eBay Lasers Made Lethal by Clever Hobbyist
Selling lasers with a beam stronger than 5mW is illegal in the United States. But it seems like many sellers on the site are not paying attention to federal law. YouTube electronics guru Styropyro bought a couple of legal laser kits to see what was going on.
What he found is actually pretty terrifying. Both kits which are advertised below the legal requirement were actually hundreds of times stronger. Strong enough to actually permanently damage vision - and these things were advertised as cats toys!
The lasers are powerful enough to cut through tape, set matches alight and pop balloons. But despite their strength, they are also a little junky. Not that well made and full of design flaws. In a fun and dangerous experiment, Styropyro upgrades the lasers so that they are even more powerful and improves on their design by solving some of their design problems.
The results are downright shocking. Merely flashing the laser onto his desk for seconds makes it immediately catch on fire. These new and improved lasers could possibly kill someone.
The takeaway here is not how great Styropyro skill is at improving lasers, nor how surprising responsible they are about holding basically a death machine in their hands. It's how incompetent the laws around laser safety that are sold online.
If you are anyone you know is interested in buying laser kits off the net, even when they say they are under the legal limit - be careful. It's not a joke when we say these lasers can make you blind or cause permanent damage.
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