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Technological Terror For the discussion of items of technology such as motors, controllers, motion sensors, audio boards etc. Also to discuss how to hack commercial electronic props.



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Old 02-23-2011
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Default New Picaxe project - PIR controlled motor

My newest Picaxe project was to figure out how to use an $8 Picaxe, controlled by a PIR sensor to run a 12V vent motor. With the help of Fritz_42 again, we came up with a easy, low cost solution. It involved using Fritz's VLC (Very Low Cost - http://www.ipprofessional.com.au/VLC...Controller.pdf) controller which runs less than $10 to build, a Parallax PIR for around $10, a $4 add on board, a $3.50 vent motor (they're still on sale until the 28th - http://www.goldmine-elec-products.co...m_medium=email )and a battery pack and a 12V power supply from the spare parts box. For under $35 even if you have to buy a cheap 12V power supply, you can have a triggered, fully adjustable prop motor and controller. I don't know how you can beat that bargain!
I know that many people are afraid to get into building their own electronics, but this is a great way to start. It does require some soldering but it's easy to learn.


I hope you give it a try. I have a layout diagram and the program code if anyone is interested.
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Old 02-23-2011
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How would you say Fritz's PICAXE controller is compared to what Steve O at Garage of Evil has done? I was thinking about trying the PICAXE system with my next pneumatic prop using GOE's tutorials, but I wonder if you would consider this to be more for "advanced" users of the PICAXE or not. Looking at the way GOE does it there would appear on the surface to be less soldering and tinkering. Thanks for any input you can provide.
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Old 02-23-2011
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The VLC uses the 08 which is the intro model of the Picaxe that runs about $8. It doesn't have as much memory or all the capabilities of it's big brothers but for this type of project it's perfect.
I didn't build out the entire VLC for many of the projects so this cuts down on the connections and soldering although it does limit the future uses of the board. I did install all the connections on the board I used to control my butlers head movements but that requires 3 servos.
I do plan on getting some of the 18M's as they are still only $15. In fact I purchased the components for the GOE build already. I'm anxious to see what we can do with them. However, I'm a firm believer in only using what is necessary to get the job done and in this case the VLC fits the bill.
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Old 02-24-2011
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I just pulled out and tested the board with a wiper motor and a 12V power supply and it works fine. The power control kit I used has a Mosfet that can handle 30A (http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10256 ). At Fritz's suggestion, I'll probably put a heat sink on the Mosfet just to make sure I don't have any over heating issues.
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Old 02-24-2011
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All I can say is thank you to all of you who are exploring the picaxe and making that knowledge available to the rest of us. I am a complete newb when it comes to these but have become completely enamoured with them. My knowledge of picaxe could fill a thimble and my knowledge of electronics could fill a cup so I am looking forward to more of these posts.
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Old 02-24-2011
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Here's a diagram of how everything hooks up.

[IMG][/IMG]
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Old 02-25-2011
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Outstanding! Is is great to start to see you guys getting more comfortable with the Picaxe and starting to assemble you own controller circuits! The stuff that Steve is doing over at the GOE is awesome. I have been in contact with him about my Picaxe book and about the next installment of it and where online we are going to post it so that everyone will be able to download it.
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Old 02-25-2011
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I've been following Steve's posts as well as trying to make it through the Picaxe manual but some of it's still Greek to me. Fritz has been keeping me on the right track though.
I'm looking forward to the next installment of your book. It's sure to clear things up and give me some new ideas.
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Old 02-26-2011
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The basic differences between the picaxe chips is the amount of programming memory that the chip has to store programs and the number of I/O (input/ output) pins available to connect to props through things like relays and transistor etc. The larger chips sometimes have other features like touch pins, comparators, and hardware serial but for the most part controlling a prop does not absolutely need to have these functions. Also the new 08M2 chip is coming with should pretty much level the playing field among the chips. Once you get the basics down which will happen very quickly then you can start to play with some of the more advance features of these chips.
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