Laser Futzing Day

A bit more progress to report. The dedicated computer is installed. I did an inspection of all the laser’s components and planned out the rest of the tasks for hook-up. I want to put the water chiller near the far wall, to keep it away from you when you’re working at the computer. Unfortunately, all the hookups for the chiller (water hose in, water hose out, and a status signal cable) are on the left side of the laser chassis, and the provided hoses and cable are not long enough to reach to the right side. I’ll have to make longer ones.

Laser Tube Installed

Today the laser tube was unboxed and mounted into the main chassis. Progress!

Wall Rebuilt

The end wall of the upstairs laser lab has now been rebuilt, thanks to Natural. The wall now features a large window, so the laser user can look out into the main build area and won’t feel quite so isolated.

Immediately beneath the window, there’s an open area in the framing. This potential opening lines up with the side door on the laser chassis, which can be opened to feed long stock through the machine.

Richard assists Natural in framing the interior window for laser lab.

Richard assists Natural in framing the interior window for laser lab.

Laser Training

I’ll be offering a series of training classes in laser operation, starting as soon as possible after the laser is up and running. I hope that will be in early August. To start with, we’ll concentrate on the important safety rules that everybody has to know, basic understanding of the workflow to produce work on the laser, and the detailed steps to get this particular laser to do its tricks for you. Attendance at one of these basic training classes will be mandatory for anybody wishing to use the laser.

Later on, I hope to have some more advanced classes and workshops, if people are interested.

I will try to offer a variety of times: daytime, evening, weekday, weekend. Comments on which time slots are best would be welcome.

Once the details have been arranged, I’ll let you know how to sign up for a class. The lab is tiny, so class size will be limited, and you’ll have to sign up in advance.


Laser Forklifted Into Place

The laser was forklifted up from ground level into the laser lab today! Thanks to Yeti for driving the forklift and to Jon Ray for arranging everything.

Installation schedule

At the Colab managers meeting on July 10, we set some dates for the next few major milestones in the laser project:

  • July 12, Natural will knock out the end wall of the laser lab and frame it up as a raw opening.
  • Sometime the next week, a rented forklift and skilled operator will pick up the laser and oh-so-carefully deposit it in the upstairs laser lab through the opening.
  • July 26, Natural will build some kind of new wall/doors/windows to close off the end wall opening.
  • Once the wall is safe again, Paul will begin hooking up the laser. Expect at least a few days of fiddling around before any actual lasing takes place.
  • July 31, first laser training class (for Colab managers only).

After that, we hope to get started pretty quickly with training classes and your laser projects!