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Old 07-08-2009, 02:23 PM   #1
IrregularPulse
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Default Automation Experts

I need a little help in choosing a sensor. I know enough to trouble shoot systems using them and work with them, but not to choose which type would be best for an application.

Background:
Family friend is also in the electronics field as am I. He has a corn hole set with plexi-glass top and rope lighting. Nothing too high tech.
I want to build the following,
Bag goes through hole, trips (insert your suggestion) sensor triggers run way lights up and down board. I already have the run way light circuit. That was easy enough. I just need help in deciding which sensor type would be best to trip it. I'd like mini Light Curtains, but upon searching ebay, this is not an option for a cornhole set. Way too expensive. I need the sensor to detect a bag falling through regardless if it comes straight down, from either side, or a "swish" causing it to very quickly pass a sharp angle. So I would need a rather large sensor window. Probably about 6-10 inches.
I've thought of a simple PB Switch with actuator but would prefer a pure electronic/non mechanical option if feasible.
I'm up for building my own light curtain with some circuit design help. I'm no EE. I can follow, troubleshoot, and build schematics,but I can't design them. Thanks for any help.

I also plan on implementing some sort of electronic score keeping, but for now sensor help would be greatly appreciated.

I know there are a few Automation guys on here such as Claudius.

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Old 07-08-2009, 02:32 PM   #3
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I hate keeping score, and a little flash is always nice Keeping score, right now I'm thinking foot switches to tally points with a Double digit 7-segment displays on one board. Step on the footswitch how ever many times per side as needed. That is until Icome up with some way to differentiate bags.

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Old 07-08-2009, 03:13 PM   #4
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Can you just run a flapper on the bottom of each hole? Just let the flapper push a momentary switch and you're set.

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Originally Posted by IrregularPulse View Post
I hate keeping score, and a little flash is always nice Keeping score, right now I'm thinking foot switches to tally points with a Double digit 7-segment displays on one board. Step on the footswitch how ever many times per side as needed. That is until Icome up with some way to differentiate bags.
RFID?

Hell, you could use RFID to trigger a scoring system if you really wanted to.
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Old 07-08-2009, 03:17 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MMW View Post
Can you just run a flapper on the bottom of each hole? Just let the flapper push a momentary switch and you're set.
This is the obivous simple answer, but I want to eliminate mechanical interference, such as if a bag hits it right and sticks the flapper down or comes through at an anlge that misses it.


RFID?

Hell, you could use RFID to trigger a scoring system if you really wanted to.
RFID is what i had in mind for the bag recognition and scoring system but haven't researched it all. I got the idea while working in a FORD plant. They were using RFID tags traveling along with the engine block to transmit the VIN number to their host system then down to our machine to marking. Just kind of scared to look at pricing. It is still just a cornhole set no matter how cool it is
Replies in Bold Above

But, I'm not really looking for suggestions on diferent methods. I'm pretty set on wanting to keep it electronic and am really just looking for input on different sensor types.
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Old 07-08-2009, 03:29 PM   #6
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Here's a start.
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Old 07-08-2009, 04:08 PM   #7
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I found that as well, but it doesn't look like anything ever came of their project besides a general idea of what they "wanted" to do. Maybe I didn't look enough. I'll recheck.
Shot one of them an email for more info.

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Old 07-08-2009, 04:13 PM   #8
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If you put the light curtain to cover the hole so it keeps score when a bag goes through.. wont it trip it when you reach in the hole to get the bag back out?

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Old 07-08-2009, 04:24 PM   #9
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I believe this just took the prize for most egregious case of over-engineering I've ever seen.

Rube Goldberg would be proud.

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Old 07-08-2009, 04:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
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If you put the light curtain to cover the hole so it keeps score when a bag goes through.. wont it trip it when you reach in the hole to get the bag back out?
I usually fish my bags out from underneath, but yes, reaching through the hole would trip it. Good tip. Will need a manual over ride to be able to adjust score if this happens

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I believe this just took the prize for most egregious case of over-engineering I've ever seen.

Rube Goldberg would be proud.
Gotta have something to play with right Sure you could make it simple with a flip type score sign,but you're friends wouldn't be jealous over that! And isn't that point, to have cooler toys than your friends?
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