13 Laser Cutting Machine Maintenance Checklist

13 Components of the Laser Cutter

1. Daily inspection and maintenance of laser cutting machine

  1. Check the pressure of the laser working gas and cutting gas carefully before turning on the machine every day. If the gas pressure is not enough, it should be replaced in time.
  2. Check whether the X-axis zero point, Y-axis zero point, Z-axis zero point, laser preparation status and other buttons are damaged (check the indicator light).
  3. Check whether the zero point, limit switch and mounting block mounting screws of the X-axis, Y-axis, and Z-axis are loose, and whether the limit switches of each axis are sensitive.
  4. Check whether the circulating water level in the chiller is sufficient. If it is insufficient, it must be added in time.
  5. Check for leaks in the circulating waterway of the external optical path, and you must deal with the leaks in time, otherwise it will affect the service life of the optical lens.
  6. After every day cutting, check the focus lens for damage.
  7. Check whether the telescopic skin cavity of the external light path is burned or damaged.
  8. After the daily work is completed, timely clean up the cutting waste, clean the work site, and keep the work site neat and clean.At the same time, do a good job of cleaning the equipment to ensure that all parts of the equipment are clean and free of dirt, and no debris can be placed on each part of the equipment.
  9. i. After the daily work is completed, open the drain valve of the air tank at the bottom of the air compressor to drain water. After the waste water is drained, close the drain valve.
  10. j. After the daily work is completed, shut down according to the shutdown procedure, and then turn off the main power supply of the entire machine.

2. Weekly and irregular maintenance of machine

  1. Regularly clean up the debris in the air outlet to ensure the ventilation effect.
  2. Regularly check the filters in the gas path to remove water and debris in the filters in a timely manner.
  3. Regularly check whether the screws of the travel switch bracket and the bumper bracket are loose.
  4. Clean up the dust on the filter screen of the electric control cabinet ventilation fan in time to ensure good ventilation to facilitate the heat dissipation of the internal electrical components.
  5. Clean up the sundries in the protective skin cavity of the guide rail in time, so as not to damage the guide rail, thereby prolonging the service life of the guide rail.
  6. After the machine tool is installedanda period of use, the level of the machine tool should be readjusted to ensure the cutting accuracy of the machine tool.
  7. The lubrication filling situationof X, Y, Z axis guides and their lead screws must be checked every other week to keep the moving parts lubricated. This can extend the service life of X, Y, Z axis guides and their lead screws.
  8. Check the pollution of the surface of the reflector and focusing lens irregularly (at least once a month) depending on the environment of the workshop, and clean the optical lens in time to ensure its service life.

3. Maintenance of external optical path optical lens

  1. Do not touch the surface of the optical lens (reflector, focusing lens, etc.) directly with your hands, as this will easily cause mirror scratches.If there is oil stain or dust on the mirror surface, it will seriously affect the use of the lens, and the lens should be cleaned in time.
  2. It is strictly forbidden to clean the optical lens with water and detergent.The surface of the lens is plated with a special film. If you use these to clean the lens, the surface of the lens will be damaged.
  3. Do not place the lens in a dark and humid place. This will cause the lens surface to age.
  4. The surface of the lens is contaminated with dust, dirt, or water vapor, which easily absorbs laser light and damages the lens coating.It will affect the quality of the laser beam, If the impact is severe, there would be no laser beam.
  5. If the lens is damaged, please contact the laser after-sales service department to repair it in time. Try not to use the damaged lens, otherwise it will accelerate the damage of the repairable lens.
  6. When installing or replacing the reflector or focusing lens, do not use too much pressure, otherwise it will cause deformation of the lens and affect the quality of the beam.

Effect of cutting head and optical path state on cutting quality

4. Methods of installation or replacement of optical lens

  1. Pay attention before installing optical lenses:

(1)Wear clean clothes, clean your hands with soap or detergent, and wear white clean and light gloves;

(2)Do not touch the lens with any part of your hands;

(3)When removing the lens, wear gloves and take it from the side of the lens. Do not directly touch the lens coating surface.

  1. When assembling the lens, don’t blow the air against the lens with your mouth, the lens should be placed on a clean desktop with a few sheets of lens paper underneath. Take care when removing the lens to prevent bruises and falls, and do not apply any force on the coated surface of the lens; the lens holder on which the lens is installed should be clean, and the dust and dirt in the lens holder should be cleaned with a clean air spray gun. Then, remove the lens and gently place it in the lens holder.
  2. When mounting the lens to the lens holder, do not use too much force to fix the lens, so as not to deform the lens and affect the quality of the beam.
  3. Precautions when replacing optical lenses:

(1)Be very careful when removing the lenses from the box to prevent damage to the lenses;

(2)Do not put any pressure on the lens before the wrapping paper is opened;

(3)When removing the reflector and focusing lens from the box, wear clean gloves and take them from the side of the lens;

(4)hen removing the wrapping paper from the lens, avoid dust and other things from falling on the lens;

(5)After removing the lens, use a spray gun to remove dust on the mirror surface, and then place the lens on the special paper for the optical lens;

(6)Remove the dust and dirt on the lens support frame and fixed frame, and avoid other foreign objects falling on the lens during assembly;

(7)When installing the lens on the lens holder, do not apply excessive force to avoid lens deformation;

(8)After lens assembly is complete, use a clean air spray gun to remove dust and foreign objects from the lens again.

5. Steps for cleaning lens

Different lenses have different cleaning methods. When the mirror surface is flat and there is no lens holder, use lens paper to clean, such as cleaning the reflector. When the mirror surface is curved or the mirror surface has a lens holder, you should use a cotton swab to clean, such as cleaning the focusing lens.

  1. Steps for cleaning lens with lens paper:

(1) Use a blower to blow off the dust on the lens surface;

(2) Clean the lens surface with alcohol or lens paper. Do not use dry lens paper to directly drag on the mirror surface. Instead, place the lens paper on the surface of the lens, drop 2-3 drops of high-purity alcohol or high-purity acetone, and slowly pull the lens paper out toward the operator , Repeat the above operation several times until the mirror surface is clean;

(3) If the mirror surface is very dirty, fold the lens paper in half 2 to 3 times and repeat the above steps until the mirror surface is clean.

  1. Steps forclean the lens with a cotton swab:
  • First use a spray gun to blow off the dust on the mirror surface, and then use a clean cotton swab to remove the dirt;

(2) Use a new cotton swab moistened with high-purity alcohol or acetone to move in a circular motion from the center of the lens and scrub the lens. After each circle, use another clean cotton swab and repeat the above operation until the lens is clean. Never use a cotton swab that you have used for operation;

(3) Wash the lens with a clean cloth, remove the residue on the mirror surface, and be careful not to scratch the mirror surface;

(4) Take the cleaned lens to a place with sufficient light for observation. If the reflection of the lens is good, it means that the lens has been cleaned. If the reflection of the lens is not good, continue to clean the lens;

(5) Place the cleaned lens on the lens holder according to the method described above.

6. Daily maintenance of laser

The laser should be maintained daily before switching on.

1) Inspection of laser working gas and cutting gas: check the cylinder of laser working gas

2) Check that the cooling water pressure is maintained between 3.5 and 5 Bar.

3) Check the temperature of the cooling water, preferably the temperature of the water required by the selected laser.

4) Check the oil level in the laser vacuum pump. If it is not enough, remember to add it.

5) Check if there is any leakage in the oil, water and gas paths of the laser, and whether the pneumatic components, the pipe joints of the vacuum pump and the resonant cavity are leaking.

Panel Display in IPG laser source Laser generation

7. Weekly maintenance of the laser

1) Check the gas mixing unit of the laser for oil and water. If so, clean it in time. Check the laser gas drying filter. If more than 1/4 of the color changes to red or white, it needs to be replaced. Its normal color is blue.

2) Check the oil level of the vacuum pump and Roots pump. If it is not enough, add it.

3) Check the filter of the chiller for impurities.

4) Check the laser cooling water circuit for impurities.

5) Check the condensate water level in the compressed air separator (located in the air supply unit).

6) Check the vacuum pump oil level (located under the air supply unit). When the pump is in a cold state, the oil level should be between  + 5mm – 0mm of the oil window middle line, and refuel if necessary.

7) Check the oil level of the Roots pump. The oil level in the gear box of the Roots pump can be seen through the oil window on the end face of the gear box. When the pump is turned off and in a cold state, the oil level should be between + 5mm and 0mm of the glass center line. Add HTCL2100 oil if necessary.

8. Half-year maintenance of the laser (or after 2000 hours of operation)

1) Check whether there is any corrosion phenomenon in the cooling water pipe of the laser head. If there is, it should be processed or replaced in time.

2) Check whether the fuel tank of the excitation power supply is leaking.

3) Check whether the high-voltage cable is damaged.

4) Check and clean the inside of the laser cavity and all the lenses, including the front window mirror, tail mirror, reflector, etc.

5) After the internal lens of the laser is cleaned, the light output mode of the laser should be readjusted until the correct mode is reached.

6) Replace the vacuum pump oil.

7) Replace the Roots pump oil.

8) Tighten all plugs carefully to ensure the air tightness of the Roots pump.

9) There is a white plastic plug on the gas splitter at the outlet end of the Roots pump. Clean this plug and apply silicone grease to its inner surface. The purpose of this silicone grease is to adsorb and capture physical impurities in the circulating gas of the laser. (Only use silicone-free high-vacuum silicone grease and apply thinly)

10. Maintenance of the chiller

The chiller should perform regular maintenance to ensure that the machine works in a good state. If there’s any malfunction, you should ask professional technicians to repair it and you are not allowed to disassemble the machine by yourself.

The daily maintenance of chiller should pay attention to the following aspects:

1) Regularly clean the heat sink. The cleaning method is:

Carefully brush the heat sink with a brush and then blow it with compressed air. If necessary, clean and rinse the heat sink with water and special air-condition fin cleanser (commonly known as polyester dust).

2) Clean the condenser regularly (the method is the same as above).

3) Check the water level in the water tank of the chiller regularly. If the water level is too low, you need to add pure water or deionized water in time.

4) Regularly check the electrical terminals and remove the dust (must be performed after power off).

5) Regularly check whether the joints in the water system are leaking and whether the pipeline is aging. If there is a leak, replace the relevant components in time.

6) Regularly check the water quality in the water tank of the chiller. If the cooling water quality deteriorates, the turbidity and the transparency decrease, the deteriorated cooling water should be replaced timely. Discard all and replace with new cooling water.

7) Clean up impurities on the filter element regularly. If the filter element is damaged, it should be replaced in time. The replacement filter element must use the standard filter element required by the manufacturer.

Water Chiller

11. Maintenance of the air compressor

1) The air compressor must be turned off and the compressed air in the gas storage tank must be drained before all maintenance operations;

2) Remember to drain water 3 to 8 times a day (depending on air humidity), and drain the air and water in the gas tank after work;

3) Clean the air filter every half month (shorten the cleaning cycle if the working environment is bad);

4) The filter element should be replaced every 1200 hours of operation, all parts should be checked and cleaned, and the valve disc should be replaced if necessary.

5) The oil-free air compressor needs to be filled with grease for the crankshaft bearing in the compressor head after every 1,000 hours operation;

6) Refer to the air compressor manual.

Air compressor, gas storage tank

12. Maintenance of the air dryer

1) You have to drain 3 to 8 times a day (depending on the humidity of the air), and drain the air and water in the refrigeration dryer after work;

2) Clean the air filter element once a month;

3) You need to remove and clean the cooling fins of the condenser once a month;

4) Replace the air filter element every six months.

13. Maintenance of regulated power supply

1) After the new regulated power supply has been running for one month, cut off the main power supply and tighten all connection terminals in the regulator, especially the main circuit.

2) Check the elasticity of the sliding carbon brush every three months, and use dry compressed air to blow out the toner and dust adhered to the components in the regulator.

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