What comes standard that everyone else charges for?
The most complete family of laser systems on the market at the most affordable price. Standard and/or Unique features include (model independent): Full Pass Through, Illuminated Substrate, Position Confirmation Test Mode, Red diode pointer, Air Assist, Water Cooling, Intelligent Rubber Stamp Engraving, Multiple or single job selection, Slat Table Work Area, User Replaceable Laser Tubes and more. NOTE: These are features that the others MAY HAVE but at a price, ours is included at no charge!
Does the CheckMate Lasers use proprietary software?
Yes & No. Yes & No. Our XM8 Series laser systems, the King, Queen, Rook, Bishop2 & Knight2 all utilize our XM8draw software in addition to direct output from CorelDRAW or AutoCAD (select versions). Our newest XM8 Series models now ships with a print driver allowing direct output from CorelDRAW, Flexi Sign, Xenetech, CasMATE, ArtCam and possibly many other graphic software applications. Our GrandMaster Series outputs directly from CorelDRAW and/or AutoCAD (select versions). All the CheckMate Lasers line of laser system utilize laser specific software applications designed for laser applications.Your computer will not know the difference between your ink-jet printer, laser printer or CheckMate Laser system. As far as your computer is concerned you are simply printing your graphic image/document. Your computer has no idea it is powering a state of the art, highly technologically advanced laser engraver.
What software can be used with the CheckMate Laser system?
The XM8 Series systems are compatible with CorelDRAW & AutoCAD. Since the laser industry in general has standardized on CorelDRAW as the graphics application of choice we have as well. We highly recommend an application that is vector based to take full advantage of CheckMate Lasers and all the features it offers but use XM8draw software as the final output applications. Using CorelDRAW allows CheckMate Lasers to provide full support, utilizing one of the many alternative vector drawing applications, such as, Adobe Illustrator, Macromedia Freehand, Deneba Canvas, Micrografx Designer will not allow CheckMate Lasers to provide the level of support our customers are accustomed to and expect. Of course you can also utilize AutoCAD as well for the high end CAD design but once again CheckMate Lasers only supports CorelDRAW.
What is the maximum engraving speed of CheckMate Laser systems?
CO2 laser tubes typicallsy cannot fire faster than an optics system operating faster than 80 inches per second (ips). That said, CheckMate Lasers utilizes CO2 glass laser tubes that cannot fire faster than an 80ips as well, so our motion system has been capped at that speed to allow for the best quality at the fastest rate of motion that the laser tube can sustain. It simply makes no sense to speed up a machine’s motion system when the tube cannot fire fast enough to keep up with speeds over 80ips therefore sacrificing quality. CheckMate Laser systems can all are adjusted in increments to full speed capability.
What is the life cycle of the CheckMate Laser system laser source?
Our Class III, cabinet style laser systems have laser tubes that have a lifespan averaging approximately 3-4 years, which has been field proven. While our Class IV, open, large format, high wattage laser systems have laser tubes that have a lifespan of approximately 3-5 years. CheckMate Lasers all use sealed CO2 glass laser tubes that allow us to keep our price point at an affordable price. Read our Glass vs. Metal article for an honest, non marketing hyped comparison.
Can the laser tube be refilled/recharged?
NO. The beauty of our low cost glass laser tubes, is that they are considered a consumable, averaging about 3-4 year life span. Once depleted a purchase of a new tube and replacement is all that is required. Rest assured the replacement tubes are very affordable, costing from $400+$1500 dependent upon the wattage (40 watt - 150 watt). Please inquire with your CheckMate Lasers sales representative.
What other components are required to operate a CheckMate Laser system?
Although not much is needed to operate the laser the following three components & two software applications are a necessity. You may already have the necessary components in place.
- Exhaust Blower … One with sufficient CFM, at least 500 or more. The more CFM the better, especially as the cabinet area increases in size. This is what exhausts the vaporized material and fumes outdoors that the laser beam creates as it laser engraves and/or cuts.
- Compressor … Such as an brushless, tankless type to attach to the standard air assist plumbing on the CheckMate Lasers line of systems.
- Windows-based Computer (XP, 2000, 7 or 8) … Any computer system built in the previous 4-5 years is more than sufficient to operate CheckMate Laser systems. We only recommend to install as much RAM memory that your computer will support.
- XM8 Series: 32-bit or 64-bit platform supported
- CorelDRAW! v9 thru vX7 … CorelDRAW is very easy to learn, an industry standard and fully supported by CheckMate Lasers.
What is the max. acrylic thickness than can be cut through?
Depending on model and lens, up to 1? We have developed a most efficient control of the lens assembly in our CheckMate Laser systems. Following are examples of what our various wattage lasers can cut through in a single pass successfully.
Depending on the manufactured process of the acrylic these numbers can actually grow in thickness.
- 40 watts … 1/4? (quarter inch) thick acrylic
- 50-60 watts … 1/2? (half inch) thick acrylic
- 80 watts … 3/4? (three quarter inch) thick acrylic
- 100-150 watts … 1? (one inch) thick acrylic
Keep in mind these figures are working the laser system at full power with minimum speed. So yes these thicknesses are possible but if you are in a high production unit don't look for the minimum wattage but the highest wattage available in order to increase production rates. As always, time is money, more power translates into thicker and faster cutting.
Can CheckMate Laser systems engrave or cut unprocessed (non-anodized) metal?
NO. Unfortunately without HIGH wattage availability (400+ watts) no CO2 laser will engrave nor cut into raw metals. CO2 lasers use a wave frequency that allows the lasering of virtually any material, which we call organic, (see below) with the exception of raw metals. Only anodized aluminum or coated metals can be engraved by CO2 lasers. Two third party solutions on the market; Cerdec and Thermark, when used properly generates a chemical reaction which crystallizes their “paste” directly to the metal substrate which creates solid black image on uncoated metals. This procedure when done correctly is extremely durable and under testing has withstood military testing, outer space application, lubricants, salt water spray, high heat, abrasion tests and high water pressure testing.
- To date marks have been made on:
- Chromed Steel
- Lead-coated Steel
- Stainless Steel
- Tungsten Carbide
- The solution is also expected to work on:
What materials can be processed by CO2 laser?
Virtually any materials with the exception of unprocessed metals (see above) and substances that are too soft or heat sensitive, such as foam. Other than that the materials the CheckMate Laser systems can etch into and/or vector cut are nearly limitless. Definitely this list is not all inclusive but here is a brief list of materials that have been proven to work well (you may come up with more).
- Anodized Aluminum
- Ceramic Substrates
- Coated Metals
- Laminated Plastics
- Matte Board
- Painted Metals