Introduction: Laser Pointer Modification

Modifying a small laser pointer to accept larger batteries.

Step 1: Modification

I had a key chain laser pointer that soon became my dogs favorite toy. (He loves to chase the red point around) Unfortunately the batteries would run out after a few hours of play. At $4.95 each the batteries are pretty pricey and the pointer needs 3. I decided to modify it, to use regular batteries instead of the expensive ones.
What you will need:
- laser pointer
- car cigarette lighter plug
- hose clamp
- 4 AA battery holder
- electrical tape

Step 2: Assembly

- solder a positive and negative wire to where the batteries fit in the laser pointer
- fit the wires through butt end of the cigarette lighter connector
- fit laser pointer into butt end of cigarette lighter connector (might have to use electrical tape to butt fit it properly (red tape in previous picture))
- the old batteries were 1.5v each, that means we need 3 AA batteries to have the same voltage
- attach clamp in the middle of laser and cigarette lighter connector
- attach battery holder to clamp
- attach wiring to battery holder
- insert batteries and test

Final Notes:
After extensive testing, a set of batteries will last a year or more. It looks like a funky alien weapon but it makes great fun for my dog and koi fish.

Comments

author
pcanywii made it!(author)2014-05-07

I'm not good at making instructables so I want someone to make an instructable about uses of a laser pointer. I guess they can entertain you but not a ton... ??

author
cochrate made it!(author)2009-03-04

solder a positive and negative wire to where the batteries fit in the laser pointer - I would like to do this for a different project it is not working for me. where exactly do you solder the wires ? Thanks

author
maniacse made it!(author)2012-06-08

If You dont want to disassembly this cheap laserpointer, You may solder negative wire to string and positive wire to tapping or casing. If You have extracted board, then negative wire to point, where was attached string and positive wire to contact, where was attached casing of pointer.

author
ronaln304 made it!(author)2009-10-26

or the another way of power is to plug it in your usb port on you computer. it is 4.5 volts

author
srhadaham made it!(author)2009-12-03

Good idea, but I'm pretty sure usb is 5 volts, I could be wrong though

author
maniacse made it!(author)2012-06-08

Yes, it is 5V. But, when I play with my dog, my PC/laptop rest home.. So, nice idea, but for other use..

author
f4ngu5 made it!(author)2007-03-24

you said, "the old batteries were 1.5v each, that means we need 3 AA batteries to have the same voltage". However AA batteries are 1.5V anyway. Also are your batteries in paralell or series. It looks as if they are in series which means that however many batteris you connect in series they will still have the same voltage (in your case 1.5V). This means that in fact you dont need three batteries. The only way you would need three was if your original batteries were 4.5v and your new ones were connected in series.

author
Project+D made it!(author)2011-02-02

The original batteries were 1.5v each, times three. Regardless of whether series or parallel increase the voltage, the old setup called for three 1.5v batteries, and he replaced them with three 1.5v batteries, so he did it properly.

author
Briguy9 made it!(author)2009-07-16

HAHA are you kidding? 1 AA batt = 1.5V, 1 old batt = 1.5V.

1.5V old batt x 3 = 4.5V
1.5V AA batt x 3 = 4.5V
It's grade school math, and so is this:
1.5V ≠ 4.5V, or
1.5V < 4.5V. They aren't the same, dude.

Oh yeah, Second Grade called, you're due for another year.

author
Project+D made it!(author)2011-02-02

Ease up, he did the same thing many of us have done, misunderstood the OP and thought he meant 1.5v *total* for the old batteries. Be nice.

author
SimoMies made it!(author)2007-09-19

You are a complete moron. Learn electronics BEFORE start complaining. IF you put 3 AA batteries in series, that counts to 4.5V. Amps stays the same, just like blackghost informed. If you put them in parallel though, then it'll be still 1.5V but it'll last longer.

author
srhadaham made it!(author)2008-12-03

You winz

author
Kaiven made it!(author)2009-09-19

Yup. Second grade is calling Briguy9... lolz...

author
blackghost made it!(author)2007-06-17

voltages in series add, amps stay the same

author
Mzege made it!(author)2007-05-10

why do u need a cigerate lighter?

author
dethmnky666 made it!(author)2009-05-05

i have a very limited spending range how much does all of this total?

author
gnasty+gnork made it!(author)2008-02-16

I have tried to do this before and it broke my laser pointer. Overpowering the laser pointer will only make it break easier. not brighter,

author
Davvik made it!(author)2008-09-03

The little laser pointer batteries are 1.5v and so are AA, AAA, C, and D

author
gnasty+gnork made it!(author)2008-09-04

I used one D cell battery and it shined brighter for a split second and dimmed to nothing in about 3 more seconds

author
sjs229 made it!(author)2009-02-09

same happened with mine but it came back to life when i kept it in the freezer for a hour

author
srhadaham made it!(author)2008-12-03

That would be undepowering it not overpowering 3 * 1.5V = 4.5V

author
cornflaker made it!(author)2008-12-19

There is more to it than just voltage you know. A D cell has a whole lot more current than a button cell. Also it very unusual for something to be damaged from being under powered.

author
awang8 made it!(author)2008-12-22

You'll probably need something like a 100k resistor depending on the original button cells.

author
Modeo made it!(author)2008-08-22

Yes overpowering will break it, however this instructable is to increase usable time of the laser by substituting longer lasting batteries at same voltage.

author
peanutthegreat made it!(author)2008-10-08

i had this crappy laser/led combo from a dollar store, and i took out the laser and put it in a pen and soldered it to a usb cable, and now its cool. its also way brighter and i can piss off kids in computer class.

author
DV8Ways made it!(author)2009-01-08

You should do an 'ible on how to connect to a USB cable... I was thinking this would be useful for the professional doing powerpoint presentation and what not... You could connect the laser to your USB port of the Laptop from which you are hosting the presentation and never have to worry about batteries... Just make sure to give yourself some length on the cable so you can walk a little ways from the Laptop to present the material...

author
peanutthegreat made it!(author)2009-01-10

you could, but it would be easier to just use a 9 volt; no cords, less hassle.

author
gnasty+gnork made it!(author)2008-10-10

I hate those "wal-mart, dollar store" laser pointers because every time i take one apart the laser diode and led if there magically vanishes as i open the case. by the way did you get detention from pissing kids off in computer class??? if not, your teacher rocks

author
peanutthegreat made it!(author)2008-10-11

No, shes pretty cool, but there was a sub that day. Me and my friend are at a 193% *shrug* so we had a laser fight on the rolly chairs. ;D

author
awang8 made it!(author)2008-12-22

I got a $3.95 laser pointer and 2 white LED torch combo but the batteries are dead in just 1 week of pointing the funny red dot around the house.

author
chinnerz made it!(author)2008-08-23

the small cells which the laser module had be4 are now being replaced by much bigger longer lasting AA batteries. how much charge a battery can give out in its life (i think) is measured in mAh. those small cells have about 70mah, a duracell battery pumps out about 26000 mAh, i think, which will prolong the lasers run time :) . i have done this with all my lasers, i have broke a few but thats because i decided to encase it with hot glue to keep it still. i later found out that this glue is like 90*c when it comes out which is too much for the laser

author
awang8 made it!(author)2008-12-22

Wow... My hot glue is 170*c when it comes out of the kinda-ugly-when-you-think-about-it nozzle.

author
chinnerz made it!(author)2008-12-24

170* thats kinda hot... you would kill the diode with that for sure XD

author
awang8 made it!(author)2008-12-25

I've never killed a thing with my hot glue...

author
chinnerz made it!(author)2008-12-26

rly? wow...

author
cotton made it!(author)2008-12-05

i flagged mmwag's comment as not nice because i hate that and great idea but show us how to build it while your building it

author
Ben.land101 made it!(author)2007-03-30

why cant you just read the "we havw a be nice comment policy" thing at the bottom of the thing while you are typing your reply because this is a great way to save money o batteries and if you had any knowlege at all on electronics (which you oviously dont) than you would know this is very easy to do

author
Supercoke made it!(author)2008-12-04

yeah!!!! u tell him

author
srhadaham made it!(author)2008-12-03

He has a life. His life includes such activities as saving money by modding gadgets to run on cheaper batteries

author
chinnerz made it!(author)2008-08-23

because some lasers are about the size of one of those AA batteries( just a bit shorter ) what you could do is modd the battery holder so that the head of the laser sticks out. what i did was get some zip tie and clamped down the button, then i got a flick switch and put it behind the laser. if you want i can take a photo of the case ( without the laser (that was used for another project))

author
AzNSilentAssassin made it!(author)2008-01-01

now doing this, will it make it more stronger to the point where it can burn things?

author
struckbyanarrow made it!(author)2008-01-04

my lighter plug thingy is to big to fit can i just connect the wires from the bat. pack to it? ~struckbyanarrow

author
Modeo made it!(author)2008-08-22

Sure then all you have to do is secure the laser to the battery pack in some fashion.

author
FunkNattidelic made it!(author)2008-01-12

to make it burn things you have to solder something on the actual chip.

author
FunkNattidelic made it!(author)2008-01-12

the chip that holds the diode or whatever. im gonna put an instructable up on it.

author
Paper+Picco made it!(author)2008-03-17

no the chip that controls the power spike

author
FunkNattidelic made it!(author)2008-03-17

Power spike? are you talking about that teensy little black thing that is soldered on? Thats is called a surface mount resistor. And just so everyone knows, i DID end up trying to solder that little resistor. It doesnt work. I think it would just make it have alot more infrared light which could be EXTREMELY dangerous. When i tried it, the point was very dull and it was hard to make it show up. I WOULD STRONGLY ADVISE AGAINST IT. look at the safety page fror lasers on the internet... This is a hypothesis, about the IR, but i would still consider it a stupid thing to do.

author
Paper+Picco made it!(author)2008-03-18

power spike fo the laser the component u have to solder is the controller so the laser doesnt heat up =/
Think Again

author
FunkNattidelic made it!(author)2008-03-18

Than i just mis-interpreted your message. I think we are talking about the same thing, the chip that the button is on in the laser that makes the light, there are a few things ( on dollar - store ones anyways ) the metallic strips making the actual diode, the resistor to solder that controls how much power actually goes to the diode, and the button that completes the circuit. when you push the button, the power goes through that resistor and the resistor " slows down " the power. If you Disable the resistor than you get the heat. BUT this only works with 5mW or higher GREEN laser Pens. The 5mW littlle laser pointers just get screwed up.

author
Paper+Picco made it!(author)2008-03-19

well it doesnt have to be green man

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