Chinese Handheld Laser Welders
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  1. #1
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    Default Chinese Handheld Laser Welders

    Does anyone know a thing or two about these?

    YouTube

    I havn't been able to find any sign of these being used in the U.S. nor has my rep from IPG. In fact, he said it was "disturbing" to see. I'm no expert, but I agree; hand-handling a 1kw laser seems like a recipe for disaster. Both for safety and liability.

    So, anyone out there who happens to have some experience with these?

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    There's a metal optics shield/edge guide on the nozzle, I suspect (hope!) that there's a continuity or inductance sensor there to ensure contact with the work and that automatically cuts the beam if the laser is lifted or shifted off the part.

    While not a perfect safety, it would cut down the risk of exposure to the beam for a worker.

    And considering the military research China's doing on weaponized handheld lasers, this might just be a "back door" testing program...

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    That is really cool. I wonder if it will cut sheetmetal too.

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    X2 on cool, I'm still waiting on something a bit smaller that will burn a hole thru a broken bolt that you can't reach.

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    Fiber laser wavelength is supposed to be fully absorbed by metal. That is why it works well on the mirror finish sheets they were cutting. I have easily cut mirror finished copper with my 1000 watt laser. My machine does not have an enclosure either.
    DO NOT LOOK INTO BEAM WITH REMAINING EYE!!!

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    NASA has a US patent on a hand held laser welder. A number have been built and used. Their specification for the hand piece is much more TIG torch in size. NASA had a repair application that justified the effort. The idea hasn’t found much of a market. In general for big expensive items that need some welding, smooth steady motion is desired like what a machine can deliver. This Chinese unit looks big, heavy and cumbersome.
    The laser welders where you position a hand held part under a fixed laser, there are thousands installed. I have been told to train a good TIG welder takes months and this is after you find a willing person. To train with a laser hand welder takes a couple of days. If you start with a trained TIG person, they take to laser in a few minutes.
    The laser beam diverges rapidly from the focus zone. If the proximity sensor strategy doesn’t work you are not going to blow a hole in the roof or even a nearby coworker.

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    I didn't watch the video. At Fabtech last week there was a company with a 1 kw handheld fiber laser available for demonstrations. I did a tee joint on 24? gauge sheet metal. It did a nice job, with a strong weld. The technician was Oriental, so the language barrier was to great to actually get good information from him. I wondered specifically if it could be used with filler but all I could understand from him was one killowatt.

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    There cool in the right application and use, that said with the fantastic employee safety records that China was maintained over the years.
    I would have to think that in China when your employee goes totally blind by noon, you dock him a half days pay guide him to the door and get the next lucky participant started off.


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