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Issues with a green laser pointer

junksmith_cheddar

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Aug 31, 2019
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Hello everyone. This is my first post about asking assistance with a laser pointer.
Around 3 months ago, I bought a green laser pointer at a store in another town, I knew it was mislabeled but I didn't care much, considering how cheap it was. Eventually, my ignorance led me to the first of several mistakes: I cleaned the outer lens (the one threaded to the front cap, collimating lens I think) using a cotton swab with diethyl alcohol. Later, after putting it back into the pointer and turning it on, I found out that doing it scratched the lens, causing a nasty beam splash (worse than the initial) and looking down the beam axis, I also realized it was misaligned. Since I didn't want to try and potentially doing more bad than good to it any further, I left it like that. Days later, I came back into it and noticed that the inner lens (expander if I'm not mistaken) wasn't centered to the body.
Given the case I didn't know much about lasers back then, I did some research about laser pointers in general and found out about the particular hazards involving cheap, 532nm green laser pointers (the one I have isn't a "303", it reads "YL-018" on a side but it should fit in the same category), such as the process of how the beam is produced and the lack of an IR block filter, which leads to a harmful IR radiation leakage that takes away a big part of the power output and also damages the retinas, because of it being invisible and not having the blink reflex to react against it. I don't have an LPM but it can do some burning by putting a magnifing lens on front of the pointer, which isn't safe because my dumb*** hasn't bought any laser safety goggles yet.
This situation led me to look for IR block filters, a spare lens and laser safety goggles online to buy, but I have several doubts that could be solved by answers to the following questions:


Should I try to align the expander lens? Because it's glued in place but the misalignment unsettles me a tiny bit.
Is it worth the effort? I mean it wasn't an expensive product but I want to make it better and safer.

side_shot.png


A side shot showing the model name.

beam_splash.png
Beam splash at three-or-so meters.


Thank you for your attention and any helpful input will be most appreciated.
 



Alien Laser

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Oct 6, 2015
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It looks like the lens is dirty not clean try to use a camera wipe don't use cotton swab the never clean nice try a hand air pump to clean it or lens liquid helps
 

Alaskan

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If the lens is plastic instead of glass, I wonder if the solvent damaged it, or just scratches on the glass. Plastic scratches far easier though. For what those cost, you can look at it two ways, one, get another and hope it is better, two, try to fix it because they cost so little, if you make it worse, you can just get another one.
 

Hap

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As you mentioned, these lasers are pretty cheap, so they’re a good way to experiment without worrying about damaging a more expensive laser :)

-Alex
 

paul1598419

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These cheap 532nm DPSS lasers use acrylic lenses far more often than glass lenses. These scratch much more easily than any glass lens. That particular laser looks like the ones that can be bought on eBay for ~$10.00 to $12.00 and generally measure between 50 mW and 80 mW. Depending on what country you live in it could be the same. In the US, they would be limited to 5 mW at maximum if sold in a store.
 




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