Fixing old cars was getting less interesting by age 14, and having read the usual “hard” Science Fiction books by Clarke and Heinlein such as “Rocket Ship Galileo”, I got interested in the new invention of LASERs. Developing the skills needed to make one, from machine work, glass blowing, high vacuum measurement, and electronics, took more than a year, but persistence paid off with success.
In those days very few people had seen LASER light, and it won high praise at the local Science Fair in 1967.
One of my lasers in operation:
The beam from my first laser… only achieved after weeks of frustrating alignment attempts… I will always remember, ready to give up, turning my head and seeing for the first time that bright mono colored 6328 Ångström red dot on the wall…