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Old 06-07-2010, 04:55 AM #1
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Default Hi from down-under

Hi guys,

I have been reading these forums for a while now, I thought it was time to join and say hi. Thanks for all the valuable info I have gleaned from this forum, I have learnt a lot about lasers here (including NOT to pot-mod, despite trying this myself on a 10mW green module that R.I.P. several hours later).

In total, I have destroyed 3 diodes now, 2 x 1mW reds and 1 x 10mW green. The lessons have been invaluable.

Now I am running another 10mW green module in a BIG heatsink (4"x4"x1") and it has been running sweet for a long time at 280mA, and is quite bright for me, well enough to have some fun at night in my lab.

I have tried all sorts of mirrors, from back reflective to CD's, finally I have settled on hard disk platters. I cut these carefully with a coping saw to approx 15mmx15mm. They work incredibly well. I am not sure how much better FS mirrors would be?

My experiments started with the usual time tunnel (very cool!) and then a 2 motor spyro. I am using 60mm PC FANS as the motors.

The other day I picked up 2 x Hitech digital servos (0.2sec/60 degree) and wired them to an Arduino. Not bad! I quickly had a nice scanner running that was producing a horizontal scan of a few degrees that slowly panned around the room. A nice mod was to scan left/right very fast approx 3 degrees and change the center spot randomly at 5 second intervals. Looks pretty cool.

Last night I pulled an old 3.5" floppy drive out of my collection and wired the step and direction signals to an arduino. I used the head sled to convert the stepper motion to a linear motion. A mirror attached to a small model aircraft hinge attached the mirror to the end of the sled and a small spring keeps the mirror in contact with the moving sled.

The result is a much faster X scanner. By stepping 5 steps quickly and pausing for 10mS for a total of 5 spots, produces 5 nicely stagger beams!

Next on my experiment list is to add simple mosfet blanking to the LD and blank the laser while moving.

Has anyone used a 3-wire PC fan for a time-tunnel? What I am thinking is this, use the tach pulse to synchronise the blanking. This would enable cool effects such at a circle that moves from 360 deg down to 0 and back etc. I might play with this tonight.

This is all great fun, but what I am working towards is a low cost X/Y scanner built either "on the cheap" or out of surplus junk.

I'll post some photos later.

Cheers.



Last edited by dnar; 06-07-2010 at 05:13 AM.
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Old 06-07-2010, 06:21 AM #2
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Default Re: Hi from down-under

Welcome to LPF

Yeah, even though you can be told countless times not to do something, people don't learn until it happens to them

I pot modded my first laser and it survived, but tried the 2nd laser and killed it.

PC fans have been used for time tunnels, though using the tach to time the blanking seems like a really neat idea!
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Old 06-07-2010, 06:40 AM #3
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Default Re: Hi from down-under

Welcome to LPF dnar
I'm sure you will find much of the info you seek here at LPF. If not feel free to ask for help. Just make sure you have try the search button first.
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Old 06-07-2010, 07:23 AM #4
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Default Re: Hi from down-under

Hi guys, thanks for the welcome!

Search? Oh yeah, I have searched these forums to the ying yang and back! Found so much useful info.

I am really ticked with the new Australian laws governing lasers... Anyone know if customs stop diodes by themselves or is just "pointers"?
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Old 06-07-2010, 08:00 AM #5
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Default Re: Hi from down-under

Just pointers, they aren't after diodes.
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Old 06-07-2010, 08:04 AM #6
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Default Re: Hi from down-under

yep i've got many diodes into Australia, as well as many green laser modules etc
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Old 06-07-2010, 08:13 AM #7
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Default Re: Hi from down-under

Welcome to the forum!
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Old 06-07-2010, 09:03 AM #8
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Default Re: Hi from down-under

Hi neighbour. I'm in Adelaide and am new to the forum myself. I'm very impressed with your tales of improvised scanners and experiments into the reflective qualities of different materials. That's my kind of experimentation, love making use of recycled parts in new and imaginative ways. I'm sure we'll have a lot to chat about in the near future you and me, welcome to the forum.
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Old 06-07-2010, 05:27 PM #9
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Default Re: Hi from down-under

Hi Jupiter8.

I am working in Adelaide this week, fly in tomorrow arvo. Nice city. I work in SA and Canberra very often.

I need a video camera that will work in low light, then I will post some videos of my escapades. Tonight I have added another servo to move the beam into different effects (other servo and motors).

Loving my laser!
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Old 06-08-2010, 12:12 AM #10
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Default Re: Hi from down-under

Welcome to the forum.
Sound like you are off to a great start. Keep up the good work and let's see some pics. when you get time. (we all love pictures)
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Old 06-12-2010, 12:51 PM #11
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Default Re: Hi from down-under

Here is poor quality video, shot with my stills camera.

It looks much better for real, the camera does not deal with low light so well, and the laser is only 10mW.

Ghetto Gear:

10mW Green module (@300mA)
2 x HiTech Digital RC servos reprogrammed for reduced span (X/Y)
2 x Hard disk platter mirrors
Arduino Mega with code providing a total of 10 effects (some random)
Smoke from inscent sticks.

I'll try to get some better video.
Attached Files
File Type: mpg ServoScanner.mpg (14.85 MB, 41 views)

Last edited by dnar; 06-12-2010 at 02:30 PM.
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Old 06-12-2010, 02:33 PM #12
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Exclamation Re: Hi from down-under

^^^ Better video posted, camera a lot closer to the laser, smoke added.

I have not played with the 3-wire fan and blanking yet, been away with work.

Enjoy.
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Old 06-12-2010, 04:20 PM #13
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Default Re: Hi from down-under

I died but came back. Just got a new TV and set it up with cable.
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