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Hi Guys I'm new :)

Jiggel

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Hello everyone. I read it is good to make a post here as a new user, so here I am! :D Lasers are fascinating, I've loved playing with them ever since I got my first 100mw green one.

Oh, I also have a question. Perhaps if someone can help me out i'd really appreciate it. I have a budget of around $150 CAD (although less is better), is it recommended to build a laser myself or to buy one if I want the most output power at this price? I took a peek at the Thor M2 3W, it seems like a great value (even though the components will obviously be low quality).
 
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paul1598419

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Welcome to the LPF. We always like it when new members introduce themselves to us as we pretty much know most of the active members here. BTW, where in the world do you live? We have members here from all over the world. As far as building your own lasers, I do that mostly, never buying anything expensive from someone else. But it can take special tools and some equipment to make it work. In the end, you get to manage how much power and divergence you laser will have and it is always less expensive.
 

BowtieGuy

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Welcome to LPF, Jiggel! :)

As Paul has mentioned, you can usually get more for your money when you build your own laser, but it will require a certain amount of knowledge.
A lot of new members will buy their first few lasers, until they develop the know how and get the itch to try their hand at building their own.

It sounds like your probably in Canada; we have quite a few great members from our northern neighbor.

Have fun, stay safe, and enjoy your stay! :D
 

Jiggel

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Thanks so much everyone for the warm welcome :) I'm from Canada by the way!
If you guys say it's cheaper to make my own, then I'll probably take that route. From the looks of DTR's shop (seems to be recommended for parts) though it seems like it will cost much more than buying something like the 3W model 960 from LPS (which is what I was thinking of getting originally).

Are there any guides/tutorials (or just a parts list) for picking good, compatible components for a cheap 2-3ish watt laser?
Thanks again.
 

paul1598419

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You can built a 3 watt 445nm blue laser using a NDB7875 diode and a buck driver set to 2.4 amps. It would require two Li-ion batteries and a short focal length aspheric glass lens. The lens can be had for $8.00 or less on eBay. These diodes are still available, though they have been discontinued in favor of even higher power diodes. You might check eBay, but I would not pay more than $35.00 for this diode. It is a TO-5 case which is 9 mm in diameter, so you will need a 12 mm module for TO-5 diodes to press it into. I have one in my signature in an MS-SSW-II host. That is a large host that takes 26650 batteries, but you can get by with a smaller host. I would be happy to help you out any way that I can. Good luck.
 

Jiggel

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Thanks so much!! I have never built a laser before, so I'm not sure what kind of tools I'll need apart from a soldering iron for this.
Do you mind helping me make a parts list? You've already recommended a diode and driver, do you have any recommendations for where and what host to get? I really appreciate it :)
 

paul1598419

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You will need to buy a TO-5 diode press and some Arctic Alumina thermal adhesive as the driver will need to be heat sinked to a place inside your host. You will also need some silicone wire as it is the best stuff to use in these types of builds. You can get the 2.4 amp Driver from DTR if he is not out of stock on them. The host is something I would have to look around for unless someone else knows of a good one and can give you a link to it. You will also need at least one 12 mm TO-5 module to press your diode into. A good soldering station and good solder are a must have, as well.
 

Jiggel

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Wow, that's a lot of stuff! I don't want to order from DTR unless I order a few components at a time to save on shipping cost. There seems to be plenty of hosts on ebay, are they bad? Also searching TO-5 diode press didn't get me correct results :(
I'm gonna keep researching. So far I have this in my shopping cart:

Brand New Nichia NDB7875 450nm 2000mW 9mm high power laser diode/1pcs
and
ACS5500BU 5.5A buck laser diode driver for NUBM44 NUBM08 NDB7875 445nm 450nm

edit: added arctic alumina thermal compound to my cart, also by silicon wire I assume you mean normal rubber wires? I have plenty of various gauge wire at home. Now I guess I just need a housing and the TO-5 diode press and module thingies?

edit edit: I am exploring DTR's website and I am interested in this NUBM06 3.5W diode. DTR has an option for the diode in a 20mm or 12mm copper module with a driver included. Does anyone know what's better? 20mm or 12mm? I feel like bigger is better because of heat dissipation but idk
 
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paul1598419

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You cannot drive the NDB7875 at 5.5 amps. If you had a link to the driver I could see if it is adjustable. You don't want to drive it harder than 2.4 amps. If it is adjustable, you will need to build a dummy load to set it up on. You can use 10 amp silicon rectifiers as those are quite inexpensive and you will need either a 1 ohm 10 watt resistor or a 0.1 ohm 3 watt resistor to measure the voltage drop across. The difference between the NDB7875 and a NUBM06 is the divergence on the former is much better than the latter.
 

Jiggel

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Thanks again for your help! I'm hoping to purchase all the parts by monday.
This is a link to the driver, and I believe has current adjustment which is good: https://www.ebay.ca/itm/ACS5500BU-5-5A-buck-laser-diode-driver-for-NUBM44-NUBM08-NDB7875-445nm-450nm-etc/153111572337?hash=item23a6292f71:g:e~QAAOSwnKdbVkav:rk:1:pf:0

The reason I was interested in the NUBM06 though was because the driver and module and diode are already together, plus it's more reputable than random ebay sellers, and the price difference seems small. Though this is just my perspective as a noob.

I can't find anything about TO-5 diode press/module, what are they?
 

paul1598419

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Oh, that is a Black Buck driver. I have several of these in my own stock. They are a very good driver, but you will need a dummy load and a digital multimeter to measure the voltage drop across your resistor, or you could use the ammeter in series with 4 to 5 rectifiers to simulate the laser diode and allow you to directly measure the current while setting the driver's current to 2400 mA.

The diode press may be available on DTR's site, or you may be able to find one on one of the other sales threads in the BST subforum. I have presses for both the 9 mm diodes and the 5.6 mm diodes. I also have extraction tools to removed diodes from modules without damaging the diode.
 
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trinh hong phuoc

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welcome to forums, i think you can start with orsam diode pltb450b or new sharp diode 1600mw
about driver,you can buy ax2002 driver from survival laser,it is cheap and very easy to build for newbie
Good luck for your find
edit:if you need >3w power,you can choose nubm08 with 5,5 a xwossee driver,but divergence is big(10mrad) so you need 3x sanwu
some website you need now is
3x sanwu you can find: sanwu laser
driver and diode:dtr laser shop,ebay or survival laser
 

Lifetime17

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Hi
Welcome to LPF have fun and be safe always.

Rich:)
 

GSS

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Welcome to the forum:)
Want to add 06' 08's are Gball lensed and come pre focused. Some not very nice at all with a horrible beam and spot. To get them to have adjustable focus they can be decanned and use a G2 or 3 element lens.. Problem is they are said to die premature early when de canned.
Would 2.2W to possibly 2.4W be fine with you?? Instead of looking for deals to save a few dollars with someone you just don't know I would really consider going with a complete set up 12 module with driver already set like a M140 from DTR or even a PLTB450B1 at 2W's with a G2 lens option.
All of DTR's diode's, driver's are brand new and come in the preferable copper module.
Lifetime17 can set you up with a very nicely heatsinked 501B for example ready to go with just attaching 2 wires and done. Pure plug and play and done.. This is if you want a little experience with building or he even can make a complete unit with no cheap China parts.
He can make a full AL sink or a Copper pressed into AL sink for way cheaper than you might think..:)
His reputation is top notch as follow his sales thread to see.
No need for a diode press tool, a dummy load board etc. for now anyways till you get into the hobby deeper..
Other plus side is 110% service from Lifetime17 if anything were to go wrong, "LaserPointerStore" will not be there for you regardless of their claims, they are just re sellers of crap laser's and knock off's of good ones and return shipping if they even ever offer is a killer..
Yes the Thor's have a "potential" to last but it's money that can be put towards something that will.
Jiggel send a PM to Lifetime17 and I garrentee you will come up with something fun, powerful and affordable.
If you open up the +3 on Lifetime17's signature pic's there's an assortment of different color 501B plug and play host's..

Want to add we have a store called "Harbor Freight Tools" which I think has a simular store in Canada called something else thats a blessing to this hobby with cheap DMM's, wire, and all little extras with lots of coupons in the mail for free stuff.
 
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Jiggel

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Thanks GSS! You and everyone else are so helpful, seriously. Your taking time out of your day to help a complete stranger.
Anyways, at my price budget, I think 2-2.5W would be an acceptable compromise (though higher is still better haha). Your suggestion to buy a module with driver already set sounds great to me. Or from Lifetime17 (I will shoot a PM to them tonight). I'll edit this comment with an update in a few.
 

hakzaw1

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fyi 'by eye' you cannot tell 2W from 2.5W or even 3W.. they are all blindingly bright.(overkill bright). and are an extra dangerous eye hazard being blue. Again 'by eye' to appear twice as 'bright' vs 2W..that would require 8W..

If you had put your location into the title of this 'intro' (btw the intro part you wrote was kinda short and from there the thread has become a help me thread.)
Your location is not in your profile.. please don't expect me to remember this thread/post.. We have lots of smart and helpful members.. ... and if your title had also ..'from VanCouver' etc.. your chances are better for getting hands-on help,
AND
getting any laser metered anytime at no cost. and maybe an in-person demo of the lasers they own.and w/ so many new wavelenghts .. things have changed .
So we must choose from quite a few 'shades' of blue.. & not all like the same one. hard to do via pics or vids. The most common now and cheapiest are 445nm.. like $15 for a 1W harvested diode..

WE all had, for the better part, to do our own homework- read the stickies . spend some serious hours with Dr Sam.
Next question you have..try this.. search it here or a google search.. we do that ALL THE TIME.



please go to the welcome section and read the intro threads left by others and all the great replies and welcomes..they got for their efforts.

Your questions regarding building/buying etc need their own thread.. in the right section.
BUT
DTR carries the tools for pressing diodes.. different size = different tool-3.8mm 5.6mm and 9mm. Follow all ESD precautions. short all caps never set current with a laser diode-build a 'dummy load' short caps then solder the diode.(Soldering station must be ESD safe.)
expect some fails.. starting with cheap parts is smart.. less pain when they die on you.. study the tutorials by DTR.. his pics are great and he makes it much easier to get up to speed.

btw I bet a mod would help you add your location into the title of this thread-- it was easy at our older forum.. here idunno.
There is a map of locations where member live who have a power meter (to share). you can find it w/ a search.

it would be hard to find an active member who did NOT own a few blue lasers etc.. seeing side by side beams is by far the best way to pick your fav.
I like 488,, & 473.
regards hak
 
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