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Pen Laser Thread

Pman

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Welcome to the everything pen laser thread:)
I realize that some of you can't stand pen lasers for various reasons but there's quite a few of us that really like this form factor and so I decided to start an everything/anything thread concerning pen lasers on my 2000th post.
Personally I love the power to weight ratio and sleek design. If there's one thing I've messed with more than anything else it would be pen units. Figure I've built or modified well over a 100 of them and I'm planning on a few more as soon as I can get up the energy as my health isn't so great. I was going to show some nice lasers I haven't shown yet for my 2000th but couldn't get myself to set things up today. They aren't pens anyways;)
So, let's post/pic/build/share whatever is on your mind and bring some fun back into this forum!

Here's a few pics of my more "professional" type units to get things started







I tried to take pics showing what they are and the outputs. The silver is an 72mW 520nm and the Gold is a 445nm that I believe is around 1.2W. The silver one isn't scratched, it's just a clear label.






Sorry about no beamshots. Ran out of energy. Don't let it discourage any of you;)
 
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Pman

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Thanks, I'm sure there are others with nicer units than these. Noticed that I don't have a 405nm in this style. Going to have to remedy that when I can. I can see they have an LP405nm 80mW if I can come up with the $ unless someone else has one at that power they want to get rid of.
Starting a new thread on the weekend = blah.....
 
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olympus mons

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Great thread congrats on 2k Pete. As a lucky owner of a RGB set of yours I can tell you they got me loving pens. I bought from the BST section a 80mW 520 pen made by BTB and the feel of this high quality pen is awesome. It's one of my favorites and also my first 520. Pens are really fun but just as a word of caution to the new members of the laser community momentary side buttons can be easily activated un intentionally.

My 520 has two tail caps one has a tiny safety key the other is constant armed. I removed the key tail cap and attached the constant armed one because I felt it's was unnecessary and when I was putting the pen back in its case the lid hit the button and the beam activated. My wife was sleeping and the dot hit the wall very close to her head. It really gave me quite a wake up call.
I no longer store any lasers with batteries and if safety switches are an option I utilize them.
 
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Pman

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I think almost all of us discovered that issue in one way or another but I don't remember any dead units from it. How did your wife react?
Should say for those who don't know that I label my units with the max output seen on my Ophir for danger level and that is those stickers with various numbers on them (most are yellow in these photos because yellow is 100mW and above although I label some units with black on clear and they could be anything). All the readings from the btb ones are using a single 10440 with spacer as their outputs are VERY voltage dependent. You can see what I mean on the 2 LP532-150mW, 60 and 50mW as their peaks hit 240, 268, 112 and 93mW although all are way over except the pulsed 20mW red (23mW). Do this at your own risk;)
The Dragonlasers Aurora (beautiful) and Vipers are nice too but I don't own any mainly due to cost. Actually I'm not sure if those are pen units as they use CR2 cells.
Actually that 532nm 60mW came from James and he said it was a Firedragon laser. Came in that oval silver tin.
 
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BowtieGuy

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Good idea on the "Pen Laser Thread" Pete, who better to start this than the Pman (Pen man)?

My two favorite pens happen to be the first and last pens I've purchased. The first pen is my Optotronics 150mW, and the next is a RA Pierce build, which is a 1.4W, 450nm, focusable incinerator; totally impractical, but a whole lot of fun! :D



Here are a couple pics of the Optotronics pen. The Opto is the top unit.



Here are a few of the chrome RA Pierce burner.


This pic is a better view of the the polished s.s. focus adapter.
 
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Pman

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Thanks for adding those. I hadn't heard Optotronics in a long time. Their website is still up showing US prices. Do they still ship here then? That's a really sharp S.S unit.
Well, the impractical nature of a powerful pen unit is why many don't like them but your right, that's the fun of it. I like that I can pop a dark balloon inside another clear balloon with just a $5 over-spec pen (more fun when it's helium floating):) Yes I'm 50 and still have a bit of fun;)
 
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BowtieGuy

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Yeah, you don't hear of them too often, but as far as I know, they're still going strong; they're located in Colorado IIRC. As a matter of fact, I think someone just ordered a unit from them the other day; I just read about it in another thread.
They are expensive, and very probably over priced, but I've had mine since 2012, and it is going as strong as the day I got it. It's my " go to" laser that gets more use than any of my others.

BTW- Thank you for the +rep! :)
 
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Pman

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Built an lpc-826 pen unit yesterday and will post some pics later.
 

crazyspaz

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I'll post pics of mine when I get a chance- 2 chrome <1W's, a single mode blue in a black pen (my personal favorite), a BTB 520, various 532's and the Pman RGB trio :)
 

Pman

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K, here's the LPC-826 that I built yesterday at over 300mW with an acrylic lens. A bit of smoke added;)







Hmmm, anyone else see the horned devil?










If anyone would like to see the same shot with one my other pens let me know.
$6 diode, $4 or less driver, classy pen that I can't remember the cost of plus 2 inexpensive LiFEPo4 10440 cells some paint and ingenuity = one hot little pen
If you are looking for the LPC-826 diodes for about $6 each (when you buy multiples at least) look for the Ebay seller in the US that I believe is offering them for $7.25 each or offer.
 
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brucemir

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I took a quick break while photographing my usual stuff to take some pics of my first two lasers I even owned. Here are a few pics of my Radio Shack LX1000 (purchased in 1997) which still works, and a Double laser (red on one end, green on the other) I got from Geek Squad I think, fifteen years ago . The battery on that red laser was almost dead so even with long time exposures , the green is much brighter in the pic posted here.

I was able to get some nice beam shots of the LX1000 even though it puts out maybe 1 - 2mw's at best. Also in one of the pics is a Laserglow Rigel 6 593.5 pen. I have many other pens but these are my favs.











 

Pman

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Yup, that's the Radio Shack one I have that isn't working. It only quit a couple years ago though and was heavily used and dropped quite a lot. I could post over a 100 other pens I've modified/own but figured maybe no-one really wanted to see those. I do have my 510 adapter ones though that I could post. The 510 heads may seem quite large on a pen so I'm not sure if that would be a "foul" on my part. Anyone care to chime in? What battery size is a pen allowed to take? Some units I still consider to be pens take a 14500. What do you guys think?

Out of curiosity sake I just purchased 2 $3 free shipping pens and a $7 pack of the 3 color pens on Ebay sold in the US to see if they are overspec and the ones I modify to focus at that price point. Price was too low for me not to find out and share as they are from sellers I previously purchased from that had the good ones. Will report my findings if they are really good as I haven't seen any that cheap from the US with free shipping. Total will be (2) 405nm, (2) 650nm and 1 532nm.
 
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The Lightning Stalker

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I'd say 14500 is the max allowed to be
considered a pen. There is also a length
range below which it becomes a keychain.

I bought some 10180 cells hoping they would
fit LR44 keychains, but they are just a tad
too large.
 

Pman

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Yeah, I'm not going to post those DTR adapter ones even if they mostly look like pens. The adapters are just too big on them. Awaiting a few parts to build a few more classy looking pens. Wish DTR would make some modules that have the 510 on the end of them so you could just screw them onto a pen vape unit. Would be slick.
I have a whole bunch of middle size units that are a cross between pen and keychain length I built. Could post the ones that look special and not just cut down.
Those 10180 cells must have pretty low capacity. Ever try and see how much draw they could handle?
 
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