The Longmill CNC is a popular machine for CNC enthusiasts. This laser upgrade will allow these users to upgrade the machine to be an awesome laser machine as well with the J Tech high powered lasers. We will go over how to install the laser on this machine in a process that takes under an hour to get going. Let’s start!
Purchase the Longmill CNC Laser Upgrade
Mounting the Laser
Depending on when you purchased your machine, you will have either holes for the laser in the front or also on the side. Where you choose to mount is up to you.
The mounting kit will contain the mount, screws, and all of the items needed to install the laser. Note, the newer higher power lasers will have just one extension cable to run.
There will also be shorter M5 screws to be able to mount to the side as well. The newer lasers will have a black 4 pin molex extension cable that looks like this:
To mount to the front, you will remove the two bolts holding the router mount tight. Unscrew the two front bolts, put the mount on, and then use the new longer bolts provided to tighten back the router holder.
For the side mount, you can use the two tapped M5 holes on the left side of the router holder. Use the shorter M5 screws included in the kit to attach the mount to the side. They are located here:
If you use the side mounting position, you will need to use the two inside screw holes on the mount.
Routing the Extension Cable
The kit will come with either a 10′ Molex extension cable for the smaller machines or a 15′ extension cable for the larger machine (48″ x 30″). You can either put it into the cable chains or you can zip tie it to the outside of the cable chains, either way. Just make sure you put the correct side for the laser before you put it in the cable chains otherwise you will need to do it twice.
The Safety Interface board will have connections for the extension cable and the PWM input signal from the Longmill controller. Here is a description of the connections:
Connect the extension cable to the laser output port H3 and the input cable to the two pin molex port H4. The other side of the input cable goes to the Longmill controller board. Connect to the SpinPWM port on the Longmill control board here:
Software to Run Your Laser
We recommend using Lightburn to run your new J Tech laser. It is an all in one software that will be able to design and control the machine all in one. It produces excellent results for vector engraving, photo engraving, and cutting. To get your lightburn software license and free 30 day trial, click on the logo below:
Once you install lightburn you will need to set up your device. Set it up following the video below.
And there it is! There are many projects you can complete with your new laser. To see some application examples, look here at our photo gallery to get ideas!