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Thread: Homemade Galvo, would this work?

  1. #1
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    Default Homemade Galvo, would this work?

    Okay, so I had an idea for a "galvonometer." It's basically the laser is on a spring loaded hinge with a pick/needle. A spinning gear is catching on the pick, which rapidly vibrates the laser. the faster the gear goes the faster the laser goes. would this work? Or does this already exist?
    Thanks
    nerdthingy

  2. #2
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    I am thinking that all of these materials are cheap. Try it out! Experiment! My first "galvo" was a compact mirror, glued to a ballpoint pen spring that was glued to the dustcap of a small woofer!
    Those who fail to grasp art are the ones who criticize it.

  3. #3
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    So you think it would work? Great! How would I drive it? this is my first time doing something like this. Is it possible to drive it off of a Raspberry Pi?

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    Quote Originally Posted by nerdthingy View Post
    Okay, so I had an idea for a "galvonometer." It's basically the laser is on a spring loaded hinge with a pick/needle. A spinning gear is catching on the pick, which rapidly vibrates the laser. the faster the gear goes the faster the laser goes. would this work? Or does this already exist?
    Thanks
    nerdthingy
    Maybe a drawing would help describe your idea. But it sounds like you're moving the laser itself, which is a lot of mass to move at say, up to 20k oscillations per second. A small galvo mirror has much less mass, so I think that's why they're used. Also, is what you're describing only moving the laser in one dimension? What about the other? Also, I'm not an engineer or laser expert.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by absolom7691 View Post
    I am thinking that all of these materials are cheap. Try it out! Experiment! My first "galvo" was a compact mirror, glued to a ballpoint pen spring that was glued to the dustcap of a small woofer!
    Sounds familiar - except your solution was WAY to techie ~
    I just used duct tape directly to the speaker dome...

    +1 on the experimenting ~
    you can do pretty cool stuff with leftover speakers, small motors, small mirrors and a laser pointer!!
    RR

    Metrologic HeNe 3.3mw Modulated laser, 2 Radio Shack motors, and a broken mirror.
    1979.
    Sweet.....

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by HankLloydRight View Post
    Maybe a drawing would help describe your idea. But it sounds like you're moving the laser itself, which is a lot of mass to move at say, up to 20k oscillations per second. A small galvo mirror has much less mass, so I think that's why they're used. Also, is what you're describing only moving the laser in one dimension? What about the other? Also, I'm not an engineer or laser expert.
    Good idea's, Yes, the mirror should be the moving part, and this could easily be made into a X, Y formation. And as far as drawings go... don't ask me to draw, it would make things more confusing

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    Quote Originally Posted by nerdthingy View Post
    Good idea's, Yes, the mirror should be the moving part, and this could easily be made into a X, Y formation. And as far as drawings go... don't ask me to draw, it would make things more confusing
    Well, if the mirror is now the moving part and not the laser, how is this any different/better than existing galvos with a precision motor driving the mirror?

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    Quote Originally Posted by HankLloydRight View Post
    Well, if the mirror is now the moving part and not the laser, how is this any different/better than existing galvos with a precision motor driving the mirror?
    It would be cheaper

  9. #9
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    It would work, i'm sure! You can make them with piezo transducers also. My first galvo was made from the hard drive head moving coils, mirrors from a fax machine and aluminium rails from a broken green house!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by nerdthingy View Post
    It would be cheaper

    I guess with some sort of diagram, I don't see how your solution is any different or better than even the cheapest of galvos out there already. Your design might work, but I'd guess it would be awfully slow compared to existing (cheap) products.

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