This idea came out of my need for a workable spectrometer to gather some data. Rather than looking to buy a commercial one, it was more useful (and cheaper) to build it out of the bits I had lying around. It turns out its fairly easy to use a CD for this purpose - but most of the older related pointers seemed to require you to build a box yourself, and in any case I wanted to use a DVD to improve the resolution.
Thus the idea of taking the DVD, case and all, to construct the spectrometer was born.
Step 1: Parts list
- Stiff card
- Two knife blade refills, or the lid from an old tub of margarine
- 'DVD Spectra' Templates
- Old translucent plastic bag
- Sharp knife
- Steel rule
- Multipart rotary tool, such as a dremel
As far as the DVD is concerned the best option is a single layer DVD to ensure you get a sharp spectra. These can be found often as the old 'flippy' DVDs, the freebie DVDs given away with newspapers/magazine, or writeable DVD.
The sturdier the card, the sturdier the 'DVD Spectra' - however the harder it is to cut. By all means you can use the cornflake box, but I'd suggest something a little thicker.