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Some advice would help

Mr Acurite

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Hello everyone, this is my first post, so a little background: I'm currently 15, the one laser I built previously sucked, I have a budget of maybe $100, and I would like to use it to build the strongest blue/violet laser I can. I have reasonable experience with circuits, but would like detailed instruction on anything advanced, and by way of tools and work space I have some basic tools, like a handsaw, screwdriver set, hammer, etc, but not a soldering iron or anything fancy like that. I'm really into building things, and I'm willing to put in quite a few hours to build this.
An aspiring newbie,
Mr Acurite
 

KRNAZNBOY

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For that amount of money you can build a 1.5 watt blue laser with very little experience needed, but first we need to know what you will be doing with the laser and if you are responsible :)

Safety First!

:beer:
-Matt
 
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Mr Acurite

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Granted that, yes, I'm 15 years old, I'm extremely responsible with anything truly dangerous, and will take all safety precautions while using something. Also, isn't 1500 mw kind of excessive? I'm not trying to take down a plane or anything, just burn through paper and other small things, get a start in burning lasers. Also, an accident with 1500 mw seems like it has a higher potential for house down-burning or people-blinding, so I wouldn't do that...
 

The Lightning Stalker

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For less than $100 you can get a 12x Blu-Ray diode. A 405nm laser would be a great first project. But
seriously, first get some safety glasses. You will definitely need them, especially when focusing and
burning.
 

Hap

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For less than $100 you can get a 12x Blu-Ray diode. A 405nm laser would be a great first project. But
seriously, first get some safety glasses. You will definitely need them, especially when focusing and
burning.

If you are going to be doing some burning, you are going to need a pair of Eagle-Pair safety goggles. They cost around $50, but will last you a lifetime if you treat them right.

Eagle Pair® 190-540nm Standard Laser Safety Goggles
 
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Tmack

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Going to need that ordering iron too man. No getting around that. Lol there goes the $100 ( glasses and iron) but nothing a little bit of saving can't fix.
Good luck! It's a rewarding project.
 

The Lightning Stalker

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Make sure the soldering iron you get has a grounded tip. Though I have not tried it, I hear those Other
soldering irons are diode killers.
 

KRNAZNBOY

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Also, an accident with 1500 mw seems like it has a higher potential for house down-burning or people-blinding, so I wouldn't do that...
lol its not going to burn your house down, and if you are responsible, you will not be blinding anyone.

:beer:
-Matt
 

XxCodyDarnellxX

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Hello everyone, this is my first post, so a little background: I'm currently 15, the one laser I built previously sucked, I have a budget of maybe $100, and I would like to use it to build the strongest blue/violet laser I can. I have reasonable experience with circuits, but would like detailed instruction on anything advanced, and by way of tools and work space I have some basic tools, like a handsaw, screwdriver set, hammer, etc, but not a soldering iron or anything fancy like that. I'm really into building things, and I'm willing to put in quite a few hours to build this.
An aspiring newbie,
Mr Acurite

Here's a build without soldering. Now, you mentioned you want a blue / violet laser. In the video, the laser is green. However you may be able to substitute it for another color. However I'm not totally sure, as I don't do laser builds yet. I'll leave that up to the vets to say why you should or should not be able to substitute it for blue. Besides, it's in an altoids can. How's that for unique?

DIY: How to Build a Burning Laser Without any Soldering! - YouTube




WITH a soldering iron, heres a good video for a DIY laser. Same guy, Styropyro, who's a member here on LPF. I always recommend his videos, as they're clear, to the point, well constructed, and easy to follow. :beer:


DIY: Burning Blue Laser Pen!! Step by Step Construction and Burning Demo! - YouTube






Lastly, welcome to LPF. :wave: :beer:
 
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Pi R Squared

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1500mw can set things on fire so in theory you could burn your house down but its not likely to happen. $100 is really a stretch but may be doable but that would be just for the parts of the laser. You will need safety glasses and batteries and a charger, and the soldering iron and you shouldn't try to build a laser if you don't have a DMM or else when you put it together and it doesn't work then you wont have a way to troubleshoot what's wrong. For some ideas check out these build threads:
http://laserpointerforums.com/f65/assembled-m140-c6-pic-heavy-83543.html
http://laserpointerforums.com/f65/assembled-445nm-9mm-stainless-steel-host-pic-heavy-85997.html and read a few other build threads too and you can learn reasonably quick how to build a laser.

Alan
 

Npglaserer

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I built the laser shown in Styropyro's tutorial above, but the leads to the DX module fall off really easily, so you end up having to solder anyway. ;)

You could easily substitute the module for another one like this: 532nm 120mW Green Laser Module Green Laser Dot Module 3 0V 3 7V Spcial OFFER | eBay

It would probably work with a module from DTR as well, but then you would have to try and fit a heatsink in there as high power requires more heatsinking. Even with the dx module I have to keep it to a strict duty cycle.
 

Mr Acurite

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Funny story actually; the laser I built two years ago was based on Styropyro's vid, and yes the leads fell off, but I got some alligator clips in just the right place to fix it. Also, I seriously doubt that my parents would let me purchase a soldering iron for the next few years, is it possible to, for a basic build, substitute solder for alligator clips or twisting wires together or something?
 

Tmack

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I saw wire glue before. No idea if it is any good but it's out there.
 

The Lightning Stalker

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Take a multimeter and put it into the high Megaohms range. Then take the soldering iron and the line
cord and measure the resistance between the tip and ground pin on the line cord. It should be 0 - 5
Megaohms.

I have used wire glue before. It contains silver so it's expensive but it does work fairly well. You do
need something to hold the wires together though while it's curing. I would recommend wrapping them
with the metal from inside a twist tie or a cut off from a resistor or something.

They used to sell little flat strips of prefluxed solder. You would wrap it around the wires and then heat
it with a flame. It would have to be done after the diode is pressed into a module or else it might
overheat. Withdraw the flame immediately when the solder flows. Again the wires cannot move.
 

Javalin

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Parents these days... When I was 8 I got a wood burning kit for my birthday. When I was 9 - 10 I realized that it worked as a soldering iron :)

It's true what the others have said though you could maybe get away with not having the proper tools but with no way of permanently fixing your diode to your driver you are asking to kill your diode.

As for your $100 budget, do you get an allowance? I would recommend getting the safety glasses and tools you need first. Then looking at making a laser.
 

Mr Acurite

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Well, I have maybe another $40 I can add to my budget, so at only $90 after purchasing safety goggles, I don't think that leaves me with enough to build a good laser if I spend anything on solder patches or anything fancy, correct me if I'm wrong... to save money without making the laser worse, couldn't I just twist the wires together, and hold them together with electrical tape? Also, I could probably use a hot glue gun that my school has for some things, and they also have soldering irons that they might let me use, if I ask nicely. Yes, I do get an allowance of $5 per week, and I'll see what I can do about more proper tools. Thanks for all the help so far.
 
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