The A3 Pro is proving to be a MARVELOUS engraver. Some of you may recall back in 2018 I wrote about the original Eleksmaker Pro engraver – it came with a 400mW laser module which was rapidly replaced with a 2300mW laser and very nice too. I left that with a friend in the UK when we came over to Spain and so I’m delighted to NOW have an upgraded version with an even more powerful laser – called the EleksMaker®A3 Pro 3500mW Laser Engraving Machine. I also have the Eleksmaker Draw Module XY Plotter. NOte that I’ve NOT put links here for them because right now, Banggood are it seems out of stock. Here however is a link for the 3500mW laser module itself (para updated September 2021).
To start – construction – as is often the case, the Eleksmaker Pro comes as a kit of parts – and it’s a DIY job putting it all together (took me just under hours including power-up test to ensure the laser works – but not including using the software). The photo at the top is a stock image, of course the engraver doesn’t actually look like that – it has wires all over – they usually miss those off on the stock shots. Other pics are mine and I just (May 16, 2021) added a photo of the finished job – thanks to reader STEVE for that prompt)…
Above you see 5 aluminium sections, the actual laser is in the box on the top left, the power supply is in the box on the top right, various perspex parts plus cables in the centre, 3 stepper motors at the top centre, safety glasses and laser clamp left, wheels and countless nuts and bolts on the right (double-sides box). Yes, it is intimidating for the first hour but construction went ahead without a hitch, really.
In this case Eleksmaker don’t supply instructions, just a small card with the relevant links to their website – the visual assembly instructions are good but not perfect – as with my original Ekesmaker A3 Pro reviews in 2018 and 2019 (earlier model), the mounting of the control panel was left a bit vague and they could have done a better job of explaining connector orientation but it’s good enough.
Oh and I found out what the little PCB was for – the one I found spare and showed in the video. It’s a “PWM-TTL” module – and if anyone knows what that is for – please do drop a comment in here or in the video. I didn’t get any spare leads so I’m not sure what if anything to do with it.
In total I spent just under 5 hours from opening the box to having a working engraver. A little more time went by as I experimented firstly with their own software Eleksmaker 3.1 (which does not seem to have been updated for some time) and Lighturn 0.9.22 (which was last updated recently).
My first engraving with Lightburn at a small fraction of full power:
The Banggood site contains links for assembly of the Eleksmaker as well as full specifications – and links for the Elecscam software – which works well enough (and will be needed to test the (optional) Draw module but I’m currently using Lightburn – an upgraded version of the software we used when I reviewed the original Eleksmaker.
It has to be said that Eleksmaker have made worthwhile improvements to the design of the A3 Pro and of course there are variations with different laser power.
In the video you may notice that I commented I was not too impressed by the (perfectly working) belt tensors – well, for anyone with a 3D printer – there are DIY versions here on Thingiverse – I plan to take advantage once I’ve completed my reviews on a pair of 3D printers.
I plan to take advantage of the new tensors once I’ve done my reviews on a pair of 3D printers but meanwhile I’ve created a setof these on my Anycubic Mono Resin 3D printer. And as if by magic, 20 minutes later..
Now – whether or not these will make strong enough tensors using water-cleanable resin – only time will tell – but first I need six of the right nuts and bolts from somewhere.
Meanwhile, more photos…
If you’re interested in my video about the original Eleksmaker A3 Pro back in 2018 – check out this YouTube link. The video could be better as the microphone and lighting at the time were less than perfect and that was my first intrduction to engravers but there’s some useful info none-the-less.
Below, pics of the optional Draw Module..
The screwdriver and Allen key were not provided with the Draw Module but I had those and other tools left over from building the engraver. Easy. This draw moule will make a great addition to the engraver.
Finished and working with optional draw module sitting inside.. Not TOO shabby wiring… power supply and USB plug into the front control panel.