Build Your Own Arduino-Powered Laser Cutter

Laser cutters are great DIY tools, but they’re expensive. If you’d prefer to build your own, Instructables user SilverJimny shows you how using an Arduino.

The build here uses an Arduino along with a lot of parts gathered from eBay. Once you put the whole thing together, it connects to your computer for the drawing program, and you can get right to laser cutting or engraving from there. It’s a complicated project, but the end result is a full featured laser cutter for a lot less than the commercial version. If you prefer, you can also buy a kit.

The MicroSlice [Instructables]


  • 250mw Class IIIB laser diode.

    Please be aware of AS/NZS IEC 60825.1:2011 because this can cause blindless.

    Do not operate without laser safety glasses to prevent scattered light removing your sight.

    • That was my first thought too, but on checking the laws it is perfectly legal to import a 250mw Class IIIB laser diode in all states of Australia.

      Our laws only stop the importation (and possession) of a battery operated portable laser device. Things like parts for DVD/Blueray burners or homemade cutting machines are perfectly ok it seems.

      IANAL, so feel free to verify with customs/your local police before purchase.

  • I have been designing, fabricating and manufacturing micro-controller based devices since 1988. My areas of interest have been custom-built industrial automation controllers, PMDC servo drives and CNC.

    In my experience of industrial automation, the biggest bugbear has been the Programmable Logic Controller. PLCs come in as many flavours and colours as the companies manufacturing them, some with proprietary programming software, which need to be bought at great cost; some with free software. With myriad software and standards, handling PLCs in the field is a nightmare for the engineer working with industrial or home automation.

    With the Arduino environment having become the de facto Open Source software and hardware standard over the last few years, it was only natural for us to start building a Programmable Logic Controller for the Arduino environment.

    We have fabricated a successful prototype of the PLC, which is compatible with the Arduino IDE as the Arduino Uno. Please watch the video of the PLC in action:

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