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Thread: Old Q-Switched Ruby Laser

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    Mesa, AZ
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    Default Old Q-Switched Ruby Laser

    Took a quick trip to Ohio recently to search for old lasers in the warehouses of a couple of large surplus dealers there. Also had the opportunity to visit Harris Kagan at OSU and check out their holography labs. One of the lasers I found was this wonderfully classic looking c1966 Perkin-Elmer model 104A Q-switched pulsed ruby laser system from Anderson Lasers. The Q-switch is a spinning prism inside the box at the rear end of the head, and is the oldest one I've seen. I love the cradle supporting the head! The cones adjust to fine tune the pointing of the beam. The power supply was way too heavy for me to bring home in checked baggage, so I left it in the basement of my family home outside of Lockport, Illinois until I gather enough there to justify renting a truck to bring them to Mesa.

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  2. #2
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    Jul 2009
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    Orlando, FL
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    How is Harris?! I used to T/A his holography class!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Mesa, AZ
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    Default

    Enthusiastic ... which is a breath of fresh air in pictorial holography these days. The pulsed laser he uses now is the same as the one I'm trying to renovate.

  4. #4
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    Jul 2009
    Location
    Orlando, FL
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    Glad to hear it! Harris is one of my favorite people ever. I remember when we got that pulsed ruby monster from the Holocenter in NYC! Is it still in that basement lab in the physics building?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Mesa, AZ
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    Default

    Yes it is, and apparently running very well. Here's a shot of mine currently in the kitchen. As Harris demonstrated, they run way more stable when cooled with a recirculating chiller than with house water. Their electro-optic Q-switches are sooooo much better than a rotating prism like in the cabinet grannie above. An even older rotating mirror Q-switch was the "Optul" made by Trion Instruments around 1962.
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