First Step: the laser diode
Getting the laser seemed like the first logical step toward building a laser cutter. First, I disassembled a broken DVD burner that was in my basement and took out the laser diode. It’s wavelength is 650 nm (nanometers). I searched a couple of websites to find an enclosure and lens for the diode, but found that I could get a pre-harvested blu-ray laser diode (wavelength: 405 nm) already inside an enclosure for a couple dollars cheaper than an empty enclosure. I don’t know why, but I didn’t ask questions. I just took the deal. I got the laser from High Tech Dealz.