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DPSS Pen Diode Extraction

The Lightning Stalker

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I've had this DPSS module with a dead diode sitting around for a while and can't resist a
good challenge. After snapping off the crystal set, it became clear that the diode could not
just be pressed all the way through. So, one brainstorm later, I hatched a plan to make an
attempt at an extraction without damaging the module..

The inspiration came from a sled I had run across where they had actually soldered the
case of the diode to a mount instead of just glue or press fit. In hindsight, epoxy might
also work, but I am impatient.



Here you can see the the results of part one of the plan. To get the maximum tensile
strength possible, a length of 10AWG solid copper wire was soldered to the back of the
diode and all 3 pins. The wire was a little corroded, so I used the nastiest zinc chloride
flux I had. It didn't really matter since the diode was no good anyway.

To the other end was soldered a brass standoff nut that was lying around. This gives us a
shoulder to pry on. This gives more surface area for the solder to adhere than a standard
nut. To fill up the space between, a couple steel spacer bushings slid on over the nut and
sat between the nut and the module (not pictured).



After prying with a big screwdriver, the diode popped right out! It was amazing just how
little force it actually took. Inside there was also a little spring and a tiny focusing lens.
The lens was just a junky uncoated acrylic as you might expect.



The diode is also built to a price. There are none of the "fancy" wings like what you would
see on an LPC. The pedestal is similar to what you would find on a 5mW red or something
out of a CD player.
 



Sigurthr

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Nice work. I did something similar a few years back on a 100mW module that the pump went bad on. I drilled and tapped the back of the diode and then used a screw to pull it out. I still have it on a shelf somewhere. Too much of a bother to find a frequency matched diode for though.
 

Sigurthr

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Yup that's what I figured. Amazing how far we've come that we shelf a perfectly good 532 cavity, heh.
 




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