TechSoft UK Ltd., Falcon House, Royal Welch Avenue,
Bodelwyddan, Denbighshire, LL18 5TQ
Tel: 01745 586845 ~ Fax: 01745 535008
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Laser Buying Guide

A laser system for your school or college will always be a major investment. The right purchasing decision will ensure the best possible technology for your students now and a sustainable investment for the long term. Before making your decision you should consider the following points carefully:

Points to Consider TechSoft Solution
What will I get for my money? Everything you need - No Hidden Extras
Budget-price lasers may look attractive but will you receive a pile of boxes and a ‘translated’ manual to build the machine from? Is the machine supplied with an extraction system (not just a blower), and will it meet UK emission standards? Generic ‘Laser’ software will severely limit what students can do so 2D Design files will need to be imported. ‘What you draw’ and ‘What you get’ will then be down to trial and error. LaserCAM machines are manufactured exclusively for TechSoft to meet all Educational Safety Standards and we include installation, commissioning and training at no extra cost. The fully automatic extraction system filters out all the harmful gases to emit clean air. All LaserCAMs work directly with 2D Design to output the whole file - including pictures.
Water Cooled V Air Cooled Laser Tube Quality Assured Air Cooled Lasers
Most of the ‘budget’ laser cutters now appearing in the UK use cheap water-cooled glass laser tubes. These can cut effectively when new and properly setup, but service-life can be relatively short so frequent replacements are likely to be needed. Costs will add up and you will seldom have a machine that is performing to its full capacity. The external water cooling system needs careful attention too - if the water gets too hot the tube fails, if the tube gets air pockets or bubbles in it, the tube fails. TechSoft lasers are supplied with Synrad air cooled solid state laser tubes (made in the USA). These high quality devices have built-in cooling fans and will provide a consistent laser output for 4 to 5 years on average. When output has declined significantly, a TechSoft engineer will call to confirm that a new tube is needed and (if required) fit a genuine Synrad factory re-manufactured unit. Once re-calibrated, your LaserCAM will be ‘as new’
Warranty Fully Inclusive Two Year Warranty
Beware the T&Cs! Check what the warranty covers and for how long. Many schemes show shorter warranty periods for parts that are known to be vulnerable. Is the warranty ‘on-site’ or will you have to pay for a visit (often by the hour)? Parts may be covered but who pays for an engineer to call? TechSoft’s LaserCAM machines come with a two year warranty on everything supplied (including the laser tube). ANY problem in the first two years (other than those caused by neglect or abuse) and we will fix it – on site at no extra cost. Extended warranties can also be purchased for long term peace of mind.
Extraction Total Fume Control
Lasers cut by vaporising material and the noxious fumes produced need to be dealt with safely. If a local factory was blowing unfiltered waste into the atmosphere there would (rightly) be uproar from parents and local authorities. It is unthinkable for schools to be supplied with anything less than a system that fully meets health and environmental responsibilities. LaserCAMs come with a sophisticated extraction system that removes all significant particulates and volatile organic compounds. The system constantly monitors the condition of filters and automatically adjusts suction levels to ensure the right level of extraction. To gain maximum life from the filters and to avoid any residual smells, the filtered exhaust can then safely be vented to atmosphere.
Software Support Direct Output from 2D Design V2
This may well be very rudimentary proprietary software. If no Windows printer driver is supplied, then the only link with 2D Design will be through a DXF transfer file with its inevitable loss of smooth Bezier curves and bitmap data. It may also be difficult to locate where the image will be cut, and what size it will be. Support for the LaserCAM range is built right into 2D Design . Power levels, positioning, integration of engraving and cutting, even support for rotary cutting and engraving are all made logical and simple with 2D Design . Because we write the software, we make sure output is direct and you will have complete control.
Air Assist and Other Accessories Integrated Air Assist, Rotary Attachment Option
Any laser will need an air assist system to keep the lasing area cool and the lens clean. Water cooled lasers will also need a pump and water storage tank. These are not so much ‘accessories, as ‘essentials’ so make sure high quality, purpose made items are supplied. Fish tank pumps and plastic storage boxes are not suitable! TechSoft only supply top quality commercial items that are designed to last. All essential components are built-in and air assist is integrated into the extractor. This auto-runs when needed to provide a very neat solution. The only accessory customers might choose is the Rotary Attachment which opens up superb opportunities for cylindrical working.
Focusing Automatic, One-Click Focusing
Setting the laser height needs doing every time you change the thickness of the workpiece. This focuses the beam onto the work and is critical for clean, efficient cutting. Some machines use a manual process to make this a fiddly, time consuming and hit and miss affair. With a LaserCAM, simply put the material on the bed, press the Autofocus button, and the job is done in just a few seconds.
Safety Guaranteed Safety Compliance
‘Budget’ imported lasers are often built to meet lower H&S standards. Any machine supplied in the UK must make it impossible for a child (or adult!) to be exposed to laser emissions or live electrical circuits. Security fastenings, interlocks and safety casings cost money, so make sure corners have not been cut in this essential area. LaserCAMs comply with all relevant European safety standards, doors are fully interlocked and the cabinet is designed to screen laser emission. Any machine operation presents potential hazards; TechSoft provide full H&S guidance for safe operation of all LaserCAM machines.
Advice, Support and Training Comprehensive Support that You can Rely On
Simple with some cheaper machines – there isn’t any. Setting up the machine, servicing and calibration are skilled jobs and potentially dangerous. When making a major investment, you need the confidence of backing from a well-established company with a proven track record. Be very cautious of any supplier who can’t provide references from long-standing, satisfied customers. We strive to make our support the best in the business. When we deliver a new machine we train you how to use it and how to look after it. Our detailed Inset Pack backs this up and will help you to get the best from your investment. If you have a problem, advice is free and unlimited by phone or email. If older machines need a service, we have one flat rate fee plus any parts. Our policy is that we do not leave until everyone is happy.
When you do the comparisons, we are confident that LaserCAM from TechSoft will come out on top.