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Old 05-05-2013, 04:47 AM #1
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Default SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

This list is an effort to create a comprehensive checklist, using BPM (Best Practices Management) to keep us from killing our diodes. Please, feel free to add something if you feel I missed it. Let's please try to refrain from esoteric arguments with regards to what is and what isn't BPM.

Before You Even Open That Baggy:
1) Do you NEED to really open this now? Really?
2) ESD: Personal Ground Protection; This means a REAL ground, not the sink or your bench legs.
3) ESD: Grounded work mat, etc.
4) Flat, level workspace, clear of unneeded cords, cables, equipment, or parts
5) Pets, children, curious idiots at a safe distance
6) Equipment, tools, components needed for why you're opening the bag in the first place

Direct Driving Your Diode:
1) ESD: Personal Ground Protection; This means a REAL ground, not the sink or your bench legs.
2) ESD: Grounded work mat, etc.
3) Flat, level workspace, clear of unneeded cords, cables, equipment, or parts
4) Pets, children, curious idiots at a safe distance
5) Set current and voltage settings on PSU
6) Turn off PSU
7) Short the PSU leads
8) Ensure SECURE connections to you diode leads. Ensure all soldered joints, all leads securely connected
9) Turn on PSU; Ramp up your current SLOWLY; Use your "Fine" adjustment settings if applicable.
10) Turn current then voltage adjustments to zero; Turn off PSU
11) Remove leads; Secure diode in anti-static packaging.

Connecting Driver to Diode:
1) ESD: Personal Ground Protection; This means a REAL ground, not the sink or your bench legs.
2) ESD: Grounded work mat, etc.
3) Use a GROUNDED soldering iron, with approriate tips only
4) Flat, level workspace, clear of unneeded cords, cables, equipment, or parts
5) Pets, children, curious idiots at a safe distance
6) Always use a test load to ensure driver current settings before connecting to diode; Driver makers do occasionally make mistakes. So do you.
7) Short the LD leads from diode before connecting to diode
8) Ensure all connections are secure; Soldered joints are wet, probe connectors securely attached.
9) Ensure all connections and lead ends are protected against short
10) Ensure proper polarity of batteries used; Ensure PSU settings correct and leads shorted.
11) Never attempt adjusting driver current while connected to LD
12) Safety eye wear on before supplying power.

Final Assembly:

1) ESD: Personal Ground Protection; This means a REAL ground, not the sink or your bench legs.
2) ESD: Grounded work mat, etc.
3) Use a GROUNDED soldering iron only
4) Flat, level workspace, clear of unneeded cords, cables, equipment, or parts
5) Pets, children, curious idiots at a safe distance
6) Test for shorts in assembly BEFORE connecting diode; Connect DMM and check for current from driver, powered by batteries in host.
7) If no shorts found, short your driver leads
8) Flux and Pre-Tin ALL wire leads
9) Use heat-shrink tubing on ALL soldered connections
10) Ensure no open connections available to short circuit

Moment of Truth:

1) Ensure batter charge/capacity/internal resistance
2) Ensure proper battery polarity (are you sure the + end goes in for this 532nm module?)
3) Ensure all components securely connected, threads completely screwed together.
4) Pray if you must
5) Hit that freakin' clicky-switch!

How to Not Kill Your Diode Now:

1) Keep all lasers in appropriate storage when not in use; padded case, display case, etc.
2) Do NOT store laser with batteries installed
3) Transport lasers in safe, padded container
4) Use wrist-strap if applicable
5) Be aware of your surroundings
6) Do NOT let some A-hole play with your laser
7) Do NOT drop laser. Particularly a 405nm laser!
8) Ensure removal of lens cap before engaging laser
9) Avoid any reflections of laser beam back into diode lens
10) Avoid over-discharging batteries



That's the basic list for now. Please, feel free to add more.


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Last edited by scumbagatheist; 05-05-2013 at 09:23 PM. Reason: Update
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Old 05-05-2013, 04:55 AM #2
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

NB4 Massive Reps given to you....

nice thread, I especially agree with number 1. I keep all my diodes in the original packaging material. That's right, I have SEALED mailing envelopes on my desk with diodes!

On the subject of ESD protection....I actually don't take a ton of precautions. I try to regularly touch grounded metal to discharge and wear shoes that I don't think will accrue static. I have yet to kill a diode from ESD problems. Usually my issue has been(not now that I have a good soldering Iron) killing the driver and then the dying driver effing my life up with a swift kick of current to my diode.

BTW you should probably add to have a quality soldering Iron.
The biggest thing IMHO is having a soldering iron with a very fine tip so you aren't blundering about like a child with a sword. If your driver board is showing massive scorch marks because you cannot touch the leads without touching the entire board, you need a new iron.
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Old 05-05-2013, 04:59 AM #3
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

Very good point in regards to the soldering station/iron!

In regards to ESD...this is a BPM attempt, it's up the reader to follow or not.

Thank you very much.
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Old 05-05-2013, 05:02 AM #4
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

BTW that testing for shorts thing you mentioned at the bottom? IMPORTANT!!!! I completely fried the hell out of a mohgasm round linear 1.8A driver by not testing for shorts. Was lazy and didn't want to pay the 30 bucks for a test load. LEARN FROM MY MISTAKES! lol. Test Loads are important.....still don't own one though :/
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Old 05-05-2013, 05:03 AM #5
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

Very good guideline on how to handle a laser diode... thanks
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:04 AM #6
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

I always NEED to open the baggy to admire the awesomeness of my diodes!! Probably the hardest thing not to do haha
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:09 AM #7
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

I have blown a total of 3 405nm SO6J's. First one I was to impatient for the driver and connected it directly to batteries. Second one I was showing someone my lasers and I grabbed 4 16340 batteries... 2 for my 445nm build and 2 for my 405nm w/ X-boost
The last one I went for 1W and it never made it. I have blown 3-4 drivers from because they shorted when I put everything together. I have yet to blow an m140 or 9mm (knock on wood). I guess these are growing pains.... It does make you want to hurl when it happens though. My 520nm diode has sat in the packaging for like two weeks until tonight when I finally put it together.
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:35 AM #8
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

mhemling33, pics? What are your thoughts on the 520 wavelength??? Mine has been in an envelope on my desk since like April 11th....so umm....almost a month now lol. Waiting for my host from Sinner.
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Old 05-05-2013, 07:20 AM #9
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

Excellent thread.

Should probably add something about using a REAL ground and not just an assumed ground. "Oh, that metal is grounded" ... Suuuuuuure.

I've never killed a single component with ESD, and I don't use/have an ESD floor mat. A GOOD ground, wrist strap, and conductive grounded work mat/surface (I use a 1/8" thick copper sheet) go a very long way.

Just so readers know I've measured over 60Vpk 60Hz mains between myself and a grounded object with a high impedance scope probe. If you are not grounded you are live - even if it is just a few nA of current.
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Old 05-05-2013, 07:34 AM #10
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

No one mentions a grounded soldering iron.... I always grounded mine in case of sensitive components.
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Old 05-05-2013, 08:02 AM #11
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by wannaburnstuff View Post
mhemling33, pics? What are your thoughts on the 520 wavelength??? Mine has been in an envelope on my desk since like April 11th....so umm....almost a month now lol. Waiting for my host from Sinner.
I like it alot
Here you go...

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Old 05-05-2013, 08:33 AM #12
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by norbyx View Post
No one mentions a grounded soldering iron.... I always grounded mine in case of sensitive components.
I've actually never found one that isn't grounded tip, even cheap 15W ones. Do they still make floating tip irons? I think two pin construction is against electrical codes now.
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Old 05-05-2013, 08:46 AM #13
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

My first Soldering Iron(which ruined most components it touched) was a non grounded, two pin, floatin tip piece of shiite. Bought it 2 years ago or so. It has since been disposed of.
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Old 05-05-2013, 09:08 AM #14
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

I dont believe in any of that crap.

they are only diodes ya know??

I am positive most of these were defective- that's my story an imma stickin' to it!!

not my fault
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Old 05-05-2013, 01:03 PM #15
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sigurthr View Post
I've actually never found one that isn't grounded tip, even cheap 15W ones. Do they still make floating tip irons? I think two pin construction is against electrical codes now.
I have not tested any of my former POS irons, out. But, they are 2-pole, cheap RS crap. I've not killed a diode due to ESD..but for other, equally stupid mistakes.

Thanks for the suggestion guys. This thread will be updated to make it more complete.
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Old 05-05-2013, 01:33 PM #16
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Default Re: SBA's "Before You Touch That Diode" Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by wannaburnstuff View Post
BTW that testing for shorts thing you mentioned at the bottom? IMPORTANT!!!! I completely fried the hell out of a mohgasm round linear 1.8A driver by not testing for shorts. Was lazy and didn't want to pay the 30 bucks for a test load. LEARN FROM MY MISTAKES! lol. Test Loads are important.....still don't own one though :/
Isaac, stop buying diodes until you spend the $10 for a test load! I'll give you my old one if you want.

But, I HIGHLY recommend buying one of Jufran's kits. Man, that is the ***iest test-load in our hobby! It was so cool, I had to blow the $10 even though Isabella and I already built one.

Again, if you don't want to spend money, let me know. I'll send you mine.
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