In this video I am going to assemble an Eleks Maker 2500mw A5 Mini Laser Engraving Machine which was sent to me from GearBest.
Ahh these are cute.
“Please don’t the eye! When using must wear goggles!”
Ok so I’m going to assemble this mini laser engraver and er, there’s no instruction in the actual packaging. In any case I did a bit of research and found two videos online. One sounded like it was in Portugese and another one which had really bad music on it. And based on those two I think I can sorta work out what to do.
The pieces are quite thick. They look about 8mm. They have also been cut on a laser cutter. And they have a protective coating on them, in the form of this brown paper which actually looks quite nice. I’m guessing these are the sides, the gantry, this is possibly to hold the controller. And this is the back and front.
Ok all the fixings are supplied in this packed lunch box. And it is sealed.
I was also provided with these. I think they are NEMA17 motors and I’m going to screw these on now.
You just gotta use the power of deduction to work out which machine screws fit on which part of the machine. There’s three stepper motors, with four holes each that means there twelve screws. There happens to be twelve of these.
I think the thing to remember with the motors is to put the contacts facing where the wires should be going. In this case it towards the rear (actually the front in Benbox) of the machine.
This kit has a very amazing smell to it. It’s definitely this paper. Something about this paper has quite an intense smell.
Bolt goes through there, spacer, wheel and nut. Ahh it’s the other way around.
Yep the bolt goes in this way.
Ok I’ve done both sides. And I think I’m probably going to have to take this off to fit the gantry.
So long machine screw, spacer, wheel, spacer. I guess what’s interesting about sorta kits like this, is you kinda feel like the graphic designer been taken out the equation. You know and it really is about just working it out. Which actually is quite a nice feeling. I guess everything we do is so mediated, to just kind of have to figure something out yourself.
So I’m going to need to put some nuts into the extrusion, so I can hold the belt down.
Ok so there’s a lot of tiny nuts. Not sure, ok so I think what you do. The timing belt goes through this slot facing down, and these nuts (I mean machine screw) goes through here and the smaller machine screw goes down like that.
It feels quite tight.
Ok the next thing is feeding this through.
Ok so I stuck the gantry on the wrong way around, so I’m going to undo these bolts and flip it around.
While I’ve got it off I’m going to put the laser on. I’ll bolt this back on and make sure you put the laser on first.
Ok so I’m going to attach the electronics. This is the driver board with the Arduino.
I noticed these red buttons earlier, and didn’t know what they were quite for. I guess they sit inside of here. Ok so I think these (metal)spacers, there’s for of them, fit onto the black bit of plastic. This will hold the buttons in place. Then you got these smaller spacers, which I imagine go… Ok the holes line up, so it’s that way.
So like I said you just have to look at when you’re doing and work it out as you go along. I’ve made a few mistakes as I’ve gone along but, this is such a simple design, all it means I have to undo a couple machine screws and I’m back on track.
The buttons can be pushed into position so you don’t have to balance them like I was doing.
So the wires which connect these stepper motors to the driver board are already heat- shrinked, so you don;t have to do too much here.
I’m just putting this wrapping, not sure what to call it, around the wires just to protect them and stop them getting lasered.
Ok I’m just going to check I haven’t left anything out, like limit switches – no.
So the assembly was pretty straight forward, although I made a few mistakes and had to undo some sections as I went along. It roughly took me 2-3 hours while filming. The kit looks neat and the size is good for small decorative projects and placing the CNC engraver over larger objects. There was a useful weak laser button on the shield, which you could use to also focus the beam without damaging the material surface. I am using a free software called Bbenbox which has a lot of settings. It took me a while to figure out how to use it but there’s lots of forums and information online. At first I was not getting any movement but after selecting the correct firmware for the driver shield under the lightning bolt button, in my case it was the Arduino LX Nano and changing a few settings – PPM to 320 and Feed rate to 1000 everything seemed to work. Please let me know if you found this video interesting and would like to see more. I think I might try engrave something on the back of the oak chopping board I levelled int he previous video. Anyway thanks for watching and see you next time.