Laser Purchase Decision (J Tech VS Nduranc)

I have read through all of the posts about diode laser and have a pretty goo understanding about the pros and cons. I do not want to go CO2, too much of a leap for me right now. I would like to engrave and maybe get some small cutting out of the deal but cutting is not that important to me. I do not need a fast laser and time to complete projects is not an issue. I have read the WIKI laser site and a few others.

I am looking at the J Tech Shapeoko bundle, probably the 2.8W for $425. I am also considering the Endurance 10W (mainly because it is on sale, 32% off, until Sept 9th) for $545.

Both list a mininum laser pixel of .003" and from what I understand smaller is better for engraving. Not sure how a 2.8W and a 10W laser can have the same mininum beam size so if anyone can explain that it sure would help.

Mainly need to know if anywone has any experience with these two companies? It looks like J Tech has an excellent reputation, it works with the Shapeoko, and it’s based in Houston!

Thank you in advance!

probably by using a high resolution lens. I bought the Jtech 7 watt around 3 weeks ago, and have been exploring its capabilities. I have 1/16 hardwood veneer and it cuts it cleanly in 2 passes. 1/8 hardwood or plywood it gets close after several slow passes at 100 % but so far I would say cutting 1/8 a fail. thin cardboard, foam posterboard cut. engraving works good on most anything. the install and configuration was pretty easy but there are some gotchas…feel free to give me a shout if you go jtech. I did go lightburn and am getting an appreciation for it. I tried the vectric pp for v carve and it did not work well for me.

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When you cut with the laser how do you protect your waste board, or do you just accept that fact?

JTech seems to have a more refined setup which seems to fit much better on the machine itself without looking like a parasite like some of the other laser you see available! LOL

my wasteboard is close to being changed out so I have just cut into it, jtech and lightburn are easiest to install and use, we were burning stuff in 1 and half hours.
are you on the unofficial shapeoko Facebook page? the lightburn page and forum is helpful too. feel free to pm me there as well

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I have zero experience with the Endurance laser, but I have a 7 watt JTech and a 50 watt CO2. My understanding of the higher powered diodes is that the spot size is larger, so they make up with that by using a higher resolution lens(but at some loss of power). If you’re planning to just mark wood and not cut I’d think the lower powered laser would be the winner here. You could call Jay at JTech and I’m sure he would steer you in the right direction for your use without overselling you on the most expensive unit. I’ve been really happy with their support.

The CO2 laser is a whole different animal for sure. It’s crazy fast in comparison to the diodes, but more $$$. I wouldn’t say “more” complex, just different, as is every new tool. Like going from a jigsaw to a bandsaw, different, not harder.

With either I’d also recommend Lightburn software. I never got the VCarve post processor to work the way I wanted it to either, but I still use it, then export the SVGs and import into Lightburn for toolpaths and machine driving.

Dan

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I am definitely leaning towards the JTech 2.8W which will do everything I need it to do. I will give Tech a call tomorrow. Thanks!

I run a 40w CO2 laser too, Lightburn is definitely the best option I’ve found for running it. I design most stuff in Aspire and export to lightburn too, mostly cause I’m used to the interface and tools in aspire. Lightburn has great tools for design as well as creating the code and running the machine. absolutely worth the price

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I called them up yesterday and asked them about their lasers and the capabilities and he said that any of them would do the job it is just that the higher watt ones would do it much faster and time was the biggest factor to consider when purchasing these. He also said that the high definition lens made the beam of the 7 watt just as fine as the beam of the two lower watt lasers. He mentioned that a new 7+ watt laser was due out in about a week or so. I am currently stationed at Fort Hood, TX and they are based near Houston which is about 4 hours away and he invited me to come down for a tour so that’s what I will do in about two weeks or so. I am now leaning towards one of the higher watt lasers in order to save time. I will let you know how the trip goes in a few weeks or so!

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