Old 10-16-2009, 02:53 PM #1
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Default "More Beam"

First off, Wow! I can't believe a site like this exists. It's at the very top of my favorities list so thanks to the creator(s) for making this site possible.

Ok, so I own a couple Jasper lasers and for their power (5mw) I love em' but, Iv'e always been looking for some "more beam". I live in East Tennessee and have the Great Smoky Mountains as my back yard. Being "smoky" all the time, I get great beam at night even being within the city light falloff. But, unless I'm right behind the pointer, the beam is hard to see. Now the dot? I can place that sucker a couple miles across the lake and easily see it in all it's green glory but I want "more beam Scotty!"

So yesterday, Jasper Lasers sends me a deal for their 100mw green laser. Now, it's the module only which I guess is how they get around selling it but for $9 more, you get the shell casing which you then install the module into. No big deal there but the discount takes it down to $200 (normally $350) and that's still pretty darn expensive for me. Especially since I use the pointer just for fun and to make others drool.

But now that I found this site, it looks like I just saved a bunch of money and possibly whatever vision I have left. I read this forums' Buying Guide and saw a post on the brightness levels of the different mw's and it seems that anything above 50mw may be difficult to look at. Plus, I'm 38 years old and don't need to be poppin' ballons or burning match heads so I don't need "burning power".

In this forum, I also found the list of companies who sell decent products and have good customer sevice and even though Jasperlaser.com (formally BigHa.com) has been a great company to buy from, it looks like from all your posts that Optotronics sell good quality lasers at a cheaper price.

So, I'm looking at the "Premium +55mW Green Laser Pointer" for $99. Knowing that I only want a brighter beam compared to my Jasper Curve 5mw pointer, will this do? Again this is just a fun toy and I don't care about the looks of the pointer (although the Curve is cool looking). Outdoor performance aside, Will the 50mw produce a bright visible beam inside a lit room or hallway? Lastly, how does a company like Optotronics get around selling anything >5mw to the average civilian? Jasper sells the module seperately and is located in the United States. So how do other U.S. companies get around it? Do I have to befriend some FDA employee by pushing him out of the way of an oncoming bus while illegally j-walking?

Thanks,
Greg


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Old 10-16-2009, 03:57 PM #2
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Default Re: "More Beam"

To quickly answer your FDA question:

FDA has regulations on lasers. They must have many safety features such as a key lock, light indicating the laser is on (other than the beam!), aperture shutter, and some others. I'm not so knowledgeable on the process, but I've heard they need to approve it personally as well.

Anyways, welcome to the forum! You can buy a kit from jayrob, and a 50 mW o-like module from o-like.com. Stylish, cheap, and portable tiny laser!

EDIT: 55mW+ from optotronics will do BEAUTIFULLY compared to that tiny 5 mW of yours ;D. It'll be EASILY visible in the night sky. And to overhead planes/helicopters (be careful not to hit any!).
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Old 10-16-2009, 03:57 PM #3
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Default Re: "More Beam"

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Originally Posted by Gsquared18 View Post
....
But now that I found this site, it looks like I just saved a bunch of money and possibly whatever vision I have left. I read this forums' Buying Guide and saw a post on the brightness levels of the different mw's and it seems that anything above 50mw may be difficult to look at. Plus, I'm 38 years old and don't need to be poppin' ballons or burning match heads so I don't need "burning power"..... So, I'm looking at the "Premium +55mW Green Laser Pointer" for $99. Knowing that I only want a brighter beam compared to my Jasper Curve 5mw pointer, will this do? Again this is just a fun toy and I don't care about the looks of the pointer (although the Curve is cool looking). Outdoor performance aside, Will the 50mw produce a bright visible beam inside a lit room or hallway?....
Hi Greg. I'm in the UK so others will have to answer your import questions.

50mw will give you a nice bright visible beam and lots of fun. Indoors, the beam will be less visible since the air will be dryer.

As regards eye damage, 50mw will only risk damage if the beam goes directly into your eye or is reflected from close range by a mirror-like surface (unlikely outdoors).

Diffuse reflections from any laser of the kind that we are likely to own (say less than 1000 mw) are generally harmless. There are various threads on the forum that give the calculations. But viewing of even a 50mw spot up close (e.g. for burning, power testing, beam measurements etc) is uncomfortable and best done with safety goggles for comfort. Plus when doing that sort of work there is always a risk of accident. But that does not sound relevant for what you have in mind.

Enjoy

David
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Old 10-16-2009, 04:08 PM #4
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Default Re: "More Beam"

Thanks Guys!
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Old 10-16-2009, 05:41 PM #5
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Default Re: "More Beam"

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Originally Posted by davidgdg View Post
As regards eye damage, 50mw will only risk damage if the beam goes directly into your eye or is reflected from close range by a mirror-like surface (unlikely outdoors).

Diffuse reflections from any laser of the kind that we are likely to own (say less than 1000 mw) are generally harmless. There are various threads on the forum that give the calculations. But viewing of even a 50mw spot up close (e.g. for burning, power testing, beam measurements etc) is uncomfortable and best done with safety goggles for comfort. Plus when doing that sort of work there is always a risk of accident. But that does not sound relevant for what you have in mind.
I wouldnt say less than 1000mW can be harmless in any sence. There is always reflection risk involved. It also depends how far away you are looking at the dot from. Maybe under 300mW with a defused reflections isn't so bad, but useing saftly goggles really cant hurt.
For a 50mW green I dont think you need to worry about buying eye protection.
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Old 10-16-2009, 08:31 PM #6
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Default Re: "More Beam"

Gsquared18,

I'm in East TN myself and can tell you that 50mw in our sky is very visible.

If you want to see if a 50mw will make you happy buy one of the Ledshoppe 50mw greens. I have one and for $25 bucks they are very hard to beat for a night sky pointer.

Small world to have a forum member that lives so close to me...lol

Welcome to the forums

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Old 10-16-2009, 11:42 PM #7
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Default Re: "More Beam"

I'm not 100% sure, but I don't believe you will have problems with the FDA if ordering from Opto. I say this because I think Opto is located in the states and there is no import involved. The laser would still not fit the FDA requirements, but I myself can't say that's a big deal.

Someone can correct me if I'm wrong.
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Old 10-17-2009, 01:32 AM #8
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Default Re: "More Beam"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gsquared18 View Post
First off, Wow! I can't believe a site like this exists. It's at the very top of my favorities list so thanks to the creator(s) for making this site possible.

Ok, so I own a couple Jasper lasers and for their power (5mw) I love em' but, Iv'e always been looking for some "more beam". I live in East Tennessee and have the Great Smoky Mountains as my back yard. Being "smoky" all the time, I get great beam at night even being within the city light falloff. But, unless I'm right behind the pointer, the beam is hard to see. Now the dot? I can place that sucker a couple miles across the lake and easily see it in all it's green glory but I want "more beam Scotty!"

So yesterday, Jasper Lasers sends me a deal for their 100mw green laser. Now, it's the module only which I guess is how they get around selling it but for $9 more, you get the shell casing which you then install the module into. No big deal there but the discount takes it down to $200 (normally $350) and that's still pretty darn expensive for me. Especially since I use the pointer just for fun and to make others drool.

But now that I found this site, it looks like I just saved a bunch of money and possibly whatever vision I have left. I read this forums' Buying Guide and saw a post on the brightness levels of the different mw's and it seems that anything above 50mw may be difficult to look at. Plus, I'm 38 years old and don't need to be poppin' ballons or burning match heads so I don't need "burning power".

In this forum, I also found the list of companies who sell decent products and have good customer sevice and even though Jasperlaser.com (formally BigHa.com) has been a great company to buy from, it looks like from all your posts that Optotronics sell good quality lasers at a cheaper price.

So, I'm looking at the "Premium +55mW Green Laser Pointer" for $99. Knowing that I only want a brighter beam compared to my Jasper Curve 5mw pointer, will this do? Again this is just a fun toy and I don't care about the looks of the pointer (although the Curve is cool looking). Outdoor performance aside, Will the 50mw produce a bright visible beam inside a lit room or hallway? Lastly, how does a company like Optotronics get around selling anything >5mw to the average civilian? Jasper sells the module seperately and is located in the United States. So how do other U.S. companies get around it? Do I have to befriend some FDA employee by pushing him out of the way of an oncoming bus while illegally j-walking?

Thanks,
Greg
Hello Greg. First off, welcome to the forum. Secondly, let's answer your questions!

1) Green lasers can be tricky, especially because they are not true green diodes. The green light that we see is 532nm. The diode inside is outputting 808nm, which is infrared and we can not see this light. What happens inside of that laser is the 808nm light is passed through a crystal which converts that light into 1064nm light (which is deeper infrared). Then it is passed through another crystal which then doubles the wavelength to 532nm and your green light is born. Now from what I understand, cheaply constructed green lasers may be advertised as 100mw. However some of them leak infrared, so you're not getting 100mw of true green light. You may be getting let's say 50mw green light, and another 50mw of infrared light, which adds up to 100mw of total light output. See how deceiving that can be? When you buy a green laser, purchase from a reputable company. If you are patient, I would recommend getting in on Glenn's CNI group buy. You can get some sweet deals through him.

2) Don't worry about the FDA standards. Unless you need a "professional" pointer for licensed sky pointing use, no need to worry about this. Although there is a small chance customs will snatch and confiscate the pointer if you're importing it. However most companies will make good on this and ship you another one on them. I personally purchased a 125mW from Green Laser,Laser Beam Optics,Laser Safety Glasses : Dragon Lasers for $299 and they guaranteed delivery to me.

3) DIY is always the cheapest method, however not many people like to do it themselves. If you don't like to, get in on Glenn's (scopeguy20) group buy. I'm personally getting a blue pointer from him

Do some research here, you WILL find all you need here before making your decision. Remember though, be careful when you point it, especially if you point it skyward. Don't shine it anywhere near an aircraft and do not shine it at people. Lasers of these power can cause permanent eye damage. Enjoy your stay here at LPF!
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Old 10-17-2009, 01:42 AM #9
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Default Re: "More Beam"

Quote:
For a 50mW green I dont think you need to worry about buying eye protection.
lol just wait till the vets see this Eye protection is highly recommended at any level >5mw. You can use them while inside or outside, but you can remove them once the beam/dot is fixed at a certain position, this way you can see the beam and know the beam isn't going to hit you, as long as you stay out of the way of the beam.
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Old 10-17-2009, 07:57 PM #10
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Default Re: "More Beam"

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Originally Posted by Lasher View Post
Gsquared18,

I'm in East TN myself and can tell you that 50mw in our sky is very visible.

If you want to see if a 50mw will make you happy buy one of the Ledshoppe 50mw greens. I have one and for $25 bucks they are very hard to beat for a night sky pointer.

Small world to have a forum member that lives so close to me...lol

Welcome to the forums

Lasher
Thanks Lasher! I just ordered the 50mW one so I'll see how it works. Do lasers this cheap (paid $22) last long if used as designed or do ya have to spend the bucks (looking at the 50mW pointer from Optronics for $99) to get a decent amount of hours out of the thing? Also, could you tell where it was shipped from and how long did it take for it to arrive? It seems like a US based company but you never know.

I live in West Knoxville to be exact so if you live near here, maybe we can cross beams sometime

Greg
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Old 10-17-2009, 08:04 PM #11
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Default Re: "More Beam"

Great Info MFO Thanks! I would love to get in on a group buy but being new to the forums, I don't know how to get in on the Glenn's CNI group buy. Just search his name? I'll try while I wait for a reply.

Thanks,
Greg
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Old 10-17-2009, 08:04 PM #12
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Default Re: "More Beam"

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1064nm light (which is deeper infrared). Then it is passed through another crystal which then doubles the wavelength to 532nm and your green light is born. !

Just to correct you. The wavelength is not doubled, the frequency is doubled therefore halving the wavelength.

Not to be picky, but you would lose marks if it were a test
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Old 10-17-2009, 08:10 PM #13
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Default Re: "More Beam"

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Originally Posted by Gsquared18 View Post
Great Info MFO Thanks! I would love to get in on a group buy but being new to the forums, I don't know how to get in on the Glenn's CNI group buy. Just search his name? I'll try while I wait for a reply.

Thanks,
Greg

If you go to the group buy section you'll see the thread for the CNI groupbuy. Scopeguy is Glenns forum name IIRC.
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Old 10-17-2009, 08:29 PM #14
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Default Re: "More Beam"

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Just to correct you. The wavelength is not doubled, the frequency is doubled therefore halving the wavelength.

Not to be picky, but you would lose marks if it were a test
Lol thanks for the correction Adam :P
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Old 10-17-2009, 08:37 PM #15
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Default Re: "More Beam"

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Just to correct you. The wavelength is not doubled, the frequency is doubled therefore halving the wavelength.

Not to be picky, but you would lose marks if it were a test
That's correct, but something has been wondering me lately. Does the crystal actually "double" the frequency? I have heard that Green DPSS lasers use a diode putting out 808nm, not 1064nm.
But I'm not sure if that's true.

Thanks,
Moptsp
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Old 10-18-2009, 12:07 AM #16
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Default Re: "More Beam"

Yes, they use an 808nm diode.
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