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Old 05-12-2009, 06:17 PM #1
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Default Tube from a Heruurscience surprise box

Hi all,

I think I am now the proud owner of a gas laser. I say, "I think", because all I really know is that it looks like a gas laser and I'd like your opinions.

It came from a Heruurscience surprise box. I had expected some cute things but when I unwrapped this I did feel like a kid at Christmas. I also received more than a few laser mirrors and what look like C-mount or bar diodes but thats for another thread... (I also ordered a 25x9mm diode grab but these all have to be tested yet and, again, belong in another thread.).

The tube itself is 9 inches long and 1 1/2 inches wide. As for markings, I cannot find a manufacturers name. There is a sticker with, "05-LHP-120-92 #5209 QQ", hand written on it and a US patent number 4,311,989. Almost out of sight it declares, "May, 1989"; presumably a manufacture date.

As you may be able to see it is a little dusty and some surface rust on either end but is otherwise in good condition, with what I assume to be the high voltage supply.

My questions are the obvious:

What is it? (I'm guessing HeNe)
What else do I need to get it lasing, and which wires, etc?
What the hell do I do with it? (Just joking. Gaze at the beautiful light it produces is what I'M going to do with it!)

Many thanks in advance,

M
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Tube from a Heruurscience surprise box-dpp_0348.jpg  


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Last edited by Morgan; 05-12-2009 at 06:21 PM. Reason: Forgot dimensions
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Old 05-12-2009, 06:35 PM #2
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That looks like a Helium Neon gas laser with a 110V power supply...

You would connect one of the White wires to the Neutral (white) of the 110VAC
power... The Yellow wire to the Hot (black) of the 110VAC power and don't forget
to connect the Green wire to AC Ground.

Remember... that after you connect the Tube to the PS and power it up..
when you disconnect the 110VAC from the PS the Tube still holds a charge for
quite some time..

Jerry
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Old 05-12-2009, 06:46 PM #3
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thas a nice lil tube ! The two red and black wires connect together through those white connectors ( though that's pretty obvious ). I don't know what the power source would be , but I can tell you that it won't do more than a few mW. But those will be some nice gassy mWs !

Adam
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Old 05-12-2009, 07:03 PM #4
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Thanks Laserbee,

Thought it seemed HeNe sort of sized. 110V you say? Damn it! It's 240V from the mains here in the UK.

Thanks Diachi,

Yep, I had worked out the red and black wire bit. I wasn't going to expect more than a couple of mW from this little guy, (having read as much as I could before my impatience blurted out a new thread!), but like you said, they will be gassy!

Anyone got any suggestions for power here in the UK? Having just about got to grips with a few volts and and even fewer amps with PHR's and the like, the, "DANGER HIGH VOLTAGE", sign is giving me the willies!

M
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Old 05-12-2009, 07:09 PM #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morgan View Post
Thanks Laserbee,

Thought it seemed HeNe sort of sized. 110V you say? Damn it! It's 240V from the mains here in the UK.

Thanks Diachi,

Yep, I had worked out the red and black wire bit. I wasn't going to expect more than a couple of mW from this little guy, (having read as much as I could before my impatience blurted out a new thread!), but like you said, they will be gassy!

Anyone got any suggestions for power here in the UK? Having just about got to grips with a few volts and and even fewer amps with PHR's and the like, the, "DANGER HIGH VOLTAGE", sign is giving me the willies!

M
You could try using a wall transformer that converts 240V to 110V , you should be able to find one in a hardware store such as Maplins.

the HV is somewhat safe since it is generally low current, but I still wouldn't take the risk of getting a shock, but if you did happen to get one due to an accidental slip you'd probably be okay and it would just give you a jolt.

the laser may also not be 110V powered, it could be 9 or 12V powered. Although I see why Jerry thinks it may be mains powered since there are 4 wires and one of them is green, suggesting earthing.

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Old 05-12-2009, 07:54 PM #6
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I guess the only real way to check the power requirements is to start at 9V and then...

Got a new PSU coming soon so maybe I'll have something more to report by the end of the week.

Gotcha on the 4 wires and earthing too...

I only got this yesterday so I shouldn't really be in any rush. In fact, while I've been writing, I think I know a bloke who may be able to help.

Thanks, as ever, for input. If it's relevant, (irrelevants's sometimes fun too though), keep it coming...


M
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Old 05-12-2009, 08:02 PM #7
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Hey, it should work fine with another PSU . Just make sure you keep that ballast resistor there ( it's glued on under the anode end of the tube, or at least I think that's what I see )

Regards,

Adam
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Old 05-12-2009, 11:40 PM #8
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I have this exact same laser. It is in fact a HeNe and should make close to 5mW. For their length, these tubes make decent power. One word of advice, DONT unscrew those little collars on each end of the tube. I did it a few months ago and STILL haven't been able to realign it.

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Old 05-12-2009, 11:56 PM #9
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Diachi - Ballast resistor?, (also now understand that that is the anode end. Thanks for the anatomy lesson!). I know the component you mean but why is it there?

Gooeygus - I won't be unscrewing anything for fear of screwing everything!

I will take all knowledge I can before doing a single thing to this valuable addition to my collection, (valuable simply because I only have one!). 5mW would have been my absolute BEST estimate with my limited experience but just to see it lase will give me a warm glow of at least a Watt!

I was just as protective when I had just one LD and that one is still alive.

Gooeygus, how is yours powered? 9V, 110V? Is it the same HV unit as well? Is it the HV unit itself that determines the primary power? Sorry if they're noob questions but to gas lasers I AM a noob. (p.s. off topic but, did you get those photos?)

M
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Old 05-13-2009, 12:31 AM #10
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Morgan

Check your PMs please
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Old 05-13-2009, 01:15 AM #11
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Mine actually uses a power supply i already had (mine came as just a bare tube) so I'm not sure what kind of power your PSU needs... Does it say anything at all about AC or DC in and/or DC out?

As far as the pictures, yes!! BUT I have only been able to check them on my iPhone since I've been so busy... I haven't been able to see them in their full resolution glory quite yet!
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Old 05-13-2009, 03:37 AM #12
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Quote:
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Diachi - Ballast resistor?, (also now understand that that is the anode end. Thanks for the anatomy lesson!). I know the component you mean but why is it there?

The ballast resistor is there to limit current
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Old 05-13-2009, 04:20 AM #13
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if it wasn't there, the tube would act like a short once the gas was 'lit'
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Old 05-13-2009, 09:16 AM #14
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white,white is 220V white ,yel is 120V Green is GROUND, Yes it is a HeNe has laser, about 4mW
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Old 05-13-2009, 12:11 PM #15
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Morgan,

It's sorted out, ignore the PM.
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Old 05-13-2009, 12:36 PM #16
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Hey Morgan...
I just got here... I wasn't aware you were in the UK...
your Profile didn't say...

Yeah... like Chris posted... the 2 white wires are for 220VAC..
You don't use the Yellow wire.. It should however have the end
insulated..

Jerry
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