Something that seems to be a long time coming is an affordable laser engraver. While laser cutting machines have been around since 1965, it is only in the last 10 years or so that the industry had taken great leaps in technology, eliminating the need for diamonds to focus the laser and replacing them with mirrors and light. Diamonds are a big reason why older laser machines were so expensive, and eliminating this need has allowed for a lot of innovation in the laser industry.
One of the things that has changed with laser cutters is the power they use to work. Laser machines range from 40W to over 6000W, which is why they are so versatile. If someone only needs a machine for engraving, then a machine that operates on low power is all that will be needed. If someone needs more versatility, such as cutting fabrics and paper, then a little more power will be required. The denser the material the more power that will be needed. The nice thing is that a 6000W laser cutter can still engrave metal, wood and even plastic while still being able to cut through heavy metal.
Another area where any wattage laser engraver or cutter excels is in its precision. When first invented, lasers were good for large swaths of cutting, but weren’t precise enough for intricate work. Now, they are so precise that it will cut within 5 micrometers of a design. Essentially, the human eye would not be able to determine any discrepancies between the original design and the copy with this amount of precision. In fact, this is precise enough for surgery, which is why lasers are being used so frequently in the medical field.
It is now possible for someone to get a high-end quality laser machine for $4000. There are lower quality machines available for less, but for a precise and powerful machine, it’s possible to purchase one without spending a fortune. This is good news for small businesses and hobbyists that could benefit from a laser cutter but who don’t have $10,000 or more to spend on this purchase.
It’s possible that laser cutters will make even more leaps in technology in coming years. However, if you need a laser engraver or cutter now, it’s possible to get one that will meet all of your needs without having to take out a loan to do it.