Introduction: Pimp My Spirograph!
This is a show-off of my mod of the Eurolite LAS-7 (and my first instructable :). The original spiro costs around 50€ more. Well, you get a 5mW red laser that is barely visible... What a deal LOL. If you want something better, you can buy the LAS-8 which has 5mW green laser inside and costs "only" 100€ and more...
Stop that crap! These lasers aren't worth the money. Because of this, I managed to buy it for 13€ from a guy on electronics forum and decided to put inside some REAL laser. Here's what I did.
I actually made 2 versions, the first with 250mW red laser and then with 50mW geen laser.
You can also see the mod here: http://laserpointerforums.com/f47/eurolite-las-7-upgrade-59360.html#post838805
Step 1: Parts
The spiro - I don't know where you can get it for such low price, you may find some on ebay or so
VERSION 1 (red)
laser: LPC-815 http://www.modwerx.com/shop/laser-components-c-2/lpc-815-20x-dvd-burner-laser-lens-assemblyred-laser-diode-p-2?zenid=vmn6cp5441gi4a5tq3auupate2
laser housing (Aixiz module): http://www.modwerx.com/shop/laser-modules-spare-lenses-c-12/laser-focusing-module-for-5-6mm-laser-diodes-adjustable-focus-p-11?zenid=vmn6cp5441gi4a5tq3auupate2
diode driver: LM317 and 3.5ohm/1W resistor
VERSION 2 (green)
voltage stabiliser: LM317 + 240ohm resistor + 5Kohm potentiometer
+ some wires, wall PSU (9-12V, 1A or more) and another small heatsink
Tools used: soldering iron, hex-key, pliers, hot glue, DMM
Step 2: Red Laser
First I wanted to connect the new laser to the original laser's connector, but there was a resistor before it that was limiting the current under like 30mA so I soldered it directly to 7806. But since the laser draws 350mA, the 7806 started to get very hot so I placed a small heatsink on it and installed small pc fan inside the case.
Finally I aligned the laser module and hotglued it inside. BAM! :D
Step 3: Green Laser
Even though 250-300mW red sounds like a lot of power, it's still not very visible. The solution? Green laser!
So I ordered the 30mW green module from dealextreme and when it arrived I did simillar thing.
First, I built LM317 voltage regulator and set it to around 3.3V (direct 6V would kill the laser). Then I placed the green module into the gap on heatsink, applied some thermal paste and pressed it together to make a nice, tight fit. I screwed the LM317 to the heatsink (this time no need to isolate it).
After this, the 7806 got so hot that I couldn't touch it, so I placed bigger heatsink on it.
Then again, align it, use hotglue, connect it and here we go!