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Thread: My Latest Mini Single-Mode Builds

  1. #1
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    Default My Latest Mini Single-Mode Builds

    I've seen several posts on the lack of custom projector builds over the past couple years, so I thought I'd share my latest two builds even though they aren't anything special.

    Why build when you can buy new projectors from China for about the same cost as parts? In my case, other than the pleasure of building something yourself (these are my 8th and 9th builds), I had specific requirements that I couldn't easily source. As I tend to not fully plan in advance, I have to modify my requirements as I go.

    Here's a brief build report and some pics:

    Requirements:
    • Two matching single mode paired projectors in the ~750mW range for use as wide scanning beam projectors.
    • Each projector should be a mirrored layout of the other so that the aperture is on opposite sides.
    • Projectors must fit into a case measuring no more than 8.5"x8.5"x10".
    • Case fans located to ensure proper ventilation when installed in their designated cubes.
    • Projectors will incorporate Scannermax 506's (I chose 5mm mirrors for future potential use for larger builds), driven by MixedGas's custom amps
    • Diodes sourced from DTR will be pbs-paired single mode 638nm reds, pbs-paired 450nm blues and a single 520nm multimode 120mW green.
    • Beam suppression is required for all diodes.
    • Built in Etherdream DACs (in part to eliminate the additional 1" required to plug in an ILDA cable as opposed to an Cat5 cable.
    • SafetyScan Lenses to be incorporated into each build.


    These were the smallest builds I've attempted, but I managed to get through the builds with only a few hick-ups. First, some quick pictures taken during the build. My cases are admittedly 'quick and dirty' and my wiring always seems to look a bit ratty, but these are for my own use in my own home and I was more interested in getting them done quickly.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Safety Scan Lens Installation:
    I really admire the Pangolin Safetyscan lens holders and have several. When I installed them, however, I found that they were too far from the galvos (approximately 2.5cm from the Y mirror to the back of the safety scan lens) and it prevented my 506's from scanning as wide as they can go (which is really wide!).

    As you can see from the optical plate layout in the pictures above, everything was about as close to the front plate as I could get it, so I built a custom holder modeled on Bill's design, but only about 1/4 the depth.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    OK, so here's the two projectors in their respective "cubby holes"
    Projector 1 Installed: Click image for larger version. 

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    Projector 2 Installed: Click image for larger version. 

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    They are doing just under 800mW each, but as they are single modes, they look bright enough to compete with my 2W multimode builds.

    Remaining issue: I've had two 520nm greens under-perform including one that dropped output to half of what they were doing originally (180mw dropping to 90mW). Its a bit perplexing and it isn't the driver dropping its output. Its been suggested that it might be accumulated ESD damage, so I'm replacing the faulty greens with new diodes and putting laserorbs on them (which I should have done the first time around.)

    Other than this issue, they are both operational. Seeing is believing, so here's a quick video of a lasershow I've been working on. (The show still needs a lot of clean-up.)



    And here are links for mobile users:
    YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NZHjSB5woN8
    Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/115874648
    "Help, help, I'm being repressed!"

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Portland Oregon
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    Default

    Wow that is a very nice compact projector. This is the first time I have seen a picture of the 506 scanners with the 5mm mirrors.
    They look huge mounted on such tiny scanners. Great show.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Laserbiker

  3. #3
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    Langhus - Norway
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    Über-impressed. And what a living-room. What magic have you done to your wife to be allowed that kind of a showroom. (The clean and tidy look is presumably the work of a woman). The PJ are working great.

    How many PJ total in that room?
    __________________________________________________ __________

    More projects than time available.
    More projects started than finished.
    More money spent than earned.
    More failure than success.
    Just got to love lasers!

  4. #4
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    The projectors are very well thought out and despite the compact size, they are not cluttered. I like the shot with the wine in the foreground. No joke, its nice. A note as to the vintage and... a true Renaissance man.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by laserbiker View Post
    Wow that is a very nice compact projector. This is the first time I have seen a picture of the 506 scanners with the 5mm mirrors.
    They look huge mounted on such tiny scanners. Great show.
    Thanks, Laserbiker! Yes, those mirrors are big, especially considering the diminutive size of the scanners. Its a real thrill to be able to project that wide at close range with the 506's.

    Quote Originally Posted by Datsurb View Post
    Über-impressed. And what a living-room. What magic have you done to your wife to be allowed that kind of a showroom. (The clean and tidy look is presumably the work of a woman). The PJ are working great.
    LOL. Well the room was already built when the current wife came into the picture, but yes she has been most patient with my disco and laser insanity. Thankfully, this is not my living room, its the multimedia/disco room so its out of the way. Regarding the lack of mess, I designed this room in the roof so I could have access from above the ceiling, below some of the floor and behind almost every wall. This allows for minimal exposed cable in the main room. Rest assured, though, behind the scenes its a cable-fest!

    Quote Originally Posted by Datsurb View Post
    How many PJ total in that room?
    I've got 8 RGB projectors installed currently with plans for one more. (There's always a plan for one more, isn't there? ) Its a small room, so most of the projectors are very humble in terms of power as compared with what most folks are purchasing these days.

    Quote Originally Posted by planters View Post
    The projectors are very well thought out and despite the compact size, they are not cluttered. I like the shot with the wine in the foreground. No joke, its nice. A note as to the vintage and... a true Renaissance man.
    Many thanks, Planters. They appear to be functional, but nothing like the futuristic, beautiful projectors that you create!

    And regarding wine, yes I find wine makes watching lasers and light shows all the more fun. I filmed this during the afternoon, though, so that wine glass had water in it!

    -David
    "Help, help, I'm being repressed!"

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by dkumpula View Post
    I filmed this during the afternoon, though, so that wine glass had water in it!
    There i nothing wrong with drinking a glass of wine in the afternoon, especially on a Sunday. hic!

  7. #7
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    Those are some lovely results! I like Jenkee's "disorganized fun" too. Always a pleasure to see people's current 'nothing special' builds; if you're still on your first, every example helps. :-)

  8. #8
    Bradfo69's Avatar
    Bradfo69 is offline Pending BST Forum Purchases: $47,127,283.53
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    All this and, not just an understanding but, a hot wife too... One lucky man. Lol

    Adam called me about the upcoming get together and sadly that's my busiest weekend this month. Shame it couldn't have been the following weekend... that's completely free. I've looked forward to someday seeing this room. Videos don't give a fair representation of size. I don't know about others but, sometimes the ever changing angles of the camera shots get a little distracting. I'd like to see it from one position but... what do I know.

    Looking good! And it reminds me that I really need to put some time in learning to use multiple DAC's.

  9. #9
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    Nice. Mirror image projectors is taking anal to a new level.
    This space for rent.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bradfo69 View Post
    Adam called me about the upcoming get together and sadly that's my busiest weekend this month. Shame it couldn't have been the following weekend... that's completely free. I've looked forward to someday seeing this room. Videos don't give a fair representation of size.
    Sorry it didn't work out with your schedule this time around, but if you are willing to do that really long ride for a one-night-only event, I'll be sure to reach out to you in advance next time around, Brad!

    I don't know about others but, sometimes the ever changing angles of the camera shots get a little distracting. I'd like to see it from one position but... what do I know.
    That's because you and I are old and have longer attention spands than 'them young whipper-snappers'! Seriously, I shouldn't have to do this for interest if I 'crowd scan' the camera. I was just too lazy to set up the camera BAM zones and remove the safetyscan lenses on all the projectors this time around.

    Looking good! And it reminds me that I really need to put some time in learning to use multiple DAC's.
    Many thanks. There's always something to learn or experiment with in this field, isn't there?
    "Help, help, I'm being repressed!"

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