Mana SE alternative/laser upgrade

  • I have a banggood 2500w A5 laser with the eleksmaker mana se controller. I think the mana finally died last night. I’ve put at least 10,000 hours on this machine so no complaints. I’m running T2 (and love it). I want to replace the board and while I’m at it upgrade to a 5w laser. What’s the most plug and play way to do this? Is there a mana alternative? Everywhere I try to get it from has like a 4-8 week lead time. I’d like to get up and running sooner.

  • Developer of T2Laser Software

    @Mark-Christensen What exactly has failed? The Mana board itself is just a fancy breakout board for the Nano clone and a couple of A4988 drivers.

    I suspect you could just replace the Nano clone with a Geekcreit (Banggood), HiLetGo (Amazon) or Sainsmart (Amazon / ebay) brand and that would fix the problems. These are all better quality than the Eleksmaker Nano clone. These cost $4 or less and come with the bootloader so all you need to do is upload my Grbl 1.1e DEFAULT firmware and be back working again.

    If you have a stepper driver issue those are even cheaper, $2 or less and plug-and-play. It is wise to set the current limit if you have a voltmeter but even if you don't it's not difficult to adjust.

    I would get the EleksMaker 5.5W laser if possible, if not there are others but many advertise electrical input power so a 7W is really a 1.6W optical output - yes laser diodes are very inefficient.

  • I was in the middle of a burn last night and the machine just stopped. LED's on laser wasn't on. LED's on the mana were on. T2 thought everything was connected because it was still showing as going through the Gcode, but motors weren't moving. My thought was that the board was fried because the motors weren't going and the laser wasn't turning on. I power cycled everything and still nothing.

    In terms of the nano, can I just order a nano and use that? Then upload your firmware?

  • Alternatively I have an Arduino Leonardo and Uno sitting around. Can those be used?

  • Developer of T2Laser Software

    @Mark-Christensen When you connect do you get the Grbl Ready message? If not then I would just replace the Nano as it is very cheap and easy to do.

  • Yup, it says GRBL is ready. When I google arduino nano, it doesn't look like my board. Can you post a link to one? thanks for the help!

  • Developer of T2Laser Software

    @Mark-Christensen If you are getting the Grbl Ready message then the Nano is working, if the motors and laser do not function it sounds like the power supply has failed.

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