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Laser tragedies: Share your story

Elektrotechniker

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People are posting their stories every now and then. What the title says. I tend to find some of them funny. I hope this doesn't offend anybody. If you remember any or have experienced a laser accident yourself, feel free to share it. Here are some that I'm aware of.

http://laserpointerforums.com/f44/laser-tragedy-44891.html
http://laserpointerforums.com/f48/big-argons-all-pics-story-added-2nd-page-33065-2.html
http://laserpointerforums.com/f40/co2-laser-kit-25494.html
http://laserpointerforums.com/f44/another-build-failure-50289.html <---- I had the honor to get my hands on this. It fell apart as soon as I touched it though :(
http://laserpointerforums.com/f43/rip-94373.html
 
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Bob_Boyce

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I didn't take pics but I was adjusting the crystals on one of my DPSS lasers while pumping at 25W and I was using the cast aluminum base of my brand new very expensive microscope as a temporary beam stop. I was wearing my goggles and did not notice the 532nm output was burning a hole in the aluminum. Not a big deal really in the grand scheme of things, but I'm usually way more careful than that with my lab equipment.
 

jeffreythe00

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I was trying to melt a hole in a pane of glass I had laying around with my new 40W co2 laser. I focused the light into the glass and it only put a pit into it. So I was inspecting the glass when it suddenly and violently exploded! Scared the hell out of me! I was lucky to have safety glasses on and not gotten cut! Boy did I have a mess to clean...

 

Livinloud

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@Jeffrey, at least you know to wear safety equipment. could have been a HUGE problem had things gone worst
 

ped

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Wow, a change of underwear needed there haha.

Every time I have a 12x die on me I feel like a faliure :/
 

Blarg King

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I broke the lens on my 50 mW 532 because I tried cleaning it with a q-tip and ethanol alcohol and I'm pretty sure the alcohol dissolved the glue holding the lens in place. :p

Luckily it was just a cheap 30$ laser from some random Chinese website.
 

Helios

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Not a laser story but I was testing a 100w led array...one of those mega huge 10000 lumen ones. I had it thermal pasted to a CPU heatsink and didn't realize how hot it was getting until suddenly 1/3 of the emitters went dim and then burned myself trying to figure out why :crackup:
 
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alessnilsen

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One day I was burning stuff with my LPC815 laser using a big lens to focus the light and my laser suddenly died.

I don't realized that the flat surface of the lens reflected the beam directly into the LD killing it instantly! Was my first casualty with optics! :shhh:

---------------

Another failure, I was happy soldering my new NDB7412T LD, all done, powering up the driver, the LD didn't turn on, where is the problem? Let's see! Oh wait! I just soldered with the polarity inverted! :spank:

A U$40,00 LD death by a simple mistake, my first expensive lost!
But I got a PLTB450 and ended with a better laser than if I was using the NDB7412T!

:crackup:

I broke the lens on my 50 mW 532 because I tried cleaning it with a q-tip and ethanol alcohol and I'm pretty sure the alcohol dissolved the glue holding the lens in place. :p

Luckily it was just a cheap 30$ laser from some random Chinese website.
I destroyed many lenses trying to clean, the last happened exact as you said, the alcohol melted the glue and the lens ended with a thin film making the lens opaque, a bad ending for a 303 laser!
 

The Lightning Stalker

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Luckily I have yet to kill a really
expensive laser. There have been some
close calls, though. I had an X-Boost die
on me for mysterious and unknown reasons.



I have pretty bad luck with 5mW modules.
Sometimes I hook them up backwards. I have
also come to learn that they are just as
ESD sensitive as a bare diode.

I have a really inefficient C-Mount diode.
These particular ones are "special" and
spec in at 500mW @ 4A. As you can imagine,
they get hot really fast. I had it on a
1x1.5x1.5" aluminum block as a heatsink for
testing. It still wasn't really enough and
after about a minute it got pretty hot. It
zombified down to about 350mW which makes
it even less efficient. It was a really
good deal at $15, but still. They probably
won't be that cheap ever again.

I had a PHR once that died at the "hands"
of an AixiZ driver. I'm not sure weather
the driver was tired or the diode couldn't
handle 125mA or maybe some combination of
things.

Those of you who are following the CC Boost
discussion are aware of my failings in that
area as well.
 

Alaskan

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So far, I've killed three of DTR LPF laser modules through various stupid acts... :( but that's three out of like 75 of them, so percentage wise, I guess not so bad, still, it sux.
 
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The Lightning Stalker

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Yes it does. It literally hurts every time.

I forgot to mention the time I had an LPC
out of a GGW. It was running happily in a
lab module until I set it on top the power
supply. As you know, they are case
negative. It was running on the AixiZ
driver again and they are continuous
positive. Negative is grounded to the case
of this particular power supply and it is
bare galvanized steel. The only insulation
was the atoms-thick anodizing on the
module. All it took was a slight shift and
the diode was directly connected to the
power supply. Lights out. :(
 




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