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  1. #1
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    Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Hello to everyone here,

    My name is Nick.
    I started to design a 60W laser cutter and I have a question about the motors.
    Yesterday I found the Teknic company that they have the Clearpath Servo motors.

    I found it very interesting and also I saw a video from a guy that they use them in his laser cutter.
    Here is the video:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Btrg...ature=emb_logo

    I checked their website, they have a lot of models but I'm not sure which one will be fine for my machine.
    My design will be wih linear guide rails Hiwin HGH 15 for both X and Y axis, AWC708c or Ruida DSP controller and I will use it for vector and high speed raster engraving.
    I'm thinking about this model
    https://www.teknic.com/model-info/CP..._voltage=75VDC

    but I'm not sure if the torque is good enough for high speed raster engraving.
    Did someone have experience with them?

    Thank you very much in advance!
    Nick

  2. #2
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    I have no experience with lasers, but have Clearpaths on my router. The folks at Teknic are very helpful regarding applications for their product. But you'll need to be fairly specific about your design parameters.

  3. #3
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Hi,
    Clearpath servos are good quality, fairly simple to set up and very actively marketed by Teknics but they are expensive for what you get.

    Delta (Taiwanese made in China) and DMM (Canadian made in China) are good quality well supported servos at fair prices and you can get a 750W servo for LESS
    that a 350W Clearpath.

    Craig

  4. #4
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    The link shows a motor that is 10x more expensive then what I use. It also features a quadrature out that won’t be read by a normal DSP laser controller. Maybe the driver reads that signal?
    I don’t think any of this would show a noticeable improvement in speed or accuracy on a laser. You don’t need extra torque, as most X axis has a nema 17, and heavier X axis motors works against you. Assuming the motor rides on the X slide.

    In the end due to the optics, a laser is not a very precise machine, compared to a machine that has a rigid spindle. Keep in mind that you are burning & melting stuff here.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  5. #5
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Dean448 has a point here; a laser doesn't have to deal with the variable of cutting resistance. Only the mechanical resistance of the machine with range of motion variables known. And laser cut work is seldom (if ever) more accurate than plus or minus .010". There may be a more economical approach to drive component selection.

  6. #6
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    I agree the Clearpath is over kill as a laser should not have much resistance when the head is moving I have both laser and CNC and the laser only uses a nema 17 and my CNC uses a nema 34 gear drive

  7. #7
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Why most laser use belt ? not much loads ? is it better for laser equipment to use timing belt ? Timing belt is cheap, so actually we can use gear rack better.

  8. #8
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Quote Originally Posted by MARV View Post
    I have no experience with lasers, but have Clearpaths on my router. The folks at Teknic are very helpful regarding applications for their product. But you'll need to be fairly specific about your design parameters.
    thank you for your immediate response.
    My design will be with Hiwin HGH15CA Linear rails for X and Y axis, belt driven with GT2 belt.
    I'm not sure if I will use reduction pulleys 2:1 or 3:1 on both axis because to be honest I think that I will lose from speed if I make a belt reduction. Please correct me if I'm wrong.
    If I will not use Clearpath due to the cost I will use Nema 23 motors with Gecko drivers.
    I'm troubled with the torque because the HGH15CA linear rails have a small resistance in comparison with V wheels and I don't want to have any motor stalling.
    Tha 45oz torque is it ok to move a the laser cuter head quickly without stalling?

  9. #9
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Quote Originally Posted by joeavaerage View Post
    Hi,
    Clearpath servos are good quality, fairly simple to set up and very actively marketed by Teknics but they are expensive for what you get.

    Delta (Taiwanese made in China) and DMM (Canadian made in China) are good quality well supported servos at fair prices and you can get a 750W servo for LESS
    that a 350W Clearpath.

    Craig
    Hello Craig, thank you! I will check them.
    I like the design of the Clearpaths, to have them all in one without external drives etc but yes they are very expensive. A friend of mine also told me that he had a clearpath and it was very good.

  10. #10
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Quote Originally Posted by Dean448 View Post
    The link shows a motor that is 10x more expensive then what I use. It also features a quadrature out that won’t be read by a normal DSP laser controller. Maybe the driver reads that signal?
    I don’t think any of this would show a noticeable improvement in speed or accuracy on a laser. You don’t need extra torque, as most X axis has a nema 17, and heavier X axis motors works against you. Assuming the motor rides on the X slide.

    In the end due to the optics, a laser is not a very precise machine, compared to a machine that has a rigid spindle. Keep in mind that you are burning & melting stuff here.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Hello Dean, thank you for your reply.
    Yes, they are feature a quadrature output but I think that I can connect them without it. Correct me if I' m wrong.
    As I know a servo it's much more better in speed, accuracy and power than a stepper but the problem with lasers and precision it comes from the belt and optics as you inform me.
    In my opinion if I can make it more stable not using the steppers and choosing servos is something that I will try to do it. To make it a bit better.

  11. #11
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Quote Originally Posted by asuratman View Post
    Why most laser use belt ? not much loads ? is it better for laser equipment to use timing belt ? Timing belt is cheap, so actually we can use gear rack better.
    I think that the reason is the cost and easy of making. I saw some machines use hear rack but they are very expensive and huge.

  12. #12
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    U need a a maxim 200w servo system, with 750w , u make an rocket launcher .
    But if u use a servo u need to make a rigid build , because they are high acceleration and deceleration , and the build will vibrate if u dont make it stiff enough , and u need a gt 3 or htd 3 for servo , with steel insert if u want to be able to use the benefits of a servo , with a gt 2 belt , i dont think its stiff enough for a servo system .

  13. #13
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Quote Originally Posted by Andreiir View Post
    U need a a maxim 200w servo system, with 750w , u make an rocket launcher .
    But if u use a servo u need to make a rigid build , because they are high acceleration and deceleration , and the build will vibrate if u dont make it stiff enough , and u need a gt 3 or htd 3 for servo , with steel insert if u want to be able to use the benefits of a servo , with a gt 2 belt , i dont think its stiff enough for a servo system .
    Thank you very much for your advice. Yes, I have read it that the build must be rigid when you use servo and I will do it. As for the belts I didn't know it and I will change them to HTD 3M.
    Do you think that this model of Clearpath that it's 120W will be fine for X and Y Axis or I must buy a bigger, at least 200w?
    https://www.teknic.com/model-info/CP..._voltage=75VDC

    Thank you!

  14. #14
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    What would be the usual materials you intend to cut with this machine? What are the expected cutting speeds?
    What would be the advantages of using the SERVO sets in your particular case?

  15. #15
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Quote Originally Posted by Storen View Post
    What would be the usual materials you intend to cut with this machine? What are the expected cutting speeds?
    What would be the advantages of using the SERVO sets in your particular case?
    I will cut and engrave Acrylic and wood materials.
    The raster engraving I would like to be about 2000mm/sec.
    I'm thinking for a SERVO in order to have the high speed without stall, accuracy and repeatability.

  16. #16
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Quote Originally Posted by nick_the_builder View Post
    I will cut and engrave Acrylic and wood materials.
    The raster engraving I would like to be about 2000mm/sec.
    I'm thinking for a SERVO in order to have the high speed without stall, accuracy and repeatability.
    The title says "cutter" so I thought you intend to use the machine mainly for cutting. If you plan to use the machine mostly for engraving I would suggest entirely different route - use galvanometer instead of gantry build.
    If you want both you should be prepared for some tradeoffs.

    Achieving high stable engraving speeds would be a challenging task. Adding some servo motors to a rigid construction won't be enough.
    Make sure your linear actuators are rated for high speeds. Design the frame in a way to allow for precise calibration - flatness, axises being perfectly parallel and/or perpendicular to each-other. Even small deviations may result to significant performance lost. When selecting the SERVO sets make sure they come with comprehensive tuning software. Pay special attention to the design of the head. The typical Chinese heads are made for low-speed cutting and cause major turbulence and inertia issues at high speeds. The head has to be as light and compact as possible.

    Frankly I think if you manage to achieve a stable 2m/s scanning speed you should consider offering your machine commercially because it will set you ahead of 99% of the Chinese factories assembling similar machines.

    Good luck and keep us updated.

  17. #17
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Hi,
    I too think 2m/s is not really obtainable with a conventional router style gantry machine.

    That sort of speed is best accommodated with a hexapod. Top end pick-and -place machines use that style and very VERY fast and accurate they are to.

    Craig

  18. #18
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    First:
    Absolutely use servos, for a laser.
    They give immense acceleration, that you want,
    and very high accuracy, that you want,
    and more speed than you can use ( so it does not matter).

    A laser is typically stuttering aka making lots of very small movements very quickly.
    Either making curves or lines -not-straight or engraving with maybe 0.02 mm movements repeated 20-50x per second.

    With a servo, it is quite easy to get close to perfect performance, aka it is near-impossible in *practical terms* to significantly improve from this.
    You would need a gantry much stiffer, that needs more spacing on the linear rails, and often better more expensive linear rails.
    And a machine much heavier, to not shake from the acceleration.

    Lasers kind of want and need very heavy acceleration - for top end industrial stuff.
    Your case is not that, but any servo will give You extremely good results.
    About 10x better than any stepper.
    An AC servo accelerates to 3000 rpm in about 10-20 ms. 0.02 s.
    A stepper gets to 1000 rpm in about 0.3 secs.
    About 10-30x less.

    My industrial-level servo machines, lathe (3 axis) and mill 3+1 run a std test file about 10x faster with their current servo motors.
    I mostly use about 30% of acceleration and 10-30% of max speed.
    I could not care less about max rapid speed.
    (About 1.8 sec end-end on the lathe z axis, 500 mm, 32 mm ballscrew).

  19. #19
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Quote Originally Posted by Storen View Post
    The title says "cutter" so I thought you intend to use the machine mainly for cutting. If you plan to use the machine mostly for engraving I would suggest entirely different route - use galvanometer instead of gantry build.
    If you want both you should be prepared for some tradeoffs.

    Achieving high stable engraving speeds would be a challenging task. Adding some servo motors to a rigid construction won't be enough.
    Make sure your linear actuators are rated for high speeds. Design the frame in a way to allow for precise calibration - flatness, axises being perfectly parallel and/or perpendicular to each-other. Even small deviations may result to significant performance lost. When selecting the SERVO sets make sure they come with comprehensive tuning software. Pay special attention to the design of the head. The typical Chinese heads are made for low-speed cutting and cause major turbulence and inertia issues at high speeds. The head has to be as light and compact as possible.
    Thank you very much for your help and your tips.
    Yes, I want it for engraving too, sorry for I didn't write it.

    I will use it for both cutting and engraving so the gantry is the only way.

    I don't know if I can achieve this result but I will try it.

    On my plans is to use High Rigidity Aluminum extrusions with parallel surfacing, the Misumi number is: GFSP6-6030, for both X and Y axis.
    I saw a video from Trotec laser and they use servo motors also but they use a reduction bigger than 3:1 i think on the axis. As I know when you are use a reduction on the belt driven sytem you can achieve better torque and resolution? but how can have 3.5m/s?
    I'm a bit confusing about it. To use a reduction or not?

    As for the laser head, I'm affraid that I can't find something better than what Cloudray has.
    I'm thinking to use this set.
    https://www.cloudraylaser.com/collec...34669916160161
    If you know something better please inform me and I will check it.

    Frankly I think if you manage to achieve a stable 2m/s scanning speed you should consider offering your machine commercially because it will set you ahead of 99% of the Chinese factories assembling similar machines.
    When I will mke it and if everything id done I will think about

    Quote Originally Posted by joeavaerage
    Hi,
    I too think 2m/s is not really obtainable with a conventional router style gantry machine.

    That sort of speed is best accommodated with a hexapod. Top end pick-and -place machines use that style and very VERY fast and accurate they are to.

    Craig
    Hi Graig, what is a hexapod system? It's the first time that I can see that.
    All the machines that I know use a gantry system with belts. I'm missing something, I'm sure.

    Quote Originally Posted by hanermo
    With a servo, it is quite easy to get close to perfect performance, aka it is near-impossible in *practical terms* to significantly improve from this.
    You would need a gantry much stiffer, that needs more spacing on the linear rails, and often better more expensive linear rails.
    And a machine much heavier, to not shake from the acceleration.
    Tha's why I'm thinking to use Servo's. To have the maximum accuracy and the other benefits, speed, accelaration etc.
    But the gantry I don't know much stiffer must be. As I wrote to Storen I'll use the Misumi GFSP6-6030, they are high rigidity and parallel surface extrusions, so I think that they will be find but if you have something to suggest me please feel free to do it.

  20. #20
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    Re: Clearpath Servo motors for CO2 Laser cutter

    Hi,

    This is a commercial hexapod pick and place machine:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RKXVefE98w

    This is an open source hexapod design:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dx5dYdQ7NDo

    Craig

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