Picture of Home-Made Collimator
In this Page, I will show you how to make an Homemade Collimator for your laser!
A laser collimator is basically a laser beam adjuster.
You could adjust the beam of your laser to as thin as hair(great for burning).
Or you could adjust it to go as far as possible, also known as the mRad(the laser beam's divergence).

Also visit my friends Home-Made Water Proof Laser Case Instructable:
I gave him my idea for the project, :)

For more questions please PM me.
You can also find the original here: http://www.lasercommunity.com/lc_view_project.php?aid=16

To visit a laser forum press:
To buy a High-Quality Laser visit:
Posted by Laser Community member: Vic

Step 1: Materials Needed

Picture of Materials Needed
Things needed:
-Concave Lens, ---About the size of your Laser(Look at pictures)
-Convex Lens, ---About the size of your Laser(Look at pictures) Should fit into large tube snugly with room for movement.
-Pen/Lead Pencil ---about as thick as your laser(Look at pictures) Convex lens should fit into larger tube.
-Fire Source ---(To heat knife)
-Knife ---(To Cut the "Pen/Lead Pencil")
-Epoxy Glue, ---ask a hardware store for the best glue for glass)

For more questions please PM me.

Posted by Laser Community member: Vic
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alcurb1 year ago

Nice, but I don't understand a couple of things:

I'm a bit confused about the steps. I don't see pictures on how to put it together, just repeated images of where the lenses go.

What is a source for the lenses? My junked camera, for instance, have a concave lens but it is too big to fit in the pen design. Where did you get yours?

You gave a link called "HERE" to go to the YouTube page where we can see your modified laser performing. However , the link points to your YT personal page. I don't know which video to look at. I would like to see your modified laser perform under different collimation adjustments.

does the sled ting in the dvd player have a collimator on it? if it does i will use that
vcw (author)  The nerdling3 years ago
The sled from the DVD player does have lens in it, but those lens may not be right for collimation.
all of the lasers i have taken out have coveres with lenses inside in the same order as your collimator so i think they have collimators
vcw (author)  The nerdling3 years ago
Yes, those lens are correct for focusing the laser light onto the discs, they may not work for adjusting to a distance.
ahh ok
Dreistein4 years ago
can u use this to make a laser burn?
vcw (author)  Dreistein3 years ago
This device could possibly make your laser burn items, if your laser has the right power output for the desired item for burning. This device will not make your laser burn, if that's what you're asking also.
dxsword454 years ago
hmm.... i wanna ask.... what it really use for?
did the tools and what we need easy to get? how the tools do?
thank you~
vcw (author)  dxsword454 years ago
use to make beam thinner and go farther, tools are on the page.
redlizard55 years ago
how can u tell the difference between the lens
vcw (author)  redlizard55 years ago
Between concave and convex lenses?
If these lenses are at a greater index of refraction than it's surroundings, then for concave lenses, when light passes through them, the light will diverge(spread apart); and for convex lenses, light will converge(intersect then spread apart).

i only got 1 question:
where would i get a concave lens from?

vcw (author)  greymatter215 years ago
You can get them from disposible cameras, old cameras, binoculars, telescopes, etc..
kool thx.
Colonel885 years ago
Wicked Lasers is overpriced. I donut wanna buy a 80 5mW laser that I could buy in the dollar store. Making my own now from a DVD...
I’m going to try to make a big laser from scratch, would this still work if it were up-scaled(I mean really up-scaled)?
vcw (author)  baatrhnearbtyon5 years ago
Ya, it would work, you'd just need lens that are up-scaled too
Ok cheers, the beam itself will probably be either infrared or Ultra-violet (probably ultra-violet) and (if it works) will probably fry everything in its path, is there a formula you predict the optimum measurements? Instead of trial and error.
vcw (author)  baatrhnearbtyon5 years ago
You'd need precise measurement tools to use formulas, it would be better to use trial and error.
ok cheers
leey16 years ago
please make more clear!!!!!!!
vcw (author)  leey16 years ago
What do you not understand?
Noodle god6 years ago
Wicked laser go buy some bad quality lasers for overpriced prices that are underespec and we censore our forums (lasercommunity) and never reply to your questions yahh!!
where do i get cocave and convex lenses!!!!!!!!!????
vcw just said where twice!!! try to read like a normal person, please.
make that thrice
vcw (author)  struckbyanarrow7 years ago
You could search the Internet. I used lens from an old digital camera. Try to find a cheap used/broken digital camera from ebay and take it apart for the lens. The lens from my digital camera were also high quality.
sona3527 years ago
can u clearly explain this step or send me pics to my mail............ minutestomidnight352@gmail.com
vcw (author)  sona3527 years ago
Just put a concave lens in front of your laser and a convex lens in front of the concave lens, then move your conv away and towards the concave lens and find the best measurements.
Dr_Acula7 years ago
Do you know if this is precise enough to keep a beam parallel for long distances. I've got a laser pointer and the beam is nice and thin as it comes out, but 100 metres away it has diverged to 15cm wide. The beam is almost parallel but not quite and I would imagine the lens alignment would have to be precise - maybe with one person 100 metres away shouting back the beam width. Have you done any experiments along these lines?
a beam can never be perfect. that would mean it has a divergence of 0mRad, or it doesnt expand at all as it goes out. the lowest mRad I've seen in a laser is 1.0, my phoenix has a mRad of about 2.5. but with a lens you could probably adjust a laser to have a mRad of like 1 or
berky93 berky937 years ago
lol scratch that - phoenix lasers have way less mrad - my memory must be fading. an average laser probably has somewhere from .8mRad to 2.0mRad. with a lens I've managed to reach like .4mRad
if you use metal threads and have a hole that you can stick a pencil or wire in to adjust it for accuracy (because it is long and can make little adjustments) ... or who knows, maybe this is fine i think there can be a little angle, it doesn't have to be dead center through the lenses
How about mounting the lens in something bigger like a block of wood then having the lead screws on the side of the block? One could then get higher accuracy. I also read somewhere about using a telescope - focus it on a distant object then place the laser at the point where your eye was and fire the beam back through the telescope and it will focus on the point you were focussed on. I can't find the reference but it makes sense. Off to ebay to look for cheap telescopes/binoculars..
i dont know if that would work, a laser just shoots in a (relatively) strait .5mm line forward, an eye has a (auto adjusting) lens with light that meet at a single point. if you used a telescope, most of the laser power would be cut away... i think
Monocular telescope finally arrived yesterday and it works. It is possible to focus to a point at minimum 30 metres to maximum infinity. At infinity focus the beam comes out about 20mm wide but stays that width 100m away. This compares with a bare laser pointer which comes out at <1mm and diverges to 300mm at 100m. A lot of power is lost in the telescope but because the light ends up focussed, when set to focus at 100m the light at the point ends up much brighter. I am going to start building a long range communicator with the receiver a metre or so of pipe (?90mm) painted black on the inside to block out sunlight. Will post once it is working.
I found a link http://forum.physorg.com/index.php?showtopic=268 Leaving aside the semantics of dispersion vs divergence, there is a good description of how to do this with a telescope. I've just ordered a telescope off ebay - will do some experiments hopefully next week.
vcw (author)  Dr_Acula7 years ago
I haven't done any measurements with the divergence, but there is a big diffrence when using it. If you would want this collimator to be precise, you would need the screws to be extra small, and it would take quite some time doing it alone.
tlogsdon vcw7 years ago
so, can you attach this to the front of a regular, red, laser pointer and use it to, say, pop a balloon?
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