K40 Laser Board Upgrade - River City Labs Makerspace

Yesterday I made great progress on the rewiring of our K40 laser at the makerspace. We originally had a 24v psu that powered the old cohesion mini board, but now that we have a Laser Board with it’s own psu, we no longer needed it.

I took this time to simplify the wiring and do some cable management to clean up the controller area.

  1. We have some LED lighting and a laser pointer connected to a 24v > 5v buck converter, so I moved that to the laser’s 24V out that was for the stock control board.
  2. I added a AC power cable to the AC IN terminals on the laser PSU, so that the new cable was connected to the power switch on the laser. It’s run out the back of the laser and connected to a threeway outlet to power the air pump, exhaust fan, and the Laser Board psu. Now the lights, air assist, and control board are controlled by the power switch
  3. I removed the steel panel and replaced it with a custom designed and printed mount for the Laser Board. It’s attached directly to the laser enclosure with adhesive velcro strips. This ensures that the Laser Board is completely isolated from the enclosure itself and no shorts are possible. Its also a lot easier to remove the controller for inspection or maintenance.
  4. There’s a sneak peek in the pics, but last fall I designed and assembled a new motorized Z table that will be open sourced and documented once we get it tested (It’s been done for months but the K40 has been inoperable this whole time. I want to make sure it works before I release the design)

I’m going to take some time and completely go through the laser and clean all the mirrors, clean the lens, and get it fully aligned before it’s put back in use for the membership, but the Laser Board conversion was a piece of cake! It was so easy I thought I had missed something important.