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Old 02-14-2012, 02:04 AM #1
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Question Question about Gas Lasers

Ok I am a newb when it comes to gas lasers but I overheard my teacher talking the other day about the laser cutter we had at our school and he mentioned that it cut's red/magenta things best now this made no sense to me because I thought the color did not matter for gas lasers and if it did I thought black would be cut best but he said it cut red better he also said it will ignite foam (like the pink hobby foam) unless you paint it another color and it can cut through 1/4 inch thick metal. Any idea what kind of gas laser it is and the power? I was thinking it was a 40W or so C02 laser until I heard about the color thing. I have never seen the laser in action myself btw although I think it is a big red machine I am not sure it is in the wood shop room and I do not take wood shop. I overheard their conversation during my Game programming class because it is right next to the wood shop. Any ideas ?


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Old 02-14-2012, 02:07 AM #2
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Default Re: Question about Gas Lasers

Talk to the teacher, express your interest in lasers and ask him if he knows much about the system.

It might be easier to get the answers directly from him.

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Old 02-14-2012, 02:13 AM #3
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Default Re: Question about Gas Lasers

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Originally Posted by Lase View Post
Talk to the teacher, express your interest in lasers and ask him if he knows much about the system.

It might be easier to get the answers directly from him.

Lase
Well are all gas lasers different in their color preference ? Cause I have never heard that before I am just curious as to what kind it may be and I have that class again wednesday maybe I will ask him then.
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Old 02-14-2012, 03:15 AM #4
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Default Re: Question about Gas Lasers

Different gas mixtues produce different colors argon for example makes blue and green beams and hene lasers make red beams
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Old 02-14-2012, 03:35 AM #5
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Default Re: Question about Gas Lasers

Gas lasers come in all sorts of wavelengths and output power ranges, you can't say anything definitive about them other than the fact that they all use gas, which is why we call them gas lasers!

CO2 Lasers produce deep infrared which does not care what color the object is, it will cut through clear glass even. It emits light at 10.6uM (10600nm) which is very far out of the visible spectrum and absorbed heavily by most materials. The tube glows visibly but the beam is completely invisible. These lasers are used for cutting.

Argon makes Blue and Green as mentioned above. These are mostly not for cutting, but can be made with enough power to cut.

HeNe makes green, yellow, orange, red, and infrared. These lasers never get powerful enough to even light a match.

Those are only the most common, there's also HeCd (blue), Argon-Krypton (white/yellow), Xenon, Cu Vapor, and many, many more.
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Old 02-14-2012, 03:44 AM #6
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Default Re: Question about Gas Lasers

Co2 is just barely in the light wavelength its more a beam of focasuable heat
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Old 02-14-2012, 05:24 AM #7
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Default Re: Question about Gas Lasers

The machine in your woodshop is a CO2 laser based device. 10.6um light will absorb itself into most any material.. and certainly any organic material.

Whoever told you about the "red objects" thing is only guessing.
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Old 02-14-2012, 11:25 PM #8
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Default Re: Question about Gas Lasers

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he also said it will ignite foam... unless you paint it another color
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Old 02-15-2012, 12:54 AM #9
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Default Re: Question about Gas Lasers

If it cuts 1/4" steel, it's a CO2 with gas assist nozzle/lens. That should trash anything in its path. I believe it would take near 800 Watts of power to cut steel that thick with any efficiency.
There is a slim possability that it is a pulsed ruby but that would be very old but could account for "some" color factors.
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Old 02-15-2012, 01:26 AM #10
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Default Re: Question about Gas Lasers

Indeed it would be interesting if it was a ruby laser, but then the description of "cutting red best" makes even less sence.
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Old 02-15-2012, 02:09 AM #11
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Default Re: Question about Gas Lasers

It didn't sound right to me either I will ask him about it tomorrow

I asked him today he has not idea what kind of gas laser is or the output. He say's it came with a book and I can borrow it also he still insists that magenta absorbs the power most. Also I misunderstood him and it can cut 1/4 inch WOOD and can only engrave metal any idea's ?

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