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Newly Completed 1W Greenie

gazer101

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Intro
Hi folks,
I recently completed a new laser and, being confident in its stability, have decided now is the time to post about it.

I originally wanted to make a 1W green laser pen (due to its cheapness), but I also really wanted to have 15+ second duty cycles and at least 15 minutes of battery life. So I did the maths and went for the next largest/cheapest host; the JD851.

Although I did at first manage to cram an eBay NUGM03 1W laser diode, inside a makeshift housing, into a small JD851 host I also got off of eBay and run it off of a homemade LM337 driver and 2S LiPo battery, the solution was far too finicky. After an... accident... the laser glue unglued itself and the whole thing fell apart. Luckily though, the resilient NUGM03 laser diode survived (NOTE: it became "decanned" in the process, not that the G-Ball lens was being held on that well to begin with).

I then knew I needed a more structurally sound solution and, since I have no way to machine my own host, I thought to try building into the next largest host (going by diameter) I know of; the C6.

Broken JD851 laser build Intact NUGM03 (tested it after salvaging)

Build Process

I began by getting the C6 bargain host assembly off of survivallaser.com along with a 9mm laser housing and 3E glass lens.

Upon arriving, I first decided to solder the driver I ordered (tested at 1.8A fixed current with dummy load, 3.5V) into the pill with the brass ring and add some much-needed reverse polarity protection via a cheap P-Channel MOSFET I had lying around. Please note that the drain pin is internally connected to the metal backboard.
P-Channel MOSFETCleaned up the driver pill with some fabric tape

I then gently and painstakingly hammered the laser diode into the housing (I don't have a vise) using a nut socket. The lens was then carefully cleaned using alcohol and a microfiber cloth.
Laser module

Following this, I tested the driver once again on a dummy load (2 HER208 diodes connected with a 1ohm resistor in series, all rated for 2W+) before soldering the driver leads to the laser module. Unfortunately the cheap driver leads managed to fall off under the weight of the module when I tried lifting it, so I had to painstakingly sharpen my soldering iron and re-solder them. To prevent this from happening again, I applied superglue around the leads' solder joints and let it cure overnight.

Upon finally putting it all together the following day, this is what I got:
Side view

The original 16340 batteries I was using weren't giving me the results I desired, so I bought some 18350 vape batteries locally and rigged a ghetto charging setup (one charger came with the JD851, the other I had lying around):
900mAh 3.7V LiIonCheap charger setup

Since the batteries were each 1mm longer, I had to dismantle the laser and loosen the driver pill a bit in order for them to fit in. Once that was done, I now had a functional laser:
Laser beamLaser spot

Conclusion
The finished laser is being run at ~3.5V/1.85A, probably outputting just over 1W. But with the losses from the collimating lens, especially on account of it getting slightly dirty in my dust-filled house within 5 seconds of me cleaning it, maybe 100mW less?

Anyhow, I'm satisfied with the result and price (still managed to build it for cheaper than had I bought it pre-made, + the form factor). Thanks all for providing technical support when I requested it on the forums 👌
 
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gazer101

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Lol I was just cleaning my lens again and I noticed that a small speck got in between my lenses somehow (I'm using an all-glass 3 element lens)... Any idea how to dismantle/clean it (without a cleanroom) without making it dirtier than when I started?

Or if not could any of you guys hit me up with a cheap glass single element lens (maybe G-2?) so I don't have such issues again?

Thanks!

NOTE: I don't see much of a reduction in power; it still burns as well as ever, but there is a little bit more haziness to the laser spot
 

Philipnzw

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Lol I was just cleaning my lens again and I noticed that a small speck got in between my lenses somehow (I'm using an all-glass 3 element lens)... Any idea how to dismantle/clean it (without a cleanroom) without making it dirtier than when I started?

Or if not could any of you guys hit me up with a cheap glass single element lens (maybe G-2?) so I don't have such issues again?

Thanks!

NOTE: I don't see much of a reduction in power; it still burns as well as ever, but there is a little bit more haziness to the laser spot
If you have some isopropyl alcohol and a piece of microfiber cloth, you could use it to clean the lens. Just take everything apart and give it a gentle wipe, and then put everything back together. Do try to use 99% isopropyl alcohol if possible, lower concentrations of IPA will leave water streak marks on the lens as the IPA evaporates. Personally i clean my lens with 70% IPA antiseptic wipes, it does leave some residue after it evaporates but it is easily removed with some microfiber cloth.

Anyway, i think you could go with a G7 or G8 lens with your laser. i have tried 3E, G7 and G8 lens with my 1 watt green and i like the G7 and G8 more than the 3E. Both are quite a bit brighter than the 3E.
 

gazer101

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If you have some isopropyl alcohol and a piece of microfiber cloth, you could use it to clean the lens. Just take everything apart and give it a gentle wipe, and then put everything back together. Do try to use 99% isopropyl alcohol if possible, lower concentrations of IPA will leave water streak marks on the lens as the IPA evaporates. Personally i clean my lens with 70% IPA antiseptic wipes, it does leave some residue after it evaporates but it is easily removed with some microfiber cloth.

Anyway, i think you could go with a G7 or G8 lens with your laser. i have tried 3E, G7 and G8 lens with my 1 watt green and i like the G7 and G8 more than the 3E. Both are quite a bit brighter than the 3E.
Glad to hear its possible to dismantle/clean the lenses, will definitely give it a shot (I have 99% isopropanol) (y)

I assume you'd get the G7/8 lenses from eBay? Or is there some cheaper and/or faster shipping place to get them from?

Appreciate it
 

Philipnzw

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Glad to hear its possible to dismantle/clean the lenses, will definitely give it a shot (I have 99% isopropanol) (y)

I assume you'd get the G7/8 lenses from eBay? Or is there some cheaper and/or faster shipping place to get them from?

Appreciate it
I got the G7 from taobao and G8 from Trinh. I'm not too sure about other sources, but i think some place like Dtr's laser shop, survival lasers or eBay can be good options if you live in the NA.
 

Snecho

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Glad to hear its possible to dismantle/clean the lenses, will definitely give it a shot (I have 99% isopropanol) (y)

I assume you'd get the G7/8 lenses from eBay? Or is there some cheaper and/or faster shipping place to get them from?

Appreciate it
DTR'S Laser Shop
 

gazer101

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DTR'S Laser Shop
Wow, G-2 is quite impressive (only 4% loss)
 

gazer101

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Update: I got a G-2 lens from forum member r4mn33k. It doesn't exactly work miracles in terms of divergence or making my focusing life easier, but its definitely brighter now.

Only drawback is that, since the lens sits soo close to the diode, I can see a back reflection of the copper-semicircle-mount thing upon which the InGaN chip sits
 
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