Material Needed

To do a minor beam alignment, you are going to need the following items.

  • 1 Set of metric Allen Wrenches
  • 1 roll of masking tape or some thermal paper
  • 1 regular flat tipped screwdriver
  • Phillips head screwdriver

 

IMPORTANT – PUT LASER LID UP: Anytime you are not firing the laser the lid of the laser should be up. When the lid of the laser is up the laser will not fire. While you are adjusting the mirrors you will not be firing the laser, make sure the lid is UP.

Inspect Alignment

To find out the extent to which your laser is out of alignment…

  • Turn off the Laser.
  • Turn the machine back on while holding the autofocus button down.
    • Hold it for 10 seconds then release.
  • The display should read, “Explorer Hardware Test, Ver 1.00 ▲= back ▼ = Next.”
  • Push the ▼ key 13 times until the display says “Laser Test.”
  • Once there, you will hit the Enter key.
  • You will adjust your power level from 50% to 10% with the Up or Down arrows.
  • Once at 10% power, move the head of your laser to the bottom right hand corner of the table.
    • This puts the head at the furthest point.
    • Once it is aligned here, it will be aligned for the whole table.
  • Place a strip of masking tape over the opening on the left hand side of the head where the laser beam and red beam pass though. This will allow you to see the red beam on the masking tape.
  • Make sure you DO NOT put the tape on the mirror.
  • Close the lid of your laser.
  • Push the Start/Stop button to fire the laser until you see the masking being marked by the laser.
    • Usually you will see smoke; when you do, stop pushing the Start/Stop button.
  • Raise the lid of your laser. You will see where your red beam is and there will be a burnt spot showing you where the laser is hitting.

Correct Alignment

The next task is to align the red beam with the visible burn spot left on the masking tape. You will need assistance form another person.

  • The Red Beam mirror is the square mirror near the laser tube (located to the left of mirror #1).
  • You will need to open the back of the machine and remove the black box that covers Mirror #1.
    • There are 5 Allen screws located on the back of the red beam mirror.
    • The 2 Allen head screw near the center thumb screw are NOT to be touched at all.
  • You will adjust one screw at a time, about 1/8th of a turn. Start turning it 1/8 of a turn clockwise.
  • Ask the person assisting if you are getting the red beam closer to the burn mark or not.
    • If it is getting closer, do another 1/8 turn clockwise.
    • If not, turn the screw 1/8 of a turn counter-clockwise and then another 1/8 turn counter-clockwise.
    • See if that helps.
      • If it doesn’t, move it back 1/8 of a turn clockwise. Then adjust one of the other screws.
  • Follow this procedure for each of the screws until the red beam is in the center of the burn mark.
  • Now that the red beam and the laser are aligned together at the head, adjust any of the mirrors will move both the laser and the red beam together.
  • We will now need to adjust Mirror #3 on the left hand side of the rail.
    • To access this, you will need to remove the small cover on the left hand side of the machine.
    • It will require one of the screw drivers and will give you access to the back of mirror #3.
  • Adjust mirror #3 the same way you adjusted the red beam mirror.
    • Adjust the 3 Allen head screws in each of the corners.
    • When you adjust this mirror, it will move both the red beam and the laser at the same time.
    • You will NOT mess with either of the 2 Allen head screws near the center thumb screw .
  • Put a new piece of masking tape over the hole on the left hand side of the laser head.
  • Adjust mirror #3 until the red beam is right in the center of the mirror.
    • The more centered it is the more aligned it is.
  • Once it is adjusted, put the cover back on.
  • Shut the lid.
  • Fire the laser again by pushing the start/stop key until the tape burns and smokes.
  • If the red beam and the laser are not together and right in the center of the hole, follow the procedure again.
  • Once the red beam and the burn mark are in the center of the hole on the left hand side of the head of the laser, it will be aligned.