Looking to buy a second machine. The basic fits my needs 100% but I just realized Affirm is not financing those anymore (the one I bought was financed thru Affirm). Anybody knows why?
Is there another company that sells something similar to the glowforge basic? Maybe with an actual software IN YOUR COMPUTER instead of online? I am ready to buy and I need another machine ASAP, business is booming!
Great question. I wonder what the financing deal is. The forum hasn’t really given any indication that there is something comparable for the Glowforge basic at that price. I’m so glad you are making money with your machine.
Thank you, yes I am so glad too! I need another one to keep up and also as a backup because I can’t just rely on one machine
I am not aware of a machine that is in the same price range and has all of the features that the Glowforge has. Depending on what you are willing to give up, there are some options though. For the most part, I am going to try to stick around the price point of the basic. The biggest thing you are going to give up across all of these options is the intuitive software. To my knowledge none of the other laser cutters in this price range have an internal camera to help you align your design to your material.
If you are willing to give up the auto-focus and willing to spend the time to build the laser cutter, you can actually get a larger print bed. Further Fabrication made a wonderful series on not just designing the laser cutter but also on building it. You can also go to his website and pay a few dollars for the detailed plans and materials list. If you feel adventurous, you could increase the bed size to any size you want. For example, you could build it to accommodate standard 4x8 material from the big box stores.
You also have K40 lasers. I don’t really recommend these because of how much trial and error there is here. I am not referring tot he trial and error of cutting something out but rather the quality of the parts and needing to replace them. But after all the trial and error is done, you would probably have a laser cutter that costs a little less than the Glowforge but at a serious cost of your time and potentially material.
Full Spectrum has a line called the FSL Muse Core which bases around the same point as the basic. One of the things I find interesting here is that they give you the option customize everything, like to just upgrade to a 45w laser. They also have an option to have a riser to put a rotary in. I guess the bottom comes off for the riser.
Your best option might be to try and find a used Glowforge someone is trying to sell.
Have you tried to apply for a small business loan or anything? They may be able to help you with the amount of money you need.
K40s are a little iffy, but if you step up to the 1200 dollar range of chinese lasers you can get a pretty good machine for not a lot of money all things considered.
So what would be the minimum WATTAGE for a laser to be able to cut like 0.08" aluminum??? ot at least 0.04"
So what would be the minimum WATTAGE for a laser to be able to cut like 0.08" aluminum??? ot at least 0.04
Around 300-400W with oxygen assist, and CO2 lasers are not ideal for metal.
And I am guessing a laser like that is $$$$$$$$$$$$$ right? Would it also be able to engrave quality small stuff? Or its more for like cutting shapes and not so much engraving? I want kinda like the quality of the GF but able to cut metal and FASTER. It is just too slow. I saw a video of a laser engraving a gun handle and it was SO FAST that looked fake. It took like 5 seconds and it was shooting red lasers all over the place. I have no idea what machine it was but that was AMAZING
Epilog lasers go up to 120W and $70,000, and they are not suited to cutting metal.
If you are looking at cutting metal I would look at a plasma cutter or a waterjet. Both of these are fairly expensive pieces of equipment. The cheapest waterjet that I know of is the Waze at around $8,000.
Are you looking to engrave or just mark metal? A standard laser, like the Glowforge, can mark metal using a marking agent sprayed on the metal surface. When you do this, the results are pretty decent. The metal is normally marked with a grey-black color.
If you are looking to cut just aluminum or brass, you might want to look at the Shapeoko or X-Carve. These are CNC machines that are capable of cutting/engraving aluminum and brass.
Hobby CNC (like the X-carve) can technically cut metal but is EXTREMELY slow, produces very rough edges, and has nowhere near the precision of a laser.
Just thinking about expanding my product line but as of right now what I really need is a FASTER 40-45w machine that can engrave and cut up to 1/4" plastic. The GF is just TOO SLOW. I don’t know what is out there. Each of my products is taking me about 20-30 min to engrave and cut. I want something that brings it down to like 5min without loosing the quality of the engraving
Just thinking about expanding my product line but as of right now what I really need is a FASTER 40-45w machine that can engrave and cut up to 1/4" plastic. The GF is just TOO SLOW. I don’t know what is out there. Each of my products is taking me about 20-30 min to engrave and cut. I want something that brings it down to like 5min without compromising the quality of the engraving
I am not sure you can get much faster without a more powerful laser. It is like saying, “I wish material would vaporize faster without more power!”
Makes sense, so what would be the step up? I just want to have an idea of $$$ cost
If you want double the speed, you need double the power. Simple.
An 80W laser will probably run $25-40,000…
holly smokes! I rather buy a second GF lol
I think that is the sentiment of most that ask this question. This is not a new situation. I wonder if others that have gone through this same situation can add their experiences?
That 's what people new to laser cutting don’t “get” - what amazing value the Glowforge is compared to everything else on the market. If it were easy, there would be a lot of choice out there.