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Old 03-24-2013, 10:08 AM #1
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Exclamation Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

I started off in the laser hobby just over a year ago. My previous electronics experience and genuine interest made me learn quickly. I am a student studying Electrical Engineering in New Zealand.

My goal was to make the best, most safest laser I could and I think I have done well so far. Ideas and criticism is welcome!





The JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser has matured over the past five builds of it. This is of the latest build, making a customer in the Phillipines very happy.

KEY POINTS:
  • 9mm 445nm Diode
  • Copper Aixiz module (Arctic Ceramique 2 Thermal compund between module and heatsink)
  • Aluminium Heatsink made here in New Zealand
  • 405-G-2 Lens (Brass Lens holder)
  • Custom thin Focus Adapter (from Mrcrouse)
  • Barrel-type keyswitch
  • 2.1A Buck regulator (Lazerer X-Drive in this build)
  • 2 x Protected 25500 Cells without + nub
  • Highlight > JD-Lasers Custom Microcontroller board

Microcontroller Features:
Temperature Sensor. LED flashes faster as the laser gets hotter. From about 1Hz at 20degC to 10Hz (strobe) at 50degC. At 50degC, it will beep quickly (in time with LED) telling you that you should let it cool down. With the huge heatsink, this gives you 5 minutes on a gruelling 30degC day to 12mins in Winter (or Unlimited time in cold wind).
I made it SMART. It knows when you have turned off the laser to cool down, and will not beep at you.



Battery monitor. At 3.5V (7V total) the battery monitor LED will change from Green to Red telling you that you should charge the battery. 3.5V still has quite a bit of capacity left, but you shouldn't let it get very low to conserve the life of your Li-Ion cells.

Armed Reminder. It will be hard to forget to disarm it as it has a flashing temperature LED, but just in case, after 1 minute of not firing, it will do long beeps at 0.25Hz. The alarm is disabled when you fire the laser or by of-course, disarming it (keyswitch).

Startup Sound. Sort of useless. But adds to the quality feel of the laser. Sounds a bit like a dishwasher startup sound when you turn on the keyswitch.

(Coming soon in next build) Digitally controlled switch. The MagLite clicky is replaced with a tiny momentary microswitch (like in a mouse). This switch is connected to the microcontroller instead of the laser. The microcontroller turns on a very low resistance Logic MOSFET which turns on the laser. This means three more features can be added.
1) Auto power off for noobs that leave it on trying to bun something.
2) Delay before firing. Through software, can make the laser not be able to fire for 2 seconds after arming (one step closer to FDA aprooval).
3) Multiple modes. Strobe anyone? (You will be able to toggle on the laser by double-clicking the switch).



Firstly I started off with a 2C Black MagLite. Why?
> Black contrasts with the silver heatsink and looks awesome
> 2C just feels right compared to 2D but still offers decent capacity


The first thing I did was shorten the tailcap by two threads. This is used with the +nub and nub-less 25500 cells.




Protected 25500 Cells from DX (good experiences with them) with + nub:


I recently got some Trustfire Protected 25500 Cells from DX that have no +nub. This allowed me to make a shallow solder blob on the negative ends of the cells so they still connect in series. These cells were a GREAT find and I hope they stack up the the blue cells's capacity. EDIT: I have tested these cells, and they take 1 hour 10 mins to drop from 4.15V to 3.00V. I'd say 1 hour is the battery life of this laser.
The reason I like these cells so much is because being a little shorter, they COMPLETELY remove a very difficult and dangerous step from the build. Modifying the switch.

With the blue cells, I would have to shorten the top of the switch, making it sit a little above the switch hole:




This made the original rubber cap not fit, and have to be modified and glued to fit. I managed to wreck a cap, and get glue in a switch once making it stick :O


Next, I added the keyswitch to the tailcap:


Wire soldered to nut.


Other end of wire soldered to one of the keyswitch terminals.


The left half of this spring gets soldered and epoxied onto the other terminal of the switch. This spring was originally part of the MagLite's bulb assembly.





The barrel type keyswitch feels VERY tough and is shorter than the key-type I have tried.


Drill LED holes:





Wires are soldered to the switch output, the negative tag, and the the bottom of the switch. The wire on the bottom of the switch is thin and goes through a groove in the side of the switch, bypassing the switch, to the microcontroller board. This supplies the microcontroller with power when the laser isn't firing.




Microcontroller board:
This is mainly what makes my laser unique.




Covered with liquid electrical tape for protection.


A previous build used PATA ribbon cable for all the connections to the board. The most recent build, I planned the lengths thoroughly and used thin silicone wire instead.


Fits very nicely. Still plenty of room in the head for future improvements.


Aixiz module set up:


Previously, I used a cut-off back-end of the Aixiz module to mount the NTC thermistor for temperature sensing.
Now, I mount the thermistor on the heatsink itself as it is stronger (can put epoxy there) and aluminium equalizes the heat well enough for accurate readings.




Wiring set up.


Ready to put together:


405-G-2 Lens


Mrcrouse's focus adapter custom made extra thin so that the MagLite can stand on its crown.


Beautiful custom warning sticker by Innovative-Lasers.


This is how everything is arranged on the back of the heatsink for maximum durability. (X-Drive has IC thermal pasted btw)
This is the current build, where the thermistor is attached to the heatsink, rather than the Aixiz back-end.


Autosol polish.





FEATURES DEMONSTRATION VIDEO:


This is a product I make and sell worldwide.

So people... What do you think?



Last edited by nztdm; 03-25-2013 at 06:56 AM.
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Old 03-24-2013, 10:22 AM #2
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Amazing! I like the size of the 2C mags as well. 2D just feels like a billy club LOL. Cant wait to see it in action. Gotta say, the added thermal sensor with warnings is a great feature and the added security of the key switch with warnings is reassuring. The epoxy is also a good idea, ill be doing that with my build now. Any use of thermal compound? Great job and keep up the fantastic work!
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Old 03-24-2013, 10:26 AM #3
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Yes. I use the best. Arctic Ceramique 2 Thermal compound. (Forgot to add that)

Thanks for the feedback!
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Old 03-24-2013, 10:31 AM #4
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Youre welcome! I personally use IC Diamond but thats only because I use it in my computers and other projects. No experience with Arctic C2. Keep up the great work! Looking forward to more vids of that besty!
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Old 03-24-2013, 10:34 AM #5
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Expect another vid tomorrow showing all the features. :-)
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Old 03-24-2013, 10:59 AM #6
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Very nice! Although it doesn't have a burning video...
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Old 03-24-2013, 11:00 AM #7
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Wow very impressive! I very much like the idea of the temperature sensor and battery monitor, really nice and +1
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Old 03-24-2013, 11:09 AM #8
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Thanks for the feedback!
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Old 03-24-2013, 11:16 AM #9
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cel View Post
Very nice! Although it doesn't have a burning video...
Most people on here know what 2.1A 9mm 405-G-2 can do. Its possibly the most powerful visible single-diode burner you can get.

Here's an advertising vid I made a while ago: JD-Lasers Demonstration - YouTube
This is of a previous one, but same diode set up.
I will make another bid of burning wood. When focused well, it actually pops and fizzes. Can ignite newspaper.
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Old 03-25-2013, 06:57 AM #10
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Added extensive features demonstration video.
Check bottom of OP.
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Old 03-25-2013, 04:33 PM #11
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Did I miss the LPM test?
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Old 03-25-2013, 04:34 PM #12
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Quote:
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Did I miss the LPM test?
Buy one and test it
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Old 03-25-2013, 09:46 PM #13
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

I musnt have been very clear in the OP.

I have made five of these haha. The LPM is gonna be different for every diode and my host and safety features will not affect that. But you would know the ballpark figure of 9mm 2.1A 405-G-2.
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Old 03-26-2013, 08:24 AM #14
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Agreed.

But your topic title doesnt reflect the fact the the power output is estimated, not measured.
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Old 03-26-2013, 08:33 AM #15
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

Quote:
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Agreed.

But your topic title doesnt reflect the fact the the power output is estimated, not measured.
3W is part of my product name. "JD-Lasers 3W Maglite Laser". It is a targeted output. It is probably lower most of the time.
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Old 01-17-2014, 07:53 AM #16
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Default Re: Building the JD-Lasers 3W MagLite Laser (PIC HEAVY)

I want to buy one of these maglite 3w laser and what is the price. An other question is there a problem in my countries custom. I am living in Turkey.
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