CNC enclosure jtech laser

I’m going to build an enclosure for my onefinity mostly to help with smoke from jtech laser. The problem I’m having is I’m looking to put in a window that is laser safe. I live in Canada and can’t find anywhere to purchase this. Any ideas of what I can use and where to find it.
Thanks in advance


I’ve looked too. The only place I can find certified stuff is from JTech in the US and the cost with shipping to Canada is ridiculous.

For now at least I made my enclosure solid and use a camera to watch what is happening.

Have you considered scavenging parts from an existing product? I searched for laser engraver covers, for example, and there were a few that were in the $75-200 range that you might be able to take window material from.

Interesting idea, unfortunately although these cheap one are sold as eye protection I’ve not been able to find anything that shows really that they are safe. I guess people using them for a long time and not going blind may be a good indicator but I’d like to see some sort of a lab testing proof. If you look at good laser safety glasses they have the wavelengths that they protect from and the optical density value (O.D.), which is how much they reduce the light by. So these uncertified ones may have a very poor OD but can still say they are blocking laser light.

The xTool one at $195 has a 18x10 window. Jtech’s products aren’t that size, they have a larger 24x12 for $34 US (currently on sale). Their first choice for shipping to Ontario is USPS Priority Mail express at $89 so that comes out to $123 US ($167 CDN) for 2 sq-ft of plastic. Their cheapest shipping is UPS standard at $35 so a total of $68 or $94 CDN, but you are likely to get hit with their brokerage fees. Really not sure what they are now (and I can’t immediately find them on UPS’ site), but based on past experience I’d guess around $40 CDN. So that $94 option is really $134. Cheaper, slower, but still $67 a sq foot for plastic.

A $46 item becomes $134-$167 because of shipping across border. And of course there’s tax on top of that. So expensive but still cheaper than cannibalizing an enclosure.

Shipping costs don’t go up a lot if buying multiple units so if multiple are needed the cost per sheet would come down.

Shipping UPS expedited may be the best for speed and cost. I think that is one that includes all brokerage fees but I’m not sure. Doing 2 sheets and using that comes out to $148 US ($201) CDN. So $100 a sheet.

edit: changed “are” to “aren’t”

This may be a long shot, but try a sign making shop. They order plastic sheets regularly and may have a source that could provide specialized plastics as well. A commercial glass/window place might be able to, also. F8nal thought - scientific or industrial supply houses.

An example of something from an industrial supplier with distributors in CA:

I’m trying! Its easier in the US! BTW, I cant vouch for that company. I just started googling for UV blocking film (or plastic, I’m not sure).

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Thanks for trying. Gotta make sure the protection is at the right wavelength. Lasers like these are around 455nm so that UV film would do very little.

I checked a scientific/industrial place and they seemed to want 10X what jtech wants. Jtech’s price is likely quite fair, it’s just the shipping costs are crazy.

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Thanks for all the info. A month ago I flew from Regina to Toronto for $99 taxes in. I weigh 230 lb. Not sure why it costs $120 us to ship a light hunk of acrilic. I think I’ll go with the camera idea. Thanks for the help

BTW, if you are using Lightburn software the camera serves double duty. You need to set it up as per Lightburn’s needs (i.e. Directly overhead if possible). Once set up for that you can also monitor the laser using the Camera control window or other software.

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I might be looking at it incorrectly, but I believe it it showing what gets through, not what gets blocked. Here is the full set of graphs, showing a light source’s emittance and what comes through for theirthree products. I may be wrong.

Ah yes. This now shows “(transmission)” so that is likely it.

So, I changed my mind and put in an orange acrylic window.

I found that with the camera being overtop I was missing out on seeing if the laser was cutting right through. I needed a view from the front. I am also using an enclosure that has a removable door that I had insulated for noise so it was a bit large and heavy so wasn’t convenient for opening and closing frequently. I also didn’t have sufficient air-intake for my exhaust. I stumbled across a YT video from The Clack Shack where he’d used an amazon supplied orange acrylic and done some testing with it. He actually cut it with the laser, showing that it absorbed laser light instead of passing it all through. That’s not proof of any certification of safety but it offered me more assurance than the thin films and cheap glasses the laser companies provided with no demonstration or certification.

So I made a new door for my enclosure, keeping it lighter, put in a 16x24 window and sufficient air intake. The window is a door itself so is easy to open and close. There’s no direct path for light to escape, it would have to bend around corners to get through door gaps or the air intake grill. I swap doors when going from laser to CNC.

I still wear the certified safety glasses I bought, but feel this provides sufficient backup safety that I don’t need to worry about light getting around the glasses, or somebody walking up and looking through the house window, etc. I also did a test with the laser, lifting it off paper the max distance and cutting the paper. I found the beam actually spreads pretty fast, reducing its danger over distance pretty quickly. I don’t know how dangerous it still is over what distance but considering it would have to somehow point out the enclosure window, make it through it while losing focus, etc, I’m not too worried.

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So this might be a dumb question but… do you have to have an enclosure for the laser? My OF is on the way and I am currently building a custom table for it. I do want to start laser engraving a few things but hadn’t planned an enclosure into the design plan.

Disclaimer: I’m just a hobby user that has been educating myself.

Depends on where you are using it, what you are using it to burn and who’s around. Honestly though, to me there are few use cases where an enclosure would NOT be required. I.e. I think people should have them.

A few thoughts:

  1. If you look at the CO2 laser market, they come with enclosures. It is only the cheap diode laser market that has gone open frame. They put little shields on the laser device and give you a cheap pair of ‘laser safety’ glasses. I bought a 3rd party set of glasses I use. Goggles would be even better.

  2. These lasers absolutely are dangerous if you get hit by one directly, especially in the eye. They will permanently burn your retina before you have time to blink. However, it is not only direct light that can be dangerous, depending on what you are shooting it at, it can reflect quite well. E.g. Engraving glass, metals, etc. These companies sell devices to let you engrave on cylinders, guess what happens if your alignment is slightly off? Laser beam is free to bounce off the side of the object in to a new direction. That little shield on the end of the device ain’t going to do you or your dog any good. You may have glasses on, your dog doesn’t, and perhaps any other innocent family members that wander in to the area.

  3. If you use it indoors, you really need to contain the smoke and exhaust it outside. These produce a lot of smoke and some of it smells pretty bad. Cut acrylic or leather in your house and you may regret it for many hours. There’s also materials that you should NEVER cut but if you do by accident at least you are getting the harmful chemicals out of your house. E.g. PVC makes hydrogen chloride gas.

Diode lasers are neat tools, I like that they are affordable, but I do think the industry is far too lax when it comes to ensuring the safe operation. As you can see in the picture, I have an Ortur LaserMaster 3. They have done a lot to provide safety including things like the bump detection, etc that could indicate the laser is not pointing down, the on-off key that can be removed, etc. However, I still worry about the laser beam meeting an eyeball and so do feel that protection beyond what they provide is needed for that. As for smoke containment, if you are using it in the garage and can leave the door open, have a fan, etc then it may be OK. Just remember, in an open garage you are potentially exposing people and animals to the laser if you haven’t added safeguards.

As woodworkers we deal with dangerous tools all the time. We try to reduce the risk of harm through education/training, guards, masks, etc. Same thing with laser cutters. Be aware of the risks & mitigations and employ things like guards (good safety glasses, enclosures), and fume extraction.

Edit: Forgot to mention the risk of fire. You are burning material, the risk is there. My machine has a flame detector that is supposed to stop the machine from creating more flame, and it has air blowing down which can help blow out a fire, but there’s still a chance of something burning. I have a smoke detector in my enclosure, I keep a spray water bottle (you can see it in the picture) and a fire blanket (red, to the top right of the picture) handy. The sides and top (no longer the door) are covered in 1.5" of rockwool (fire resistant) and I have a fire extinguisher 20’ away at the entrance to the shop. I’m new to this but so far I haven’t had to use those.


Videos worth watching. First: Are cheap laser cutters safe? - YouTube
Then a followup: What YOU had to say about Laser Cutter safety - YouTube

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Late to this thread. JTech is offering OD3 for $17 sq ft. That is quite inexpensive. Is the exorbitant shipping charge a result of your wanting an oversized (not overweight) piece? If so, would it help to introduce mullions into your window opening and use two or three 12"x12" pieces rather than a single large piece? If it is commercial shipping as opposed to private/residential shipping, perhaps someone stateside would be willing to have the material delivered to them and then ship it to you? $120 is outrageous - even with diesel at $6 per gallon.

2 pieces of 12x12 vs 1 of 24x12 only changed the shipping cost by $7.

Oops. Somehow I had 2 sheets of 24x12. 1 sheet comes out the same as 2 12x12.

If someone in the US worked with you:

US to Ontario, residence to residence, UPS standard, “tax free” (whatever that means - I don’t know), for a 24"x12"x1" 1 pound package is $31. So, for 1 sheet at 12x24, $34. US sales tax, $2.50. US shipping from JTech to US residence, $19.50. US residence to Ontario residence, $31. Total is $87. Additional sheets up to total package weight of 2 pounds, shipping remains same and add $34 plus about $2.50 sales tax for each additional sheet. Is this helpful?

US to Ontario Laser Shiels.pdf (941.0 KB)

You are showing better prices than JTech offered.

As I said above, I went with the Amazon stuff and so I’m no longer looking to buy.