Not really 2" clearance w/o the crumb tray

so, i have a set of 120 blocks that are **just shy of 2" square. they’re 1.90" to 1.95". I was operating under the understanding that there is 2" of clearance without the crumb tray. and, unfortunately, the air assist scoop is clipping the top edge of the blocks.


so… thoughts? i have 120 of these things, need 115 completed. basically like giant dice with some symbols on all 6 sides. they’ve already been cut and shipped to me. how much of an issue do you think it would be if i temporarily removed that air assist scoop? no cutting, just engraving some hard maple.

i think my other option is to spend hours with a belt sander trying to sand the dice down. which then might create other issues, since someone else is 3D printing all the bases that these go on, and they’re making them based on a 2" cube, so i don’t think i can really do that.

very very frustrated.


Could you sand/shave off a bit of the air assist scoop instead (and instead of removing it)?


i thought about that, too. that kinda leaves me uncomfortable because it’s permanent. and i’d need to borrow a grinder to do that (don’t have one). and i don’t think that’s a part i can order from GF (unless i want to buy the whole carriage plate assembly for $150). but it’s a possibility.


Maybe it’s time to cut the bottom out? :grimacing:


hah! no. not getting that crazy. i’ll shave the scoop before i do that.


Can you do just a row of them at a time where the front part of the laser head will engrave it without the air assist hood touching them? I pulled this off on some knives I ran into this issue with.


hrm. maybe? i guess it depends on whether the scoop might still hit the back of the cube before it finished engraving the surface. it would definitely slow me down resetting every row instead of being able to run 4 rows at a time. let me test that.


Remove the scoop. You’ll have plenty of airflow running around to blow the smoke away from your engrave. He says not being entirely sure…. But my experience with that air assist fan is that it throws a tremendous amount of air around.


thanks. i guess tomorrow i get to disassemble. had enough for tonight.

tried just doing the one row, but it’s still catching on the top edge of my jig, which is just shy of 2" as well (and which also happens to have snapmarks on it, so it needs to be pretty close to that 2" level to scan properly).


I agree with @evansd2.

However @shop if you don´t want to go commando without a scoop :rofl:, may I suggest you exchange the original scoop by cutting a temporary short (trimmed) scoop out of aluminium baking foil or thin aluminium sheet? It is a simple shape and you can even use the original as a form to mold the temporary scoop. Just an idea.


First off, I am viscerally feeling your pain! This is like slow internet is worse than it being out completely.

Anyway, my vote is for fabricating a lower-profile scoop. It doesn’t have to be fancy, just give you the clearance and still direct the air. A disposable oven pan would work great.


First I would turn the machine off and by hand move each cube under the blower and see just how much room that you have or need. Even the bolt in the back holding the fan in place is not much higher than the opening.

There is very little room available, but you do not need very much so, as you are removing the carriage anyway, a light file on the very bottom would give you the thickness of the metal more room.

What would cause a bigger problem (and I had it alot with thick wood that I have engraved frequently) is that the edge of the wood interferes with the smooth flow of air. causing enough problems by itself to mess up the engrave. I discovered that a board of equal or near equal height will smooth the flow and work much better.

As we are talking about a few thousandths of an inch issue I would look carefully at the metal bottom of the tray to be sure it is not warped by that amount as well.


I used a Pepsi can in a matter of minutes


so, i got the carriage plate off, cleaned the air assist while i was in there (it was filthy, so overdue anyway), got everything reassembled and did a manual test w/the machine off, no issues.

so then i set up my jig, put a couple of cubes in to test and literally as my finger was about to hit the start button, the bleeping power went out. followed by lots of sirens nearby a few minutes later.



Good grief, that is one way to build suspense!


i think it’s going to work fine, will be curious to see if the engrave is dirtier w/o the scoop. but yeah. i have a limited amount of time to do all of these and it’s going to be about 20-25 hrs of engraving over the next 9 days. so i hate to lose a couple of hours this afternoon.

nextdoor says there was a car accident and someone knocked over an electrical pole. power company says 3-6 hours til restoration. sigh


well at least they didn’t plow into your substation…

good luck!!!


the power outage culprit:


Also, the evidence of the filthy air assist.


Perfect timing! It would have been so much worse if they hit that pole three minutes later.