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Tools at the Asylum
Large Format Laser Cutter

Picture of generic Lasersaur

General Info
Mfr. Specs
ManualProject Lasersaur manual
Training (experimental section)
Tool SpeciesLaser Cutters
(Includes rubric, training information, and testing information.)
Asylum Info
LocationDigital Fabrication
OwnerDerek Seabury
Operational Status
Latest Status
QR Code

The Asylasaur is the Asylum's version of the Lasersaur Laser cutter. It has a 100W CO2 laser and a 1220x610mm (48x24") cutting bed. There is a $1/min usage fee billed in 5 minute increments. An invoice will be emailed to you. Email member-services@ with any questions.


Laser Appropriate Materials

Many materials are unable, unsafe or unpleasant to use in the laser cutter. Reference the Asylasaur Material List for a list of materials that laser-cut/etch well or poorly, plus suggested settings. PLEASE CONTRIBUTE TO THE LIST! For a more general list of how to cut various materials with Asylum tools you can reference this page: Materials Cutting Chart.

Asylasaur Operation Checklist

☐ Turn on Ventilation, Cooling and Air assist systems
☐ Disengage eStop switch with clockwise twist
☐ Load material in Laser
☐ Set focal depth - adjust as needed using Focusing tool
☐ Log in to Laser PC as cutter
☐ Open Firefox
☐ In File Import tab load image to cut
☐ - Confirm size is accurate
☐ In Move/jog tab set up cut area
☐ - Move to far left with arrows if needed
☐ - Hit house icon to configure home
☐ - Clear any offset by clicking outside of offset area
☐ - Click or use arrow keys to move to top left corner of work piece
☐ - Wait 2 seconds, click Move To and Set Offset buttons
☐ In Laser jobs tab configure job
☐ - Set passes, speed, power and colors for your job
☐ - Confirm placement with Send Bounding Box Button (next to Send)
☐ Record your usage via the web page
☐ Put on safety goggles as appropriate
☐ Send to Asylasaur
☐ Watch for fire, errors, missing or misdirected laser, head crash
☐ For additional cuts repeat from clearing and setting offset
☐ In Move/jog tab reset laser
☐ - Clear any offset by clicking outside of offset area
☐ - Hit 0,0 button (or 0 on the keyboard) to move lens home
☐ Log off machine (Menu from top right corner of screen)
☐ Allow ventilation (at least 3 min after plastics)
☐ Hit eStop
☐ Remove work, clean bed
☐ Remove cut bed and vacuum if needed
☐ Power down support systems


Problem: Head does not respond to commands from the app.

Solution: Remember to turn off the emergency stop. Also try resetting the firmware: on the lasersaur app, at the top left, under Admin, click Reset Atmega (restarts firmware).

Problem: Error flag "rejecting, outside work area" when sending the job or bounding box.

Solution: If your job is an inkscape .svg file, you may have lines outside the defined page. Make sure no lines cross over the page border, and zoom out to check that you have no images fully outside the page.

Asylasaur Training

Asylasaur training is covered in the Asylum Laser Cutter Training class. Class attendance is required to offset the machine lease and testing expenses as well as ensuring everyone has been informed of all safety policies and the expectation that they contribute to the group knowledge base.

Media:Asylasaur Training.pdf

Asylasaur User Maintenance

Most maintenance tasks for the laser such as lens cleaning, belt adjustment, mirror alignment etc. will be handled by the testers and trainers, and documented here. There are other tasks that may come up that ambitious users can undertake however.

Correcting Crosshair Lasers

  • Etch a horizontal and vertical line crossing on a piece of paper
  • Move the laser to the crossing point
  • Place finger under one line laser to block it and adjust the other to go through the intersection evenly
  • Repeat for other line

Resetting Asylasaur

After jobs are interrupted or other unusual events the laser may be in an odd state where the laser may not fire or air assist may not turn off or on. If the web page is still responsive you can reset the system with the following steps

  • Clear any offset
  • Choose 'Reset Atmega' from the Admin menu at the top of the interface
  • Click the house icon to re-home the system

Checking Y Gantry Alignment

If you believe the belt on one side or the other has skipped, you can perform the following test/fix steps.

  • Home the machine
  • Hit the emergency stop button and wait 15 seconds
  • Push the gantry to the back of the machine. It should make contact with metal stops on both sides.
  • If one side is not touching the gantry is out of alignment
  • Open a ticket on the machine. If you are able to fix the problem (see below) just open a warning. Otherwise mark the machine as down.

Correcting Y Gantry Alignment

  • Move the gantry to the back as noted in the Checking steps above.
  • On the side that is not making contact push the gantry back along the rail until it the belt jumps a gear and the gantry makes contact with the back stop. Try not to place any twisting force on the gantry and only push straight back along the side rail.
  • If gantry moves enough to feel the belt slip a tooth and you may hear a click. Both sides should now contact the back plates at the same time when the gantry is pushed.
  • Disable the eStop and home the machine.
  • Perform a sample test cut piece of paper near the left side of the bed to check the laser.
  • Repeat the test on the right side to compare the results. Check the mirror mount for heating.

Asylasaur Reservations

Use of the Asylasaur should be scheduled via the Asylum reservation system [help].

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