The FLUX Beamo is a compact, easy to use CO2 laser cutter and engraver. It uses templates you create in pretty much any program you want, upload it and you can create make cuts to hundreds of material and engravings with high precision. A CO2 laser is far more accurate than any human would be capable of using scissors or a craft knife.
TS Ling Chen took the Beamo into her studio in Berlin to see how the machine can change her design concepts as well as her workflow.
FLUX Beamo Hardware
The FLUX Beamo CO2 laser cutter was made to fit “any” home, office, or classroom at 24.2 x 17.52 x 6.97-inches and puts several high-end features in an affordable package. This device has an 11.81 x 8.27-inch work area and cuts with a CO2 laser across hundreds of materials.
The hardware itself is terrific for the price, with a decent-sized LCD touch panel to control it. Not that you will use it all that much as the Beamo has both ethernet and wireless — with an included dongle — so you can do almost everything you need to on the Beam Studio software.
One of my favorite little features is the ability to remove the cutting bed and even the bottom of the Beamo if you need to so you can print much larger pieces than the dimensions would typically allow.
The app and desktop software is easy to use and the FLUX Beamo has a variety of features that generally only come with laser cutter/engravers that cost a whole lot more money. Features like camera alignment, a hybrid laser system, autofocus, and internal water-cooling make for a product that, at first glance, seem like they might make the end product cost about as much as other similar products on the market.
Material testing with the Beamo
Ling tried the Beamo is a lot of different materials and found that leather that was under 3mm did not cut well and just burned. Turning down the intensity didn’t seem to help so she preferred working with cow leather over goat or pig which is thinner and more supple. Wool and felt were also idea materials to work with as they heled a pattern really well and looked sharp.
The machine to beat in this category is the Glowforge Basic, if you go this route you’ll get a slightly larger work area and 40-watt laser tube power for $2495 USD. The FLUX Beamo has 30-watt laser tube power and a slightly more compact work area (and WAY smaller body) for $1499 USD.
Even at $1,499, the Beamo is less than half the cost of its competitors and while it doesn’t offer all of the features that they have, it offers more than enough to make that price point a bargain.
Here is the FLUX site for Beamo for more information!
Update: Beamo sent over some notes on the review, we wanted to update our review to provide more detail.
Manual is in Chinese, it was difficult to really get the most out of the machine with the quick start guide. The english manual will be available any day now.
To not burn the softer more delicate leather products they suggested turning down the laser intensity and doing two passes instead of one. It was also suggested that masking the product with painters tape would help to protect the material to get cleaner margins. There is a learning curve with such a machine when you’re not just doing standard projects (engraving your laptop or making wooden coasters, which is what we noticed was the main activity of the other reviews. The Beamo is versatile and we will continue to update this review with new projects and learnings.