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Hello from TN , USA

rustynuts

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Dec 17, 2018
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Jon here,
HI, from the mountains of east TN.
I am middle aged Guy with many interests.
Active Amateur astronomer for 18 yrs, Telescope designer and Maker.
Active Amateur machinist for 14 yrs. kind of a necessity for me. oh, almost forgot also Electronics hobbyist for 27 yrs,
Always loved lasers too, have several pointers from 5mw to 100 mw green.
I found the 45mw 532nm to be the ideal pointer for astro outreach. A good balance between bright enough for a light polluted sky and good battery life.
also own and use various other lasers.
I guess that Its time to try some laser builds.
 

BowtieGuy

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Welcome to LPF, Jon! :)
Sounds like you'll fit right in with your electronics and machining background.

Be sure and have the proper safety eyewear for your any of your new build projects.

Have fun, stay safe, and enjoy your stay!
 

rustynuts

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Dec 17, 2018
Messages
37
Points
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I am currently researching safety glasses. I will have them on before any diode is powered on for any reason.
I will be building a blue laser first, A 445 1w diode, I know,guys well that is the diode that I have now also I dont have all the materials. and I wont be running the diode at that power level anyway,

I also have the 3 watt laser-bee meter I had to fix it myself and replace the internal Chinese mv meter in the case he uses. also wile I was in there I modified it so I can use a external millivolt meter, Added a good dc jack for a added external power supply all this added up get a stable accurate v out on the sensor. Now I dont need to zero it out as often.
I use it to meter the astronomy club member's lasers and for their safty I check for the IR l levels as well.

I take safety very seriously, I have made many high quality solar filters for telescopes. without the proper filtration if you look into the eyepiece of a unfiltered scope pointed at the sun you will have eye damage in that eye or worse both if using a binoviewer.

lasers are very dangerous. I feel that a high powered laser, for example 1 watt or more is more dangerous than a loaded gun . Bullets usually cant bounce from just any shiny surface. lasers can, also the beam is much faster. 186000 ish miles per second vs 1200feet per second for a standard .22 round means you get no warning.
Jon
 

rustynuts

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Dec 17, 2018
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I joined this forum partly because the astronomy forums cloudynights and astromart do not allow discussions of laser pointers.....well, lasers in general really.
I understand and respect their policy and the reason for it.
However it did leave a gap for those using lasers. For example we use a Barlowed laser to help collimate the optics on fast mirrored telescopes.
Its funny I know some members here just by seeing their name. Some are the makers of the collimation tools. also if you want to see some other projects I have done I used the same username that I have at cloudynights.
 

paul1598419

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As long as you don't have a lens in front of your diode you needn't worry about your eyes. Welcome to the LPF, Jon. Hope you find this place a wealth of information about lasers in general and direct diode lasers in particular.
 

rustynuts

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Dec 17, 2018
Messages
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Points
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One of the projects I will look into is a laser for dealing with the wasps that start to nest up high, 16 foot up from the floor, in my observatory dome, I cant use chemicals which can ruin some very expensive telescope optics.
 

Lifetime17

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Hi Welcome to the forum many nice folks here hope you find what your looking for.
Rich:)
 

rustynuts

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I wont do a hit and run here.
I have been in the other forums for over 10 years, Now I have almost finished the interior of my lab. I went from 4 foot work area, now I have 18 feet of work table space. and a few more tables in the works. I am looking into a laminar flow station, for a clean work space for optics. I have many uses for one of these, Telescope eyepiece repair and laser assembly hard drive repair, data retrieval, etc
Has anyone built one of these?

I am self employed for now, I need to work at home because I am caretaker for my aging family. I have worked 10 years as a repair tech, I was the guy that the last employer found out that there wasn't much I couldn't do. So he sends me all the difficult jobs. this got old,
He did not pay well, This was more my fault because took the job years ago.

Over my career I found that my former employers would not buy proper tools. Over the years I have bought many tools also built even more custom tools, I By the way I have been focused on micro circuits for a year. for the past year and have been gearing up, I had to invest in a lot of used working , non working metcal gear. Repaired it and using it now. Doing micro soldering for the local repair shops here as my business. Now feel that I am ready to build lasers without doing harm to the diodes. I think I have the soldering covered, Now I really want a clean space for low dust requirements.
 

Immo1282

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Welcome! Sounds like you'll fit in well :)

I know little about Laminar Flow stations other than getting a chance to use one briefly at University, but something that's crucial if you want to do much work with Lasers (and not learn the hard way by killing ~£100 of diodes before you get anything working...i.e. don't be me) is an ESD workstation - You've said you're doing micro-soldering so no doubt you've got this covered already. I use Metcal equipment at work and it's brilliant but there's no way I could justify that for my home workbench at this stage...

All the best getting your first builds going :) There's a lot of information here - but you seem well equipped and raring to go.

Glad you're conscious of safety - though the majority of the safety near-misses can be mitigated by safe usage and awareness of your environment.

Not heard of using lasers for wasp removal but it sounds interesting - and there's some seriously affordable ways of getting lots of power now, so it could work!
 
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rustynuts

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Dec 17, 2018
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Thanks For the reply,
It has been a long road over the years.
I too first used metcal wile working, for me it was at Siemens , For a young person with my interests, being a QC trainee as my first ever Job
I was all over that factory I had to learn a lot of it I will never forget that experience. It was awesome. As for my boss however. I just wished I was hired in a different department first. That was a long time ago.
Jon
 
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rustynuts

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Dec 17, 2018
Messages
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I hope that I can share some interesting ideas with everyone.
I am not into being cool, and never was, I was a sience nut in HS everybody thought I was a loner,
In a small rual county school system there was really not many people with similar interests, Most were into overpowered cars and sports.
Even the staff. Vocational school is where I first truly felt at home.
Jon
 
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paul1598419

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I don't know much about removing wasp nests, but have you thought of CO2? You could cover the nest in a plastic bag and put a nice sized chunk of dry ice inside. It might do the trick and would be more effective than lasers to kill wasps.
 

rustynuts

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Dec 17, 2018
Messages
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Points
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At first I thought you meant A CO2 laser. I cant get to all of nests, It would much easier if I could reach the buggers, Too high up, also the telescopes will be in the middle, directly underneath permanently mounted on a 20 inch dia concrete pier. I cant even get a pole high enough and not hit the scopes. the dome is a 14 foot diameter .070 aluminum with a black interior which I built the dome from scratch, In the early spring, wasps love the top because it is warm, If the nests are gone, by the summer it is too hot for them and they dont build there anymore. Also I dont have any trouble for the ones I can reach.
 
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rustynuts

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Dec 17, 2018
Messages
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I also thought of electrifying the problem areas somehow.
I was thinking maybe a ozone generator to gas them? Ozone may do more harm than good.
 

rustynuts

Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2018
Messages
37
Points
8
Welcome! Sounds like you'll fit in well :)

I know little about Laminar Flow stations other than getting a chance to use one briefly at University, but something that's crucial if you want to do much work with Lasers (and not learn the hard way by killing ~£100 of diodes before you get anything working...i.e. don't be me) is an ESD workstation - You've said you're doing micro-soldering so no doubt you've got this covered already. I use Metcal equipment at work and it's brilliant but there's no way I could justify that for my home workbench at this stage...

All the best getting your first builds going :) There's a lot of information here - but you seem well equipped and raring to go.

Glad you're conscious of safety - though the majority of the safety near-misses can be mitigated by safe usage and awareness of your environment.

Not heard of using lasers for wasp removal but it sounds interesting - and there's some seriously affordable ways of getting lots of power now, so it could work!
As for ESD
All worktables are aluminum connected to a 1 meg resistor in series to mains earth ground , also as I can afford them adding 8 foot rubber ESD mats to cover the aluminum, Just as the Siemens workstations were built.

I chuckle everything I think of how every repair shop I worked for never used any esd safegaurds, In fact they work on carpeted tables, even the computer repair store.
 
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