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Old 11-04-2011, 09:57 AM #1
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Default Build Advice

Hey everyone,
I haven't been on here in a long while, but a dorm mate brought over a 1W 445 that re-sparked my interest in lasers.

I still have a PHR-803T sled sitting around at my father's house. I really want to make a handheld laser with it, though I'm planning everything out and I've run into some issues/questions. If anyone could provide me with some advice or information I'd really appreciate it!

So, first off I need a module. I have an axiz with another 803T (dead, electrician friend apparently never worked with laser diodes before, insisted diodes weren't heat sensitive even though I warned him as such :/) in it, but I was considering buying an O-Like module (405nm/445nm laser module housing w/glasses lens [OL1845-BL] - $9.99 : Zen Cart!, The Art of E-commerce) instead, as it seems to be nicer quality in build and lens. Is this going to make any difference in output versus the standard acrylic axiz lens?

Secondly, I need a driver. I had a good experience buying a kit from Rckstr when I made my first attempt, though I worry I may not have soldered it well enough. The university I attend has a very well equipped circuits lab, so I suppose I could take it in and hook it up to a DMM or oscilloscope to check if it is functioning properly. I'm a bit lazy, though, and I was considering buying this 2 pack of drivers, also from O-Like (2 pack Red laser/808nm laser diode driver 80-500mA w/TTL [OLDD20] - $5.99 : Zen Cart!, The Art of E-commerce). It says they are variable from 80-500mA, which includes my intended current of 110mA. Though, I'm unsure what sort of drivers these are. They are marketed as for red/IR diodes and says it outputs @ >2.5V when on, which I worry isn't enough for the 803T diode because the 405nm driver they sell indicates it outputs 4.8V. If all else fails, what would be a fairly cheap driver that could definitely power the 803T?

Another issue I face is that of a power supply. I intend to put this all in a flashlight host from DX, most likely one that uses 2 CR123As (such as this: SuperFire Flashlight 9V BLACK - Free Shipping - DealExtreme), which would provide 7.2V in series, which exceeds that 2-pack driver's input range of 4-5V. Though, if that driver is out of the question, I suppose that's a non-issue. Another host I had in mind was this (9-LED 8000mcd White Light Flashlight with DX Logo - Black (3*AAA) - Free Shipping - DealExtreme) which takes 3 AAAs in series. I figure that would add up to about 3.6V/800mAh with rechargeable AAAs, but that's now too low. Even if I modified the 3xAAA holder to be in parallel, and used 3 10440s, the voltage would be only 3.7V, though perhaps with a bit more mAh of around 900mAh.

A final bit to consider is that of a heat sink. For the 2xCR123A host, I could probably modify the reflector to serve as a temporary heatsink. Not possible with the 3xAAA host. I plan on getting access to a lathe and some aluminum, so I could machine some well fitted heatsinks later on.

Again, any information or advice you can provide would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks in advance!


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Old 11-04-2011, 12:00 PM #2
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Default Re: Build Advice

I think your easiest bet would get a c-6 host . If you want get a kit from moh then use a DIY driver and power of 2 c r123a
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Old 11-05-2011, 03:05 AM #3
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Default Re: Build Advice

Moh? Did some searching, I'm assuming you mean this: FS: Aurora C6 Kits!
$25 is a bit much for just a host, driver and heatsink. Plus it says it's pre-set to 1.25A, obviously for a 445nm diode.

Last edited by Omega; 11-05-2011 at 03:06 AM.
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Old 11-05-2011, 03:13 AM #4
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Default Re: Build Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Omega View Post
$25 is a bit much for just a host, driver and heatsink.


I challenge, no I dare you to find a better deal.
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Old 11-05-2011, 05:55 AM #5
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Default Re: Build Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghostchrome View Post


I challenge, no I dare you to find a better deal.
Challenge accepted.

Driver: 2 pack Red laser/808nm laser diode driver 80-500mA w/TTL [OLDD20] - $5.99 : Zen Cart!, The Art of E-commerce
$6
Host: 9-LED 8000mcd White Light Flashlight with DX Logo - Black (3*AAA) - Free Shipping - DealExtreme
$2.20
Heatsink: I have access to scrap aluminum and I know how to use a lathe.
$0

Even if I used the nicer host which is $9.71, it's still only ~$16.
I'm on a fairly tight budget. Every buck counts.
And again, that kit seems to be for a 445nm diode since the driver is set for 1.25A.
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Old 11-05-2011, 03:49 PM #6
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Default Re: Build Advice

If you want to compare that $2 crap to $10 host,

You might want to take a few things into consideration.
First, number of 1x 18650 builds versus number of 3x AAA builds (which nicely illustrates the potential of AAAs to 18650s).

$25 for host, heatsink, and driver is a very nice deal.

If you are really on a very tight budget, that's something else, but here we generally use hosts which are "tried and true" quality and assembly possibilities regarding combination of drivers and diodes which can be powered in it.

If you want an alternative, see here:
Ultrafire Flashlight Aluminum Alloy Casing/Shell/Housing with Strap - Black - Free Shipping - DealExtreme

That's Ultrafire 501B , a host of my choice. You can find heatsinks for it at Radiant Electronics, linked in my signature (currently only direct pressfit heatsinks are in stock, 12mm bored ones sold out all of a sudden, me and Mario are already working on restock).

It's a bigger host and bigger heatsink, it can also use either 1x 18650 cell or two 16340 cells.

DIY laser hosts do not get much better than that.

EDIT - Oh.
Quote:
Heatsink: ...
$0
Ouch.
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Old 11-06-2011, 12:59 AM #7
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Default Re: Build Advice

Y'know, unless you're intending on throwing this thing away after a few uses, you ought to at least get a nicer host so that it doesn't have a cheap flashlight feel to it. I know those LED flashlights are much nicer these days, but that just means you can get something even nicer to work with.
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Old 11-06-2011, 06:33 AM #8
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Default Re: Build Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eudaimonium View Post
If you want to compare that $2 crap to $10 host,

You might want to take a few things into consideration.
First, number of 1x 18650 builds versus number of 3x AAA builds (which nicely illustrates the potential of AAAs to 18650s).

$25 for host, heatsink, and driver is a very nice deal.

If you are really on a very tight budget, that's something else, but here we generally use hosts which are "tried and true" quality and assembly possibilities regarding combination of drivers and diodes which can be powered in it.

If you want an alternative, see here:
Ultrafire Flashlight Aluminum Alloy Casing/Shell/Housing with Strap - Black - Free Shipping - DealExtreme

That's Ultrafire 501B , a host of my choice. You can find heatsinks for it at Radiant Electronics, linked in my signature (currently only direct pressfit heatsinks are in stock, 12mm bored ones sold out all of a sudden, me and Mario are already working on restock).

It's a bigger host and bigger heatsink, it can also use either 1x 18650 cell or two 16340 cells.

DIY laser hosts do not get much better than that.

EDIT - Oh.

Ouch.
You must not have read my first post, nor this bit: "Even if I used the nicer host which is $9.71, it's still only ~$16." My first consideration was a ~$10 host, though I appreciate you finding that nice one for $6

I am on a tight budget. Unfortunately my college tuition isn't the cheapest. $16 is a significant bit cheaper than $25 in my eyes. Also, again, unless I misread that deal, the driver in it is preset for a 445nm diode. 1.25A would fry my little PHR-803T.

What's the "ouch" about the heatsink for?

Also, will any light that takes two CR123A/16340 also fit one 18650? I was under the impression that a 17670, which is 2x the length of a 16340, is the only larger battery that will fit in those lights. Also, as far as the AAA host bit, I was considering modifying one to take 3 10440s in parallel for the sake of capacity.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bionic-Badger
Y'know, unless you're intending on throwing this thing away after a few uses, you ought to at least get a nicer host so that it doesn't have a cheap flashlight feel to it. I know those LED flashlights are much nicer these days, but that just means you can get something even nicer to work with.
Yeah, like I mentioned above, my first consideration was a nicer one. The cheap-o one was a last resort sort of thing. I'd prefer the one that it better made.

Last edited by Omega; 11-06-2011 at 06:38 AM.
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Old 11-06-2011, 08:38 AM #9
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Default Re: Build Advice

Yup, that for $6 is the best host for the money.

"Ouch" part should be obvious - I machine heatsinks, and selling them for $0 would not be very profitable (and I think I'm pretty sure without running the numbers). It costs a lot of material (and gas to go get that material), knives and tool bits get used up, chucks need replacing... it has it's fair share of costs to go with it.

All 18650 lights will fit two 16340 (and 18350, look those up, they are great), however not all 2x 16340 lights will fit 18650 cell.
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Old 11-06-2011, 09:36 AM #10
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Default Re: Build Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eudaimonium View Post
Yup, that for $6 is the best host for the money.

"Ouch" part should be obvious - I machine heatsinks, and selling them for $0 would not be very profitable (and I think I'm pretty sure without running the numbers). It costs a lot of material (and gas to go get that material), knives and tool bits get used up, chucks need replacing... it has it's fair share of costs to go with it.

All 18650 lights will fit two 16340 (and 18350, look those up, they are great), however not all 2x 16340 lights will fit 18650 cell.
I'd certainly agree with that. I suppose I never found that prior because I was only searching through flashlights, and not accessories. I really appreciate you sharing that!

Ah, I see. I wasn't suggesting I would sell heatsinks for such a price. I only meant that is what I could get one, only for myself, for. I assure you I won't be intruding on your business :P

Gotcha, those designed for a 18650 will accept 2x16340, but not necessarily the other way around. Oh wow, 18350s have around 1.5 times the capacity of 16340s. If I purchase that host, which I'm 99% sure I will now, this gives me the flexibility of ~2500mAh @ 3.7V with a 18650, or ~1200mAh @ 7.2V with two 18350s. Awesome!

I suppose all that's left is a driver and module. I figure I'll first check if my rckstr driver is functional. If anyone can confirm or deny if those O-Like drivers will work to drive a PHR-803T with any of my power options, that'd be really helpful. I'm guessing not, because (Violet laser - Laser Wiki) says that the diode runs on 5.4-6.5V, and that driver only outputs 2.5V. So if my rckstr driver is bunk, I guess I'll have to make some EE friends and make one from scratch.

As far as modules go, I'm wondering if that O-Like one is coated specifically for 405nm, or it's just a plain lens. If it has a benefit over an aixiz I'll go with that. Otherwise, I think aixiz...s are cheaper, and it's possible to get a 405nm coated lens for them.

Thanks for your help, Eudaimonium :]

Edit:
Found this "spec sheet" on the AiXiZ site (http://www.aixiz.com/store/product_i...roducts_id/104). I guess those drivers definitely wont work. Drat.
Vcc---------Voltage Out () Max Output (1mv = 1ma)
3VDC----------2.9VDC-----------27ma
3.5VDC--------3.1VDC-----------76ma
4.0VDC--------3.3VDC----------144ma
4.5VDC--------3.5VDC----------226ma
5.0VDC--------3.6VDC----------310ma
5.5VDC--------3.6VDC----------400ma
6.0VDC--------3.75VDC---------430ma

Though, now I'm thinking. Would it be possible to connect two in series to provide twice the voltage at the same current? That sounds a bit sketchy. Not sure if that is safe, though I recall hearing of multiple drivers to power 1W+ diodes. I'm assuming those were in parallel so the current adds up. If I supply two with 3.7V, they'd output a total of ~6.4V, which is just under the max of 6.5V, and the max current would be ~110mA. If such a setup is safe, this would be ideal with a single 18650.

Last edited by Omega; 11-06-2011 at 10:16 AM.
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Old 11-06-2011, 09:45 AM #11
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Default Re: Build Advice

Driving a PHR diode is very easy.

I would reccomend that you get yourself a bulk of these:
10 PCS AMS1117-ADJ SOT-223 LM1117-ADJ 1117 ADJ 1A | eBay

They are very easy to work with, pinout configuration and working parameters exactly the same as LM317, just that they have lower Voltage drop and will enable you to run a bluray diode off two lithiums, which is very nice solution, and with 18350s it will last forever. Well, 8-10 hours of ON time to be precise.

You need a 12 ohm resistor and a capacitor, and with those three components you can have your driver to output 107mA. I have build a lot of PHRs that way.

When you're done with that laser, LM1117s are useful for pretty much everything else too.

For 100mW bluray, plastic lens should suffice and you don't need to worry about glass, but if you want to you can pick up glass lenses over at Rayfoss (cheapest glass lenses I know of), for $10 you get two pieces.
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Old 11-07-2011, 01:07 AM #12
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Default Re: Build Advice

I'll have to check the circuits lab for some of those. They basically give you anything you need :]

As far as the cap goes, I've heard that can risk frying the diode if there's an accidental discharge. How does one prevent that? I'm guessing the layout would be similar to the DDL circuit (First build: PHR-803T), just with a 1117 rather than a 317.
Just for Ss&Gs, I might talk to some EEs about making a boost driver so that I could power it off of a single 18650. Also, this brings the issue that I was hoping to buy as much as I could off of DX, but DX only has one sku of 18350s and they're unprotected (http://www.dealextreme.com/p/ultrafi...ies-pair-50485). I'm getting a "smart" charger though (http://www.dealextreme.com/p/12594), so hopefully it wont be an issue.

So a plain ol' aixiz module would be fine? I'm considering getting the o-like one because of the nicer build, the coated lens, and the fins around the diode half of it. I've never seen Rayfoss before, though. Thanks for sharing that :]

Last edited by Omega; 11-07-2011 at 01:18 AM.
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