I have been wanting to install a milliamperemeter in my lasercutter/engraver for some time. The reason for this is that i haven’t been able to make the lasertubes last as long as they are advertised.
I recently purchased a Reci 100W tube, and this time i want it to last as long as possible. Here is a link to the tube i ordered.
The life span can reach 10,000 hours if the current is kept below 26mA.
Here is the analogue milliamperemeter thet i got from ebay.
I then took meassurements from the meter to create a template for cutting a hole in the X700 for installation.
I mate the template out of 1mm thick acrylic and test fitted it to see that my meassurements where correct. I made the template using the lasercutter ofcourse.
I found that the best place to install the meter was where the 2 switches currently are. The left one activates the red dot (that i never use), and the right one wasn’t even wired to anything.
I held up the template to see if the meter would cover the holes from the switches.
I then removed the switches.
I then used the template and a pencil to mark where i would need to cut and drill the 2 mounting holes.
I used a dremel with a cutting tool to cut trough the metal.
I had to clean up the edges a little, before the meter would fit.
The wiring is really simple. The milliamperemeter has to be wired in series with the negative wire from the lasertube. I used a little hot glue to insulate the contact points.
I then installed the meter using the 2 M3 nuts that came with the meter. It was easy to get access via the side panel of the machine.
Here comes a few pictures of the finished installed meter:
After testing the laser with the milliamperemeter, i see that i have to stay at max 70% capacity of the tube to stay below 26mA and hopefully get it to last upwards of 10.000 hours.
If you have any questions regarding this installation, just leave a comment 🙂