Laser Show Prototype

Mar 9, 2009
Category:Electronics Arduino 

I've recently acquired a laser pen, and of course, instantly dismantled it! I bypassed the push button and soldered on a couple of wines replacing the batteries, allowing it to be powered and controlled by the Arduino.

I wanted it to wobble about in a random fashion, so I mounted it on a spring and attached the spring to a motor. I powered up both the laser and the motor and let the show begin! It wasn't bad for the initial test, but before long it seemed to get into a repetitive loop drawing just a figure of eight or other mundane but curvy shapes.

To add some extra randomness to it I programmed the Arduino to randomly turn on and off the motor, which seemed to do the job quite nicely and is shown in the video above. It does not look as good on video as it does in real life, this is due to limitations caused by the relatively slow frame rate of the camera. Oh how I wish I could justify buying a high speed camera ;)

The next step will be to make it a bit smoother, hopefully quieter, and get it displaying on a wall outside during the night. Stay tuned to see how that goes!