There are many ways to commemorate an event or promote your business. T-shirts are an all-time favorite. Mugs are always a hit, and custom pens are functional and inexpensive. Maybe you'll even enjoy some designer hats. But if you want to create something truly memorable, engraving is hard to beat. Unlike disposable pens or mugs, engravings have a long-lasting, durable aura. In order to create them, you need a good laser engraver.
Of course, branding and awards are just two applications of engraving machines. Engravers can be used to reproduce artwork. You can create plaques and other objects with text and images. Laser engravers can also be used to cut a variety of materials. This is often more reliable, efficient and repeatable than sawing or other traditional techniques. But if you want good performance, you need a quality engraver.
Today, we will be reviewing the LONGER RAY5 20W Laser Engraver. This is a powerful 20 watt laser engraver that is far more powerful than most publicly available laser machines. It can engrave and cut most materials, and can even create shadow etches on stainless steel. But does it meet all the requirements you need? We'll take a deep dive into this machine and evaluate all of its capabilities.
Frames and Gantry
LONGER RAY5 20W laser engraving machine is mainly composed of black aluminum frame and gantry. It has a roughly square footprint, measuring 24 by 26 inches. Metal feet lay flat on any level surface. But they also have pre-drilled holes on the sides so you can attach them to your own custom frame. This makes the router installation very flexible as you can install it almost anywhere.
Working area is 375mm x 375mm. This is about average for a laser engraving machine, which typically ranges from 350mm x 350mm to 400mm x 400mm. White graduations are printed on both sides of the frame to easily locate whatever you want to engrave.
The side rails are also slotted in the middle to form a set of tracks. A black aluminum gantry spans the sides horizontally and rides on tracks. The wheels are clipped to the side rails from the top and bottom, and the gantry is motorized. This allows the gantry to move back and forth freely.
The gantry itself is also marked with a white millimeter scale for easy horizontal placement of objects. At the same time, the laser module is installed on the top of the gantry. The module is also motorized and can move side to side on rails on the gantry. Therefore, it can move from left to right, and forward and backward. This allows the laser to automatically move in two axes and complete the engraving.
The LONGER RAY5 comes with a 12-month manufacturer's warranty to cover any faults. You are fully protected against defective parts or labor.
Laser and Control
The laser module itself is a vertical rectangular block. It's made of matt black aluminum that fits perfectly into the frame and is connected by brackets. The stand has a pair of slots with two set screws so you can move the laser up and down freely. Next to the slot is a set of millimeter scales that can be used to customize the laser height. You can adjust the focal length according to your needs to cut and engrave various types and thickness of materials.
The laser consumes 20 watts of power, which is very powerful. Most home routers consume 5 watts, and some more powerful models consume 10 watts. At 20 watts, you'll have a lot of power, but also a lot of heat. To this end, the top of the module is ventilated, with built-in fans to improve air flow.
There is also a dust cover with a built-in suction tube to suck dust out of the laser. If your engraver has a larger guard this will do a good job of keeping it clean. There is also a blue shield around the laser head to help prevent eye injuries. However, UV protection glasses should still be worn when engraving.
There is a 3.5-inch touchscreen on the front left for simple controls. You can open individual files and sculpt them, or adjust your settings. You can also use diagnostic tools to improve the performance of your machine. On top of the display is a large button that acts as an emergency shutdown. If you need to stop the laser immediately, just press a button.
connection and setup
There are several ways to connect to the RAY5 and start working. The default method is to use the smartphone app. If your phone and longer laser engraver are on the same WiFi network, you can work directly from your phone. As long as you have a compatible image file, you can print without any interruptions.