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Rayfoss RF405-150mW - Noob Review :)

Reshals42

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So this is my first "proper" laser. I've owned several cheap red and green lasers before but this is the first one that requires laser safety goggles.

1st: Order / Shipping Times

Order placed late evening US Time on 11-16-2011
Shipped by Rayfoss in China on 11-22-2011
Arrived in Santa Clarita CA, US on 11-26-2011
Arrived in Dallas, TX Sort Facility 11-27-2011
Delivered to me on 11-28-2011 mid afternoon

So from order placed till at my door 11/16 to 11/28 this is better then I expected after lurking here for a while and reading about people having problems getting items from China.

2nd: Packaging / First Impression
It came in a small plain brown padded bag with lots of stickers and Chinese characters all over it... Inside the bag were two items, a white box that said "Green Laser Pointer" on the top and a black hard case that said "T-Rex" on top.
Now this scared me a bit since I ordered a 405nm "Violet" pointer not a green one...
Upon opening the box I am reassured by the warning sticker on the side that says wavelength 405-450nm and is blue in color. It came in 2 parts (Body + Tailcap) and inside the box is the laser, 2x 16340 batteries, cheap charger for said batteries, and keys to lock the laser switch.
First impression overall is that it seems to be good quality and feels like its solid. The glasses also seem solid and decent for what they are. (I know these glasses are not good for higher then maybe 200mw but for this laser I think they are sufficient.)

Testing / Burning
Took it straight from the box put in the batteries and started trying to light a match / cut electrical tape/ pop a balloon... and couldn't do it.
I thought maybe the batteries were not fully charged so I charged them up and tried again and still failed. I was trying from different distances from upto about 12 feet away to only 1 foot from the laser, and couldn't even mark the electrical tape. After about 30 mins of frustration :mad: with this I was about to come post on here that Rayfoss was terrible and had sent me a hugely underspec laser etc, etc... Then I figured out that if you unscrew the front it works as a focus :banghead: :oops: and then I proceeded to pop balloons, light matches (without sharpie on the top), and cut electrical tape to my hearts content.

Goggles
I posted another thread in the Safety area asking if these goggles were any good while waiting for the laser to arrive. The consensus there seemed to be that overall these are not very good goggles but they should be fine for a relatively (150mw vs 1000mw) low power 150mw laser. I tested them right after I got them by setting the laser about 1 foot from wall and taking pictures of the dot on the wall unfiltered and then filtered through 1 lens on the goggles. The dot is visible but very dim even in a dark room (You can see it in the pictures below)

PICTURES:
First picture is the laser + goggles fresh out of the packaging


Close up of the warning sticker


Close up front of the laser


Laser pointing at a white wall about 1 foot distant without the goggles in front of it.


Same as above with the goggles in front of the pointer.


Think this will work....
http://youtu.be/htimrqVf8_0

 
Last edited:

jimdt7

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Nice little review. If the dot is so dim after the glasses then the goggles should
be good. But the only way to confirm it is by LPMing the laser while the glasses block
the beam.

Anyway have fun and be safe,
Jim
 

ThatOneDude

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YO!!! Nice laser you got there. Makes me wanna get one lol. The glasses should be good. I sow a youtube video that measured the laser with and without the goggles. With the goggles it went down to about 6mW which is not bad. I forget what tat video is called though :whistle:
 

Haloid95

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Great review, I haven't seen a rayfoss one in a while. I might order a cheap green from them just to see there quality. But I think I will sick with Lazerer for a while.
 

ThatOneDude

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Make a review of that Cyber when you get it. It would be awesome if you do. :p
 

Haloid95

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Dont worry I will make a review of it as soon as it arrives, Haven't seen any other reviews of it.
 

ThatOneDude

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Thank You very much. I have always wanted to look at a review for that one. The Cyber has a peculiarly nice host don't you think?
 

Haloid95

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Ya and waterproof. Check for a review in a week or so. Hopefully I get it by then.


@Reshals42 You should post a video of some burning and beam. ;)
 

offroadfreak8582

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Ya and waterproof. Check for a review in a week or so. Hopefully I get it by then.


@Reshals42 You should post a video of some burning and beam. ;)
It's weird no one actually bought the cyber before! I guess the Riffle distracted everyone :p
 

offroadfreak8582

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YO!!! Nice laser you got there. Makes me wanna get one lol. The glasses should be good. I sow a youtube video that measured the laser with and without the goggles. With the goggles it went down to about 6mW which is not bad. I forget what tat video is called though :whistle:
Well i watched the video too, And i don't know.. The goggles are tested with a 150mW reddie :tired: and it stoppes dropping at 6mW. What does that mean for a 1500mW to 2000mW 445nM? Offcourse the glass is different for that wavelength but i hope it reduces the laser light a bit more :(

greetings,,
 

JaiNobeZ

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Nice review.

I'll help answer a few questions regarding goggles.
Goggles serve several purposes. The first and foremost is to protect your eyes from the cumulative effect of long-term exposure to the focussed laser dot. Second, to protect you in the fairly unlikely event that a beam will reflect directly into your eyes. And finally, so that you're able to accurately gauge the size and shape of the dot so you're better able to focus it.

Goggles are rated according to Optical Density (OD), and this value will vary for different wavelengths. OD1 will reduce the beam strength tenfold - so, 150 milliWatts becomes 15 milliWatts. The general consensus on goggles seems to be that it's considered safe when the power is reduced beyond 5mW since that way if you pointed the laser at an object with the intention of burning it and the object was a mirror (I know, stupid and unlikely but this is a worst case scenario) and the laser reflected back into your eye it would not do damage (provided you blink). In general, the cheap Chinese goggles are OD2-3 for a given wavelength. So, 150mW is reduced to 1.5mW (considered safe) and 1W is reduced to 10mW (not ideal).

A second factor to consider is the rate of melting. The cheap goggles you get free with lasers use plastic lenses which means a direct hit tends to bleach the dye and penetrate the lens fairly quickly. With 150mW, this isn't too big a deal since it'll happen slowly enough for you to shut your eyes and redirect the laser (or just shut it off). With 1W lasers and goggles which will melt they may be providing pretty much no protection at all in the event of a direct hit as they will melt too quickly to be of any use. The other issue is that this is harder to test for than OD. If you want to check it's ok on your goggles, choose a spot as far away from your feild of vision as possible and attempt to burn it with your laser. See how quickly the colour goes. In addittion, some people have commented on the idea that the goggles may bleach out of continued use without receiving a direct hit. I don't know too much about that, so I'm not going to comment, but be aware of it and it's best to give your goggles a quick check before you play with them.

Finally, there is shape. Strictly speaking, laser safety glasses are different from laser safety goggles in that glasses sit in front of the eyes while goggles surround them and cover them from all directions. There are advantages and disadvantages to each (glasses are generally more comfortable and make vision less tunnelled and you have the option to look through the lenses when using the laser and through the bottom when you're not) but goggles are considered safer because of the way that there is no way the beam can reach the eyes from any angle. My personal opinion on this is that while burning you're so unlikely to get the beam around the corner of the glasses that goggles are not worth the cost difference since mainly you're doing it to protect you from the cumulative effect of lots of exposure to the dot, but if you're aligning beams or mirrors or optics then goggles are a necessity.

Other considerations include things like lens colour, which affects your ability to see the rest of the world while using the laser. But usually you don't have a lot of choice unless you're willing to pay quite a bit.

Hope that cleared a few things up, and that I didn't sound too patronising. Have fun and stay safe!
 

Reshals42

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Good info JaiNobeZ

From what you've said the "glasses" I got from Rayfoss are probably od2-3ish and should be okay for use with the 150mw laser.
One thing I've noticed about focusing the laser to burn something is that the distance that you focus it to becomes basically the ONLY place the dot is "good". On this laser when the front cap is screwed in all the way it seems to be focused to "infinity" since the dot is "smallish" from about 1-2 feet from the front out to as far as I can see it accurately. However when I focus it to about 3-4feet from the front it very very quickly becomes a large blur right after the focus point.
 

Haloid95

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Nice review.

I'll help answer a few questions regarding goggles.
Goggles serve several purposes. The first and foremost is to protect your eyes from the cumulative effect of long-term exposure to the focussed laser dot. Second, to protect you in the fairly unlikely event that a beam will reflect directly into your eyes. And finally, so that you're able to accurately gauge the size and shape of the dot so you're better able to focus it.

Goggles are rated according to Optical Density (OD), and this value will vary for different wavelengths. OD1 will reduce the beam strength tenfold - so, 150 milliWatts becomes 15 milliWatts. The general consensus on goggles seems to be that it's considered safe when the power is reduced beyond 5mW since that way if you pointed the laser at an object with the intention of burning it and the object was a mirror (I know, stupid and unlikely but this is a worst case scenario) and the laser reflected back into your eye it would not do damage (provided you blink). In general, the cheap Chinese goggles are OD2-3 for a given wavelength. So, 150mW is reduced to 1.5mW (considered safe) and 1W is reduced to 10mW (not ideal).

A second factor to consider is the rate of melting. The cheap goggles you get free with lasers use plastic lenses which means a direct hit tends to bleach the dye and penetrate the lens fairly quickly. With 150mW, this isn't too big a deal since it'll happen slowly enough for you to shut your eyes and redirect the laser (or just shut it off). With 1W lasers and goggles which will melt they may be providing pretty much no protection at all in the event of a direct hit as they will melt too quickly to be of any use. The other issue is that this is harder to test for than OD. If you want to check it's ok on your goggles, choose a spot as far away from your feild of vision as possible and attempt to burn it with your laser. See how quickly the colour goes. In addittion, some people have commented on the idea that the goggles may bleach out of continued use without receiving a direct hit. I don't know too much about that, so I'm not going to comment, but be aware of it and it's best to give your goggles a quick check before you play with them.

Finally, there is shape. Strictly speaking, laser safety glasses are different from laser safety goggles in that glasses sit in front of the eyes while goggles surround them and cover them from all directions. There are advantages and disadvantages to each (glasses are generally more comfortable and make vision less tunnelled and you have the option to look through the lenses when using the laser and through the bottom when you're not) but goggles are considered safer because of the way that there is no way the beam can reach the eyes from any angle. My personal opinion on this is that while burning you're so unlikely to get the beam around the corner of the glasses that goggles are not worth the cost difference since mainly you're doing it to protect you from the cumulative effect of lots of exposure to the dot, but if you're aligning beams or mirrors or optics then goggles are a necessity.

Other considerations include things like lens colour, which affects your ability to see the rest of the world while using the laser. But usually you don't have a lot of choice unless you're willing to pay quite a bit.

Hope that cleared a few things up, and that I didn't sound too patronising. Have fun and stay safe!
Very detailed info +1. Ill make sure to remember to test all my glasses.
 

JaiNobeZ

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Good info JaiNobeZ

From what you've said the "glasses" I got from Rayfoss are probably od2-3ish and should be okay for use with the 150mw laser.
One thing I've noticed about focusing the laser to burn something is that the distance that you focus it to becomes basically the ONLY place the dot is "good". On this laser when the front cap is screwed in all the way it seems to be focused to "infinity" since the dot is "smallish" from about 1-2 feet from the front out to as far as I can see it accurately. However when I focus it to about 3-4feet from the front it very very quickly becomes a large blur right after the focus point.
Yeah, some people's opinions may differ, but I'd say you're probably fine with them. Just try to make sure you can always only see the dot through the lenses and not around the edges of the lenses, particularly when burning stuff. Outdoors you needn't worry quite as much, but then there are other things to worry about.

Regarding the focus, that's normal. If you want to know where on the thread the infinity focus is, try pointing it up into a night sky when badly focussed and then keep turning the focus until the beam is as narrow as you can get it. But it's pretty much normal for a laser to only be good at burning at around its focal point. A fun thing to try while wearing goggles is to point your laser at some wood that you've scribbled on with a black marker pen, hold the laser down on a surface and focus it onto the wood slowly - try to get the best focus you possibly can. When you hit the focal point you should see some little coloured flashes. That's the laser's perfect focus point, and the best way to burn stuff. You can draw on the wood producing very narrow black lines. But don't do it near any smoke alarms; it produces a fair amount of smoke that you can't really see from behind the goggles :p


Very detailed info +1. Ill make sure to remember to test all my glasses.
Thanks. Glad it was helpful. Be aware people have differing opinions from mine regarding goggles, and it's good to listen to advice from more than one person so you have all the information and can decide where you stand on the issue.
 




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