Picture of Laser Flashlight Hack!!
Turn a MiniMag flashlight into a powerful DVD laser pointer! This 245mw laser is powerful and fits real cozy in a MiniMag! See the video at the end for the Test Results!

NOTE: This Instructable WILL NOT WORK with any CD burner/player diodes or DVD player diodes!

See the FAQ on the last Step for common questions



UPDATE: If you want to use this as more than just a novelty item, a driver circuit is recommended. See the schematic for details.

Disclaimer: CAUTION! As you know...lasers can be dangerous. Never point them at any living object!T his is not a toy, and this should not be used like a conventional laser pointer. In other words, don't use it in presentations, or to play with pets, or allow children to use it. It should only be operated by responsible persons who understand and respect the potential laser safety hazards.

Step 1: What you need...

Picture of What you need...
You will need the following items:
1. 16X DVD Burner. I used an LG burner I had as a spare.


You can buy the Red LASER DIODE HERE
Soumojit10 days ago

what is a driver circuit

NathanielE5 months ago

can this work with a cd player???????????????

Hi NathanielE, no this will not work with a cd player, because the light emission from a CD player in infrared light.

JoseA4128 days ago

i just took a laser diode out of a broken playstation 2 but it's powered by a ribbon cable, no wires anywhere. anyone know how i could use it?

godofpain1 month ago
Nice!But I want to ask something.What is the laser's range?
mejiggles7 years ago
ok.... i have a dilemma. i spent $40 on a dvd burner, and i took it apart. i found the carriage where the diode has to be. inside the carriage there were several mirrors/prisms/whatever, and they led to two different holes, where i assumed the diodes would be. (there was no other place they could be!) but instead of finding some normal laser diodes, i found these strange rectangular ones with four pins on the back. they definitely won't fit in the aixiz housing... what should i do? are these really the diodes, or should i continue looking? i have completely dissected this burner, but to no avail...

Mine look similar because I got a DVD/CD burner/player (It did all of the above so i'm lucky) from an old laptop. 1 is the dvd (red) and 1 is the CD (IR, looks like nothing is happening or pinkish). What I did was using a AA (1.5v), test each pin to see which one is + and which one is - . You have to try every combination so be happy it's only 4 pins and not 8, 12, or 16 pins. I found that 1 L.A.S.E.R. turned on and was red while the other looked like it didn't work. Camera's can "see" IR (that's how night vision works) so I labeled each pin 1-4, turned off the lights and started using my laptop camera and screen recorder (Screencast-O-Matic). Each time I tested a connection, I would call out both pin numbers and which one was positive/negative. Finally I looked at the recording and found my + and - terminals. Now, you might be ready to reply to me saying that this doesn't help your case at all... well, it was from a laptop so the laptop cooling fan is connected to a heat sink to cool the laptop faster. You can find a spot for the L.A.S.E.R. to fit in or cut a square/hole into the side of the heat sink for it to fit. This was done with a drill press and a strong bit. If you don't have access to this stuff you can probably find an old desktop computer tower that holds heat sinks, a CD/DVD player/burner, access for USB and other ports, RAM, ROM, and many other components. It doesn't have to work as long as you can get it cheap/free. Otherwise you can go on eBay and search for heat sinks because people that take apart electronics will try to sell parts that they don't need or want. I took apart 2 laptops, 2 Wi-Fi routers, an old digital camera (a monster in size by today's standard, it used floppy disks to save stuff!) and a big boom box. I want to make a EMP/taser thing,and some other cool tings that might even be able to be used by my Arduino. Anyway, I hope I helped at least a little.

CamoM1 CamoM11 month ago

"Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation"


A.C.E.2 months ago

Kipkay, I'm a big fan of your tutorials! I've been wanting to try this for awhile and I just now found an old dvd burner that still has a good diode I can use. After messing around with this and perfecting the technique, I want to buy one of those 2 watt blue laser diodes and REALLY make something cool!

Anyways, my question is this: How long would a 9 volt battery power a typical red dvd burner laser? I don't know the current the diode is supposed to take yet, so I can't do the math, but I'm wondering if I should just use one 9 volt at first or if I should hook up 2 in parallel. Also, There was a glass lens in the dvd drive, should I try to incorporate that? Or should I just use the adjustable lens that came in the Aixiz housing? The one in the Aixiz housing doesn't appear to be made of glass.. I think it is plastic and I have no idea if the laser will melt it or not.


make me one i live in millwood dr in nashville tn my zipcode is 37217

make me one i live in millwood dr in nashville tn my zipcode is 37217

akshaylals1 year ago

I had found out the LD. I desoldered it from the board. But laser is glued into the whole thing. How to get it out. The one I had opened is samsung cd r/w 52X read, 32X rewrite, 52X writeable

starvan2 years ago
I connected, directly, the positive and negative pins of the laser in 3 AA batteries (4,5V). It turned on for a few seconds, and now it don't turn on with 3V (2AA batteries). Is it broken? :/
Probably, yes.
edvin19942 years ago
can i make a module or can i put laser in other stuff or i need to have aixiz alser module
buboop618142 years ago
about how much power does it have?
like can it pop some balloons or light a match?

200mW 650nm Laser Diode Kip Kay project suitable

haha look its you
finn123452 years ago
on estimated time how long do you think this will take
TayTayBob2 years ago
can you make an iron man plum laser with a blu ray laser that can burn ?
BionicBBQ3 years ago
Whats the range of the laser?
LightSpeed16 years ago
I was really intrigued by this Instructable. Thank you. I have taken to heart all the cautionary comments, too, so I may not try to build it for myself since it requires enough safety precautions to make it NOT a fun toy to play with; more like a dangerous power tool. The need to put the laser diode into the housing from a low powered laser was not fully explained. But I have deduced from later comments that the reason for the extra housing is: 1) to act as a heat sink for the diode during operation. And 2) The housing includes optics--lenses to focus the laser light to a dot, or a linear ray. I wonder if an alternative source of focusing lenses could be suggested. I am aware that often the primary difference between a good and a cheap laser device is the lenses used. I presume that with only a single wavelength of light, cheaper lenses can be used since there is no worry about chromatic distortion, but still there are cheap lenses and then there are cheaper lenses. The Instructable is sketchy also about the details of the hookup of the laser housing/electronic connections and the flashlight housing. Perhaps this section could be more detailed with closeup photographs. The same needs to be said about the regulator--how would this be fit into the flashlight housing? Is the regulator more for regulating voltage or limiting current? And how does one know where to set it? I suppose one could calibrate it with a multitester and mark the potentiometer for reference. BTW, could a simple resister or pot be used to regulate the current at least, without the rest of that circuit? Just wondering. Apply Ohm's law. It would really be good to research the optimal voltage and current of the diode used to be certain not to shorten its life--perhaps with that knowledge and Ohm's law a simple resister would be all you would need to regulate the current with a a prescribed number of cells powering it. I want to remind people that there is a much more powerful "Laser" that is available for free and requires no batteries. All you need is a mirror and a magnifier. And sunlight. Yes, you guessed it: reflect the sun with the mirror and it really is like a solar powered laser--visible for miles! (Not bad if you are signaling a search plane while lost in the wilderness.) The magnifier is all you need to burn wood or start a fire with the sun as well. Very simple, and obvious, of course, but we forget that when the word "laser" is mentioned, and we conjure up visions of Star Trek or Star Wars. Obviously the same precautions need to be observed with your high powered laser as when using a magnifier with sunlight--as every kid has learned early on when the light starts to burn the skin and he stops as once. The difference here is the fact that the laser beam focuses that energy much farther away from the source than a simple lens does, and the heating of distant objects may not cause as immediate a realization on the part of the aimer. Also the potential of scattered light off of unexpected reflectors doing harm is also introduced, since the longer focusing distance makes it a much more dangerous thing. For instance, shining it through a window perpendicular to the beam will reflect back a large percentage right to the aimer, or bounce it in other unintended places. I would caution against aiming it out windows or at metal or glass or liquids, or plastic bags even. Anything reflective can bounce it in unexpected ways. I learned from this Instructable the fact that DVD burners use visible wavelengths unlike CD readers which are IR. How about CD burners? What do they use? And the new Blue Ray DVD burners: do they have more energy output per mW? Certainly the ability to see the ray you are aiming is a safety feature, making IR or UV lasers less desirable. Thank you again for a truly interesting and informative Instructable.
- Yes the Aixiz housing includes the optics necessary to focus the laser into a beam.
- I don't know if the driver is more for regulating voltage or limiting current, but I do know that you can buy drivers for laser diodes online, or you can make one. The trick for making one is to make it small enough to fit it in the host you want it in (like a flashlight. As for setting the driver to work well with the diode, I don't know how to do that yet, but www.laserpointerforums.com is a great source for all of that information.
- Blu-ray diodes are about 405nm, which is violet/near UV. Some blu-ray lasers are more/less visible depending on the exact wavelength, which may be off by a few nm. Their power is generally around 100-150mW, where some of the red DVD burner diodes can go up to 200-300mW.
-Another housing you can use is the Meredith module which can be bought here: http://www.mi-lasers.com/cgi-bin/shopper.cgi?search=action&keywords=diode_optics . According to what I have read on laserpointerforums.com, those have better quality optics that produce more powerful lasers.

Please don't quote me on all that; I'm trying to help, but I'm not entirely sure of the accuracy of those statements.
srice4 jerrysl3 years ago
I've updated that Meredith-instruments site by the way (I'm their web designer type guy), that link will no longer work. Try this one instead: http://www.mi-lasers.com/diode-lasers/modules-systems
dmhjah jerrysl6 years ago
It didn't look like he used the driver just the housing. Whats your take on that?
jerrysl dmhjah6 years ago
Well, if I remember correctly, the laser community called out kipkay for not using a driver. While it is possible for it to work without one, the longevity will be reduced, and it still may not work at all. The laser community practically considers the driver an essential part.
dmhjah jerrysl6 years ago
I saw the driver that is in the laser housing and its pretty small. I guess it might fit under the lid of the minimag that has the two holes to plug the bulb in?
blu-ray laser diodes work great but the diode from a casio x something projector is the best and you can buy one off e-bay for less then $50. i dont know the casio full name but when you are looking up the item you will see plenty of the right name and model.
thats long
geez, that's one long post! :-)
mo5 LightSpeed16 years ago
killjoy...jk :]
what would happen if you used 2 watts
That is what I'm doing for my Senior Project, creating a computer controlled laser engraver/cutter. First of all, you need a bigger heatsink. Second you will need to use a different driver setup and you will actually need to make 2 and wire them in parallel because the LM317 can only handle a max of 1.5A and a 2W laser is 1.8A. I found this website very helpful

can you use the same driver in the aixiz housing with the new diode?
if you cant use the same chip can you use a resistor
Can you use the same chip from the Aixiz housing when you put the DVD burner diode in the housing
000TOMO0007 years ago
Can i use 4.5 volt ?
Kipkay (author)  000TOMO0007 years ago
NO! that will blow the diode in an instant!
I had an old dvd burner diode that I hooked a 9volt battery up to. Did I just burn it out? I also only got an intermittent 'faint' glow when I tried it.
Yes, it is burnt out. When testing lasers, start out with 3 volts.
Hi Kipkay,

I was wondering if we don't need a driver circuit between the diode and the batteries. You are using two AA-batteries, that's 3V. Wouldn't that be too much for a diode of 250mW? Connecing it directly to the batteries might fail in giving a constant current, so I guess a driver would do better. Or am I very wrong now?

You can also mail me at ramon_jansen_92@hotmail.com.
Hey kipkay, I was wondering if this really works or its a fake video..because i have alot of friends that know alot about heat lasers and i asked them about this and they said that it would blow the diode. Are they right?
It's real. You see the module the laser is in? It acts like a heat sink and will distribute the heat out so you can use it for a little while. Now for long burns I'm not sure if it would last. My rig I place the housing in a block of metal that fit in one of my flashlights and it worked out perfectly.
dolfi Kipkay6 years ago
can I use also different diode instead of the one form LG burner? I have some diodes from Philips DVD recorder. will it work?
as long as its relativly fast (12x or faster )it should work
kwa9 Kipkay7 years ago
hey kipkay, i am buying the diode from mfgcn.com and was wondering if two 1.2 volt batteries would work or two 1.5 volt batteries would work?
Would it be possible to use a diode from an obsolete PS3 instead of using a DVD one?
lego cowz6 years ago
awang8 squit1016 years ago
That's like $40...
cybertech433 years ago
Hello everyone.

My name is Calvin. I own a Crafted wood working business on line. I am useing a bench scroll saw to cut out my items that I make. I would like to up grade it to a laser cutting tool that will cut through 3/4" thick wood. I could purchase a tool that can do this, but I would like to build it my self, can any one give me some pointers on this, please?
You might want to use a Co2 burning laser for what you want to do instead.
mondeluz3 years ago
hey i have a problem i bought a 16mm Focus Focal Glass Lens for Green Laser 532nm-635nm-650nm-660nm Red Lazer my laser diode has 660 nm and it is red i also bought Coated Collimating Lens w/ M9/P0.5 Frame for 660nm 650nm Red Laser Diode from ebay but it still doesnt burn!!!! CAN SOMEONE PLEASHE HELP ME I BEG OF U!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1
So where can I get one of these 16x DVD burners besides online? This would be my first project and I am really looking forward to it, but I have no clue where to find one of those.... someone please help
ashannon13 years ago
can this actually burn stuff?
Hello everyone.

My name is Calvin. I own a Crafted wood working business on line. I am useing a bench scroll saw to cut out my items that I make. I would like to up grade it to a laser cutting tool that will cut through 3/4" thick wood. I could purchase a tool that can do this, but I would likie to build it my self, can any one give me some pointers on this, please?
yes it can only you will need lens that are atjusted to laser diode
example:if your laser diode have 660nm wawelenght then lens also need 660nm
can you make a vidio

here it is!
mossimo36 years ago
Two things: 1.) I have two laser diodes that have been removed from the laser housing, one is a smaller 12 pin diode with a small glass cube on it, while the other is larger with a longer glass cube on it, how do I know which one is the burning laser? 2.) There are 12 pins on the laser diodes, how do I know which two power it up?
LaserDiode 001.jpgLaserDiode 002.jpg
I have made a breakthrough, the positive and negative pins are the ones that are on either side of the diode. ooooo (o) (o) ooooo Each "o" is a pin, the ones boxed are the positive/negative pins. To test, get a 3v powersource, then hook up the positive end to a 100ohm resistor. From the negative terminal, wire that to the case of the diode, then touch the 100ohm resistor wire to a pin, you should see it light up a bit; that is the positive pin. And you've discovered the positive pin! Now just solder the laser up and your good to go! (Note: You do not have to have the 100ohm resistor wire into your diode, the 3v is low enough to not ruin the diode, but powerful enough to produce an extremely bright laser beam.
vdien mossimo33 years ago
mossimo3, I can't make it focus like a laser. the bright is very less. Do you need other part to make it become a laser beam ?
mossimo3 vdien3 years ago
For diodes such as these, a focusing lens is required. One of the reasons why you would be encountering a dim 'light' may be the cause of one of two things. First, if you have tested the positive and negative pins using a resistor in your circuit and it is dim, then it is because of the resistor in the circuit. Or, second, if the diode appears to be emitting a rather dim pinkish-reddish light, it is possible that you have harvested an infrared diode. If it is the latter, I would recommend not staring into it as these are particularly dangerous. While they may appear dim or not working at all, they can be "full on" and due to its wavelength, we cannot perceive the the massive amounts of light that is secretly damaging our eyes. Yes, it is quite possible to blind yourself quickly with infrared lasers. I hope this helps.
those are not the diodes those are the prisms
those arent the lasers
They are lasers, they just don't have a focusing lens, so instead of a beam, it is an extremely bright 'light'.
i have a super important queshtion i have a laser diode that i hooked up to a 9volt and it still dosent burn i thik i spy a risistor but im afraid if i take it out it will mess up everything. chold i whier a wier to the other sideof the risistor and get it to work?...............................sorry for spelling
mondeluz3 years ago
hey can someone please send me link on how to get the parts for the laser driver circiut? if yes then please send me link becouse i realy realy need one please replay
mondeluz3 years ago
hwy i made this laser pointer and bought a realy powerfull diode and all but i do not understand how do i make it burn it still is just a regular pointer im thinking of using some other lens than original ones that came in the 5Mw laser housing is that ok?
Hello KipKay!
I would like to ask, is the minimag flashlight necessary for making a burning laser? Or i can connect the laser housing with the DVD writer laser installed to the batteries?
Thank you!
mondeluz3 years ago
yo kipkay what will happen if i will use a 1w diode and 1w module on flashlight using this hack?
cyrus_0163 years ago
wow it works
How many Watt is that laserdiode?
N3v3rm0r35 years ago
i've built it, with only some small changes: i concealed it into a lighter and i did't  use any aixiz module and it works just fine...
You mean you just had the naked diode?
iam really confused , I got out a "laser" , but when i look at it from the top , wich is where the laser would come out , all i see is 2 pins and a tiny tiny tiny glass piece , is this the laser ? , and it has like a grey metal thing around it , but there is no lence or anything Oo , its glued to the metal like hell . help me please ?
 It seems a bunch of people are trying to figure out where the DIODE is located...
IF YOU HAVE ANOTHER Drive of sort ANY will do (An old CD ROM from a Bad PC)
My advice is Go buy a 5 dollar DVD or CD ROM from a PC Store or the local recycling center.  Might be cheaper...  But DON'T try to GET the HDDVD Laser out if you haven't had a little practice on a Cheap "WHO CARES IF I BREAK IT DVD or CD ROM."  You only get one chance to take the HD one out and if you slip you get to buy another.
The LASER DIODE is "Hidden"down deep inside.  You will end up Probably Breaking the Metal Casting around the laser itself.  If you see the LEN'S (The piece that runs back and forth that you can see without taking anything apart ON TOP)  Below that you'll see a Round Piece of Glass. Dig Deeper Behind that maybe upto 1/2" away the Laser Will be, behind that.  This is where you might have to break the Metal Casting of the housing. ***NOT the LASER HOUSING***  "The metal housing you might need to break to get the diode out."
Dig way down under everything you see and pull out a 3 Pin Laser Diode as Pictured in Step 6.
I want to build a subsurface engraver. can I use dvd burner laser to do this, I only need to penetrate 25mm 1inch of class,
How do I control the laser direction. where is the controller of the laser.
lis.tesla3 years ago
so i have another lazer housing i got from a regular laser pionter it's a little bit small but will it work someone plz reply
sbelavadi4 years ago
@Kipkay-my laser diode already ahs a heatsink around it!so can i just focus the beam with a convex lense instead of buying a axiz module??!!!!
vruiz34 years ago
heres an epic creation.add 50 more of those diodes.
dsijacki4 years ago
can dvd laser diode work on usb port? usb port to be my "bateri" ?
gnolnats6 years ago
Why is it when I power the diode there is no narrow stream of light? This is the third diode that I have tried with same results: wide spray of red light.
This is a good thing gnolnats its supposed to do that. you just need to get a lens you should put the diode in the AixiZ Laser Module which as he said serves as a heatsink and a lens then you will get the narrow stream of light
There was no mention of a lens in the tutorial, that I saw anyway. Where would I get this lens? Thanks for your reply.
Actually, there was a mention of the lens in the Instructable. Read the comment over the picture of the housing being inserted into the Maglight in step 10.
OK, I got a new question. The new module came and I hooked it up to the maglite and it burned bright as expected for about 10 seconds and now it only barely lights up. The same for the dvd led that I removed from the burner, it only barely lights up. I got 2 modules so I hooked the other one up and it burns bright also, but I didn't leave it connected for very long. Why do they burn so dim, are they being damaged? Also, do you de-solder the original laser and then solder the dvd laser to the little circuit board or wire it directly to the mag lite ignoring the circuit board that came with the module?
I am still not totally sure of this, but I think the little circuit board that comes with the module because its purpose seems to be regulating the current to the laser diode. That would also probably fix your other problem with the dim light. You might need a new DVD diode though.
OK, so I hooked up the second module that I got without modifying it at all and it works, just like the first one did. I only left this one connected to the 2xAA batteries (maglight) for about 4 seconds, where I left the first one connected for about 10 and it then went dim and still is even with new batteries. It's rated for 3.2 volts, so how did putting 3.0 volts on it damage it? Now the first module and the dvd diode both burn very dim, but the second module burns bright like you would expect. What's going on? I tried new batteries. So, I should put a new DVD laser on the new PCB in place of the weak laser?(the working one, I assume the first one that burns dim is damaged somehow?) If I get all of this done and it burns for 10 seconds I'm going to be pissed.
cgosh gnolnats4 years ago
Proper procedure is to limit the voltage AND the current to the diode AND remove excess heat. Failing to limit all three will blow up your diode.

Some people use a high-wattage resistor or a $15 circuit to limit current. Some circuits control voltage and current, with an upper limit on current (you can't get 1 watt through a circuit that's rated for 300 mw). All solutions will benefit from using a heat sink and heat sink compound (toxic, stains clothing, most look like toothpaste) to remove heat from your diode.

You'll need a lens to focus the beam to a point. The AixiZ barrels sink some heat if the diode matches the housing, and they usually include a lens. You'll pay extra for a glass lens instead of a plastic lens.
Did you hook the first DVD diode up to the PCB? You said that the first module and DVD laser are dim now but can you tell me more about the light? What I am asking is do they produce just a weak dot, or was it somewhat weak but also more of a spray than a point? Because when I first hooded my unmodified Aizix module up to the AA batteries, it was not very bright, just a broad stream of light, like you would expect from a regular flashlight. Only once I adjusted the focus lens did it make a point.
I did not hook either of the two dvd lasers so far up to the PCB. Both of them produce a weak wide spray of light, not bright at all like the module was initially. The 2 PCB's that I just received both burned bright initially. The first one I left connected (unmodified in any way) to the maglite and it went dim after about 10 seconds and still works but is always dim. The second unmodified module burned bright for the 4 seconds that I hooked it to the maglite, but I quickly disconnected for fear of frying it too. I assume that if I power the dvd laser behind the lens that it will produce a point, but it's so dim that I don't believe it will burn anything, I mean it's barely on.
I am not sure what your problem is, and I am not really an expert on this sort of thing so at this point you might want to seek help from someone more knowledgeable, although I would be happy to continue giving you assistance based on what I know. Are you sure you are connecting the polarities right? Check that both the DVD diode and the PCB are connected right. For the PCB, I am pretty sure that the lead in the middle of the board is - and the one closer to the edge is +. For the laser diode you should refer back to the Instructable. No matter what diode you use you still have to adjust the focusing lens until the beam comes to a point.
The diode is dead. There should be a big warning on this saying to use a driver. Check out Laser Pointer Forums for more info, and find out how to make your own driver so it doesnt die in a VERY short amount of time. Also, you can get a nice LPC for ~$10 shipped! (250mW)
yeah I'm sorry If I wansn't clear UbuntuNinja Is right
I actually have a question about the video you provided. What is the little thing that the guy puts the soldering iron over to de solder the circuit board? And just to confirm no resistors are needed if I use the circuit board in the end product? If I do need resistors what value should I use?
The thing that guy was using is called a desoldering braid. It's a braid of copper wire for, well, desoldering. Like the name says. It's all very creative, I know. So you place the braid on the solder and the iron on the braid. The solder then melts and bonds to the braid as opposed to the joint. It comes in handy. I generally use a desoldering bulb, but most of the time the braid would be more effective. I hope that was helpful.
To be honest I was wondering the same thing that thing was?? But you do need to have something in the circuit to limit current. What I did was use an LED and a 100k ohm potentiometer and I started with 4.5v and it cut down the voltage to around 2.8 which is fine for me
How does the LED help? How did you wire the potentiometer into the Maglite and how did you start out with 4.5V? Two AA batteries (what goes in a Maglite) only make 3 volts. To get to that 4.5 volts you would need 1 more AA battery. Is there a certain value of resistor that I could use that would reduce the maglite's 3V down to the 2.8 you are talking about? Do I need to have extra resistors even if I use the little circuit board from the back of the Aixiz module?
well I didn't even use the Maglite. I made my own circuit and I used an LED so that when ever the laser is on the LED would light up its just a safety feature. When I wired the potentiometer I wired it to the positive wire. I ran a wire to the center pin and then out then one next to it, If you do that make sure to use the center pin it doesn't matter what edge pin you use but you have to the center pin. I am not sure the value of the resistor you would need to make 3v down to 2.8v but It wouldn't be much. I hope this Helps!
what the ninja said. try connecting the laser diode directly to the batteries. and make sure the batteries are putting out no more than 1.52 volts each, or they could fry the laser diode. if they are over-voltaged, they may have already.
Yea, what he said - I took the laser out of a Pioneer DVD burner that had a broken tray (it is buried waaay deep in the guys of the unit) and hooked it up to a 9 volt battery and it lit up...but now is dead :(. I think I cooked it, but for about 5 minutes it worked. But now I know how to get the lasers out, and to only use 2 AA not a single 9 volt.
 same a gnolnats says whats wrong with my laser is on buts realy dim
i used a mini mag lite and put the diode where the light was and its dim. am i doing something wrong. if so can you tell me cause i ripped another dvd+rw burner drive out of a dell and the same thing keeps happing. no pointing just a dim light i ordered the AixiZ housing for the diode. do i not use the little circuit
that came with the weak 5mW laser
You probably fried the diode from to much voltage, but you may have weak batteries. you should just take out the little circuit board and put the DVD diode in the heatsink with the lens from the module and then hook it all up. This whole Instructable is a bad idea because of the voltage going to the diode the lifetime will be very short you should at least use a resistor or potentiometer to limit the voltage
oops sorry I was thinking of another instructable. To get a good lens go http://www.mfgcn.com/_wsn/page2.html then order the 5MW 3.2VDC one. when you get it, take of the warning label untwist the top off it and then take out the weak diode and put your powerful diode in close it all back up. and add power and than your done
Do you know what the specifications for a laser would have to be for the beam to be visible when it is going through the air without using smoke? Would any of the lasers on that page fit that description?
Green lasers. Shine it into the night sky and it goes forever.
OK, I ordered that one. Thanks for the tip.
great, let me know if you have any questions
Hey gnolnats here is a great video I found on how to put the diode in the AixiZ housing http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uOhyJ8JyBEo&feature=related
Thank you so much for helping me out with this. I'll let you know how it turns out.
Thats great Thanks!
seriously? jeez, man you need to do some reading on laser diodes before doing things like this. every laser diode on this planet,and most of the ones on mars are like that. you need to get a laser housing from somewhere like Axiz and put this in it for it to focus. next time when you decide to undertake a project like this, you might want to consider crawling out from under that rock and doing some research.
dude are you using a focusing barrel?
I guess not. What's that?
Would a laser diode from a computer or an old laptop work because they can burn dvds and cds also?
Yes as long as it's a burner
jimkash6 years ago
i dont knw what for evry1 liked this instructable.. i simply got a pointer laser for less than 1$ whats special to break a burner and do all this y not simply get 1 which is so cheap
I would like to build it for fun and just to be able to do it. You can buy almost anything you can hack but it's usually cheaper and a lot more fun if you are into DIY projects.
flakman jimkash6 years ago
Your $1 laser will not be strong enough to do anything but burn out someone's retina. The DVD burner diode will produce enough heat to actually cause some etching in material. I wouldn't break a working burner to do this. There are plenty of bad burners to take apart for this.
dmhjah flakman6 years ago
What could you etch with it?
flakman dmhjah6 years ago
dmhjah: Not sure about all that can be etched with this. This would be good information from someone that has built one already. Give some examples of time/burn quality.
You can burn electrical tape, light matches, pop balloons, maybe light homemade black powder, and maybe light cigarettes
i like to light fire crackers from 30 ft away... perfect!
tim1274 years ago
I dont know a lot about laser diodes, but why would you need a housing for the diode?
kcortez14 years ago
dude.. can i use the diode in my old DVD PLAYER
instead my DVD WRITER for a burning laser ????

No, It's not powerful enough.
eddiekim955 years ago
i dont know why, but i cant open the top part of my minimag. the very top ring wont come off
that is prolly cuz it has never been off B4.....

take some foam or some heavy cloth(to protect the finish of the maglight) & turn....Lefty loosey, righty tighty. left to loosen it, right to tighten it.
vksbatham4 years ago
How could i install the laser diode in laser module driver circuit ??????????
nedim1555 years ago
i cant find the laser i find the laser lens but no laser
GamerM nedim1554 years ago
laser is not under the lense its on the sides :)
fundash4 years ago
oh no, I think I obliterated my diode...:(
GamerM fundash4 years ago
Me too.
I pulled the pin for - power to gt the laser out instead of the pin in the middle that does nothing and i ripped off the tiny cable inside the laser that connects it to the tiny plate that makes laser light
Avatar_I_Am4 years ago
Broke DVD... flashlight... laser... thingy... doohicky... whatsit...
cutting my fingers disassembling the DVD housing...
burning the crap out of myself trying to build it....
Is there any way I can just buy one from you and save the embarasment
and bandaids and burn jell costs up front?
camferret4 years ago
hey guys is there anything else other than a dvd burner i can get one from no shops just house hold items
Yeah, you can get one out of a blue ray player.
thanos4 years ago
How do you get the driver and a >8V power supply into a mini-mag!!!!?!
alexw21504 years ago
Why can't you use a DVD player laser?
Because the CD burner laser is much stronger and Visible and a DVD laser is weak and INvisible.
MenWithPlen4 years ago

Our attempt's on here (Laser Torch) - we bought all the bits from Amazon/eBay:


The audio's a bit off after converting from .mp4 - but it's good enough to watch.

Let us know what you think!


PS: DON'T use RED eye-protection! The company sent us the wrong glasses... they should have been BLUE! (to protect between 600nm-700nm (red) laser beams).

PPS: Any suggestions of other Instructables projects we can attempt?
Doc Penguin4 years ago
is it pos. if i can use a mini DVD player laser???
bchong4 years ago
If im carefull enought do i still need the glasses? i mean its not like i can buy em anywere in my country...
jisgreat4 years ago
Hi im having trouble with my laser diode. i did everything as instructed acept the laser driver from axiz housing didnt work so i wired it directly to 2 double aa bateries. it worked fine acept that the diode didnt burn stuff. it sow as a nice bright dot but didnt burn anything. please any adice is welcomed.
H20 jisgreat4 years ago
There was a focusing lens that came with the housing right? That needs to be adjusted to make the smallest dot possible. Also, try coloring the match or whatever you're trying to burn black with a sharpie.
searl24 years ago
Is there a place where I could get a focusing laser lens that would fit into the plastic lenses place?
Speedmite4 years ago
What size resistor would you recommend using to protect the laser?

Or is there a better way to lengthen the life of said laser with still burning stuff?
spbhargav4 years ago
why all the leser's colour are RED?
You could buy a green one and pay more. Get a blue laser and pay a whole lot more!
Blue 445nm lasers are cheaper than green lasers. A 1200 mW (yes, 1.2 W) 445 nm costs $50.00. A green laser of that power would cost several hundred dollars
you can go on woot.com and buy a blue laser for like $10.00 to $15.00
No,Red is just one of them.
For example,532nm Green Lasers,405nm Violet Lasers,445nm Blue Lasers,635nm Red Lasers,etc.You can come to GreenLaserPointer.Org to choose any kinds of lasers or laser pointers.
most everyday lasers are red because they are cheap to manufacture, the the parts used in the laser are "Usually" very bad quality "A.K.A. Dollarstore lasers" there are Green, Purple, Yellow, Blue, Cyan, Infared, Ultraviolet And probobly more Colors. any other laser besides red uses more money to Use better quality parts, Thus making a better laser  
there are green and blue ones too...
Random user4 years ago
Do I need to wear sunglasses to use thing, or is it safe to look at the laser indirectly?
NEVER USE A HIGH POWER LASER WITH SUNGLASSES!!! You DEFINATLY need proper OD5+ goggles for this laser build. You can pick them up from o-like.com for $14.99, and you will not go blind :) Look for "Red Laser safety glasses"
I dont think you need OD5 for a 200 mW laser. Even OD 3 would reduce the beam power to 0.2 mW for a direct hit.
that isnt a good one ....
Oh. thanks for the advice. Kipkay should really put these sort of details into this 'ible.
It's never healthy\safe to look at a laser directly so i would say yes.
could you do this with a playstation 1 laser diode? i know it wont burn like the DVD burner diode but will it work?
luther3034 years ago
Do any burners use infrared lasers you know of?
Tobor 2.04 years ago
do you know some where i could buy (besides online) a laser housing or where i could find one
I found a bunch at a local thrift store for cheap.
Tobor 2.04 years ago
my laser dioed has 4 pins on it hiw do i tell witch is positie and negitie and what's a laser housing?
hondaman9004 years ago
I got my red diode out of my kaput DVD burner, hooked up the two AA batteries and it lit up like a beacon. Did that about twice for no more than 4 seconds each time, it never got hot, but now the light is real dim.D VM measures 1.6V on the batteries so they're good. I know these diodes are current sensitive, but could I have blown it with the two AAs'?
I'm pretty sure I blew it and it's now functioing as a LED. I tore apart another DVD Burner and hooked it up to a current limiting supply, as described here, and it works great. 10ohm reistor gave me a nice 120mA measured.

Thanks for the great 'ible.
BR0W4 years ago
WOOOOOOWWWWWW This IS the cooler thing that i see here certainly i will make =DDD
JumboFlea4 years ago
Does the DVD burner need to be 16x? I bought a 22x LG DVD burner and I am having trouble getting the laser diode out of the piece of aluminum.

PS: Could I have the exact model name of DVD burner you used?
The 22x is the same thing, but about double the power of the 16x! You'll be fine using the 22x as long as you wear safety glasses. Read my above post for where to get them. Also, I'm pretty sure the 22x is LOC (long open can) which just means the diode seems to be cut in half. It will still work, just be careful not to let anything touch the open part. Good luck!
south964 years ago
can i downlaoad this video pls. my internet connection is slow so it makes it boring
Hi, I've just gutted an old 52X DVD reader for the stash draw, I'm not so much interested in the burning side of things but more just a freebie laser pointer. Will this process still work less the burning?
Yeah, probaly. Just try it.
antonycmch5 years ago
i have a laser module and laser diode but i cant remove the old laser diode of the laser module how can i remove the diode help anyone
i'm having the same problem can anyone help?
try using a nail by taking the flat head end of the nail and sticking it in the module over the old diode. use a hammer and hit the diode out (it takes more strength than the video tells you).
try using a nail by taking the flat head end of the nail and sticking it in the module over the old diode. use a hammer and hit the diode out (it takes more strength than the video tells you).
fvtop4 years ago
hmmmmmm, pretty popualr now
miniopa14 years ago

Think you could make this work in this watch? Or somehow make a Burning laser watch? Kinda like a wanna be james bond watch?
LOL, I was thinking about that today. Okay, I suppose 1) you need a large
watch-- which probably won't be working to begin with. Otherwise you'd be spending a lot of money that'll be wasted.

2) Take out all of the watch gears.

3. Drill a hole in the side the size of the laser; ya don't want the laser on the outside.

4. Get some glue or better yet, epoxy, and mount the laser inside the watch at the hole. Might be better still if you could solder or braze the diode to the inside of the watch case for a heat sink, but it probably won't matter that much.

5. Put in a battery: the biggest that wi fit or that has the most current. Either way, it probably won't last long.

6. Connect the positive lead to the laser, the negative lead to a switch.

7. Put the watch back together. Now you can use the laser next time you encounter a crazed villain trying to take over the world or if you're in jail and they hadn't taken your possessions first..

Oh, by the way, #6 is the hardest part! And, uh, you would probably need a more powerful laser diode, too. But If you have any problems, call Q branch for tech support. ;-)
App Killer4 years ago
coud you use a laptop dvd drive
Of course you can :D They're exactly the same thing, except a little more compact.
link4704 years ago
One more question if anyone is available who has completed this. I had the laser diode working really nice and bright during testing and I broke one of the leads [not the original 3 leads coming out of the diode but I didn't have a strong solder on one of the lead extensions so the extension broke off]. After that I've been trying to solder back on the lead and having a tough time, but besides that I'm noticing the laser diode is much less bright now. It still works, but it isn't as bright. I haven't placed it into the minimag yet. Do you think the lower powered light is because of solder at the base of one of the leads that has fallen and is touching the copper part?

Any suggestions on how to brighten it back up before assembling? Yes, I've tried different batteries.

Thanks in advance!
link4704 years ago
I'm really having a tough time getting the diode out of the housing on both the new laser module and the DVD RW drive. The author mentions gently tapping with the handle of an X-Acto knife. I'm using an X-Acto handle and a hammer and have hammered over 100 times and the diode ain't budging from it's enclosure. I don't know how a few "gentle taps" did it for him.
polird link4704 years ago
You have probably already figured it out by now, but I used a hammer to get the diode out of the Aixiz enclosure and for the DVD Diode I was able to break off the composite material around the diode with some pliers (it was pressed in with a little glue).
link470 polird4 years ago
Success!! Onto assembly. Thanks!
rsk115844 years ago
HI I have a flash light its LED flash light, can I buy the diode from market, if yes please mail me the specification of the diode so that I can buy it from the market. pls mail to ravi.exe@gmail.com

Thanks in advance.
TRAHZIL4 years ago
Could i use an Old original Xbox laser diode?
romero5594 years ago
Where can I buy one of these already made if possible...I want to skip the trouble of making it. Its for my boyfriend.
Spotman4 years ago
My PS2 plays DVDs
Can I use that?
Probably not, the laser will not be powerful enough because it is not designed for burning DVDs.
c.mcnichol4 years ago
can you use any dvd burner diode?
dtc-joey4 years ago
i've got a 16x burning laser and a aixiz housing but i havn't got a driver can i use a 1mw 650nm class 2 red laser driver? please reply thnx
im about to buy the stuff to make this but the aixiz housing on the site says it comes with plastic collimated lens and that i have to pay extra for a glass lens. do i need the glass lens?
here's the product : http://www.aixiz.com/shop/product_info.php?cPath=1_26&products_id=44
dtc-joey4 years ago
hey, do you need the module?? i've got a dvd burner diode but i haven't got a module please comment

btw sorry about my bad english:)
An Villain5 years ago
HAX! *Throws computer monitor*
yes we all have seen Gmod idiot box... and HAX!!!! to you to...
gonzalosiu4 years ago
Hi, does a 20-48x cd burner works for this?
oooh pocket sized death ray ! i love it !
its illegal to actually point the laser at people, you know that, right?
well yea.... but still theirs lots of fun to be had... that dosent involve people getting hurt
tobyscool4 years ago
any ideas what to do with class I lasers
w/o using any Aixiz
intalinator4 years ago
can a class I laser burn things??
no your laser must be a Class IIIb laser to burn or at least 50 mW
>.< i wasted my dvd drive and my time

i only got Class I i got 5 drives that's only Class I
Lacurazz4 years ago
i can't get this thing to pop a balloon let alone burn something, and i have it focused as much as possible
 I bought everything except the driver circuit.. does it matter what voltage the capacitor is? I have a 47µF 50V cap, will this work?
 The 50V capacitor will work fine.  The capacitor voltage rating is the maximum voltage the capacitor can reliably withstand.
 yeah, i once misread 10, as 100, pants where shat...
ROFL!!!  I've missread some number before, but it didn't cause me to have to buy a new pair of pants...LOL
Because you have never had a big capacitor blow up in your face before.
beardy cornz4 years ago
no the voltage doesn't matter
monleyson4 years ago
hello!!!! a question after, after we constructed the laser does it have the line in the ray?
laptopdude4 years ago
you rock so much!!!!!!!!
hi 001.jpg
Remember, people, if you don't have a DVD burner to steal the diode from, go to your local computer store and ask them if they have any broken DVD burners. See just how far you can go. Ask them if they have any broken Blu-Rays, as well. It may cost you up to 5 bucks, but it's more than worth it.
i actually just did this with the diode from a blu ray drive and the results were.... AWSOME!
algviper4 years ago
if i get a 300mw diode off ebay would it work in the aixz from this project
i dont understand. so all you do is pop it in there?
okay so i put the diode in the mini-mag and ... nothing happens!
stale565 years ago
What would happen if you used a CD/DVD player diode on this?
Data643 stale565 years ago
I tried putting a 3v battery on a DVD player diode and it lit up a little bit. Then I tried a 9v and it lit up a lot for about 5 seconds and then it overheated and burned out.
-max- stale565 years ago
i THINK its ether the operating voltage or that CD/DVD diods are infra-red.(more likely.
stale56 -max-5 years ago
Yeah, they are... =(
I have a DRU-710a by Sony and it can record DVD+R at 16x but DVD-R at only 8x. I found that there are 2 lasers in it. They're both red lasers. One has a tiny heatsink and the other has a bigger heatsink. I assumed the bigger one would work, and it work. But you won't feel a thing. It won't burn anything. Even when I use a lens to focus it. I tried it with the smaller one, but it didn't burn either. Anyone have any suggestions?
If you built it as in this tutorial, without a circuit driver, it's possible you burnt out the diode. Check out LaserPointerForums.com for more information.
but if i havent aixiz?
antonycmch5 years ago
ok i install the new burning laser diode got it into the flashlight but no laser point it just get heats up until it burning then i take it off the flashlight
scott12025 years ago
The drive your using is most likely a combo drive, the clear-ish diode is for cd's and will not work, the blue-ish one is the burner that you can use.Car dvd players
Topunisher5 years ago
Can it set a cloth a fire? If so what range?
bugjojo5 years ago
Is the driver supposed to fit into the minimag? Whats the deal with the pot, could I leave it out of the circuit, is it just to dim the beam?
zack2475 years ago
i have the exact same dvd burner as you! ('cept mine is black) im not sure if i want to do this or not...
Don't. The diode will burn up in seconds and your laser will become useless. Visit laserpointerforums and look at the designs that incorporate a driver. You should also buy the bare diode from someone on the site, as it is a lot cheaper than an entire dvd burner.
could it be used like a laser engraver in any way?
Blu-ray is ~200-500 mW, while laser engravers are ~10 W — A factor of 30. I suspect that because of heat dissipation you might have to go at 1% speed for it to work. Note that I don't know much about this.
what website for the lazer
ali_loly105 years ago
sorry but im new to this
what is the Aixiz housing and could there be an alternative to it
deth2all5 years ago
 So i saw this video when it came out, and this video personally got me started on the hobby of burning shat w/ lasers. Ive made countless reds, a green, and a burning "blu-ray", actually have lost part of my vision in my right eye from a blue laser. ... It was totally worth it. 
Just thought id share something w/ u ppl. 
dinodirect.com has burning green/red/blue lasers for under 100 bucks... 
BUHI5 years ago
 can you use a computer diode?
I'm assuming that the green squares on the driver circuit means unconnected, right? 
monsterman5 years ago
do you have to use the AixiZ Laser Module or can you use a difrents one.
J-Manoo75 years ago
was looking at the pictures and was thinking,, man that looks alot like KipKay's Kitty... didn't know you were on instructables!
would the laser diode from a broken xbox 360 work?
smashpoe5 years ago
So the lazer diodes in cd players are infrared?
spazmanx115 years ago
Can i use a diode laser lense thing from a dvd player?
comopt5 years ago
On the Russian site there is an interesting information about graphite for laser technologies.
 Where can i buy a driver?
I'm severely new to all this tweaking, but I'm learning. So I was wondering, would a blu-ray laser work? I read the instructions and know about the cd/dvd PLAYER dilemma, but I wasn't sure about the blu-ray lasers. Thanks.
Yes a blue ray laser will work, but it will be way more expensive.

Audi0slave5 years ago
A better way to get a diode is take it out of a laser pointer it's less work and less expensive.  This is a good website to buy one from http://www.dealextreme.com/products.dx/category.910
arturomc6 years ago
if i use a cd player diode.... can i make a laser (that it's not a burning one) or it wouldnt work
kevkid arturomc6 years ago
Nope, the laser diode inside of a CD player/burner is at a lower wavelength, basically if u hooked it up you wouldn't see anything because it is in the infrared wavelength which our eyes cannot see.
usb key kevkid5 years ago
what about  regular cd drive
and waht does the housing do?
3DD3 kevkid5 years ago
BUT...If you own a Night vision device it will light up the night!
reddenann5 years ago
thats  cool
IdDa4205 years ago
 shouldnt their be a step between 7 and 10 sayin how to mount to the old circuit board driver casue you cant just put the pins you soldered into where the old lite pins go wouldnt that burn out the laser with no driver before the batterys
mad_b5 years ago
Those "2 children faces" makes me remember of that "face mountain" on mars... Matter of combination of lights and the photo :-)
But yeah, they are freaky hahahaha
coffeeCupNz5 years ago
why can't i see the driver circuit? where is it? also... would a jeule thief circuit work with this laser pointer? would be cool to run it with a single AA battery, but the PWM nature of the jeoule thief circuit would mean a decrease in power...
ok...but how do you install a driver circuit??!!
Johndoes7 years ago
OK, There's a be nice comment policy, so I'll do my best. This instructional is rubbish, and I'm still being nice. You advice people to run a laser diode without any form of current regulation and that's just dumb. A laser diode needs a strictly regulated voltage and current, as any well informed laser builder will tell you. Your diode will most certainly die pretty soon, and since you wrecked an entire DVD writer for it, you won't be very happy with it. Also advice people on the safety aspects, they need goggles, goggles people! And sunglasses won't do the trick with this kind of power, you need real laser-goggles that block at the right wavelength. You only have two eyes and can't get any new ones after you messed these up.
Emsaid Johndoes6 years ago
actually the air force has special glasses to block lasers. But they cost Thousands.
don't believe all that you read, they might block a few popular wavelengths but if they blocked all then they'd be black!!!!  :)
finding materials which block one wavelength isn't hard, getting it certified as safe for your eyes is where it become expensive.
Fancy reflective coatings for various wavelengths stacked ontop of one another is how to block a lot of wavelengths effectively, but like I said, if you stop em all then its black!
Do you have to do this with the flashlight, or can you just replace the diode of a laser pointer
you cant get new eyes... YET, lol i am just kidding and know that lasers do require a lot of safety..!
I agree, this project was extremely frustrating and far more expensive than I expected...
I agree, do you 'like' killing laser diodes?
1up Johndoes7 years ago
Would you mind posting a schematic of a proper laser diode driver suitable for this type of laser?
mb4004 1up7 years ago
Here is a driver: <a rel="nofollow" href="http://stonetek.org/shop/index.php?main_page=popup_image&pID=205">http://stonetek.org/shop/index.php?main_page=popup_image&pID=205</a><br/>
1up mb40047 years ago
Ok... Is the LM317 an IC? Or is it a Mosfet or power transistor?
Big Bwana 1up7 years ago
It's an IC, actually it's an adjustable voltage regulator simular to the 780X series but they are not a fixed output voltage allowing you to adjust the voltage or current output, and they have internal fault protection so you can't really hurt them and depending on the case size selected they can look like a MOS-FET T0-220 3 PIN case but they also come in smaller 3 pin sizes... They are only a buck or two at most parts stores And or they can be salavaged from lots of switched mode power supplies, some motherboards, broken sat receivers ( bell / dish have them ) and lots of other things.... mb4004 thanks for the nice simple supply schematics ..
how would you add a driver circuit to this project?
the easiest way to do this is to go to walgreens and buy a nice small high powered LED flashlight for 6 dollars and then get a rubberband some construction paper and some type of red plastic. cut a hole in the middle of the construction paper and then insert the red plastic. done
@nickweaver WTF do you even know what a laser is? EPIC FAIL
or im not some dumbass geek who spends my life playing world of warcraft with no life and no girlfriend
I see you use a red laser diode from a dvd burner. Question ? I have a 5mW green laser pointer, can i use the parts from my green laser pointer?
Thanks: ( very good and informative instructions)
No, it can be any color but needs to be 200-500mW
Cluna5 years ago
I am a huge fan of what you make and do on the videos and
I would like to ask a small favor from you.

Would you be able to make me the Laser Flash Light hack?

The only reason why i won't make it myself is because
I don't want to stuff it up and not just that but I would like
it done by a person that has done it before.(professionally)

P.S. I am willing to buy it for a reasonable price.

Hope to hear from you in the near future.
dakkenly Cluna5 years ago
-w- buy a real one maybe?
Will this unit ,or any type of green laser pointer of 100mW or larger make a neighbors security camera pointing at you, make it dysfunctional?
ryan!5 years ago
A quick question: Does the laser diode have to be from a DVD burner? Or can it just be from a DVD player, CD player, CD computer drive, ect.?
the judge5 years ago
any tips on removing laser diodes from their origanal housing? i thought about getting a knife and slowly prying it out, but i don't know if putting that amount of pressure would be safe (for the diode) and i didn't know if just pulling it out by the pins using pliers would be better or worse, or if there's anything else i could try. any suggestions are greatly appreciated.
Cluna5 years ago
Hey would it be possible to buy the finished product?

because i don't wanna stuff it up mainly because
I'm not the great with electronics

Can it burn anything? Like the one's in the James Bond movies...
hutter5 years ago
can you use a blu ray diode like your website says?
Parabola9495 years ago
Few notes for anyone who is thinking about this project.
1.) Yes, it does work.
2.) Before putting the diode into the module, you will get a widespread, not a focused beam.  It will also overheat easily, and thelight will fade out.  The module serves as a housing, focusinglens, and heatsink (hence why he said to use arctic silver [thermalpaste] when mounting).
3.) As you have a focusing lens for this, you will of course need toadjust this len for different distances.  When trying to burnsomething, focus it up close, maybe a few inches to a foot away. For long distance, don't expect to burn anything.
4.) Yes, you can see the beam.  At night, point it at thesky.  Since it is a red 650nm laser, it will not be very visible,but you can see it.  Green (532nm) diodes are MUCH more visible.
5.) Use common sense when using this laser!  Don't point atanyone's eyes, don't play with you pet with it, don't let children useit.  Seriously- the other night while driving some punk kidspointed a good green laser at my car and hit my eyes.  They didhurt, and if they hadn't run off, they would have been in a world oftrouble.  Be responsible people!
6.) Be very careful after soldering when "plugging" the laserinto the maglite to make sure the pins don't touch.  I found outthe hard way that while focusing the lens, the module may turn some, thepins can touch, which will short and burn up your diode.  I used avery small strip of electrical tape in between the contacts to prevent this.
7.) NO, a regular diode from a CD player or DVD playerwill NOT work.  The diode from a DVD burner is 200mW,which is why it is able to burn the dvd.
8.) Only dark colored objects can be burned.  Anything else willreflect to much and won't absorb the heat, therefore won't burn.

Props to KipKay for an awesome project- I had fun building this.
www.mfgcn.com - Aixiz, where you can get the module, also sells thediode you need for this if you don't have a spare dvd burner.  Theyare also really nice people, based out of Houston, TX, USA. (My hometown)
Good luck everyone!
Hi, do you have any idea about how long it would take to ship the laserfrom Texas to Fontana, California?
besides what they list up there I also need a lense?
quasi44 municaa5 years ago
there is a brand name associated with this, but you can find these simple components at any Radio Shack, just tell em yer looking to build a small burning laser, give em about ten bucks, and just be careful.
They use First Class USPS, so it might take a week.  You may beable to call them and ask if they offer any other shipping methods.
You ask about shipping the laser, and then ask about the lens. Understand this:  You mainly need 2 things, the laser DIODE, andthe laser MODULE.  The module is basically a heatsink with thefocusing lens attached.  The diode is the actual lightsource.  When you go to http://mfgcn.com/ They have listed both parts on the first page, scroll down.  Theyeven say on there "For the KipKay project"
(Cut and Paste from the website:)

If you are here to purchase the unit for the Kip Kay flashlight hack project, click here..
650nm 5mw 12X30mm case $4.50 USD ($2.50 shipping will be added) USE THE PURCHASE BUTTON BELOW THIS TEXT.

If you are here to purchase the 200mw red laser diode for the Kip Kay flashlight hack project, click here..
650nm 200mw laser diode $40.00 USD ($2.50 shipping will be added) USE THE PURCHASE BUTTON BELOW THIS TEXT.

if i just want a laser pointer that doesent burn people on contact/light matches but has a good mW output like o some say 50mW.....
can i use a normal dvd/cd drive laser diode?
ricardop5 years ago

This is Good Stuff!

municaa5 years ago
I know it's not a very good question, but i want to know... Why does it burn?
I want to make some investigation on this, and it would help me if you could tell me why does it burn, or what is the function each item has for it to work. It would really help me, I chose this for a school project (:. Please?
Would an X32 Burner have a strong enough diode to burn humans on touch?

I want to make a lasgun =P
Pet King215 years ago
stll thats awaom

iProton5 years ago
 Can it melt solder? It wuld be awesome if it did, cause I don't have time to buy a blue ray :P
Lasersrock6 years ago
Kipkay can you answer me because im almost done. all i need is a laser housing. so would a pointing laser from wal-mart work if i took the laser housing from it? would it melt???????
It would probably melt if you don't have the heatsink. The laser pointer also has to be a high capacity laser pointer.
municaa raytian5 years ago
Excuse me raytian, but, could you please tell me what the heatsink is?
I can answer that.  The laser module he mentions getting fromAixiz is basically the heatsink.  What this does is to keep thelaser diode from overheating and burning itself out.  Beforeputting my diode into the module, it would stay on for about 20 - 30seconds before overheating and dimming out.  This also of coursestressed the diode really bad.  After attaching the diode to themodule, I can keep it on for.... well I haven't had it dim onme yet lol.  The focusing lens is also a part of the module, so youkind of need it anyways.
Basically, a heatsink absorbs the heat from the diode and disperses it,allowing the diode to function without problem.
corsi5 years ago
What class is the laser
Koen925 years ago
Will a blue-ray diode also work with this module?
KipKay has a specific tutorial for a Blu-Ray diode, just search it on youtube or here on Instructables
thefr34k6 years ago
Hi, This looks like a fun little project, I scrapped a DVD-RAM drive in hopes of finding the appropriate laser however I did not find anything resembling your picture of the Diode. The 2 diodes I found were square with oh say 12 pins? Anyone else tried this with a DVD-RAM/R drive?
Yup, just outta luck really. Depends on what drive you get. You can buy a nice one online for about $10 tho at modwerx.com. The LPC-815. I have it, works great!
ryanforddd5 years ago
I am having the same problem as you George, I still can't figure it out. did you?
King_Chaos5 years ago
Hello! I was wondering if I could use and regular dvd player diode. also if not can u use and old xbox. and could u just buy one. a diode of course.
zatchy215 years ago
any ideas on how to make a driver small enough to fit in the minimag case? or at least small enough to fit in your pocket?
aagrios5 years ago
i will pay you for that or the laser lighter
JudgeMonkey6 years ago
After much work, I managed to open the laser housing. Had to use two heavy pliers to do it. But now that dang laser diode will NOT come out. Since I don't care about the diode, I pushed as hard as I could, and it just won't budge. I don't have an exacto knife, so I have been using a pen.
can you access the diode from the laser side and stick a stick in it and hammer it out? Don't know what housing your using so I can't really suggest much.
expidition6 years ago
does anyone else have 2 diodes from 1 dvd burner like me?
The drive your using is most likely a combo drive, the clear-ish diode is for cd's and will not work, the blue-ish one is the burner that you can use.
can i use 52x dvd writer?
Darter765 years ago
where would the driver circuit fit in the flash light if u wanted to put one in?
Ronan25 years ago
hello, kipkay. i have a question i want to order the lasermodule 5 mW but I cant order him becuase i must say my state and on the site its only Canada or US so where can I order him ??
qballcat6 years ago
heyy on your driver circuit the lines change from red to green, does this mean anything? and what are those little boxes? i can read schematics but in kinda new. :D thanks
weirdo626 years ago
over 800,000 views! nice
Normjr6 years ago
Great Hack! All of your links are to an ebay listing, have you researched any commercial sites where the parts are available? Especially the An AixiZ Laser Module? No offense, but this appears to be an advertisement for an ebay store.
for some reason, when i plug the complete diode in casing into the maglite, it immediately heats up, and the beam doesn't appear. what do I do??
wanfurqaan6 years ago
i've got the laser diode. where can i get the driver? can i get it from a low cost laser keychain?
BelgianRofl6 years ago
Could you use an xbox360 dvd drive for this? I dont know if they are capable of burning.
What are the length of the pins that you soldered to the diode??
dukich55366 years ago
I'm new in this forum, I'm also interested in this stuff. Could some one tell me, what is the Aixiz for in the real life.
djr6789 AXHEJAZ6 years ago
dude ive just fineshed mine and it worked perfectly. are you sure you got the right laser diode because theres 2 of em 1 for burning and 1 for reading the disk.
I just took apart a DVD+_RW and it had two diodes as well. How do I tell which one is for burning and which is for reading?
the burning diode is usally the one stuck to a bigger heat sink due to it generating more heat, or you could connect both to two aa batteris and the brightest one will be the burning one
AXHEJAZ djr67896 years ago
i'm gonna try it again, thanks for the heads up
me mate used a laser diode from a old blue ray burner and it works so good it he uses it for cutting through his project boxs instead of a drill and he also has a laser proof plastics to protect the rest of the table and box.
i'm gonna try it again, thanks for the motivation
did it work this time or did u blow the laser...????
my not me mate at the start
DUDE its ok it works fine. Make damn sure the laser is flush in the laser housing. Toggle the lense so that its twisted more out than in. I know when you look at the laser on a wall its big... BUT go about a foot from the surface of a piece of plastic or your computer keyboard and you will see smoke dude. I thought it was bs at first then I toggled it for about 10 minutes and IT WORKED!!!! I want to find out how to make it more powerful now its so fun. I'm forewarning that the burning capacity is not impressive.
i appreciate the motivation and information! i'm going to try it again!
killmore2316 years ago
Went to the page to get the Housing, and it came back 0 items found. Anywhere else I can get one? -__-
Stillphotog7 years ago
Here's my variation on the final looks/mounting. Instead of relying on the reflector, and leaving the connections exposed more or less. First off, I've used the original mag lens as a retaining ring. I cut a hole in it and expanded it out with a file until the laser lens fit through. This allows for a sturdy mount since the diode pins are held against the socket they're plugged into. That means no more twist on /off, so I added a nice kroll tailswitch. Thick rubber cover, and you can press down slightly for momentary, or all the way to lock it on.
C:\Documents and Settings\Robb Rosenfeld\Desktop\mag1.jpgC:\Documents and Settings\Robb Rosenfeld\Desktop\mag2.jpg
Looks really good. Thanks for the help. Going to order one today:) Just out of curiousity, did you use a driver for the diode.
Where did you get the kroll tailswitch? I looked on their site and couldn't find it but that doesn't mean anything.
Try finding it here...Highly recomended, great service / quality.
Is that a black lens? I know they have some mini-mags that come with extra lens.
That's the stock lens. I scratched it up a bit while cutting the hole for the laser, so I just took either some fine sandpaper, or a scotch-brite pad and sanded both sides of the lens, making it diffused. That way you don't see the empty areas outside of the "can" inside the head. Looks black because not much light is getting inside.
Very nice. YOU could do an instructable
dmhjah6 years ago
Its hard to tell in this picture but it looks like the remainder of the old diode has not been removed. Isn't the white part is what needs to be tapped on? I also imagine that the driver is not needed as well? Then place the new diode in, the spring and the black housing we see in one of the next pictures?
dmhjah6 years ago
So the black screw casing that came with the original diode lens is used again? So I take that I would solder the extensions on to the + and - to the new diode, place the new diode, and then put in the black screw casing?
hey do i have to buy all tht stuff off ebay?!
will a normal dvd reader work?
456logan6 years ago
why do you have to use a driver circuit and what is the negative of not using one???
getthim6 years ago
what would happen if you use the diode from the dvd player
It will be weak.
it would just be a regular old pointer right? just not setting stuff on fire capabilities
i ripped one out of a dvd reader movie palyer thing and i forgot that if you solder directly to metal back, it will short out so now i need to find another i dont think its worth the energy, just go buy a cheap one off ebay or something
The DVD player diode is less than 10mW of power, it's too weak to do anything meaningful.
What would happen if you used the diode that came with the laser housing AixiZ?
The mW rating is too low, it won't burn, you'll just have a laser pointer.
Would the laser driver in the Bic Laser hack work with the laser diode in this hack?
Probably, I don't see why not. It *might* be a different driver given that it's a blue laser diode, but I don't think it's any different. I think it just needs to regulate the current being fed to the diode so it doesn't burn out.
So if I don't use a driver with this laser then how long before it burns out?
Until it burns out, and not a minute more. I'm sorry, I'm afraid I have no idea. It's kind of a variable. That's like asking how long a battery's going to last, there are variables that can't be predicted. Suffice to say, if you're using a Blu-Ray or HD-DVD blue diode, for the cost you'll want to use a driver. If you have a cheap source of DVD-burner diodes, I would still recommend a driver but you could do without. It's all a matter of what you want, ease of build, cost, attention to detail, etc.
LOL - I see your point.
Hope that helps put some things into perspective!
Absolutely, I appreciate the help:) I did find out one thing though. There are dvd burners whose diodes are physically configured in a different way and could not possible be used for this hack -- I found out the hard way.
486dx4 getthim6 years ago
not a whole lot. the reason he used a burner diode, is because it has to be more powerful to write onto a DVD, whereas to read it it just needs to reflect off the surface.
carl016 years ago
kevkid carl016 years ago
No, Because it doesn't limit voltage, although Mack44 did say something interesting and I quote "For anyone who want to make this: - the laser diode is an semiconductor components. It means that: when is in conduction... (it lights) the resistence is going to 0, and the amperage will grow to maximum- infinite. And of course, is burn. For that reason an resistor is required to limit the amperage. Try an 4,7 ohm variable rezistor. First ensure is on maximum resistance. then adjustit till laser diode start to light hard. and stop right there. If u decrease too much the resistor, the lifetime of diode will be very short, about 3 hours maximum." This is interesting because i am using 270 and 330 ohm resistors for my driver, because i want to regulate voltage, because there are voltage spikes that can come from the batteries, but that driver regulates current which is needed for the diode to burn if there isn't enough current the diode will not burn, but too much will cause it to overheat.
Prof I.tiki6 years ago
are you sure this works i tried it and there was no results :@
Yes it works
sephirothpp6 years ago
Does ir work with a Laptop DVD Burner ??
Usually no because the diode is smaller (if you had the proper housing it would work). Regardless the diode will light up ect. but you would not be able to put it inside the housing.
i would not try it because i managed to take apart a desktop and the diode had eight or ten pins on it so I would use the one Kip-Kay used
kipkay I have a 22x burner. I was wondering if that will work? will? thanks
Yes 22x DVD burner will work.
UbuntuNinja6 years ago
I tried to remove the pre-installed diode from the Aixiz houseing, but I could not get it out. I tried using an exacto knife the way it is suggested, and using a small screwdriver. Neither worked. How can I get the diode out of my now slightly mangled housing? Also when inserting the DVD laser diode into the houseing, do you install it from the top of the housing (the part where the lens screws in) or the bottom (where the circuit board for the original diode would be before it is removed)?
There is a lot of force involved to get the diode out, I had used a vice and wrapped my housing with paper to prevent scratching, also i used a bigger screwdriver and a hammer, you put the diode in from the bottom in, so it goes in where the circuit board was.
hey ubuntuninja just watch the video I provided in the link above that will show you how to get the laser diode in the housing.
Thanks for the video, very informative. Do I really need to keep the little circuit board on the back of the housing? I don't see any mention of keeping it in the Instructable. What exactly does the little board do? Is it like some sort of voltage regulating system?
I think the board is just a regulator of some sort but anyway no you do not need it. You only need the housing to use as a heatsink and a lens. As long as you have some sort of regulating system (resistors, potentiometer etc.) you should be fine
noreply00006 years ago
hi everyone, im a newbie. i wanna ask couple of question. in this project, the diode is directly connect to the battery or need to replace the 200mw diode on the electric board of the aixiz laser module then just connect to the battery? Thanks.
The instructions are to connect the diode to the diode directly, but it will be better to construct a driver for the circuit so you don't get voltage spikes from the batteries.
lamborox6 years ago
if i got a 32x dvd drive would the laser be stronger?
kevkid lamborox6 years ago
No, it will not. The speed only refers to the speed that the disk spins.
yrogerg776 years ago
Wow... construct my own driver? This is getting a little too advanced for me, does anyone know if there is anywhere you can buy a driver for this type of project for pretty cheap? I already broke one laser diode trying to get this thing to work, and I'm not sure how much more money I'm willing to spend. This is a really cool idea for a $20 and under project... but if I'm going to end up spending $50 or so on some home-made novelty item, then no thanks...
Well the driver construction isn't exactly hard, i mean he basically gives you a Driver circuit schematic so you just have to build it, but the priceing is true, $40 for the diode on the link, thats kind of a lot of money to ask for when you could get dvd burners off new egg for $22. But when your finished with the project it feels good that you have done something constructive
This one is REALLY cheap, probably not very good, but I'm going to try it. http://www.o-like.com/b2b_cpinfo.asp?id=987 if the link doesn't work then search "2pcs CC power supply driver" on their site.
I got my laser with a housing from this site for $27. http://stonetek.org/shop/
I was pleased with the service although shipping was a little slow. They sell a good driver for $20. To me this seems a little steep but its a driver.

You could also get a nice driver for $26 here: http://hacylon.case.edu/ebay/laser_diode/Micro_FlexDrive.php or their cheaper driver here: http://hacylon.case.edu/ebay/laser_diode/LavaDrive1.php

I'm with you on the cost which is why i'm going to try to build this driver: http://fr.truveo.com/DIY-How-To-Make-A-Laser-Diode-Driver-Circuit/id/157974391

Good luck!
Will a blue colour laser diode work?if it does how to get one without destroying a a hdd drive or how to get one in singapore?Help will be appreciated.pls reply thanks.
You don't get Laser diodes from HDD (but you can get powerful magnets out of them). You can use a blue diode from a Blu-ray burner, which would make it cooler but much more expensive, you should probably go with a red diode because of the shorter wavelength/cost to manufacture, either way yes it would work, if you can get your hands on a diode that has a high enough power rating then it would work.
noj48886 years ago
Can I use a CD player/burner and DVD player/burner Diode?
A CD player/burner diode doesn't conduct enough mW to burn anything. The same goes for a simple DVD reading diode. Burning DVDs requires a more powerful laser than CDs, and more powerful than simply reading the DVD. So no, nothing less than a DVD burner diode will work. It seems 200mW is the weakest one would want to use.
Well not only that but CD diodes are in the infrared part of the electromagnetic spectrum meaning we wouldn't be able to see it.
what if you just want to build a pionter would a dvd reader be enough and will it run off onlye 1 aa battery and make it last longer if you only run this for a few seconds, do you have to use axis housing ime oke with it being a line and whatnot
Like I said, a DVD reader diode isn't strong enough, period. It needs to be no less than a DVD writer diode. You can use a DVD writer diode without a driver circuit, sure. But it wears the diode out very quickly, which is why it isn't recommended.
A.J. noj48886 years ago
dmhjah6 years ago
How long will this diode last in this configuration? Will the driver in the Bic Laser work with the 200mw laser diode 650nm? Cheers
MrLWJ6 years ago
Is the driver included with the 5mw laser acceptable to be used with the 200mw laser? If it is it will save a lot of time and a few bucks to boot.
dmhjah6 years ago
Hi, When you say 200 mw Red Laser Diode 650nm. Does the 650nm refer to the size of the laser module?
dmhjah6 years ago
The one in the picture looks different then the one seen on the link. Is the difference only in looks?
EdelRitter6 years ago
How about a CD/DVD RW drive, will that work?
-Aj- EdelRitter6 years ago
yes, they have two separate lasers. one for cd one for dvd. you need the dvd one. figuring out which is which is the tricky bit. as cd burner lasers are infrared and you cannot see it, but it can still burn your eyes. if you hook both up in turn the way indicated in this instructable and see which one is crazy bright red, then you found the right one. if its really dim red its the cd laser and the red is just a dim light to let you know its on.
What is the diffrence between a driver diode and a cd/dvd doide? is it more powerful? does it work better? is it hotter?
It takes a lot more power to burn a dvd rather than read it
bigern19906 years ago
Hey Kipkay. I plan on using my laser all the time. My friends and I are really into lasers like this. Would I be able to take the laser driver that is in the laser housing I purchased from mfgcn.com and use that as the driver for this diy? If so, that'd be great. If not, are there any "pre-made" drivers online I can use, or is it possible to use a driver from a $1 store laser pen :p Any help is greatly appreciated, if it weren't for your video I wouldn't be doing this in the first place.
heimo6 years ago
Hello kipkay would that driver circuit you have posted in step 10 work for this laser diode


KRSJuan8 years ago
Thanks for this, I have extracted 3 lasers already this morning and am ready to build......................BUT Exactly which AixiZ housing to buy? The only one on their site for $4.50 is different than the one pictured (it's brass). It looks like your using the 8mm x 14mm, but I would like to be sure before I order a bunch. Thanks, KRS Juan
Kipkay (author)  KRSJuan8 years ago
It is a 650nm 5mw module 12mm brass case. While they are silver in color, they are brass construction.
ljfa321 Kipkay8 years ago
what's the different between

1.650nm 5mw module 12mm brass case

2.635nm 5mW module 3.2VDC w/ adjustable lens 635 nm

will the no.2 be better to focuse the laser bean?
(since 635nm is smaller than 650nm?)

and also the "w/ adjustable lens" will be easier to use?
The lens is not adjustable more than once, when you assemble it. And, 635nm is green. Green lasers are guaranteed to be more expensive. Go for the red. Brass is good.
The answer to the first question is yes 635nm is better then 650nm. Its more expensive, but its a truer brighter red. Burning and visibility starts at a lower mW output.

And for future notice:

405nm = Violet
473nm = Blue
532nm = Green
556nm = Yellow
593nm = Orange
635nm = Bright Red
650nm = Red
808nm< = IR
Thing is, he's talking about the module with out the LD. And a mW is a mW. No colour burns better than any other, unless you're talking about different colours of object you're burning. A 650nm and a 635nm LD of the same power will both burn a black object exactly the same, however visibility is different. The closer you get to human eye peak visibility (555nm) the brighter a colour seems, for the same amount of power. And you forgot another common laser colour. 780nm IR for DC players or burners. It is slightly visible but much brighter if you can see IR (with a CCD or CMOS camera). Try laserpointerforums.com you will learn a lot there, like how to make a DIY laser WITHOUT burning out the laser diode like this 'hack' will. I GUARANTEE YOUR DIODE WILL FAIL IN ONLY A FEW HOURS OF OPERATION IF YOU DO NOT USE A (appropriate) DRIVER / REGULATOR. (I mean constant on time, added up.) Learn to build a BLUE laser for the SAME PRICE as a red one. Learn where to get a GREEN LASER that is visible from MILES AWAY! and BURNS THROUGH WOOD! Mostly, discuss your new hobby of lasers, ask for help, post advice, get access to discount codes for various laser companies, and all in a totally nonbiased and open community!
Thats not true. My 55mW Green Wicked Laser burns faster then my 240mW Maglaser. And tell me more about the DIY failing in only a few hours. I made one, and it has been working fine. I bought the AixiZ Laser Module, and took off the circuitry board that was stopping it from working. I was wondering what the purpose of the circuitry board is. p.s "808nm<" stands for 808nm and up. I was only stating the most common colors every one should know. 808nm and up is a wavelength most people should not mess with unless they know exactly what they are doing.
The only case it would be possible for a green WL to burn better than a DVD burner diode would be if it were a red object you are trying to burn. Bottom line. A mW is a mW. Colour makes no difference. That's how thermal laser meters work. No need to set the wavelength, you just shine the laser onto the sensor and get a power reading. Explain how that works if different colours are more powerful. Don't believe me, email Coherent Inc (very large professional laser company) and ask. And also, the circuit board ('circuitry') in the Aixiz housing is a driver for the <5mW laser diode preinstalled. I take it you did actually put in teh diode from a DVD burner? It sounds like "I bought the AixiZ Laser Module, and took off the circuitry board that was stopping it from working." you just left the original diode in there, which could explain why a 55mW wicked laser burns better. Actually there is another possible reason... IR. Green DPSS lasers, if improperly filtered, can emit their rated power of green, and significantly more IR at 808 or 1064nm. Which burns just as well as green 532nm. If you are getting better burning on black objects from a 55mW green than a 185mW red (IF the red is focussed properly) than it's probably IR doing the burning which is quite dangerous, as the human eye has no blink reflex to IR. Imagine literally cooking your retina and not noticing until you can't see anymore. One more thing. Not even a 20x open can diode can give 240mW unless installed on a peltier cooler (TEC element) and if it's a 16x diode than 150-185mW is the range you will get. If you don't believe me, come on laserpointerforums.com and ask any of the 6600 members.
hey I work on a bomb squad and am looking to make something or buy something that I can burn through the rubber/plastic and thorugh other thin materials while working on devices. Can any of these things do this, or should i make a more powerful one.?
Hey listen you seem to have a pretty good idea as to what you are talking about. I am building my first laser and was getting ready to base my operation off of this video. From what I have ready in your posts, thats a bad idea. Do you have a video with better instructions on how to make one? I want lots of burning power, a nice casing, and somewhere within $60 for the parts. Any advice is welcome. Thanks for the warning posts.
Hey, it's nice to see someone who wants to do it well. It is a very bad idea to follow these instructions.
A good DIY red can be made for $40 (in a torch for under $60), and all the information you could need and more are at http://www.laserpointerforums.com
It's the only place to go for any information about any sort of laser.

I can also sell some very nice lasers, red, green and violet, in box housings, TTL and or analog modules with TEC cooling, or even portable units (kinda torch size).
Hey, thanks for the advice I did just that and found great instructions with helpful pics. Again I have decided that you know what you're talking about and may contact you with questions in the future. Im just_here_2_learn on laserpointerforums.com. Thanks for the advice. Its nothing personal but I am going to make my own just so that I can learn about lasers in the process. Thanks for the offer though. See ya around.
They have 240mW 650nm diodes on ebay. Are those more powerful than the one I'm using? (16x dvd burning diode) Can it be replaced with that, or would a 240mW diode need cooling? What is the max output power in 650nm I can use with the 3V Maglight? Using just the diode like done in this project in a AixiZ Laser Module. They also have a 1000mW 808nm IR Diode on ebay. Can it just replace the 5mW diode in the AixiZ Laser Module?
I wouldn't buy any diode from ebay. You have no guarantee about the output power. I would say that they would be probably about the same without cooling. If you cool a 16x diode, you can push it to 600mA input, though the peak emission (most output) is achieved at 400mA with a TEC cooling it to about 20 degrees C. Also a 1W IR diode would be in a much bigger can and would not fit. I STRONGLY advise against using a laser diode of any sort without a driver. I can sell you a professionally built red laser using a similar diode, that takes CR123 batteries. In a proper professionally machined housing, with a driver and everything. for $130 USD. Output power ~185mW and significantly longer lifespan than a maglite hack. Anyone contact me at cgeeky [nospam] @ gmail DOT com if you're interested. I still think you should come to laserpointerforums.com though... great resource, I learned everything I know about lasers from there.
What dose it take to turn a 25,000mW 808nm laser into a 532nm green? And that would probably put me around 5W. And thats around where I want to be. But how much easer would it be to use only a 5,000mW 808nm, putting me around 1W green?
You posted the same question on LPF didn't you? I can't find the thread though... you got a link? You'd need a Nd:YVO4 block, and a KTP block, both coated appropriately and made to handle that sorta power. It'd really be easier to sell your IRs and go buy a premade 5W green labby... sooo much easier and cheaper.
Im sure some diodes are better than others. Its pretty lucky to have a 16x diode that didn't go out right away when pushed to 240mW. They usualy run at 2.5 volts in the DVD burner. All of these are run much harder then mine though.
wtf was I on. 635nm is not green... lol, thats 535. or 532 is more common.
hey Kipkay, i was wondering if you could use a standard lazer lens for example -http://wolfstone.halloweenhost.com/Lighting/litled_LASERPointers.jpg
the one on the far left of this picture, it can focuse a stadard red lazer poiner, i was wondering if it could do the same to a DVD burner laser.

and also can i use a CD burner instead of a DVD burner vice versa?

Please rely, (this is prt of a project for my 6th form)
thanks (",)
Endy SnypaSingh7 years ago
"can i use a CD burner instead of a DVD burner vice versa?" No, that has been said many times. CD burners use infrared LED. I tested the one i got in my DVD burner (there are two LEDs in, one for CDs and one for DVDs), it barely emits any red light at all, but it does emits plenty of invisible but dangerous infrared radiation.
k3y3l3e3 Endy7 years ago
welliu already extracted my CD burner lense what can iu do with it now???
i mean dioad
SnypaSingh Endy7 years ago
thanks for the reply, another question can i use the lens from a cheap standard red lazer, the one in the link


sukinmaru6 years ago
Where on earth do I hook the driver up to (I made my own)? I also bought a 200mw diode off eBAY along with an appropriet moduel. If this does'nt scortch a hole in a baloon or incinerate a match nothing will. Someone skilled with electronics please tell me how to assemble this! I AM DESPERATE!!!
nbcgod8 years ago
Is it possible to break the diode if I put it in wrong? And how to I check Polarity with a AA battery? Brian Sheehan
LarryQ nbcgod8 years ago
If you put in the diode backwards, it is possible to damage it...If you try to put a lot of load on it. If you put one AA battery on you SHOULD be ok.... If it's backwards, it will NOT laze..it's a DIODE after all, and is designed to only allow energy to flow in one direction! Really there should be no reason to wire it backwards if you have a Multimeter.. (If you don't have one GET ONE AT YOUR LOCAL RADIOSHACK ASAP!!!) The schematic that is in the video of a laser diode pin outs is pretty easy to read... 3 pins.... Arrange to look like the letter "D" or an arrow pointing RIGHT... +. (pos pin) --. (neg Pin) . (Ignore Pin) Top pin will ALWAYS be Positive.... Middle (furthest to the right) will ALWAYS be Negative Bottom.....well Not used for anything in this curcuit..so cut the darn thing off! hehehe Then check the two "Holes" where the original maglight bulb went... Stick a couple of pins down there and use the multi meter to determine proper polarity.. If you check the voltage on your multimeter and it shows -3.2 volts (NEGATIVE)...you've got it reversed...and now you will know which "Hole" is positive and negative... If you take an exacto blade and scribe the black plastic near the holes + and - you will forever know how your light is wired!.. Larry
what's an ignore pin... o_0
I have just one question. The picture showing the polarities, is that facing towards us or away from us? its just that if it was facing away from us then the the top pin would b positive, but if it was then facing the other direction and then turned to show the D formation, the positive would then b on the bottom. i just need to know if the diagram id facing towards us or away from us so i don't mess my laser up. thank you for your time.
Dystonia LarryQ8 years ago
use a volt ohm diode tester this will check polarity red wire is pos. black neg.
nbcgod LarryQ8 years ago
Ok I think I have a multi-meter in my shed. thanks alot Brian
Putting the laser diode in backwards won't hurt anything, it just won't light up that way.
sukinmaru6 years ago
I'm guessing that the diode will burn-out if used too much without the proper driver?
fcampbe46 years ago
Do you guys think you could take the diode just out of a regular cd player?
Fizzxwizz6 years ago
Will this light a fuse?
In one of your video,you mention that instead of destroying a xbox360 you can use a broken one. what do you mean by broken ones?how do you make sure that the laer diode is not damaged when getting a broken xbox360?thank you for your help?Pls reply
TOCO6 years ago
hey kipkay i am a huge fan!!! I have a Que!Fire 12x10x32x cdrw and I was wondering if it would work for this project. If not what other amazing thing can I do with it?
badboy0076 years ago
anyonewant to build me one. i will buy it for 60 bucks or make me an offer trade an ipod or whatevers clever : )
you can buy one pre assembled on deal extreme thats where i got mine here are 3 links. one for the laser 1 for lithium ion batteries and one for the charger for the lithium ion batteries. i recomend it. mine is amazing.

battery cr2
battery charger
awww man no shipping in the U.S.A. :(
OK this is the part I have ordered to install into a mini Maglite. It does not come with a driver circuit and I was under the impression a driver circuit was not needed if you were only building a casual toy such as this one. I mean this isn't a laser I am going to be running scientific experiments with that require precise outputs for hours at a time so I was just curious as to what would happen if I ran it via a 9V battery instead of a pair of AAs.
11richie216 years ago
does this work with a dvd player?
Darter766 years ago
anyone know where i can get a driver circuit? what the laser housing do? does it just hold the laser or just attach the laser the the power source?
If you look around there are other Instructables that have schematics for driver circuits. Kipkay has one for his 007 laser weapon unleashed project, and there is one project claiming lasers to be better than duct tape that you might also look into. The housing is used as a heat sink and holds your focusing lens. Otherwise it comes out as a line instead of a dot, and you can't do a whole lot with a line except scan bar codes. If you want to make it easy on yourself, when you purchase your housing it should come with a diode and driver circuit installed. Just use your diode to replace the one already on the circuit. It should drive your diode fine. It may under drive it (not use it's full potential) but it should last longer that way. If you scroll down this page, someone posted a really useful youtube video link of someone doing the project. I would recommend watching that. I hope that was helpful. Happy tweaking.
does the axis laser housing listed in this instructable come with a driver circuit?
It should come with a driver circuit with a laser diode attached (It should come with a diode and driver circuit, but that may also depend on where you purchase the housing. I can't promise anything. But I do believe it does. To be on the safe side, see if it says on the website you get it from, or call their customer service and ask). You will have to remove the diode that comes with the housing and solder your diode into place the same way the original diode was mounted (more or less). I'm sure you already know to take note of which lead is positive and which is negative before you remove the diode. Is that what ou were looking for?
this will work with a blue laser diode right?
yea kipkay has a different vid on it so yea
Honestly I don't know. When you get your housing in and you take the diode off, you should use your multimeter (Assuming you have a multimeter.) to check the voltage on the output terminals of the driver circuit. If it has the proper output it should work. I would also recommend attaching a capacitor to the output terminals along with the laser diode to dampen any spikes from the battery. The driver circuit should be stable enough, but I don't know exactly how stable it is. I haven't used it before. You might even try running an L.E.D off it for a while and monitoring the light to see how it will function for an extended period of time. But if you're wanting a blue laser diode you could look on laserpointer forums.com. I've heard there is a sort of all purpose driver circuit on there. I just haven't had time to look for it yet. I also read that there was someone working on an instructable for a driver circuit superior to the one Kipkay has on his 007 laser weapon project. I think I'll give that a try if it comes out soon. Is there anything else?
yes thank you
I realize that this tutorial recommends installing this in a 2AA Mini Maglite (3V) but since the diode comes out of a DVD burner that is powered by 12V inside a PC would it be safe to run 12V through this diode without overloading it? And would that in fact make the laser more powerful? Because I was thinking of hooking this to a 9V battery instead of two AAs.
Junk Mail6 years ago
What is a driver circuit?
Dartgunman6 years ago
I was also wondering what the aixiz housing do and I have a different dvd burner diode and I don't know if it will fit into the aixiz housing. Can you help please?
Dartgunman6 years ago
is mfgcn.com reliable because I don't want to get screwed
djpat266 years ago
Hi, I remove a laser diode (at least I think it's that) and i wanna know if i'm on the money or really far from a laser diode. I removed this from a LG dvd burner gsa-h55n. And do a multitester can send enough currect to test it?
taosif.an6 years ago
Hello, I am also interested in the photo transistor (the device that receives the reflected light), how can i extract it? and about the led, are the anode and cathode distinguishable and does anybody know the power rating of the diode (both burning and IR?) Thanks
blugyblug6 years ago
Has anyone actually tried doing this with a normal DVD player? You say it doesnt work but what part doesnt work? Is it not compatible with AA batteries or something?
Yeah stupid comment, I'm only 13 =/
Basically you'll have spent all your time and money on a normal red laser pointer if you use a regular DVD player diode.
So it works? Its just really weak, like a normal laser pointer for presentations and everything.
If you do use a DVD player diode the light would apparently be invisible to the human eye, why you ask? Well, a DVD player uses a diode that "reads" the CD through holes placed inside it through DVD burners! See, You want the DVD burner not the DVD reader.
Well, I haven't done it myself. I don't see any reason why it wouldn't work. I imagine that it would be brighter than a normal presentation pointer. I just don't really see the point of going through the trouble of making one if you aren't going to make a really really good one.
the diode is meant to read not burn
jamesly1236 years ago
Can i use a Enzer E5488 laser diode?
madkid456 years ago
i just removed the laser diode from my "light scribe" dvd burner but it looks nothing like the one you have. and all of the prongs are in a strait line what do i do?
ryguy4254256 years ago
I have (had) a panasonic dvd recorder (for recording tv) that conveniently broke randomly right after the warranty expired. I now have the laser diode completely extracted without using a soldering iron. It was held together by screws and some kind of glue that looks like latex calking. When I ran out of screws I pried it out with a mini screwdriver. I can't believe I got it out! Panasonic (the one I have) works great (so far), now to move on to the next step when I get the parts conveniently located on the other side of the world. Thanks Kip Kay for teaching us noobs how to do cool stuff!
I'm afraid that's how a lot of warranties work. The companies test their products to see how long they last and then make the warranty just a little shorter.
noreply00006 years ago
Kiss my donkey, Thanks ya! http://cgi.ebay.com.my/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&item=120420962900 can i use the laser module to modify on other flashlight? can the dvd laser work with AAA battery? Thanks.!
Cool. And don't forget, You can burn images on bread with this (and sell your Toast of Turin for maybe $20)
hey kiplay, i have got all the parts fitted together perfectly and have focused the laser but it still doesn't burn anything. the diode is 200mw does it need to be stronger or is there any other explanation why it is not burning?
kipkay plz help i dont really want to make a burning laser pointer just a reagular one. would the laser from like a cheapo cd player work but it has 3 pins comeing out of it help?!?!