Laser PWM Module V1



  • Just had my order from JLCPCB of the mini PWM boards for driving Lasers.

    tl;dr - A board to drive PWM laser modules from the Duet!

    My first time getting a PCB fabbed and my first real SMD soldering! Somehow managed to nail the SMD soldering on the first try, so have 9 bare "practice" boards left 😛

    The projects is linked here on EasyEDA. It's based on Duex circuitry, and is designed to slot into the Duex expansion slot. It's a 74HCT02 based board, which will invert the PWM, and drive it from the high side, rather than the low side driven PWM on the Duet. It also has the same protection the Duex has in case the 3v3 rail is shorted to ground to shut off the PWM.

    It's the same circuit described here. Which also describes how to utilise the board. It is of course open source, everything needed to make your own is on the EasyEDA link above 😄

    As you can see in the images below, it's pretty simple, 2 components and 3 connectors. And it works, drives my Laser happily!

    The traces are a lot thinner than I'd expected, I think that's down to just not being familiar with the scale of things. I suspect they're more than enough for the 2.5W laser I'm running though. I'll probably redesign it with chunkier traces, though all the GND and PWR connections do are pass through for the sake of keeping connections in one place, so you could just skip connecting them through the board and just use the PWM output.

    Anyone see any issues/potential problems with it? Or potential improvements (e.g. more PWMs - there's room on the chip to drive 2 more I believe).

    Imgur

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  • @keyz182 said in Laser PWM Module V1:

    The projects is linked here on EasyEDA.

    Excellent project & write-up, @keyz182! Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Could you please provide more info (& pics) regarding the laser you're using with this module? (I might give it a go myself and haven't worked with lasers before so any pointer would be helpful).

    And perhaps say a bit more about what you're using the laser for? is it for etching/cutting acrylic and the like or something totally different?



  • @snowcrash said in Laser PWM Module V1:

    @keyz182 said in Laser PWM Module V1:

    The projects is linked here on EasyEDA.

    Excellent project & write-up, @keyz182! Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Could you please provide more info (& pics) regarding the laser you're using with this module? (I might give it a go myself and haven't worked with lasers before so any pointer would be helpful).

    This is the laser I'm using. It appears to be using the same control board as the Eleksmaker laser modules that are all over Aliexpress and similar.

    They're pretty simple boards, they take GND, +12V and PWM. They have a button on them, when off, the laser is on, but in very low power, so good for lining up parts, focusing, and I generally leave the switch in this position when not in use. When on, the laser is in PWM mode where it's intensity is PWM controlled, from off up to full power.

    If you're getting one, be sure to check that it's a PWM laser, and buy safety glasses! I also got some transparent safety acrylic that filters out the lasers wavelength which I'm going to try to either enclose, or somehow shield the laser with for extra safety.

    And perhaps say a bit more about what you're using the laser for? is it for etching/cutting acrylic and the like or something totally different?

    I only have a 2.5w module, so plenty of etching, but limited in cutting - card, paper, thin/light wood, very thin opaque acrylic (or a lot of passes - ~16 passes at 3mm/s on some 3mm thick stuff I tried yesterday). Also remember that this is a visible light wavelength laser, so if you can see through it, the laser will "see" through it too (unless, as mentioned above, it filters that particular wavelength).

    I'm trying/failing to get into leather work (wallets, belts and the like), so hoping to use the laser to cut templates and etch logos/designs/etc.


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