New Module IDEAS

Yes, we do have a plan of 8-watt laser module in 2021, which is compatible with Snapmaker 2.0 machine. It is still in a prototype period and there is a long of work to do.

It is not compatible with Snapmaker Original machine.

Cheers
Edwin

Thanks Edwin. I think it is a pity that SM original owners are being “left out in the cold” when it comes to the proposed 8W laser module. We were the ones that took the chance on Snapmaker at the beginning and all things considered I have been very happy with the machine. I bought the 1600mw laser as soon as I could but as a pensioner certainly cannot afford to upgrade to SM2. Surely it would not be a huge leap to produce an 8W laser version compatible, or adapted, to work with the SM original. It makes me wonder if the parts and support for SM original are going to be slowly phased out and stopped too - I sincerely hope that will not be the case???

Yours sincerely

Bryan Parkinson

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Dear Bryan,

Thank you for your tremendous support to Snapmaker Company.

I have to say that we barely have plans for upgrades of Snapmaker Origin as we are heading for different add-ons for Snapmaker 2.0 and other new machines in 2021.

We totally understand your concerns, but we are devoted to offer better machines for our supporters.

For users who have Snapmaker Original, they have all the services that we promised.

Best regards
Edwin

Other new machines? Something else coming out?

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I think the frustration comes from being told that one of the innovations of SM was the CAN bus for the modules, which meant that there would be “many future modules available”. They were “promised” more modules that would connect to the original machine, but now the company has decided their machine is no longer upgradeable (outside the single 1600mw laser module), so the original promise of being able to upgrade without having to buy a new base machine has been broken.

As a recent purchaser of the SM 2, your comment about “and other new machines” worries me that even my SM 2 may shortly be left behind with a new SM 3, and future modules will only work on that machine and not mine.

Maybe to assuage some fears, SM could finish the DIY module instructable: 「8.8」DIY Laser Module : 6 Steps - Instructables (need all the steps about how to install the firmware), since that would at least allow some hobbyists to make diy modules to keep supporting the older machines.

I found a picture on Snapmaker’s blog about the 2.0 and it’s showing the prototypes of XL-CNC, H-Laser and (what looks like) a radial printing platform, kinda looks like a gazebo. Thinking about it, that’s probably what he means. Those aren’t simple additions, they are pretty much machines in and of themselves, and we would still have to buy the rails. Here’s the pic for reference.

@Artezio @nivekmai @BJP

We have four main projects in 2021.

  • Linear Module Project
  • Printing Project
  • Laser Project
  • CNC Project

High-precision linear module and larger baseplate for A300&A500 will ensure the larger machine will move and work more stable.

Dual-extruder module and a deeper research in 3D filament will lead the machine to a new level and help users to have more fun.

Laser project will provide air purifier and a 8-watt laser module to expand the boundary of Snapmaker machine. We call it L500 because we want to design a larger workplace as well.

CNC project contains the Rotary Module, High-power CNC spindle, and collet kit. This is the most difficult project we ever have, and we just have a timeline for it.

Cheers
Edwin

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Me like what you’re saying! :drooling_face:

Will the larger machine A500 fit in the A350 enclosure? Will I be able to buy parts to convert my A350 to a A500 or is this a completely new machine?

in another post Edwin said their intent is to make it to where you buy the addons, not a new machine, that it would hurt customers and them as a business.

@Foggynoggin Hi James, A500 would be a complete new machine in the initial project blueprints. Our mechanic engineers are still developing the high-precision linear modules now. We are not sure whether it is possible to convert A350 to A500, but have to wait for the R&D team to tell us.

@Artezio Hi Aron, thank you for clarifying this issue. I am sorry that I cannot offer you the clear answer now.

Sorry for the inconvenience.
Edwin

@Snapmaker-Edwin I’m not necessarily worried about the release date or it being a new machine. More concerned with how much it will cost. Any ideas on the possible ballpark price range? It’ll probably be a good year or two before we even start seeing anything hit the website. Already going to get one, would just like to know a guesstimate price range so I can have an idea about how to go about saving for it. The fact that it’s a new machine tells me 3 almost certainties.

1: The quality of it being a Snapmaker combined with the size is going to make it more expensive than the A350.

2: If #1 isn’t true, making a kit adaptation to turn A350 into an A500/L500 would result in the price ending up being more than the A350 forcing the making of a new machine the only possibility.

3: The new machines might not be multi-function but rather dedicated machines for them to shine, yet probably still modular for their own purpose.

I am sorry that I cannot offer you an accurate price list.

High-precision linear modules will be used in the A500 machine to ensure stability.

The R&D team are developing the linear modules, the large work plate. I will consult if they are going to release the update kit which converts A350 to A500.

Edwin

I know this is a bit late, and not sure if it was mentioned above but Id love some sort of retractable z-axis distance probe. Something that attaches to the side of any module, lowers down to 1mm below the head of the attached module and calibrates it physically. Can retract once calibration is done to get out of the way. This would eliminate the need for manual calibration with the calibration card, and any user error.

For 3D printing it could accurately level the whole bed.
For laser cutting/Engraving it could accurately set the laser to the optimal (15mm?) focus height.
For CNC it could accurately set the z-offset.

  • More accurate levelling result is related to the 3D printing project. Our CAE engineers are working on a larger and flatter heated bed.
  • As for the Laser focus process, we plan to develop the physical measurement, like a removable rule.
  • CNC tool setter is in plan and we want to release a high-power CNC module this year.

Edwin

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Oh interesting! For the laser focus I was thinking about 3D printing something to attach to it for now. I think in the past you mentioned the Focus distance is 15mm not including the “shade tube” thing, correct? So that would be, 15mm from the line where it screws into the rest of the laser module?

For the CNC tool setter. Do you know if that would help with bit changes within a specific job? Or if Luban might include a “Tool change” setting before running a secondary G-Code. Where it runs one G-code, then rises up for a tool change then runs the next G-code without needing to do anything else other than changing out the bit?

According to the laser specs, the focal length is about 15mm, from the end of the tube to the material surface.

As the shade tube is about 10mm, users can set the distance as 5mm.

We have plan to make a square to measure the distance accurately. As you can see in the picture below, there are four sections in the square, and the thickness is from 3mm to 6mm.

We are printing it and will test if it will work.

Cheers
Edwin

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As for the CNC carving in Snapmaker Luban, you are able to generate two G-code files with the same model, one for roughly carving and one for precise carving.

You can change the bit when you switch to the second file. However, this feature is not available now.

Cheers
Edwin

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Have they gotten back with you yet about whether or not a conversion kit that will turn the A350 into A500?

Sorry that I went home yesterday. The R&D team is so busy having meetings this week. Since we have not made a prototype of A500, I will update the issue here after our holiday.

Cheers
Edwin