CD-ROM CNC Laser Cutter with Arduino and Grbl

On December 28, 2015 by jw

This is an Arduino powered CNC laser cutter made from two obsolete CD-ROM drives. The cutting device is a 500mw 405nm Blue-Violet 5V laser. I purchased one from China through eBay for about 40 dollars.

I followed a guide from Tinkernut for the required hardware and software. I also created custom 3D printed parts for the tray, laser, and switch mounts. The Arduino runs the Grbl G-Code interpreter. The G-Code was generated with makercam. After calibration this Frankenstein CNC does a pretty great job cutting a maximum 1.5 x 1.5 inch design.

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The bed and laser are mounted with custom 3D printed parts.

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The small stepper motors from the old CD-ROM drives have new leads that hook up with the EasyDriver motor controllers. I tested each wire’s resistance to find the two phases. The two wires with similar resistance are one of the two phases.
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There is 5v coming in at the bottom of this picture. This will power the Arduino, EasyDrivers, and the laser. IMG_1493

The laser is currently switched on manually at the start of the job and manually switched off at the end. In the future I could add a relay to trigger the laser. I would also need to edit the G-Code to send commands to the relay.
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The star is a little skewed because the X axis (the bottom tray) is slightly off.
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Here is an early proof of concept video showing all the components working together and communicating properly. I like to test all the IO before assembly and calibration.

 

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