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Old 07-28-2015, 08:39 PM #1
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Default "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

Edit: Just for future reference, as I keep getting questions about the module not being flush with the heatsink, even after I posted the results of my testing on multiple threads. When using modules with a full copper back half, it does NOT make enough of a difference to sacrifice the ease of focusing the laser to flush the module with the heatsink. I observed less than 1 degree C difference after many duty cycles when pulling it all the way out to where the front half meets the back half. If someone wants to purchase one of these, I will gladly flush it if it will give them peace of mind, however, based on my testing, it will only make it more difficult to adjust the focus on this host while providing nearly no effect on heat dissipation/transfer.


So I decided I wanted to do a build thread...after I had pretty much completed the build. So this won't feature every single step of the build, but I might go back and add some of the skipped steps when I build another. I've built many lasers now, but this will be my first to actually post on LPF. This is one of my favorite hosts at the moment, so I will be building many more. I actually have 3 more hosts and heatsinks on the way, so if anyone would like one of these, PM me.

So this is what Rick Trent calls the "Zombie Killer" host. It does, in fact, seem like a pretty good backup skull smasher in case of a zombie apocalypse. Lol. I have had a very difficult time finding these hosts anywhere except through Rick. The only other source I've found is in bulk @ around 1,000 pieces. That seller called them "Anti-Wolf Attack Flashlights". I like "Zombie Killer" better.




The heatsink he sells for this host is an aluminum set-screw type which includes a 12mm copper module. What I really like about Rick's modules is the fact that the rear portion of the module butts up to the back of the diode. It makes me feel a bit better about heat transfer from the diode to the module.




Since I didn't think to take pictures during the build, I'll just go over some of the basics. I used Arctic Silver as thermal interface between both diode/module and module/heatsink. All leads are heat shrink wrapped. I used a BlitzBuck V5 driver set at 2.4A with an aluminum heatsink attached via Arctic Alumina thermal adhesive, and covered all exposed points on the driver with AA to prevent shorts. The heatsink for this host is designed for a larger(20mm, I believe) driver or contact board, however the driver contact ring can be flipped over to work with a smaller driver. I did so, and simply used the Arctic Alumina to attach the driver to the heatsink.







Once all that is complete and the laser assembly is tested successfully, all that is left is to drop it into the host and screw on the bezel that makes this the "Zombie Killer", and not just another silver flashlight host.

Edit: Two of the other hosts I received do not have the vertical play between heatsink and host. I am now using one of those hosts to eliminate the vertical play since I have put this one up for sale, so the wire contact ring you see in the pictures is no longer necessary. I have had no issues whatsoever with the wire fix, but this one will no longer require it.







And finally, the finished product. Let me know what you think!











And the power output. A little more than I expected.




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Old 07-28-2015, 08:54 PM #2
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Default Re: "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

The module needs to be flush with the heatsink. You are losing a lot of heat transfer the way you have it.
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Old 07-28-2015, 08:57 PM #3
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Default Re: "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

Great looking build TaterMay!
Your fix for the loose heatsink should be ok as long as it stays tight when the crown is screwed on.
An alternative would be to machine a spacer to fit around the heatsink, like a large, thin washer.

Edit - Yes, definitely push that module back into the H.S. like crazy says. I totally missed seeing that.

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Old 07-29-2015, 12:10 AM #4
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Default Re: "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

Wow great job! That almost looks like 405nm
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Old 07-29-2015, 01:01 AM #5
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Default Re: "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

Looking good what diode are you using?
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Old 07-29-2015, 01:06 AM #6
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Default

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Originally Posted by crazyspaz View Post
The module needs to be flush with the heatsink. You are losing a lot of heat transfer the way you have it.
Yea, I had it extended a little when I was playing with the focus a lot, measuring output and stuff, but I pressed it to nearly flush after testing. I have also been monitoring case temps via both IR thermometer and a digital thermometer/thermocouple to ensure I don't even get close to overheating the diode.

The way those modules are designed, the very front of the diode can is still behind the end of the heatsink, and the actual diode case is 5mm behind the end of the heatsink. Do you think there is a significant amount of heat dissipation lost through the forward end of the module where the diode doesn't actually touch it? I know it dissipates SOME heat, without a doubt. But I would think that most of the heat is transferred throughout the rear, nearly solid copper area of the module. This is definitely something I can experiment with with my new digital thermometer/thermocouple.

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Old 07-29-2015, 01:17 AM #7
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Default Re: "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

Quote:
Originally Posted by joeybab3 View Post
Wow great job! That almost looks like 405nm
Glad you brought that up. I was wanting to ask everyone for advice on taking pictures. All of my 445nm lasers appear WAY purple in pictures, when they actually appear completely blue in person. Does anyone know how to get more accurate colors when taking pictures? I've tried with every camera-bearing device I own. Though I do not own any purpose-built cameras; only phones, tablets, computers, etc. Lol.

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Looking good what diode are you using?
Nichia NDB7875. Thanks!
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Old 08-03-2015, 01:13 AM #8
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Default Re: "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

Pretty sweet build!
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Old 08-03-2015, 01:43 AM #9
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Default Re: "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

Nice build and I really like the color and shape of the host.
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Old 08-03-2015, 02:33 AM #10
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Nice build and I really like the color and shape of the host.
Isn't it awesome? I seriously just bought 3 more. Lol.

I just got some GITD powder and epoxy that I was wanting to use(after I paint my daughter's nails with it, of course ). Think it would look good anywhere on this host?

Btw, if anyone is interested in this laser, PM me. I want to sell a couple of them so I can order an Ophir LPM. I want to build an NUBM44, but I want to be able to measure the output when I do. I only have a Laserbee 3.7W USB at the moment.

Last edited by TaterMay; 08-03-2015 at 02:49 AM.
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Old 08-03-2015, 03:19 PM #11
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Default Re: "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

Good looking build Tater! I may have to pick up one of those hosts as well I like the look of it.
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Old 08-03-2015, 07:52 PM #12
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Default Re: "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

Like the ingenuity of using g the copper to make up the difference. Kind of thing I would do if needed or even use big Orings as the heat-sink is really doing the work anyways for cooling.
The last 9mm I made set at that same 2.4 was at just above 2.8W so you never know what you are going to get as the one before it measures about what you got at the same setting. Actually I think that was the only 9mm of that diode that I have ever had that wasn't well over 3W. Just happened to get one at the low end although I will say that this time I had gotten an outstanding deal on the host kit and I didn't bother to check if it really was set at 2.4A so you never know. Fact is it's not like you could likely tell the difference between it and one over 3W and I changed the G2 to a 3 element anyways. Square/rectangle dots are blah.
Oh nice little build and like others have mentioned if nothing else it looks better to have the focus knob not stick out so far.
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Old 08-03-2015, 08:16 PM #13
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Like the ingenuity of using g the copper to make up the difference. Kind of thing I would do if needed or even use big Orings as the heat-sink is really doing the work anyways for cooling.
The last 9mm I made set at that same 2.4 was at just above 2.8W so you never know what you are going to get as the one before it measures about what you got at the same setting. Actually I think that was the only 9mm of that diode that I have ever had that wasn't well over 3W. Just happened to get one at the low end although I will say that this time I had gotten an outstanding deal on the host kit and I didn't bother to check if it really was set at 2.4A so you never know. Fact is it's not like you could likely tell the difference between it and one over 3W and I changed the G2 to a 3 element anyways. Square/rectangle dots are blah.
Oh nice little build and like others have mentioned if nothing else it looks better to have the focus knob not stick out so far.
Yea, I had one recently that only hit 2.8 or so with a G2 lens, and it actually went down when I pushed it past 2.4A. I didn't push this one any further because I was plenty satisfied with 3.3 watts. I will be building the remaining 3 starting tonight, and I am interested to see how they compare. The one that I keep for myself will be built using a decanned NDB7875. I am also interested to see if it gains any power from having one less piece of glass to go through. I have the power output graph from before the window was damaged, so I can do a direct comparison with and without window.

I agree about the 3-element. I know I definitely can't tell the difference in power without two beams being side by side. Even then, I'm not sure I could tell which one is more powerful. I keep a 3-element in all of mine except my PLP520-B1 build because it's a nice beam, even with a G2.

I guess I should post an updated picture with the module pushed in. I just had it pulled out a little at the moment because that bevel makes it kinda difficult to adjust the focus, and these pictures were taken while I was doing testing.
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Old 09-25-2015, 05:02 PM #14
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Default Re: "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

Edited OP to clarify the module not being flush. I have built 10 or 12 of these now, and I have done thermal testing on 5 so far. Flushing the module makes for an almost unobservable difference in diode temp. I don't want people who may potentially buy a laser from me seeing these posts and thinking it is going to negatively affect the heat transfer/dissipation when testing proves otherwise. I will gladly provide more data if anyone needs further clarification.
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Old 10-12-2015, 10:31 PM #15
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Default Re: "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

where did you get the host?
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Old 10-12-2015, 11:19 PM #16
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Default Re: "Zombie Killer" 3.3 Watt 445 Build

Nice build. I like the host you used for this. I would be interested in buying one, however, I have yet to build one myself. I've been looking for a nice kit (that is not too complicated) to get my feet wet.
Vince
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