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Thread: Another Dead Laser - Warning Thread Contains Swearing!

  1. #1
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    Unhappy Another Dead Laser - Warning Thread Contains Swearing!

    Shit, Bugger, Arseholes, Piss, Cock, Fart !!!!!

    O.k. So, here's the situation...

    About a couple of weeks ago I was adjusting the focus on one of my dual Maxyzmodules, I had the projector on but no laser emission, i'd twiddle the focus ring a little, power the laser up and check focus, then power down and adjust some more etc. Anyway, suffice to say I accidentaly grounded the diode - my fault entirely a momentary error of judgement cost me the diode and I raise my hands up as it was entirely my fault. That's now been sent back to Chuck for repair.

    Fortunately I had a spare Maxyzmodule of the correct polarisation, so I stripped down the projector and fitted this. It worked fine and i've been running the projector earlier in the week for a couple of hours or so without problems.

    Fast forward to today... I switch on my projector and it doesn't look right, not enough red. I take the lid off the projector and the replacement module I fitted has died. WTF, It was o.k. now it isn't... What is going on???

    We've got the UK meet next week and i've got my first big public show (250+ peeps) on the Tuesday of the week after, I could really have done without this right now.

    So, I'm getting seriously hacked off with the fragileness (if that's a word) of diodes. What (quick) options are there for me to move away from diodes to DPSS, I guess it'll have to be 671nm and I guess i'll have to up the power to get the same brightness.

    Any suggestions as to where I can get something - Quick???

    I've emailed Chuck and hopefully he'll be able to get my original Maxyz repaired and returned fairly quickly. In the meantime I could do with a supplier who can get something to me FAST.

    Now don't misunderstand me here, i'm not complaining at Chuck at all, he's brilliant and turns stuff around very quickly. The problem is the time it can take to get stuff from the States to the UK by postal service. If I can get a decent DPSS solution, i'll put the Maxyz into another projector along with my other 'spares' and then i'll have a spare projector just in case anything else goes wrong. I guess it must just be something about me and diodes, we're not compatible

    Jem
    Quote: "There is a theory which states that if ever, for any reason, anyone discovers what exactly the Universe is for and why it is here it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable. There is another that states that this has already happened.... Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

  2. #2
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    Smile

    Jem;

    Sorry to hear about your troubles. You might want to contact Chuck directly and ask him to send the repaired module to you via Fed-Ex or UPS red-label. Yeah, it will cost you more in shipping, but you will get it in your hand a lot quicker that waiting on the mail.

    I haven't had any problems with my Maxyz module pair, but I don't ever get near them either. I mounted them, adjusted the PBS cube to get the best mix between the two, and since then I haven't touched them. (granted, I've had no reason to touch them...)

    But yeah, direct injection diodes are fragile, and you need to be careful with them. When I was building my projector, I noticed that the 9 volt PSU I had intended to use to power the Maxyz modules actually put out around 10.5 volts, and spiked as high as 12.7 volts on start-up. So I put a pair of 100 ohm, 10 watt, sand-filled ceramic resistors in parallel with the modules.

    This creates a constant current draw of around 200 ma which pulls the running voltage of the PSU down to around 10 volts with the modules off. It also smooths out that starting spike. The resistors get slightly warm to the touch, so I mounted them on the bottom of the baseplate. (The modules float on their own tables, so any heat from the resistors won't affect the temperature of the modules.)

    I suppose if you want to rebuild your projector you could go with a 671 nm DPSS red... But you'll need a lot more of it. (My guess would be at *least* double the power, if not more.) Plus the head is going to be much larger. Do you have the room to fit it?

    Adam

  3. #3
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    Apart from the last one that blew (which was entirely my fault) I really don't know what i'm doing wrong. One minute it all works and the next it doesn't, this will be the fourth one that's died

    I'll have a word with Craig (Wiring Monkey) who knows about electronics and pass on your suggestions to him regarding the resistors. Perhaps this is the problem - I just don't know. Another thought that occured to me was to move the beamsplitter cube further away from the front of the laser just in case it's some sort of back reflection from that that's doing it. Damned if I know

    I know what you mean about not having to touch them. The only reason I was adjusting focus was because on my spare Maxyz the beam wasn't quite as tight as on the original one so the pair didn't quite match. I'm not one for continually messing around with things, I like them to work and then I leave well alone.

    I guess i'll have room in the projector for a DPSS unit as I can't imagine the footprint will be much more than the dual Maxyz setup. To be honest I think I was just a little upset in my first posting, I really do like the MaxyzModules, but I just don't know why i'm having such bad luck with them. I can't afford for them to keep going like this, O.K., so it's going to cost me for a DPSS but hopefully I won't have these troubles anymore.

    Cheers

    Jem

    I'll send Chuck another email and ask him to look into shipping it back by courier.

    Quote Originally Posted by Buffo View Post
    Jem;

    Sorry to hear about your troubles. You might want to contact Chuck directly and ask him to send the repaired module to you via Fed-Ex or UPS red-label. Yeah, it will cost you more in shipping, but you will get it in your hand a lot quicker that waiting on the mail

    I haven't had any problems with my Maxyz module pair, but I don't ever get near them either. I mounted them, adjusted the PBS cube to get the best mix between the two, and since then I haven't touched them. (granted, I've had no reason to touch them...)

    But yeah, direct injection diodes are fragile, and you need to be careful with them. When I was building my projector, I noticed that the 9 volt PSU I had intended to use to power the Maxyz modules actually put out around 10.5 volts, and spiked as high as 12.7 volts on start-up. So I put a pair of 100 ohm, 10 watt, sand-filled ceramic resistors in parallel with the modules.

    This creates a constant current draw of around 200 ma which pulls the running voltage of the PSU down to around 10 volts with the modules off. It also smooths out that starting spike. The resistors get slightly warm to the touch, so I mounted them on the bottom of the baseplate. (The modules float on their own tables, so any heat from the resistors won't affect the temperature of the modules.)

    I suppose if you want to rebuild your projector you could go with a 671 nm DPSS red... But you'll need a lot more of it. (My guess would be at *least* double the power, if not more.) Plus the head is going to be much larger. Do you have the room to fit it?

    Adam
    Last edited by Jem; 01-26-2008 at 07:16.
    Quote: "There is a theory which states that if ever, for any reason, anyone discovers what exactly the Universe is for and why it is here it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable. There is another that states that this has already happened.... Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

  4. #4
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    jem-

    maybe try lasever? i was DAMN impressed on how quick i received my 635 from them. (from payment to delivery about 4 days!!) HOWEVER, i have yet to install the laser in the projector im building (still waiting fro my LT1000) and actually see the thing operate under stress. i am strictly just speaking on its turn around time and delivery time.

    beam quality is of course no where near DPSS specs, but i was actually pleasantly surprised at its size diameter at aperture and over about 25-30 feet.

    wish i could help you out more. but all i can offer for now. 671 of course would be AWESOME!!! but, EXTREMELY expensive. and for same brightness you need SERIOUS amounts more power. (671=82.6% 532=7.23% 473=9.6%) for balance.

    -Marc

  5. #5
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    sorry for the double post--

    but have you checked your power going to the reds?? diodes are obviously a lot more voltage/current sensitive than DPSS. are you getting good, clean power to them? i apoligze if thats a dumb question. but i dont know how far you have gotten into troubleshooting the system.

    every time the reds have blown has the system been plugged into the same outlet? may sound like a REALLY stupid question, but i know someone who blew 3 lasers this EXACT way! he was just getting REALLY crappy power. and realized that the plug he was using on his bench where he was building his projector was fluctuating in power IMMENSELY!!! i dont remember exact #'s but somewhere along the lines of 140V - 100V (USA)

    sometimes its the STUPIDEST things you would think to yourself, "NAAAH...it CANT be that !!!" that turn out to be the culprit. just a suggestion. i am by no means a pro or anything! lol...

    -Marc

  6. #6
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    im hating have red diodes they are so fragile, ive got through so so many.

    im very very tempted by the 300mw 635nm red from lasever, only $500 thats a great price.
    Eat Sleep Lase Repeat


    Aluminium Optic Mounts

    http://www.laser-man.co.uk/opticmounts/

  7. #7
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    The lasever 635s are good and powerfull ( pics of mine in the Banthai beast thread ) but im gonna say the beam profile is too big 6mm beam at the projector and about 20mm at 10m ...

    now as i mostly do beam shows its not too much of a problem but if you intend doing grafix .... it will be an issue


    all the best ... Karl

  8. #8
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    Been looking at possible causes this evening, and to be honest I can't seem to find anything. The power to the Maxyz appears to be o.k. and i'm only running them at 9 volts.

    If anything i'm a little more concerned about possible back reflection, especially as i've read so much about even the slightest bit of back reflection (BR) killing diodes. I bought the ready assembled double unit from Chuck (Marconi) and the beamsplitter is set very close to the laser output lens, this makes it difficult to deliberately mis-align the cube to avoid BR. I've never really adjusted the cube since the day I got the lasers but on close examination I guess it looks pretty square on to the front of the laser, perhaps this is the cause - who knows? It would possibly also explain why it's always the H. Pol. laser that dies as that's the one that's firing directly through the cube.

    Anyway, i'll send it back to Chuck and let him have a look at it, he may be able to offer some insight as to why it's gone again in such a short space of time, and hopefully, suggestions as to how to cure the problem once and for all.

    The final possibility is that it's just a faulty diode, but surely the law of averages says that I can't be that unlucky

    I've PM'd Chuck and sent a couple of emails but not had a reply as yet (not waited long I know), but if anyone knows his telephone number and would be prepared to ring him for me to ask him to check his mailbox it would be greatly appreciated.

    Cheers

    Jem

    Quote Originally Posted by gottaluvlasers View Post
    sorry for the double post--

    but have you checked your power going to the reds?? diodes are obviously a lot more voltage/current sensitive than DPSS. are you getting good, clean power to them? i apoligze if thats a dumb question. but i dont know how far you have gotten into troubleshooting the system.

    every time the reds have blown has the system been plugged into the same outlet? may sound like a REALLY stupid question, but i know someone who blew 3 lasers this EXACT way! he was just getting REALLY crappy power. and realized that the plug he was using on his bench where he was building his projector was fluctuating in power IMMENSELY!!! i dont remember exact #'s but somewhere along the lines of 140V - 100V (USA)

    sometimes its the STUPIDEST things you would think to yourself, "NAAAH...it CANT be that !!!" that turn out to be the culprit. just a suggestion. i am by no means a pro or anything! lol...

    -Marc
    Quote: "There is a theory which states that if ever, for any reason, anyone discovers what exactly the Universe is for and why it is here it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable. There is another that states that this has already happened.... Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

  9. #9
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    Cool

    I talked to Chuck earlier in the week, and he said he's been having a *lot* of problems with his back. The surgery in the fall didn't help at all. In fact, it may have made things worse. He was scheduled to meet with his Doc again on Thursday. Don't know what happened after that though. (Further surgery is not out of the question, though if it happens he might be looking at 6 months of convalescence this time.)

    Just wanted to let you know that he might not be the most responsive at the moment...

    Adam

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buffo View Post
    I talked to Chuck earlier in the week, and he said he's been having a *lot* of problems with his back. The surgery in the fall didn't help at all. In fact, it may have made things worse. He was scheduled to meet with his Doc again on Thursday. Don't know what happened after that though. (Further surgery is not out of the question, though if it happens he might be looking at 6 months of convalescence this time.)

    Just wanted to let you know that he might not be the most responsive at the moment...

    Adam

    Oh Dear... I hope he's o.k... sadly that's the last thing I wanted to hear

    Hope he can manage to pick up the soldering iron for this

    Get well soon Chuck, your minions need you

    Jem
    Quote: "There is a theory which states that if ever, for any reason, anyone discovers what exactly the Universe is for and why it is here it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable. There is another that states that this has already happened.... Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

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