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Elopement

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I am looking for preferably a red (but green would suffice) laser which is less than 1mW and preferably a 1M laser so that I can use it in a working environment without fear of blinding customers who wear glasses.

I would like to point to products on the shelves high on up at my shop so that I could highlight exactly what product I'm referring to.

A number of my customers wear glasses and I read that anything above a 1M rating is dangerous if it comes into contact with a magnifying lens, which would be glasses.

My second condition is that the body be encased in a slim quality profile that accepts AAA batteries.

I live in the UK and although many options are available on eBay I'm not entirely convinced of the quality of these products, nor the assurance of the laser warning.

However I did find the following from a reputable high street shop called Maplin:

Slim Green Laser Pointer | Maplin


And these guys seem to have something along the lines of what I'm looking for:

1mW Laser Pointers: 1mW Green, Red Laser Pointer Pen for Sale - Laserpointerpro


I'm not sure if what I'm looking for exists, there doesn't seem to be many laser pointers of a 1M class on the market.
 

Laser Chick

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Hi Elopement,

Welcome to the forum. I would go with green as red is not very visible at 1mW.
Do the products that you will be pointing out have reflective surfaces such as polished metal? It is good to error to the side of safety but if the lighting is bright in the room, red might be very difficult to see.
 

Gabe

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Hi elopement-
Laser chick is right, green will be more visible than red for the same power.
Do not buy from laserpointerpro, it's all cheap, over spec or underspec garbage, who will likely rip you off. As for Maplin, never heard of em.
Glasses do absolutely nothing in regards to focusing or magnifying a laser beam coming into the user's eye, no worries :)
You don't need to have a laser that's 1mW to be safe, so long as the laser is under 10mW and you aren't intentionally pointing it into someone's face with their eyes superglued open, everything will be fine. As for companies to buy from, I wouldn't really know, sorry. I don't usually go shopping for <5mW lasers.
 

Elopement

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Thanks for your replies guys, good to know about glasses. After reading the classifications on Wikipedia I thought that it was referring to people's spectacles, however I read on WickedLasers that they term "optical instrument" as "binoculars" or a microscope" - can you provide any references on spectacles being safe please?


I understand that green is better recognised by the eye, but I was quite taken with something more exotic like blue/violet:

1mW 405nm Purple Beam Light Starry Light Style Middle-open Laser Pointer Pen with 5pcs Laser Heads Blue at Laserpointerpro.com


I know that you warned me away from LaserPointerPro, but with no alternatives offered I am at least browsing their offerings to see what's available.


I quite like the pattern idea, initially I felt that a dot would be all that I needed, but that small dot can get lost, while a whole pattern would be far more visible. However, I am concerned about how tight the pattern is from a distance, as it should grow (and grow fuzzier) when further away, while I need a semi tight pattern of around 15-20㎠.

I understand that Blue/Violet is nearing the end of the visible spectrum, like that of Red, have you ever tried a 1mW blue/violet laser before, is it noticeable indoors during the day time but not in direct light?

*we have a large window facing the street, but the sun passes over the top of us and on to the other side of the street so we're never in direct sunlight (in fact the only time light will come in semi-directly is on the rare occasion a big delivery truck with a white façade reflects it in)*
 

Gabe

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Alright, let's get these questions done with. So, any piece of optical equipment that will increase the danger of a laser into the eye, would be one that when you look though it, it magnifies the image. So binoculars, they magnify the image, it changes the zoom, so it would focus the laser onto the persons eye. Spectacles, contacts, eyeglasses, and corrective optics change the focus of the image into the eye, not the magnification. So no risk.
As for using blue-violet lasers, here's the thing. Not only are they thousands of times less visible than green lasers, they also play tricks on our eyes. In that colour range, it's tough for our eyes to pick out the colour, so the dot gets fuzzy and hard to see. I'd imagine this would make an already extremely underwhelming and dim dot even harder to spot. At least with red the fuzziness doesn't occur. Furthermore, a star capattern thingy doesn't make it easier to spot, it makes it HARDER to see. So much harder. Imagine the same amount of light that's usually focused into one spot, spread out into a large area. It's like spreading a drop of paint over a square meter piece of paper. If you want to get some nice pointers, you can check out LaserBTB, they sell pointers and lasers in all colours and powers. I still recommend green, at 5-15 mW.
 
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Not to throw throw a wrench in the machine but aren't true <5mW 532's quite hard to find? This one looks affordable and probably quite reliably <5mW http://www.laserglow.com/GAN

You could always have a member build you a PLP 520b1 diode and under drive the piss out of it. Safer wave length than 532.

Lehap would be a good person to chime in here his entire collection is high quality <5mW pointers.
 
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Gabe

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Yep, laserglow's pens are certified under 5mW.
 

hakzaw1

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AixiZ Laser (.com) has lots of low power in several wavelenghths-I suggest you avoid 405 as at a power where you can clearly see it -Because we dont see 405 well -powers needed are far too dangerous- PLUS our eyes stay dialated allowing even MORE laser to enter the eyes AND your own lens can multiply the power by HUNDREDS--

please add UK into your profile- we need that in order to help you..
also did you make an 'intro' thread??

( in WELCOME Section)best to get that done if not.

hak

just buy a $3usd free ship red pointer- best for your needs
 
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Elopement

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Gabe: Thank you for taking the time to explain the difference between focusing and magnifying, that really should be included in the Wikipedia blurb, perhaps you should add it?

hakzaw1: It was also interesting to learn the way the eye works to take in more light resulting weaker lasers take their toll is also something I didn't think about, many thanks for that!

I always like to do something a little special, I initially got a laser with a pointer of which had a picture, something unique, but it was a low quality cheap product and didn't last more than a day, but proved a point. The issues of the power of the laser focused on a single point makes sense, but if it were not distributed too much, or too widely, then surely it would still remain highly visible, more so with a green laser I should imagine - I'm thinking of a simple circle, that would be useful.

Looking at LaserBTB the products seem to be a little more than on/off, with locks, IR filters and features like indoor and outdoor mode, plenty to research. The one at LaserGlow seems pretty nice, I like the dimensions and it's unfussy profile, but now I begin to wonder about things like if the casing is magnetic, can it accept rechargeable NiMH batteries...

That's my problem and thats why I may be interested in collaborating with someone here to build a custom laser, but in that case I would need to know how to test a laser to see it's true strength so I can be sure.

Things get complicated, fast.
 
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Gabe: Thank you for taking the time to explain the difference between focusing and magnifying, that really should be included in the Wikipedia blurb, perhaps you should add it?

hakzaw1: It was also interesting to learn the way the eye works to take in more light resulting weaker lasers take their toll is also something I didn't think about, many thanks for that!

I always like to do something a little special, I initially got a laser with a pointer of which had a picture, something unique, but it was a low quality cheap product and didn't last more than a day, but proved a point. The issues of the power of the laser focused on a single point makes sense, but if it were not distributed too much, or too widely, then surely it would still remain highly visible, more so with a green laser I should imagine - I'm thinking of a simple circle, that would be useful.

Looking at LaserBTB the products seem to be a little more than on/off, with locks, IR filters and features like indoor and outdoor mode, plenty to research. The one at LaserGlow seems pretty nice, I like the dimensions and it's unfussy profile, but now I begin to wonder about things like if the casing is magnetic, can it accept rechargeable NiMH batteries...

That's my problem and thats why I may be interested in collaborating with someone here to build a custom laser, but in that case I would need to know how to test a laser to see it's true strength so I can be sure.

Things get complicated, fast.
As I replied earlier I think a PLP520nm green laser would be a great choice and an pretty easy build. It's a 120mW diode but I'm guessing it wouldn't be too hard to set the driver low enough to be relatively safe. I like the color of 520 better than 532 and that diode is single mode and has very good divergence. Divergence in lay men's terms is how much or little the beam spreads out over distance. This is what makes the cleanest round spot. Multi mode diodes, such as blues and purples, are known for rather poor divergence and more of a dash than a round dot.

But for simplicity sake that link I posted for the Laserglow 5mW pointer was suprisngly cheap for that that company who is known for high quality lasers but IMO way over priced. The down side is shipping can take a while from China and some companies like CNI are a hassle to order from requiring bank transfers.

Just about any laser you will be recommended will use reachable batteries. Get good quality cells. The cheap "fire" brands are never true to their ratings and can even be a serious fire hazard. Also get a quality charger for the same reasons.

If you do like to be fancy and unique but have a few hundred dollars to spend, the Aqurius is a really beautiful ice blue laser pointer in the nicest pen style host I've seen. It's a 473nm 2-4mW blue laser which means it has as good of divergence as green 532's because it's the same type of laser which is called a DPSS module. It's not a diode like the 520. DPSS lasers have the best divergence and are many people's favorite kind of laser. They normally cost a lot more though for good ones. Stay away from eBay DPSS green lasers they are usually way over the specified power rating and have a lot of invisible infrared. So a cheap 532 may only be putting out 5mW of green coherent light but could have 50mW of harmful invisible light. This is why many people try to deter new laser buyers to stay away from cheap greens as they are called. You could be staring at the 5mW spot on a white wall and have no indication your eyes are being damaged because the IR light can't be seen but is just as harmful as light in the visible spectrum.

Good luck.
 




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