Welcome to Laser Pointer Forums - discuss green laser pointers, blue laser pointers, and all types of lasers



Laser Pointer Store

Question RE: fan power

JimBolder

New member
Joined
Dec 13, 2010
Messages
108
Likes
9
Points
0
I'm not insuating anything, don't be that defensive without a reason ;). I just don't want to my foreign (english) friends to be forbbiden to own lasers at all, because someone got "blinded" by a homemade unit.

A 100W CO2 wouldn't be THAT dangerous, as the PSU could literally "burn thru" you. :p
There are many people who don't understand the danger behind lasers, they don't know what 2W of blue light looks like.
Yeah, I understand where you're coming from.

Too often around here you see threads like "OMG HALP I SHINED MY ARCTIC IN MY EYE AM I GOING TO GO BLIND" or "Help me build a laser to [insert illegal activity here]."
 

Leodahsan

New member
Joined
Aug 7, 2010
Messages
2,088
Likes
76
Points
0
about shining an arctic in the eye, I've never seen. I didn't seen any child able/desiring to buy an arctic and shine it on his on eye :thinking:

I've seen someone wanting to build a laser to kill birds (like "shoot'em down"), to throw fire on a house by a distance, and some other illegal activities: it is common.

I just don't understand. Was that sarcasm?
JimBolder said:
Too often around here you see threads like "OMG HALP I SHINED MY ARCTIC IN MY EYE AM I GOING TO GO BLIND" or "Help me build a laser to [insert illegal activity here]."
 

JimBolder

New member
Joined
Dec 13, 2010
Messages
108
Likes
9
Points
0
about shining an arctic in the eye, I've never seen. I didn't seen any child able/desiring to buy an arctic and shine it on his on eye :thinking:

I've seen someone wanting to build a laser to kill birds (like "shoot'em down"), to throw fire on a house by a distance, and some other illegal activities: it is common.

I just don't understand. Was that sarcasm?
Haha no that wasn't sarcasm.:beer:

There was a thread not too long ago in the safety section from a guy who hit himself in the eye with the arctic. I can't seem to find it right now, though.

There was also a thread from a guy who wanted to build/buy a laser to burn one of his roommate's possessions from behind a display case like a month or two ago.
 

anselm

New member
Joined
Nov 22, 2010
Messages
2,470
Likes
80
Points
0
And the guy who wanted to scam prizes from an arcade game, cutting the threads the
prizes hang from.:rolleyes:

On topic:
You can find fans that run off 5V in a computer case, too.
Also, even if they are rated for 12V, they will still run with less voltage, just slower.
 

Leodahsan

New member
Joined
Aug 7, 2010
Messages
2,088
Likes
76
Points
0
There was also a thread from a guy who wanted to build/buy a laser to burn one of his roommate's possessions from behind a display case like a month or two ago.
I've seen that. Was something that was being susprended by a thin wire or something like that. The guy cannot even talk alright, looks like he never gone to school :O
:beer:

@anselm
building a portable CO2 (UTFS Starwarz power ;P) and cutting the glass/metal thru would be a more than appealing experience.
 

JimBolder

New member
Joined
Dec 13, 2010
Messages
108
Likes
9
Points
0
I've seen that. Was something that was being susprended by a thin wire or something like that. The guy cannot even talk alright, looks like he never gone to school :O
:beer:

@anselm
building a portable CO2 (UTFS Starwarz power ;P) and cutting the glass/metal thru would be a more than appealing experience.
You'd probably end up setting fire to the whole machine.

And the guy who wanted to scam prizes from an arcade game, cutting the threads the
prizes hang from.:rolleyes:

On topic:
You can find fans that run off 5V in a computer case, too.
Also, even if they are rated for 12V, they will still run with less voltage, just slower.
I guess I can forget about the 12V fan, there's like almost zero info out there on making a DIY boost driver.

I have a few 5V fans, but they're TINY (like 30mmx30mm XD). I'll try looking for a larger one. Also, will the 3-pin computer fans work if you just power the + and -? I know that the 3rd pin is for fan control or something, but will the fan work without it?
 

Trevor

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 17, 2009
Messages
4,513
Likes
548
Points
113
Please allow me to interject here a bit. I think this just needs to be said.

A short while ago 2W was a power level that was cost prohibitive for anyone except professionals or the wealthy to build or buy. No one had it. A year ago (almost to the day) I spent over $1,000 for a 1W rated 532nm system for a projector. With prices that high, 15-year-olds that just wanted to light matches and pop balloons had to pay a fair bit for a couple hundred milliwatts. Now, 1W is the standard output level for someone who wants to get into the hobby. That's scary - for their own safety, the safety of others, and the future of our hobby. We're all a bit on edge.

More specifically to you, 2W is really nothing to sneeze at. It's an absurdly dangerous level of laser power. You're acting really cavalier about it - "it's not a 100W CO2 burner?" Right, it's not. It's also not a 5mW pointer. If this is your first non-pointer (>5mW) laser, I guarantee you that you're not prepared to handle it. You've not been working with lasers long enough to appreciate the risks involved. It's nothing personal. It's not age- or maturity-related. It's just that 2W of optical power shouldn't ever be put in the hands of someone who isn't experienced with lasers. Period. There have been photos posted here of retinal burns from a 60mW laser. You're looking at more than thirty times that output. Don't downplay this laser, saying "it's not 100W." It's not something that should be taken lightly, or trifled with.

I'm speaking from experience. When I bought my 532nm system, I wanted the best price per unit of power. The knee in the curve landed at that point. I had had a few 100mW+ systems then, but hadn't fully thought through exactly how much more power 1W+ was. I only made the mistake once of not wearing goggles; after I turned off the laser, my eyes had the sensation of being full of sand and everything looked way less green than it should have. I didn't take a direct hit, and I don't have any lasting damage. But... don't take it lightly. Don't spring for 2W just because it's the best price per milliwatt. I won't say "don't make the same mistake I did," but please - don't let your learning experience (that you will have with this laser) cost you your vision in one eye because you hit your optical nerve while not wearing goggles because you wanted to see the beam for once.

-Trevor
 

Leodahsan

New member
Joined
Aug 7, 2010
Messages
2,088
Likes
76
Points
0
I think I'll be flamed for this but..
After my first A140 diode reached my house, I grabbed my goggles FAST and light it up. After some pinpoint burning, I focused to infinity and went outdoors and was amazed at the beam. After I returned indoors I commited the BAD action: Lighting up on a wall 1m away from me. The blueness amazed me, after 1 minute playing I had lost the capability to see red LOL! I looked on my MSN and thinked to myself: "what I'm doing appearing offline.." so I right clicked and there was: "status : Busy". When I looked the antivirus icon, with my peripheral vision I could see it was red. lol. Like a half hour and I recovered fully.

Scary tho :(

@twhite
have you thinked about the LPF members selling assemblied 1W lasers to anyone (lowbies)?

IMO after some power (200mW for blues), it starts losing the "WOW Factor", because people got annoyed by the incredible bright thing and start disliking it.
 

JimBolder

New member
Joined
Dec 13, 2010
Messages
108
Likes
9
Points
0
Sorry for truncating/splitting your awesome post, I'm just not a fan of large walls of text. :undecided:

Now, 1W is the standard output level for someone who wants to get into the hobby. That's scary - for their own safety, the safety of others, and the future of our hobby. We're all a bit on edge.
And you have good reason to be, as too often you hear about newbies ending up with permanent blind spots playing with their brand new arctic.

More specifically to you, 2W is really nothing to sneeze at. It's an absurdly dangerous level of laser power. You're acting really cavalier about it - "it's not a 100W CO2 burner?" Right, it's not. It's also not a 5mW pointer.
That was intended as sarcasm towards the previous poster, who I believed was insinuating that I were some kid that had zero previous experience with lasers. I've done my research. I know what two watts can do. ESPECIALLY with the blue light hazard.

If this is your first non-pointer (>5mW) laser, I guarantee you that you're not prepared to handle it. You've not been working with lasers long enough to appreciate the risks involved. It's nothing personal. It's not age- or maturity-related. It's just that 2W of optical power shouldn't ever be put in the hands of someone who isn't experienced with lasers. Period.
This is not my first 5mW+ laser. I've been toying with lasers almost all my life, but I'll admit that I didn't get into the higher-powered systems until about half a year ago. Since then, I've built multiple 200mW+ systems and have had plenty of experience with operating higher-powered lasers. I'm actually paranoid about harming my vision, so needless to say, I always observe the proper safety precautions.

There have been photos posted here of retinal burns from a 60mW laser. You're looking at more than thirty times that output.
Believe me, I've seen PLENTY of pictures when I was researching goggles.

I won't say "don't make the same mistake I did," but please - don't let your learning experience (that you will have with this laser) cost you your vision in one eye because you hit your optical nerve while not wearing goggles because you wanted to see the beam for once.

-Trevor
I almost did actually, once. This was back a while before, a few days after I finished my first build. I was experimenting with the laser, doing random stuff (with my goggles on ALL the time, of course). I decided to shine the laser into a glass of water, but of course I couldn't see anything with my goggles on. Right as I was about to take my goggles of to get a better look, the laser moved a little and a specular reflection hit me square in my right eye. Good thing I still had my goggles on. Believe me, I won't be making any mistake of that sort again.

Anyhow, thanks for the precautionary post. I guess it makes me feel a little better knowing exactly how much people on these forums care for safety.

Laser discussions elsewhere on the internet always promote absurdly dangerous/self-destructive behavior with lasers. This gives me hope. :beer:

IMO after some power (200mW for blues), it starts losing the "WOW Factor", because people got annoyed by the incredible bright thing and start disliking it.
I'm building this labbie solely for personal experimental/learning purposes. Actually, I don't think I'm going to let anybody but close, educated friends even know about it. Don't want somebody to get a hold of it and end up frying their retinas...:tsk:

Why would you need a fan to cool it in the first place?
I've never built a two watt before, but I'm assuming that the diode generates a lot of heat. Also, I'm using a linear driver, which requires proper cooling for extended periods of use.

I was thinking about embedding the diode housing into a finned LED heatsink, so that way, in conjunction with the fan, would provide better heatsinking than a simple block of aluminum/copper used in handheld builds.
 
Last edited:




Top