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CO2 Laser Cutting Basics - The Beginner's Guide

Are you looking forward to DIY or buy an affordable CO2 laser cutter kit? Review 2022 best CO2 laser cutter buyer's guide for machinists, operators and beginners, we'll offer you 2022 cheapest automatic CO2 laser cutting machines with expert customer service to fit your custom laser cutting projects, plans and ideas.

What is CO2 Laser Cutter?

A CO2 laser cutter is an automatic CNC laser cutting system that uses CO2 laser beam to engrave and cut wood, MDF, plywood, chipboard, dieboard, cardborad, acrylic, fabric, jeans, plastic, leather, paper, ABS, EPM, PE, PES, PUR, PVB, PVC, PUR, PMMA, PTFE and thin metals, which is widely used in industrial manufacturing applications, school education, small businesses, home business, small shop and home shop. A CO2 laser cutter is composed of laser cutter frame, laser cutting head, laser lens, laser mirror, laser generator, laser power supply, water chiller, control panel and CNC (Computer Numerical Controlled) system. CO2 laser cutter is also known as CO2 laser cutting machine, CO2 laser cutting system, CO2 laser cutting equipment, Non-metal laser cutting machine, CO2 laser engraver, CO2 laser engraving machine, CO2 laser engraving cutting machine.

How Does CO2 Laser Cutter Work?

A CO2 laser cutting machine is an automated smart cutting tool that uses a CO2 laser tube with a numerical control system to irradiate the laser beam to the surface of the object, and at the same time release high energy to melt and evaporate the surface of the object, thereby realizing the plan of cutting and engraving. The laser beam is a column of very high intensity light, of a single wavelength, or color. In the case of a typical CO2 laser, that wavelength is in the Infra-Red part of the light spectrum, so it is invisible to the human eye. The laser beam is only about 3/4 of an inch in diameter as it travels from the laser resonator, which creates the beam, through the machine's beam path. It may be bounced in different directions by a number of mirrors, or "beam benders", before it is finally focused onto the plate. The focused laser beam goes through the bore of a nozzle right before it hits the plate. Also flowing through that nozzle bore is a compressed gas, such as Oxygen or Nitrogen. Generally speaking, higher laser power is used for cutting, lower laser power is used for engraving. The laser power is adjustable during operation. Turn it down for engraving and turn it up for cutting. The level of laser power will also affect the depth of engraving and the thickness of cutting.

Technical Parameters of CO2 Laser Cutter Kit

ModelSTJ9060, STJ1325, STJ1390, STJ1490, STJ1610, STJ1626
Laser Power80W, 100W, 130w, 150W, 180W, 280W, 300W
Laser TypeCO2 Laser Tube
Max Cutting Speed1400mm/s
Position SystemRed Dot
Laser Locating Precision≤±0.01mm
Cooling SystemWater Chiller
Drive SystemServo Motor & Driver
Graphic FormatBMP, AI, DST, CDR, PLT, DXF, JPG, PGN
Price Range$3,000.00 - $20,000.00

What is CO2 Laser Cutter Used For?

CO2 laser cutters are used for cutting & engraving wood, plywood, MDF, chipboard, cardboard, fabric, leather, plastic, PMMA, acrylic, paper, bamboo, ivory, rubber, EPM, depron foam, gator foam, polyethylene (PE), polyester (PES), polyurethane (PUR), carbon fibers, neoprene, textile, jeans, polyvinyl butyrale (PVB), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), beryllium oxide, polytetrafluoroethylenes (PTFE /Teflon), and any materials containing halogens (chlorine, iodine, fluorine, astatine and bromine), phenolic or epoxy resins.

1. Advertising Industry.

a. Double-colored board.

b. Organic glass.

c. Label.

d. Crystal cup.

e. Warranty signed.

2. Arts and Crafts Industry.

a. Wood.

b. MDF.

c. Ivory.

d. Bone.

e. Leather.

f. Plywood.

g. Paper.

3. Packing and Printing Industry.

a. Rubbery board.

b. Plastic board.

c. Double-layered board.

d. MDF board.

d. Plywood board.

4. Leather and Garment Industry.

a. Fabric.

b. Textile.

c. Synthetic leather.

d. Man-Made leather.

e. Jeans.

5. Architectural Model Industry.

a. ABS board.

b. Model.

6. Production Totem Industry.

a. Appliance signs.

b. Anti-fake commodities.

From the technical and economic point of view, CO2 laser machine is not suitable to cut thicker sheet metals compared with fiber laser machine. The typical products that have been used are: automatic elevator structural parts, elevator panel, machine tool and grain machinery enclosures, various electrical cabinets, switch cabinets, textile machinery parts, engineering machinery structural parts, large motor silicon steel sheets, etc.

Patterns, signs, marks and fonts of stainless steel (generally 3 mm thick) or non-metallic materials (generally 20 mm thick) for decoration, advertising and service industries, such as the design of art photo albums, the marks of companies, units, hotels, shopping malls, Chinese and English fonts in stations, docks, and public places.

Special parts that require even slitting. The most widely used typical part is the die-cutting board used in the packaging and printing industry. It requires a slot with a width of 0.7 to 0.8 mm on a 20 mm thick wooden template, and then inserts a blade in the slot. Use fashion on the die-cutting machine to cut out various packaging boxes with printed graphics. A new field of application in recent years is the oil screen pipe. In order to block the sediment from entering the oil pump, a uniform slit with a width of 0.3 mm is cut on the alloy steel pipe with a wall thickness of 6 to 9 mm, and the diameter of the small hole at the starting and cutting hole cannot be greater than 0.3mm.

How Much Does CO2 Laser Cutter Cost?

If you have an idea to buy a CO2 laser cutter, you may wonder how to get a final price? According to different driving system, control system, laser powers, laser sources, laser software, spare parts, other hardwares and softwares, you will get a final price range from $3,000.00 to $20,000.00. If you want to buy overseas, the fee of shipping costs, tax and customs clearance should be included in the final cost.

How to Buy CO2 Laser Cutting Machine?

1. Consult:

We will recommend the most suitable CO2 laser cutting machine to you after being informed by your requirements.

2. Quotation:

We will offer you with our detail quotation according to the consulted machine.

3. Process Evaluation:

Both sides carefully evaluate and discuss all the details (technical parameters, specifications and business terms) of the order to exclude any misunderstanding.

4. Placing Order:

If you have no doubt, we will send you the PI (Proforma Invoice), and then we will sign a contract with you.

5. Production:

We will arrange the CO2 laser cutter engraving machine production as soon as receiving your signed sales contract and deposit. The latest news about production will be updated and informed to the buyer during the production.

6. Quality Control:

The whole CO2 laser engraver cutting machine production procedure will be under regular inspection and strict quality control. The complete machine will be tested to make sure they can work well before out of factory.

7. Delivery:

We will arrange the delivery as the terms in the contract after the confirmation by the buyer.

8. Custom Clearance:

We will supply and deliver all the necessary shipping documents to the buyer and ensure a smooth customs clearance.

9. Support and Service:

We will offer professional technical support and free service by Phone, Email, Skype, WhatsApp, Online Live Chat, Remote Service around the clock. We also have door-to-door service in some areas.

What is CO2 Laser?

CO2 laser is a pulsed wave laser in which carbon dioxide gas obtains continuous wave or high output area in the infrared of the medium. The wavelength is 10.6μm. It is a light source used for rapid prototyping. High-power lasers are used for cutting and drilling. The medium power output is used for engraving. Since the output wavelength is easily absorbed by water, it is also widely used in medical treatment.

What is CO2 Laser Tube?

The structure of CO2 laser tube is mainly composed of hard glass, resonant cavity and electrode. Let us introduce a three-part detailed structure and principle.

The Hard Glass Part

This part is composed of GG17 material fired into discharge tube, water cooling jacket, air storage jacket and air return pipe. The sealed-off laser generator is usually a three-layer casing structure. The innermost is the discharge tube, the middle is the water purifier, the outermost layer is the gas storage sleeve, and the return gas pipe is used to connect the discharge tube and the gas storage tube.

The Cavity Part

This part consists of a total mirror and an output mirror. The total mirror of the resonant cavity is generally based on optical glass, the surface is gold-coated, and the reflectivity of the gold-film mirror is above 98% near 10.6um; the output mirror of the resonant cavity is generally made of infrared materials that can transmit 10.6um radiation Germanium (Ge) is the substrate, and a multilayer dielectric film is formed on it.

The Electrode Part

The laser generators generally use cold cathodes, which are cylindrical in shape. The choice of cathode material has a great impact on the life of the laser generator. The basic requirements for cathode materials are: low sputtering rate and low gas absorption rate. As far as the CNC laser machine is concerned, the quality and performance of the laser tube directly affect the working efficiency of the laser machine, which is also one of the most important parts of the CNC laser machine.

What is CO2 Laser Generator?

The CO2 laser generator is a gas laser generator with CO2 gas as the working material. The discharge tube is usually made of glass or quartz material, filled with CO2 gas and other auxiliary gases (mainly helium and nitrogen, and usually a small amount of hydrogen or xenon). The electrode is generally a hollow nickel cylinder and a resonant cavity. One end is a gold-plated total reflection mirror, and the other end is a partial reflection mirror polished with germanium or gallium arsenide. When a high voltage (usually DC or low-frequency AC) is applied to the electrode, a glow discharge is generated in the discharge tube, and there is a laser output at one end of the germanium mirror, and its wavelength is in the mid-infrared band near 10.6 microns.

CO2 laser generators are usually made of hard glass, and generally adopt a layered sleeve structure. The innermost layer is the discharge tube, the second layer is the water-cooled casing, and the outermost layer is the gas storage tube. The diameter of the discharge tube of the carbon dioxide laser generator is larger than that of the He-Ne laser tube. Generally speaking, the thickness of the discharge tube has no effect on the output power, mainly considering the diffraction effect caused by the size of the light spot, which should be determined according to the tube length. The longer tube is thicker, and the shorter tube is thinner. The length of the discharge tube is proportional to the output power. Within a certain length range, the output power per meter of discharge tube length increases with the total length. The purpose of adding a water cooling jacket is to cool the working gas and stabilize the output power. The discharge tube is connected to the gas storage tube at both ends, that is, one end of the gas storage tube has a small hole communicating with the discharge tube, and the other end communicates with the discharge tube through the spiral return tube, so that the gas can circulate in the discharge tube and the gas storage tube flow, the gas in the discharge tube is exchanged at any time.

2022 Best CO2 Laser Cutters for Sale

(20 Items)

2022 Top Rated CO2 Hobby Laser Cutter Machine for Sale


$2600.00 - $3600.00

2022 top rated CO2 hobby laser cutter machine is an entry level laser engraving & cutting system with 2x3 table top for hobbyists, small business, small shop, home business and home shop. Now the best 2x3 hobby laser cutter for sale at affordable price.

2022 Best CO2 Laser Cutter for Small Business and Home Use


$3000.00 - $11600.00

2022 best CO2 laser cutter STJ1390 is suitable for small business, home use, and hobbyists with engraving & cutting of paper, acrylic, wood, rubber, plastic, glass, leather, etc. Now the best laser cutting machine for small business on sale at affordable price.

100W Laser Wood Cutting Machine on Sale with CO2 Laser Tube


$3500.00 - $4500.00

2022 top rated 100W laser wood cutting machine with CO2 laser tube is the cheapest laser wood cutter with CNC controller for beginners to engrave & cut wood (softwood, hardwood, solid wood, MDF, plywood) for crafts, 3D puzzles, letters, earrings, panels, signs, logos, arts, gifts and more designs into different 2D/3D shapes & profiles. Now the 2022 best affordable wood laser cutter for sale at cost price, free wood laser cutting service and support within your budget.

2022 Best Acrylic Laser Cutting Machine for Sale


$3000.00 - $5500.00

2022 best acrylic laser cutting machine is used to cut plastics, clear and colored acrylic sheets (plastic glass, lucite, plexiglass) as letters, numbers, signs, logos, patterns, arts and crafts. Now the affordable acrylic laser cutter for sale at a low price.

Dual Head Entry Level CO2 Laser Cutter for Paper & Cardboard


$3800.00 - $6500.00

Entry level CO2 laser cutter with dual head is used to cut paper sheets, cardstock, and stacked & layered cardboard for invitations, arts, crafts, sculptures, models, storages, and packaging boxes. Now the laser paper & cardboard cutting machine for sale at affordable price.

CNC Laser Cutter for Rubber Gaskets & Seals with CCD Camera


$4800.00 - $6000.00

CNC laser cutter with CCD camera visual recognition system for accurate cutting gaskets & seals made of rubber, neoprene, silicone, graphite, CNAF, PTFE.

Metal & Nonmetal Laser Cutter with 300W CO2 Laser Tube


$8100.00 - $13000.00

Metal & nonmetal laser cutting machine with 300W CO2 laser tube is a new designed laser cutter for thin metals and nonmetals, such as stainless steel, alloy, acrylic, leather, plywood, MDF, wood.

Low Cost 4x8 CO2 Laser Cutting Machine 300W for Sale


$5400.00 - $12500.00

Low cost 4x8 CO2 laser cutting machine 300W is used to engrave and cut hard nonmetal materials such as wood, plywood, MDF, plastic, acrylic, color plates, ABS, and rubber. Now the affordable 4x8 CO2 laser cutter for sale at cost price.

2022 Best Industrial Fabric Laser Cutting Machine for Sale


$9500.00 - $16000.00

2022 best industrial fabric laser cutting machine with large conveyor table and automatic feeding system for fabric cloth, textile garment, fashion apparel, and leather fabric in industrial manufacturing with commercial use. Now the best industrial fabric laser cutter for sale at affordable price.

2022 Best Metal & Nonmetal Laser Cutting Machine for Sale


$7500.00 - $12000.00

2022 best mixed hybrid laser cutting machine STJ1610M adopts CO2 sealed laser tube, which can cut thicker nonmetals, and metal materials from 0.5mm up to 2mm.

CNC Laser Fabric Cutter for Home Use with Automatic Feeder


$6000.00 - $7500.00

CNC laser fabric cutter for home use with automatic feeding system is suitable for cutting fabric, garment, textile, leather, cloth in home shop and small business. Now the affordable fabric laser cutter for sale at cost price.

Profitable Mixed CNC Laser Cutter Hybrid Cutting Machine


$10000.00 - $12500.00

Profitable mixed CNC laser cutter hybrid cutting machine is a beneficial laser cutting system for wood, plywood, MDF, acrylic, fabric, leather, stainless steel, and more metals in commercial use.

Fabric Laser Cutter for Sublimation Printing Sportswear


$6500.00 - $12500.00

Best budget fabric laser cutter is a vision cutting system for sportswear, activewear, cycling wear, swimwear, and sweatshirts with sublimation printing, which adopts CCD camera, automatic feeding system, and conveyor belt to cut printed fabrics for sports & fitness clothing. Now the cheap laser sports clothes cutting machine for sale at a lower price.

2022 Best Selling Affordable Laser Cutter for Plywood & MDF


$8400.00 - $20000.00

2022 best selling affordable 4x8 laser cutter with four laser heads can cut a full sheet plywood, MDF to make multiple boxes, furniture, arts, crafts, and more projects from 1 up to 4 at the same time. Now the top rated laser MDF & plywood cutting machine for sale at cost price.

2022 Best Industrial Laser Foam Cutting Machine for Sale


$6800.00 - $11800.00

2022 best industrial laser foam cutting machine is used to cut EVA foam, EPS foam, XPS foam, PE foam, Styrofoam, rubber to make foam molds, foam letters, foam inserts, foam packaging, gun case, pelican cases, boat flooring, filter mats & pads, car floor decking from teak. Now the cheapest foam laser cutter for sale at cost price.

Contour Laser Cutter for Printed Fabrics with CCD Camera


$8500.00 - $15000.00

Contour laser cutter for digital printed fabrics & textiles with CCD camera is a vision laser cutting system for sublimation printed fabrics with all shapes and sizes.

Flatbed Laser Cutting Machine for Appliques & Quilt Kits


$9000.00 - $12000.00

Flatbed laser cutting machine is used to cut applique kits, quilt kits, quilt patterns, perfused fabric appliques, precut applique shapes & patterns with four laser heads and automatic feeding system.

Automatic CO2 Laser Cutter for Clothing, Garment, Apparel


$8000.00 - $9450.00

Automatic CO2 laser cutting system with roll feeder is used to cut clothing patterns, festival clothing, cloth face masks, textile garment, and fashion apparel. Now the CO2 laser cutting machine roller table and automated feeding system for sale at cost price.

Top Rated Commercial Laser Leather Cutting Machine for Sale


$5400.00 - $7000.00

Looking for a large format CO2 laser leather cutting machine for making custom or personalized leather bags, leather bracelets, leather wallets, leather patches, leather purses, leather jacket, leather fabric, leather earrings, leather jewelry, leather shoes, leather tags, and more laser cut leather projects for commercial use? Review the 2022 top rated leather laser cutter for synthetic leather, leatherette, and genuine leather. Now the 2022 best commercial laser leather cutter for sale at affordable price.

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