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Cutting laser and glass...

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O.K. here is the step-up. Small hand held DIY cutting laser (the kind that will pop balloons and cut e-tape), and a pane of glass like typical household glass (no IR coating or whatever).

How much power loss will you see through the glass? I know from projects I have done in the past that glass is not as "transparent" as you would think. I found that a pane of thin Lexan can block up to 40% of light that goes through it. ((Yes I used a lux meter) However knowing that lasers work in totally different way than normal light, do they get softened as much?

Also, if they do how much would I need to up the power of the laser to see the same results without the glass?

Thanks guys and girls if you reply!
 

AJ_Dual

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we won't tell you how to scam the machines at the arcades lol


michael.
LOL yep.

Go to 4Chan and learn how to make fake coupons to steal that iPod you want instead of trying to cut it loose from the hooks inside the "Stacker" machine at your local mall with a laser. No less illegal, except that you don't run the risk of eye damage to yourself or anyone else.

If you actually have some sort of legit project in mind, like popping a balloon through a window to scare your little brother or are making some sort of laser show that will be under glass, give us the specifics and we'll apologize and help you out.

We just get the "I want to cut the strings off prizes in arcade machines!"-question about once a month here it seems. :D
 
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O.K. the project I am working on is a kid friendly name tag cutter. I want to have the laser mounted in a safe enclosure, then have a handle that the kid can grab onto. They slide their tag in the groove under the laser and then can draw the design they want on it. Sorta like one of those "mirror image" tracing things they sell on late night tv. The glass is there to make sure no little hands reach up and grab anything inside the box. I got the idea after seeing a few cnc instructables, and there is a summer fair coming up at my grandparents local church. Thought I might try to put it together and do "dog tags" for the kids and stuff.

After re-reading my first post I can see how that would sound kinda weird. I have done lots of optics projects, DIY projector, and the like. Just never worked with lasers much. I know you can make small cutting lasers, and its a cheap thing to build. Just needed some help with the power output part.
 

chipdouglas

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what are you going to be etching on. unless it is like bolsa wood or card board you wont get much out of a diode based laser.

michael.
 
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I have a bunch of leftover ABS black plastic. I figured it wouldn't take long to cut circles out of it with a hole saw. I know black is the best color for cutting as it heats up faster. Is ABS too tough to etch into? I dont need to cut all the way, just burn a trough into it. Just deep enough to get paint into. That way the names show up.

Edit: If I am gonna need a gas laser, then I can drop this now. I only have like $200 to spend on it in the first place. LOL
 
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After a few minutes with google I found 1lb of black wooden coins for like $12. They are not balsa, but they would at least burn right?

Old Time Wooden Nickel Co. - Generic Specials Page

Also, is the .5 mw ban still in place in the states? I remember reading something about that a few months ago. I don't remember if it was being appealed, or put in place though.
 

ndrew2505

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there is no "ban" YET but if dummies keep pointing at planes there will be. the legal limit is 5mw and all lasers have to be fda approved.
 

strik3

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I think it would probably better to use a cnc setup encased in a non see through enclosure and have them design it on a pc as if it's housed in see through plastic or glass there is a chance that you may get reflections and I don't wanna see anyone loose their eyesight or get sued

Edit: also what kind of arcade machine uses string to hang prizes? It's been about 5 years since I was last at an arcade
 
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No no no, the case will be wood, or plastic. Not see through. The glass is only to go between the laser and the coin. I was thinking of a setup like the following so they could hold a fake pen, and it would link to the laser diode. I was not wanting to build a full CNC setup just for a weekend of use. I do want to build a full size CNC for doing foam cutting, but that is next year.



Having the "pen" on the large end, and the laser on the small end. Then make a plate the correct scale up from the coin and they could draw on the big coin while it burns into the small wooden one. Did that all make sense? My head is starting to hurt even thinking about his project now.
 

strik3

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Ahk yeah that makes sense now.

I personally wouldn't put glass between them as you can get a reflection back into the diode and could kill the diode. What would suggest is something like the shrouding they use on gear sticks in cars. That way it's flexible and would prevent little hands from going where they shouldn't be.

Also how will you track what the child is doing and control the speed at which they are moving it? As it can take a few secconds to start to etch depending on the power of the laser
 
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Having lasers powerfull enough to cut things around children just dosn't seem like a good idea...
 
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Oh, I didn't know it would take that long. I was thinking it would turn on and start etching almost like a ball point pen. Damn, I guess this is just to complex of a thing to pull off in a bit over a month. Thanks for your help guys! I will have to com up with something else that is cool.
 




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