Buying A Rotary For Your Laser
Rotary attachments for laser engravers open up a whole new world of products you can engrave on. Tumblers, glassware, and bottles just to name a few. Many companies offer a rotary attachment as an optional add-on to their laser engraving machine. If you have a Chinese (imported) laser that wasn’t sold by a North American based company, you may have to seek a third party rotary to fill your needs. We should note also that there are many options available for third party rotary companies that fit the mainstream laser machines and can be as much as 1/3 of the cost – so it pays to shop.
Types of Rotary Attachments
Lathe Style Chuck Rotary
These rotary attachments can work well depending on your needs. Very well built, they operate similar to a lathe chuck with a set of jaws. This type would work well for things like pens, pencils, ball bats, etc. However keep in mind the other style rotary attachments below can likely handle those items and more.
In our experience it was hard to center things like cups and glassware where it turned evenly. After fussing with this style we put it on the shelf and haven’t used it since.
Roller Bed Rotary
The roller bed rotary attachments are as they sound. Just a device you set in the bed of your machine with rollers that turn. Many have two sets of rollers for large and small round objects. We have used these for very large items like 64 oz. growlers. It is hard to keep items from walking around on the bed.
Some users will put bean bags, sand or other weighted items inside the object to hold it down on the rollers for better results. NOTE – irregular shaped objects will not stay level on these type of rotary attachments. This can be a problem for things like tumblers and some bottles.
Adjustable Roller Bed Rotary
The adjustable roller bed rotary attachment has taken the above two rotaries and made the best of both worlds. By being able to move the stop in and out – you can control the item from walking around. By raising the stop up and down you can level a product that is irregular shaped for good lasering results.
Many of these styles come with an adjustable roller wheel that will run inside the cups or glasses holding the item down to the rollers. These can be flipped out of the way for other types of items.
Considerations Before Your Buy A Rotary
1) You will need to know what type of controller you are running before ordering a rotary. Some have 2 Phase and some 3 Phase motors. The wiring will be 3 or 4 wires depending on your machine. Often times the Brand and Model will dictate what you have. If you have imported a machine - you will need to verify what you are running BEFORE ordering a rotary. See more info at http://piburn.info/home/support/ or http://www.holgamods.com/holgamods/Lasers.html OR ask the company before you place the order and confirm controller AND the connector you will need to fit your machine.
2) You need to make sure the rotary will fit inside your laser physically. Measure the area you have to place it in along with the height. You have to drop the bed quite a bit on a C02 laser to install the rotary and a large 30 oz tumbler. Think about how tall a tumbler is laying on it’s side + the height of the rollers on the rotary + enough room to focus your laser above it. That would be the minimum you would need.
3) Consider what type of items you want to engrave or mark with your laser and make sure the style of rotary you choose will work for your application. One style may not fit all your needs.
Laser Rotary Attachments To Consider
There are many to choose from – here is a beginning place to start.