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The laser hobby doesn't seem to like me

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I just seem to be having bad luck with lasers as a whole. I ordered some stuff from AixiZ and they forgot to send some of the parts, but it was quickly cleared up. Still it set me back a couple days. Then the hole in the 3.8mm copper diode mount is undersized and bent my diode. Also the male threads on it are jamming in the tailpiece thingy. It seems like they are slightly oversized. After getting the diode pressed in there I come to find out something is wrong with it and it's terribly weak. That's possibly the reason the DVD drive was bad to begin with. I should've tested it before removing it from the mount in the first place. I'm getting what looks like <5mW @ 300mA. Luckily I had just pulled some 5.6mm diodes from a couple 5.25" drives and had an appropriate host ready and waiting. So all is not lost and I'm a firin ma lazar.

Anyway, learn from my mistakes.
 

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That's right...^ try and try again. You don't ski down the mountain first time.... no, no, no you face plant, then ski down the mountain.
 

Leodahsan

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Maybe the diode were already dead, and you pressed it into the heatsink the wrong way?
The hole for inserting the diode IS small. Its intended for a press fit. And soldering for a longe time (ie at removing ribbon or soldering wires) can damage the diode in a way it may look... 5mW.
I've been there too. Whats the power of your soldering iron?
 

ARG

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It happens :)

I've killed ~350$ of diodes during my time here.
Each loss hurts, but you just got to remember that it happens to everyone and it's part of the hobby :p
 

Speedy78

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I went through 100$ in diodes and 2 drivers for one build. I feel your pain.
 
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Thanks guys for all the encouragement.

That's right...^ try and try again. You don't ski down the mountain first time.... no, no, no you face plant, then ski down the mountain.
Thanks and I love your profile pic. It cracks me up every time.

Maybe the diode were already dead, and you pressed it into the heatsink the wrong way?
The hole for inserting the diode IS small. Its intended for a press fit. And soldering for a longe time (ie at removing ribbon or soldering wires) can damage the diode in a way it may look... 5mW.
I've been there too. Whats the power of your soldering iron?
I suppose anything's possible. The iron is a 48W PACE SP-2A. It could also have something to do with the way I was initially testing it. I didn't feel like setting up a current source and don't care about burning it up since it was free, so I hooked it to a variable voltage supply and slowly increased until there was dim output. That won't happen again. It could also have been ESD, though that is doubtful. My strap is tested good and most assembly was done on an ESD safe mat grounded through the soldering station.

I can now report light from the other diode. (pics if anyone wants) It lights matches even without black marker and burns wood. It is running through the magnifying glass on a third hand tool so the dot is probably <0.5mm. There is a lot of back reflection from the magnifier. What is a good way to test point size?

Not bad for $5 of diode. Next stop party balloons.
 




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