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Cold Weather - Green Laser Pointer - Insulation Fix

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#1 Sky_LO

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Posted 20 November 2019 - 04:03 PM

Hello ! 

 

I know there are a lot of threads about Green Laser Pointers.

Many mention how they tend to fail, or work poorly in cold weather.       

 

I had mine out at about 32 degrees (F) and it just sort of pathetically flickered.  

 

Then the light bulb came on and I came up with a possible fix.

I wondered if insulation could help. 

 

Thought I would start a new thread about a fix - rather than trying to insert this

into many several GLP threads.  

 

I took a few pieces of scrap pipe insulation that I had laying around, and cut

two  1 1/2 inch pieces and used them to insulate the rear battery area of the laser.   

I used two pieces - to go onto either side of the mount.   

 

The laser was slightly fatter than the pipe this was intended to insulate, so

I had to cut the insulation lengthwise, and splice another piece into the gap.   

Closed with metal ducting tape.    

 

So far so good.   

I was able to get an hour session in last night in mid 30 degree temps, 

and at the end of the session the laser was still working well.  

 

I don't know how low of a temperature this fix will work for, but the insulation fix

was very helpful to keep my laser going for my initial alignments.    

Maybe give it a go and see if it helps you also?  

 

-Lauren   

Attached Thumbnails

  • insulate laser.JPG

Edited by Sky_LO, 20 November 2019 - 04:05 PM.

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#2 Astroman007

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Posted 20 November 2019 - 05:46 PM

That sure as hell wouldn't work up here, LOL.

 

You were at about 0*C, which is warm here at this time of year. If GLPs are having trouble at 0*C, then I fear I'll never have much success with them (well, half the year anyway).


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#3 msl615

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Posted 20 November 2019 - 05:49 PM

I have read about similar solutions before, and yours looks really good. My nights of it being +30F outside are long gone in Alaska now in winter, just like our friend from Northern Ontario above. ...  so the GLPs are all stored inside the house. I still have not come up with a good solution for cold GLP (down to -20F), and really don't want to have to wire up the scope with a dewheater just for the GLP. Hand warmer packs might work, too.   But right now, I work only with cold modified Rigels and Telerads.

 

Mike


Edited by msl615, 20 November 2019 - 05:50 PM.


#4 Sky_LO

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Posted 20 November 2019 - 06:25 PM

OK OK Canada and Alaska observers.....

yes, I am glad my 32 degrees is my cold nights....not my WARM ones !! 

cool.gif 


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#5 Exciton

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Posted 20 November 2019 - 06:41 PM

Seems to me that the laser will likely work fine in the cold temps, it is the batteries that cannot hack it.  Not that long ago I was into high altitude ballooning (at atlitudes of 100,000 ft+) where cold temperatures were also a problem for running electronics.  The solution was to use batteries rated for cold temps.  Energizer makes AA, AAA, and 9V ultimate lithium batteries that operate fine down to -40F/-40C.  Try those in the laser pointer and see if it doesn't do a better job of operating in the cold (you want the "ultimate lithiums" not "advanced lithiums").

 

The packaging can be seen on their website https://www.energize...thium-batteries

 

Data for the technically inclined can be found at https://data.energiz...om/pdfs/l92.pdf

Exciton


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#6 clearwaterdave

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Posted 20 November 2019 - 07:33 PM

I use pinty rifle lasers and the cheap batteries that they come with and they work down to at least 0*f.,so better batteries may help some lasers.,but some of the cheap ebay lasers don't work no matter the batteries.,the one that came with my Z8 doesn't work below 30* no matter what.,lol.,

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Edited by clearwaterdave, 20 November 2019 - 07:35 PM.


#7 msl615

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Posted 20 November 2019 - 09:37 PM

It is not the power, but rather the electronics and crystals that take an IR signal and boost it to green...that method is temp sensitive. Z bolt has a coldweather GLP that creates the green signal directly, without having to boost it....however they rate it down only to 14F...though there are rumors of them working OK @ 0F.



#8 NorthernlatAK

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Posted 20 November 2019 - 10:05 PM

Our local wildlife refuge needs someone to give sky tours and I seem to be the only one qualified that might have time. A laser pointer would be necessary to do this properly so will probably order one. Temps are definitely a problem when stars are visible here, so I will try some insulation. 32° seems pretty balmy here at times except this year it's the norm and warmer. We haven't had a single transparent clear evening here since last winter. I don't even think we've reached single digits yet...
Sure would be nice if there was a true cold weather laser out there for us. Or almost anything electronic for that matter.

#9 Sky_LO

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Posted 21 November 2019 - 12:11 AM

Yes my laser is the inexpensive generic ebay variety.  

 

All I can say is it was being really " iffy " in anything under 40 degrees.   

In prior useage.   (its a piece of junk) 

 

But the insulation seems to be helping.  

Used Scope with laser -again- tonite - High 30's

.  

Laser very strong - no issues - with the pipe insulation on it.  

 

-Lauren


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#10 Andynator

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Posted 21 November 2019 - 10:45 PM

Rubber-band a disposable hand-warmer to it.

#11 Andynator

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Posted 21 November 2019 - 10:45 PM

Rubber-band a disposable hand-warmer to it.
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#12 Sky_LO

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Posted 22 November 2019 - 04:04 AM

Yep, the disposable hand warmer rubber banded is probably the best approach.

'Low temp' rated batteries is also worth a try. 

 

The insulation approach seems like it should work.....It seems helpful.... but only for a short time.

and not if its close to freezing.   My laser fizzled again.  we had lower temps tonight - about 28 degrees. 

The insulation kept it going just long enough for an alignment.    

 

Any other ideas? 

Any other insulation approaches?  

 

Thanks all for your ideas and input.  

I may have to use a red dot finder in the cold rather than the laser. 

 

-Lauren   



#13 Myk Rian

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Posted 22 November 2019 - 07:32 AM

Rubber-band a disposable hand-warmer to it.

This.

#14 clearwaterdave

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Posted 22 November 2019 - 05:01 PM

I tried the handwarmer and could not get it to cover the laser enough.,even with a few of them.,trying to get around the holder made it more trouble than it was worth.,

  The pinty lasers are only $25.,the remote switches have failed on me but the lasers have all worked fine.,I have them on 5 scopes and they stay at outside temps 24/7,.cheers.,



#15 rnabholz

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Posted 22 November 2019 - 05:36 PM

Here is my solution

 

https://www.cloudyni...y/?fromsearch=1


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#16 Sky_LO

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Posted 23 November 2019 - 05:01 PM

Right, a hand warmer plus insulation.  

I like it, I like it, I just might wanna try it.... ! 

 

-Lauren   


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