Hi folks, I am a hobbyist CNC'er who is interested in maybe modding my

Hi folks,

I am a hobbyist CNC’er who is interested in maybe modding my CNC to do laser cutting. Could you give me some advice for cheaply/easily (with more emphasis on easy) adding the capability to cut 1/8" thick plywood to my CNC router table (4’x8’)? If the question is naive/dumb, please feel free to correct me (I’m totally ignorant!)

Thanks for all comments!


Plywood with a diode its difficult unless many many passes

I’m gonna say, this won’t be easy. The easy method to have a laser on the CNC is a diode based laser, but you won’t cut plywood with it. You’ll sorta scorch your way through after hours of cutting and leave a nasty sooty mess. :stuck_out_tongue: The alternative is a bigger CO2 laser tube, but then you’ll have to deal with mirrors and a proper containment for the beam, since those will make you blind right quick if you don’t have a box. For the cost and effort, you might as well buy a K40 and kit it out with better electronics.

Just wondering why you would use a laser to cut the plywood when you have a cnc router?

Some work requires a very fine cut without stressing the stock material… Like living joints.

OK, understood. In that case you would probably want to invest in a CO2 laser, a 50W unit will do everything you want to 1/4" stock. Best of luck in your endeavors.

Thanks @funinthefalls ​!

To do 3/4" in one pass you are probably looking at 150W or more.