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Just a lil idea low cost laser cutter

terramir

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we all know dvd burner lasers well the strength and class are fairly easy to source decent quality lasers, some people have made laser etchers even ones that can burn into wood a bit, but there are 3 things here that are factors,

#1 power limit (those diodes run at about 200 to 250mW max

#2 shape and beam size, (most of those lasers create a rectangular beam)

#3 conical cut ( using a convex lens even a high quality one out of a laser printer creates a beam focused slightly below the surface and then it diverges again beyond the focal point.

so I had an idea use more than one of these lasers, the number has really no theoretical limit as long as long as the directionality directed in the right way and cooling is applied properly.
the lenses might also need to be cooled through an aluminum heatsink/ lens holder focus tube.
here is a picture

I dunno if this could work but I would like to hear some ideas, also I dunno but even one laser may benefit form a 2 lens convex the concave combo if focused right. I mean the smaller and more parallel the beam is when it hits the cutting surface the better

terramir
 
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Alaskan

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Normally, the beams are paralleled with a knife edge when combining them this way and then reduced to a smaller beam width through additional optics. Here's a photo showing some beams being made parallel through knife edging and then reduced down to make a smaller beam, but I'm not sure this method can be used to make a fine enough point to etch well with or not. If the beams are not paralleled before combining, they shoot through expander or focusing lenses at angles.

http://laserpointerforums.com/f51/theory-approaches-combining-beams-same-wavelength-59284.html

You could have your diodes spaced out like shown in your drawing if each of them were coupled into fiber optic strands, then the individual fibers are bundled and fused together to make one small output aperture, the output is then sent into a lens which can focus the combined power into a tiny point. Here's the inside of a bar diode array which uses this technique:

http://krazerlasers.com/lasers/fap/overal-fap.JPG

Fiber: http://www.ebay.com/itm/600um-core-...61-532-473-445-405-355nm-lasers-/321293128098

Much easier and more effective to just get a 16X 405nm 900mw laser diode and use that than combine the output of a number of lower powered red laser diodes, I think.

Anyone else? I'm at the edge of my knowledge in this area.
 
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