Phase 0 - Customer and Research

For this project I am the customer. I have been developing this project for a Kickstarter project. I need to get to a point where I have a working prototype and then Kickstarter will help to fund and publicize the product allowing it to successfully come to market.

The idea for this project is not new, it is just improved from what is available on the market today. Picatinny rail is the mounting rail that is common to most rifles and some tactical hand guns. This rail is used for mounting sights, flashlights, mounts for ammo and many other resources. The point to having a laser sight is that it gives you a finite point to where your rounds will be with a smooth fire pattern.

My concept is a laser sight that has electronics built in to help control when the laser is on to help save battery life and to help control dangerous situations (including laser glare).

Phase 1 - Part Selection

The core components are designed to operate the entire range without changing in theory. A few resistors in the circuit will change when neccessary to perform different actions. One of the main goals with this project was to ensure that battery life is optimized within the project. Because of the form factor of this project the battery was a key component to ensuring this project stays small. The CR2032 was the correct choice because of the power that it packs with a small diameter.

The advantage to using a laser diode is that you can pulse the signal to use less power than running it constantly. By modifying the duty cycle with different colors and applications different results can be acheived by just switching resistors instead of larger primary components. The reliability of the 555 Timer is unparalleled for its simplicity and price in quanity which helps to keep margins high.

Without having a microchip embedded in this project it can be costly to get feedback through the use of amplifiers and filter circuits. By using an ADXL 362 Triple Axis Accelerometer that has preset trigger pulses. I have developed an op-amp circuit that acts as a trigger gate that captures a triggered signal and holds it for a fixed period of time which allows the diode to turn off after firing the gun and helping to reduce laser glare.

The actual diode will change from model to model but the concept is to start with a green and yellow diode to help the eye recognize the beam and allow testing to be done more easily with high speed cameras. Part of the Kickstarter project will be to add the ability to use purple and red to achieve other goals. I do not have a link to provide for this part yet as the final decision has not been made on the exact part.

The casing for this project will be built on an a Maker Bot Replicator for its ability. As a Kickstarter backer I will give people access to the raw files for the 3D printed project and ship them an electronic setup with the directions to assemble as a DIY option. With the abundance of 3D printers that are available I want to give people the option of creating their own project. The design is set to be two molded halves that are glued together and are set with screws too. A battery compartment will be the third part that will have a twist cap to remove.

Followers of my projects will get to see first cut drawings that the rest of the world will not see as this project progresses.

Phase 2 - Prototype

The prototype that we are building is designed to be mounted on a Picatinny rail which is the desire for the final product. We are also making a suction cup mount that will have a ball mount that will allow a good level of stability as well as motion to control and point in different directions.

The prototype can then be testing on less dangerous applications to test overall functionality. Plenty of testing in a shooting range will follow once these initial tests have been completed.

As for the actual prototype, the inital board has been crafted and the rough cut has been built in the 3D printer. The point of this rough cut is to allow larger components and breakout boards to be used in the construction to help minimize the cost outlay during testing. Testing is in progress with this model and more information will be given shortly.

Phase 3 - Software

The software for the test model is running at 65 Hz which is where the laser diode is able to operate properly and the beam does not appear broken looking at it, using a high speed cammera the beam can clearly be seen turning on and off.

Phase 4 - Software

Phase 5 - Launch

Phase 6 - Documentation