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Using the SUN with a PlasmaCam table.

PlasmaCam Hardware discussion forum
cutnweld
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Re: Using the SUN with a PlasmaCam table.

Post by cutnweld » Fri Sep 09, 2022 8:41 pm

Do you have some burning projects to show us? I am curious to see how this turns out.
5X10 Shop built table
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10x40 lathe
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Miller Multimatic 255
Miller XMT350MPA
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Joe Jones
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Re: Using the SUN with a PlasmaCam table.

Post by Joe Jones » Fri Sep 09, 2022 9:20 pm

The solar tracker has been delivered however I have several pressing projects that are taking priority right now. The deadline for the Halloween props has been moved up by three weeks so I have to make about 20 tombstones in the next couple of weeks as well as some other props. I am also committed to helping a friend build a greenhouse behind his home, made out of two of the harbor freight 10 x 12‘ greenhouse kits combined together into a 12 x 20‘ greenhouse. I expect that that will require some custom brackets and braces which I will have to make on the plasma table. So as much as I want to get to the solar tracking experiment which I think will come out very nice, it will have to wait until a couple of other things are out of the way.

On the plus side, the owner of Plasmacam sent me an email to explain that it is possible for the Plasmacam table to adjust the speed of a cut in a single path, and he told me where to find the information on that. So that is really exciting news! If the focus of the magnifying glass can be made sharper or wider based on the height over the material, and the speed at which the Plasmacam moves along any given path can be variable, this gives me great flexibility in creating files that should come out to be extremely interesting.

Joe
Franklin, KY., USA
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Joe Jones
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Re: Using the SUN with a PlasmaCam table.

Post by Joe Jones » Tue Sep 13, 2022 2:50 am

I ordered a new DHC2 complete gantry to go with the new set of spare rails I have here. I can take a spare carriage and set this up quickly. The controller in my 510 table is removable so it is a simple matter of moving it to a mount for the tracker setup. This disables my 510 table, but I am a one man shop, so I only run one table at a time anyway. I am really anxious to try this!

Joe
Franklin, KY., USA
Samson 510
DH2 4x4
X-Tool D1 PRO 20 Watt Blue Diode Laser
30 Watt Galvo Fiber Laser
CreatBot D600 PRO 3D Printer
FREE DesignEdge Online Training!

It really is more fun when it isn't necessary!

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Joe Jones
4 Star Elite Contributing Member
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Posts: 1788
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2014 2:33 pm
Location: Franklin, KY., USA
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Re: Using the SUN with a PlasmaCam table.

Post by Joe Jones » Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:25 am

cutnweld wrote:
Fri Sep 09, 2022 8:41 pm
Do you have some burning projects to show us? I am curious to see how this turns out.
I will start with test files. I am going to draw a series of lines, and set the cut (er ... BURN) speed to a different speed for each line. Once I know the exact cut height for the "hot spot" sharpest focus of the sun's rays, I will run the machine over a sheet of Birch plywood and note the results of each line.

Then I will experiment with running a series of lines at the SAME speed, but at slightly different cut heights. Each line will be a few thousandths of of inch difference in cut height, to take the sun's rays slightly out of focus, but HELD at that level which is not something I can do by hand. In THEORY, this will create a bank of gradient shades of brown, since the BTUs of heat put into the wood will change with the focus of the sun spot.

Then I will do a bank of "FILL" shapes, where I will fill an array of squares at same height / different speeds, and same speed / different heights. This will give me an idea of what settings to use to get what results, dark black, or dark brown, or lighter brown, or tan, etc..

The full sun will be as consistent as a plasma flame, so that is not really a variable, although I am sure that a cloudy day would give me interesting results.

Once I know basically what the machine will produce on a clear, sunny day, I can start drawing some art files and begin the journey.

If YOU would like to create a test file for me to burn, I would be happy to do that! Remember that the Full 3D upgrade is required to adjust the speed, and I am still not sure if I can change the cut HEIGHT for an individual path without the Full 3D upgrade. Make the test area about 12" square so it is easy to photograph and post here.

I sure would like to get this dialed in though.

Joe
Franklin, KY., USA
Samson 510
DH2 4x4
X-Tool D1 PRO 20 Watt Blue Diode Laser
30 Watt Galvo Fiber Laser
CreatBot D600 PRO 3D Printer
FREE DesignEdge Online Training!

It really is more fun when it isn't necessary!

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