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Thread: Feeling a bit blue

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Eindhoven, The Netherlands
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    Default Feeling a bit blue

    Just a simple write-up of my first build here. Nothing fancy, but a simple 445 projector I threw together from all of the bits I had scattered around and I was eager to get photons out of the aperture.

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    Shot of the projector from the front. The enclosure was cannibalized from a 40 LED fixture which expired its shelf life about 6 months ago. It has more than enough space for a simple satellite projector and it had some useful components that made it the perfect candidate for modification into a laser projector.

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    The back panel has some of the original connections, including the safety cable, power cord, fuse holder and XLR in/outputs. Instead of DMX, these were repurposed to serve as a 12VDC connection from a remote emergency stop, with a relay inside the projector controlling power to the laser.

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    There was enough vertical space inside to use a two-story layout. The optical deck sits on 4 standoffs which you can see here and the 12V and galvo power supplies underneath, together with the projector's wiring loom.

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    The optical deck itself is nothing specifically fancy, and could probably be built a little more efficient if I put some more time/effort in, but again, I wanted this to be a fairly clean and straightforward build which worked.

    The projector itself consists of a simple 20K China scanner system and a dirt-cheap TTL 445nm module which is specified as 300mW on the sticker. Right now I have no need to crank the power up more, if I upgrade this unit, I'll probably switch over to an RGB system. The only reason I didn't do so already is because I didn't have any proper dichros or kinematic mounts on hand, and cramming an RGB beam table onto a 120x120mm square might be a bit of a tight squeeze.

    Again, I didn't care about building this thing as efficiently or space-saving as I could, I just wanted it to work.

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    The projector all lined up and running.

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    Quick test to see if my graphics worked -- not perfect, as you can see (but then again, this is one insanely complex frame). The galvos need a bit of a tune, but I'm going to wait for that until I have a more sensible excuse for a DAC than just hard-wiring a sound card straight into the ILDA connector.

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    And of course, this thread isn't complete without the mandatory scanning beam shots!

    This thing is going to be accompanied by a twin sister once I can free the budget for a second laser and scanning system, and eventually the main head will have a bigger beam table with ~1,5W (600mW 445, 600mW 635, 300mW 532) of balanced RGB and 30K scanners. The satellite systems will probably stay like this until I can get some decent base plates machined for them.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    MI, flint, farmington hills
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    569

    Default

    Sexy and nice enclosure.
    Im currently trolling ebay for something.
    Cant decide on what to put it in aluminum flight case, custom, or broken DJ equipment.
    You looking for software for your setups?
    Or just running free stuff for now?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Australia
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    3,730

    Default

    Nice. The blue module looks like a pair of 300mW 447nm modules I bought from Spacelas last night to mix with 532 for fake Argon looking sats I am building.
    This space for rent.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
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    Athens, Greece
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    1,931

    Default

    nice compact build stoney, and a nice looking result. too
    how is that blue module doing? does it have correction optics or it is ok just for beams?

    In case you want to talk budget, I have a cheap 14k galvo set that needs tuning, a set of DT25 and a set of PT40
    "its called character briggs..."

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Eindhoven, The Netherlands
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by LaNeK779 View Post
    nice compact build stoney, and a nice looking result. too
    how is that blue module doing? does it have correction optics or it is ok just for beams?
    The blue module is as straightforward as it can be: Just a single 445 diode bolted to a heat sink and a collimator in front. I wouldn't be surprised if it was the original collimator pulled from an XJ-A140.

    I wouldn't use it for demanding graphics too much, but it's OK for beam shows. Given the fact that the module was under $100 off the shelf.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/12V-445nm-45...item43a924e4e2

    It's the exact same unit as this one, a lot of sellers are selling it with the drivers readjusted for higher power ratings (and more dollar). I don't have an LPM here, so I'm not going to bother with tweaking the power level at this time. I could probably do a good guestimate with an ammeter, but I don't want to risk trashing my blue module right now.

    As far as the galvos are concerned, I need a better DAC before I can do anything sensible with regards to tuning. My 'DAC' right now is the familiar C-media USB sound card without any correction, and if I purchase a new DAC, it's going to be something more serious like a Riya or even a Pangolin FB3-QS. You can see from the graphics that the scanners are picking up quite a lot of hum from the connection somewhere, so any attempt to tune them is going to be useless anyway.

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