Goldsmith Paul Paine talks the endless benefits of the DaDo laser welder technology.
Paul, what are the main benefits of the DaDo?
As a goldsmith of over 35 years who had always used oxygen and propane you could argue that I was the ‘Torch Man’, the ‘Flame Man’ even, because I could do anything on the flame. But the way you would describe the torch against the laser is a sledgehammer versus a scalpel.
Now, I only do the work on my laser. With the torch, you must heat up the whole job which means you can run into more issues simply because you’re heating the entire piece up. You don’t need to do anything like that with the laser.
I am so precise because I can isolate an area and just aim where I need to work, and that’s what makes it efficient and cost-effective, plus adding a premium to your work because people are prepared to pay for the purity of the metal and quality of the work I produce with my laser.
What kind of jobs do you do with your laser welder?
By now, I’ve upgraded to a 140J machine, which I absolutely love! I can pretty much do all jobs on this machine so I can laser up platinum rings, spectacles, watch cases, watch dials and other pieces.
Standard jobbing work is very easy with this laser too. There isn’t anything I don’t do with my laser.
“My workload has increased, and my pressure levels have dropped by about 50%”
What’s the main difference between the bigger, production lasers to the entry laser welder, the DaDo?
The bigger lasers can increase the speed of the work, make for a neater job. You can have it on constantly without any issues of overheating and the upgraded Leica lenses help too.
By increasing the speed, you can increase your income. It’s a win-win-win for the business, although the DaDo is an amazing machine for the money. It’s a great entry model.
How did you increase your income with a laser welder?
I was probably knocking out £100-150 jobbing work a day with the DaDo laser welder alone, so the DaDo paid for itself within a couple of months.
“The DaDo is a cost-effective, efficient machine that adds productivity to your work”
My new, upgraded laser, is paying for itself quickly too. I’m very pleased and I wouldn’t give it up for anything.
What are the most important techniques you teach your students?
I would say the most important technique is infilling, using laser wire to fill cracks and porosity. It’s an important skill to have for anyone who makes and repairs jewellery.
What advice would you give to people thinking about upgrading?
Do it! Upgrade when you get the chance. You won’t look back. I would have nightmares if my laser went down. If you took my laser away from me, I would probably give up the trade! I don’t want to go back to the old stresses.
“I would have nightmares if my laser went down!”
What would you rate Freeform’s service out of 10?
I would rate them highly, upper 10, no problem at all. The reason I say that is that when you buy a machine, you want to buy with confidence, and your confidence is based on the support service.
All my questions and needs were dealt with straight away and efficiently. I think that’s important, it’s not just selling the machine to the client, it’s that customer service that Freeform has.