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Why isn't my burning laser focused? Answered

I recently bought a 5.6 mm, 300 mw, 650 nm laser diode and a corresponding driver. ( I believe it was this one : http://www.ebay.com/itm/300mW-650nm-High-Power-red-laser-diode-/261004757828?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3cc5188b44 ). Anyways, I got a 3.2 VDC output from the driver and connected it to the laser diode. However, the light looks more like a flashlight, and isn't focused at all. I read up on it and I believe that the problem is that it needs a laser housing. Is this correct?



Best Answer 6 years ago

You need the collimator assembly ( lens assembly ) to focus the natural
diode coherent light spray,  to a beam and maybe a point at some
distance to burn some balsa wood.


That's what I was thinking.

Also, diode beams are notoriously elliptical.

You need a lens of a short enough focal length to put the energy down on a small spot, but long enough to stop you getting smoke on the optics.