Laser cutter/engraver! Why would you want that? Is that like a lightsaber?

Well… almost.

Laser is an acronym: Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation.  A laser is created when the electrons in a specific gas or crystal are stimulated by electrical current.  These electrons then emit photons of light of a uniform wavelength. This is the key difference between normal light and a laser.  Lasers were first made in 1960, and we all have seen or used them in CD/DVD players, barcode scanners, or played with laser pointers.

But, they can be used for more than just terrorizing a kitten.  A laser cutter generates a laser beam, and then uses it to burn through some materials!

As you can see above, a laser cutter can be used to slice up intricate designs into a variety of materials.  Depending on the power laser, someone could cut wood, paper, cardboard, or plastics.  You could also etch or engrave a wide variety of materials such as glass, fabrics, wood, aluminum, marble, and tile.

Have some cool idea for your laptop case? No problem!

Lost Nation R&D just got a laser cutter from Universal Laser Systems, and we could not be more excited!

So, other than the empirical fact that this is cool, why would we want one?  There are a number of projects with which we will be keeping this machine busy. But first, all our stocks need markings.

One of the huge selling points of our stock is the easy and quick adjustability for club athletes, but you have to know where to put our different settings.  We recommend a coach help fit each athlete the first time they use this stock system, but after that first time, all the athlete has to remember is their numbers.  The next practice, all they have to do is move the settings to their numbers, and the athlete can confidently know the rifle is fit to them.  This will streamline practices and revolutionize the way clubs share rifles from one training session to the next.


Grip Refining

We have spent a lot of time testing different methods of making grips for these rifles. On the left, you can see an early grip that had plastic molded around a core. On the right, an early test of a urethane grip.

Both of these options have some serious downsides, and are far from mass-producible.  We then tried making a model from clay, pouring a mold, and then molding a grip.

It was a fun attempt, but not quite the final product we had in mind.  So, this past week we started refining a interchangeable grip design, and experimenting with texturing.

The red grip has a rubberized coating, and the black grip was a test of a gritty texture.  Above, a prototype lefty grip is drying after hitting it with some primer.

We also started playing with a new standing grip design; mocking up the idea in basswood.

Making a nice model is all about the time put into sanding and finishing. Here we used a filling and sandable primer. Now we’re patiently waiting for bondo glazing and spot putty to cure before a final sand.  The bondo is wonderful for filling little imperfections.  It might not look like much now, but after ample, mind-numbing hand sanding, it’ll look and feel great.