Laser marking in the promotional sector

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In the promotional sector, the main requirements of promotional gift manufacturers are: high productivity, laser marker versatility and the marking of special decorations.

Laser marking aesthetics play a dominant role here, so the choice of laser marker and marking parameters is more important than elsewhere.

LASIT usually carries out free tests on promotional gifts. This helps us identify the best laser from among the 13 different sources in our laboratory. Based on the material, the best option is identified when processing the requested design. In terms of laser marking quality, source selection is fundamental. On the other hand, automation and the laser marking system are important factors to meet production needs.

The laser source recommended most often by LASIT is the MOPA fiber. The versatility and the adjustable pulse duration of the MOPA fiber make it ideal for precise laser marking of painted or chrome-plated components.

The MOPA laser has all the advantages of traditional fiber (no maintenance, long life, and air cooling) and can boast a series of added values for marking both plastics and metals.

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Laser marking versus pad printing

Pad printing technology is currently widespread in the sector, but lasers are becoming increasingly popular thanks to the advantages they offer over the old method:

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Savings:

pad printing paints must be constantly replaced and waste materials require disposal. For a high-productivity chain, this means very high costs;

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Ecology:

laser is the best technology from the point of view of environmental safety. Zero waste materials means fewer chemical and hazardous substances;

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High-speed marking of cylindrical components

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Data dynamism:

laser marking allows you to manage the dynamism of data via software, automatically generating serial numbers and sequences;

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Longevity:

prints and labels get damaged over time and codes or texts lose visibility. This can negatively impact both productivity and company image.

The system and accessories vary depending on the application. The 3-axis head is used for laser marking cylindrical components such as pens or flasks. Rotary table machines are popular with our customers both for their high productivity and for the possibility of marking different parts with the same laser marker.

3D laser marking with the 3-axis head

The LASIT three-axis head is composed of a system of linear motors, two X and Y rotaries that allow the laser beam to be moved along the axes, and a third axis for focusing. The laser beam passes through a photographic objective equipped with a movable lens, which in turn is mounted on a linear side-shifter. Operation is automatically managed through the FlyCAD software.

The heart of the three-axis head is its optical design, which varies according to the type of application and application requirements: the system can adapt to the size of the working field and the size of the required laser spot.

The scanning mirrors are positioned after the lenses of the photographic objective. The raw laser beam enters the optical system through the dynamic expansion lens. The photographic objective lenses re-draw the Gaussian beam formed by the dynamic expander lenses on the target plane.

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The movement of the dynamic expander lenses through the linear side-shifter varies the distance of the focal plane and therefore the dynamic focus. The mirrors (MX and MY) – which are located in the XY scanning module – bend the beam and direct it by angular deflection to scan the work plane.

This feature of the 3-axis head is particularly advantageous on components such as water bottles, glasses, and other rounded items. Although not always necessary, it is good to know that LASIT was one of the first manufacturers in the world to make it in 1991.

The world's most productive laser marker

In 2020, LASIT shipped the world’s largest laser marker. It was the largest and one of the most complex projects ever undertaken.

During a trade fair in Las Vegas, the client approached LASIT with a very specific set of project needs:

The customer’s initial idea was to purchase four laser markers. After an extensive R&D study, LASIT came up with another solution: The Fly Gantry MAG project was thus created.

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The laser marker has 3 operating modes
1
Fully automatic mode

The operator loads the components on the magazines and starts the cycle. The YZ Robot selects the pallet and moves it to the marking cabinet. While the laser marks the first pallet, the Robot moves to the second pallet. No time is wasted between cycles.

2
Assisted mode

The operator selects an empty pallet and loads it with the components when the Robot moves the pallet to the laser marking cabinet. While the cycle is in progress, the operator can request and load another pallet.

3
Manual mode

The YZ Robot is deactivated, and the operator manually loads the pallets directly from the marker’s front door. This cycle takes longer, but allows you to load larger and heavier components not suited to traditional pallets designed for small promotional gifts.

Read this article to learn more about how the Fly Gantry MAG intelligently manages the magazines and the two lasers. To learn more, read the story here.

Laser marking for pens: automation and productivity

PenFeeder is an automatic system for laser marking cylindrical components. It was first manufactured to mark pens automatically. However, its automation means it can adapt to different types of cylindrical parts. It is ideal for completing large production volumes and large cycles in the same day.

The fully automatic system requires minimal manual input by the operator. Pens are loaded disordered in the magazine and Penfeeder uses specially designed V-shaped fins to independently arrange them on the chains.

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The Lift and Rotation system then moves the pens in order to align the clips, ensuring work precision and time optimization until the next step.

The Marking and Rotation system allows for automatic 360° pen rotation, moving the pens so as to mark the entire circumference.

Our advantages

Sole Supplier

No intermediary, from design to realization

Interface

PROFIBUS protocols, PROFINET and PROFIsafe

Integration

Integrations with MES / ERP systems

Industry 4.0

Business database interaction for industry 4.0

Vision system

Automatic centering, 2D code verification and grading, OCR recognition

Laser system

For every application and integration in production chains

Sole Supplier

No intermediary, from design to realization

Interface

PROFIBUS protocols, PROFINET and PROFIsafe

Integration

Integrations with MES / ERP systems

Vision system

Automatic centering, 2D code verification and grading, OCR recognition

Industry 4.0

Business database interaction for industry 4.0

Laser system

For every application and integration in production chains