I’ve made a few upgrades to our units since we got them and it’s crazy how some smaller and relatively inexpensive changes can make a drastic difference. Here’s a list of some of the upgrades we have made so far:
An external cooling/air compressor unit is included with the Muse 3D. Although it is a decent system and very convenient as the unit is combined, the cooling system is passive which means that the temperature will only cool to the temperature of the air surrounding it (the room temperature). In Florida, even with the AC it can get pretty warm especially with the machines running. This is critical as not maintaining a proper temperature on your machine can result in a drastic reduction in the lifespan of your CO2 tube (which means more $$ out of your pocket – those things can be expensive!). As a result, I upgraded our cooling system to the CW-5202 from Cloudray. This is an active cooling system, which removes heat and allows you to achieve temperatures lower than the surrounding air. I also love the CW-5202 because it can run two lasers at the same time. This is perfect for us, because I keep our lasers side-by-side and did not want to have to purchase two cooling systems. If you are not looking to run two lasers on it, the CW-5200 will work just fine (the 5202 can fit two sets of pumps). I would definitely choose this option over purchasing the FSL Coolbox as the Coolbox is incredibly expensive for that type of unit. It would cost almost the same if not cheaper to go with a much better industrial chiller like the CW-5200 and a separate air compressor versus getting the Coolbox.
The air compressor that is in the included Coolbox is fairly weak, which will result in more burn marks as well as a harder time cutting material. If you go ahead and upgrade your chiller, you should also grab an air compressor while you’re at it. I am running both of our units on one 135W Hailea ACO-009D Air Compressor from Cloudray. Honestly, this unit suits our needs and works just fine but it’s nothing special. It’s fairly cheap at only $68 right now so it’s a pretty good bang for your buck and is quiet enough that I don’t get any noise complaints in our office. I’ve heard some great things about the California Air Tool compressors but haven’t tested them myself enough to give any real details. If you’re looking for something beefier, though, that’s the direction I would look in. The only major drawback of getting a separate air compressor is that it doesn’t hook up to your unit the same way in that you can click a button in RE3 to turn it off and on. I’m sure there’s a way to make this work, but we certainly don’t have the time to figure it out. If you do though, let us know how you did it because it’s something I’d eventually be interested in doing to our units.
At some point in time, I noticed that our mirrors seemed to be pretty gunked up and had small scratches across the surface. I went ahead and bought a new set of Si mirrors from Cloudray, found here. So far, I don’t have any complaints about them – they seem to work well. I didn’t notice any real improvements when I added them but at least I feel better about the quality of my equipment. If you need new mirrors, they were a pretty budget-friendly option at only $24 for a set of three and get the job done. I would steer far away from the ones sold directly through Full Spectrum Laser as they are far overpriced at a crazy cost of $50 per mirror!
The Muse 3D includes basic ducting to vent your unit with. If you are having issues with the laser creating a smell even when you think you’re correctly venting, I would shine a light through your ducting and see if there’s any holes or gaps. I noticed that my ducting had small holes throughout it, which may have occurred because I move the ducting every time that I close the window. If you have holes in your ducting, I recommend upgrading to something a little more heavy duty. I got the AC Infinity 4-inch ducting found here on Amazon. I put one on each of my units and it definitely helped with the smell from lasering materials. It’s only about $14 right now, so it’s a relatively cheap upgrade that will provide a noticeable difference. I’ve had it for a few months now and move the ducting every day when I close up my window. I haven’t noticed any holes developing yet so it seems to be good.