The K40 – The cheap laser cutter earning you a part-time income
Can you make money with the K40 Laser Cutter?
Iv’e always been a bit of a pyro at heart so I thought what’s better than burning stuff with a laser *Star Wars theme*. After trawling eBay for 3 days I finally stumbled on a cheap laser cutter called the K40 which was a great price and also had a digital screen and emergency stop button if it gets out of control. The total shipping cost was AUD $585 which equates to about $420 USD.
There are a lot for sale on Amazon.com although be careful a huge majority of the sellers have inflated shipping costs so beware of the total costs if you are ready to buy a K40.
After I had Tested and experimented with the output quality for about 2 weeks I finally started to make some progress with the K40 Laser Cutter
The k40 is a great entry-level machine for anyone wanting to get their feet wet with laser engraving.
Octopus: I Pulled an image from google removed the Sharpie and ran the Bitmap Trace features that’s within Inkscape.
This is how it looked after the Bitmap Trace. I then increased Contrast and brightness.
Because I am going to be scaling this image up to 1m I wanted to make sure it was in a vector format to preserve the final quality.
I ran the k40 at a speed of 100mm/s and at power level 11% laser power to get the following effect. As plywood is very soft, the power settings can stay very low.
Top places to sell your laser cuts with your cheap laser cutter
eBay is still one of the biggest e-commerce platforms on the net, so if you want to get more eyeballs your product, eBay would be a good starting point
Etsy is the home for everything handmade, so if you decide to sell wooden items especially, Etsy is your best bet. They have fairly low commission rates, so expect to be paying 3.5% + 27 cents on each sale
Artfire is another handmade marketplace which you can sell your handmade goods. Similar to Etsy, Artfire is the place for custom wood and trinkets as well as other handmade items
What can I make with my K40 Laser Cutter?
There are endless things you can start to make with your K40 cheap laser cutter, Ranging from gifts for friends, weddings and birthdays to home and pet accessories. Being a such a versatile machine, the k40 can engrave a range of personal items that can be sold at your local market or online for the whole world to see.
Here is a list of things you can start making today.
- Custom Pet Tags
- Drink Coasters
- Custom Poker Chips
- Engraved Chopsticks
- Custom Name Tags
- Wedding Invitations
- Framed lasered photography
A few things to remember before purchasing a K40 laser cutter
Although the K40 Laser Cutter is a great machine for creators, there are a few things to remember after purchasing.
- Be aware the K40 does generate small burns in your wood. Please be aware there needs to be adequate ventilation, as the K40 Laser Cutter emits waste smoke.
- It is not a toy! The k40 laser cutter is quite powerful and can cause injury if used incorrectly.
How long does it take to engrave an item?
Depending on your laser settings the laser cut can take between 1 minute and 30 minutes depending on complexity and size of the item
The Octopus took around 20 minutes to complete at a speed of 100mm/s and 10% laser power. The height of the Octopus image is 170 mm tall and 135mm wide
You can increase the speed of the laser, although you will need to increase the power of the laser cutter to compensate.