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Old 12-10-2007, 11:25 AM #1
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Default Asking for a simple laser making guide

Hello everyone.

I've taken this fancy, to make a spectacular laser pointer (as in extremely strong, peculiarly coloured or both) and I surmised, checking around on the Internet, that this is the best place to ask for suggestions and schematics.

So, being a fiddler with little knowledge of these matters, I searched eBay for a laser diode that I could insert in a case of my design and operate to my leasure.
As you have already guessed, I found myself entangled in a net of inflated prices and dubious bargains, including five 1000 mW diodes for under 60 bucks. (I'd post the link if I could).

Therefore, I address you, knowledgeable fellows, with a plea for help: what's the most simple option for an unskilled layman like myself? Of course, excluding the purchase of a commercial laser pointer...

Thanks a bunch.


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Old 12-10-2007, 02:25 PM #2
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Default Re: HALP!

Please change the thread subject be more descriptive.
This is needed because proper forum conduct requires searching before asking a question, and it’s hard to search threads titles things like “halp”, “wooooot!11!1!!”, or “DUDE!!!!!! THIS LAZER ROX0RS!!!!!!!”
Also, please PM Timelord and ask him nicely to move this thread to the “Help & Repair” board.
Thanks, and welcome to the forum!
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Old 12-10-2007, 02:53 PM #3
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Default Re: Asking for a simple laser making guide

Welcome to the forum.
Let me address your question (thanks for changing the thread title)
Up top of this section you will find a sticky for links to "THREADS OF INTEREST"
in that thread is links to most of our favorite threads conserning DIY laser pointers. You will find it most interesting and helpful I'm sure. I personally have a walkthrough linked in there that I am particularly fond of (wonder why!)

As to components ebay is an ok source but your best bet would be to checkout
sales.stontek.org Senkat, who runs that store has been gracious enough to provide us with a means to purchase most of the things we need to build our own lasers. Now he's having back surgery right now and is likely recovering for the next few weeks so any orders that are placed now may take a bit to ship but it's still a great resource.

Again welcome to the forum
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Old 12-11-2007, 02:28 PM #4
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Default Re: Asking for a simple laser making guide

Unfortunately, most of them require an AixiZ module to be completed, and since I am in Europe I'm not sure I'll be able to get them. How can I replace them with basic electronic components?
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Old 12-11-2007, 02:38 PM #5
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Default Re: Asking for a simple laser making guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by bricco
Unfortunately, most of them require an AixiZ module to be completed, and since I am in Europe I'm not sure I'll be able to get them. How can I replace them with basic electronic components?
Are you asking if you can use something other than an AixiZ module? As in something you can buy from your local DIY centre?

If the answers are 'yes', then I must answer 'Not without a LOT of expensive tools and a LOT more trouble'
Just go to StoneTek. You can find everything you need there.
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Old 12-11-2007, 05:17 PM #6
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Default Re: Asking for a simple laser making guide

Erm... So, if a laser is already placed in an AixiZ module it can be hooked up to a pair of batteries and be used?
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Old 12-12-2007, 02:16 PM #7
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Default Re: Asking for a simple laser making guide

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Originally Posted by bricco
Erm... So, if a laser is already placed in an AixiZ module it can be hooked up to a pair of batteries and be used?
Yes, but it will die.

http://www.laserpointerforums.com/fo...num=1190456606

The 'Sony Diode Pre-Installed In Aixiz Module' for $26.50 is only a diode in a module with an adjustable lens, no driver.
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Old 12-12-2007, 02:53 PM #8
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Default Re: Asking for a simple laser making guide

Look, I went to that thread, but you have to help me here because I'm not sure I understand what's written there... Let me recap; a laser pointer is made of:
1) Laser diode: makes the light. Includes optical correctors.
2) AixiZ module: holds the diode, transmits the current. I have no idea of what it does beside that...
3) A "driver". I suppose this reduces the amperage?
4) Battery: gives the current
5) Case: hold the things together, includes a switch

I know I'm being bothersome, but I find it difficult to deduce the functions of the various components of the laser; please be patient.
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Old 12-12-2007, 03:31 PM #9
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Default Re: Asking for a simple laser making guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by bricco
Look, I went to that thread, but you have to help me here because I'm not sure I understand what's written there... Let me recap; a laser pointer is made of:
1) Laser diode: makes the light. Includes optical correctors.
2) AixiZ module: holds the diode, transmits the current. I have no idea of what it does beside that...
3) A "driver". I suppose this reduces the amperage?
4) Battery: gives the current
5) Case: hold the things together, includes a switch

I know I'm being bothersome, but I find it difficult to deduce the functions of the various components of the laser; please be patient.
First off, you aren't a bother at all. The best way to learn is to ask a LOT of questions. And provided someone searches a bit before plastering the forum with questions that have been answered before, no one will be upset.

I'm sorry if I sounded annoyed, I mostly make very terse posts and I suppose it comes across like I'm annoyed sometimes.

Let me try to explain.

1) Yes, the LASER diode (hereinafter refered to as 'LD') makes the coherent light

2) The module holds the LD, and a lens with which to focus the beam. It also acts as a heatsink, taking the heat produces by the LD and wicking it away.

3) A driver as Daedal described in the 'DIY driver' thread is a constant current supply. It provides a constant current of (1.25V/sense resistor resistance in Ohms = current in Amps) It does this by increasing the voltage to the LD until the current reaches the 1.25V/Ohms setting. This is needed because the voltage the LD needs to operate at a given current changes depending on the junction temperature.

4) Yes, the battery supplies the power for the circuit and must provide enough voltage that the regulator doesn't drop out (that just means it isn't getting enough voltage to keep the LD at the full power. The voltage needed is Regularot dropout (for the LM317 this is around 2-3V) plus the sense voltage (for the LM317 this is 1.25V) plus the LASER diode forward voltage drop (for the red 16X sony diodes this is around 2.7-3V) plus a little for battery sag (when a load is applied to a battery the voltage will be lower than when there was no load). So that's 2.5 + 1.25 + 2.85 + a little for battery sag say .4V = 7V. Often the regulator can do a little better than 2.5V dropout, but to stay at full power you want around 7V. Any extra voltage is wasted as heat by the LM317 so don't go much higher without a good heatsink on the regulator.

5) For a case, just be creative.

I hope that helps!
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Old 12-13-2007, 08:24 PM #10
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Default Re: Asking for a simple laser making guide

Thanks, this really helps.
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Old 12-13-2007, 08:41 PM #11
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Default Re: Asking for a simple laser making guide

Great! Let us know what you come up with.
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