK or Ireland. This often means that little support is offered beyond online resources.

Why choose Trotec?

As the UK subsidiary, Trotec guarantees manufacturer’s support including software updates, spare parts and consumables as well as annual services carried out directly by our highly-trained service team. With over 50 UK-based staff plus six showrooms across the UK and Ireland, Trotec offers enhanced training and support to ensure that you are able to make the most of your new investment.

Trotec support

5. Additional Equipment Requirements

Most laser systems require peripherals such as a PC and extraction and many will also need additional items such as a water chiller. When you are quoted on a new laser, make sure that you consider these costs inclusively as well as any expected
annual costs for related consumables and running costs. This way you can understand the true investment in the equipment solution you choose.

Why choose Trotec?

Trotec’s Speedy laser cutters are ordered to suit your requirements. The laser is supplied with all essential components, including power supply, lenses and cutting table, while extraction will be discussed with Trotec’s area manager during your initial demonstration so that your school receives the most efficient system for your requirements. Speedy lasers can be operated using any PC or laptop which has a graphics program installed. Unlike comparable laser systems, the Speedy range does not feature a glass tube laser source and as such a water chiller is not required, minimising machine footprint and negating additional maintenance requirements. Trotec lasers are compatible with all common design programmes including 2D Design, CorelDraw and Inkscape, as well as many others.

Trotec laser machines

6. Versatility and Options

Laser cutters are diverse tools capable of processing an abundance of applications. Thanks to the contactless nature of the processing, tight geometries and complex shapes can be cut in seconds while detailed graphics can be easily reproduced.
Some lasers are less accurate than others owing to the mechanics and motors driving the laser head. Try to get samples from different laser suppliers, using the same artwork on a range of materials so that you can see the difference in speed quality
and accuracy between each solution. Other factors such as bed size, a moving Z-axis, power options and lenses can either limit or open processing capabilities and therefore the creativity of students when using the laser for coursework and projects.

Why choose Trotec?

Trotec lasers are available with a wide range of features which can further help to enhance the laser processing experience for students. From rotary engraving attachments for processing glasses and other conical objects to Trotec’s JobControl® Vision camera software for accurately cutting printed material, a Trotec laser machine is available with many options to showcase a multitude of laser techniques.  For maximum material versatility, all Speedy laser systems have the option to be upgraded to dual-source models featuring both a fiber and CO2 laser source, allowing for near unlimited material processing possibilities. In addition, all Speedy lasers are available with different laser power levels which can be increased at any time to improve processing capabilities.

Trotec Laser accessories 

7. See for yourself with a laser demonstration

The best way to see Trotec laser machines in action is to book a demonstration at one of our six dedicated showrooms across the UK and Ireland. Featuring a range of Trotec laser machines from enry level cutters to larger flatbed models, your tailored demonstration is the perfect way to see for yourself how a laser cutter will revolutionise your classes productivity. 

Whether you visit us in person or online, our friendly and knowledgeable staff will make sure that you have all the information you need to make an informed decision when investing in a laser machine. 

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