Motion sensor flash trigger
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Old 12-30-2009   #1
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Default Motion sensor flash trigger

This is a follow on from bursting water balloons !
I bought a cheap 'dummy camera' with a motion sensor that triggers a small motor to make it look real and scare people .



Then I ripped its guts out ....



cut the wires off the motor and soldered them to a 5v -50volt DC solid state relay ...



And finally tonight I did some preliminary tests to see what factors come into the equation .
First I found out that if I had very low lighting I needed a large object to trigger the sensor .



Then when I dropped the lens cap in front of it I initially thought the bounce on the table was triggering the flash .....



Then I increased the distance available and found that there is quite a delay from the movement till the flash fired which is good - it will make it easier to time something like a water drop .



I found out that the most reliable way to get it to trigger with smaller objects is to have a weak light shining right at the sensor and then have the shadow of the object pass across the opening - this will require some setting up in future but tomorrow morning I pack to go and climb mount Egmont so this project will have to wait a while .... at least I'll have something to think about for a few days !


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Old 12-30-2009   #2
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Default Re: Motion sensor flash trigger

Excellent water balloon series. Have some k for being creative with your homemade equipment
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Old 01-01-2010   #3
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Default Re: Motion sensor flash trigger

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Excellent water balloon series. Have some k for being creative with your homemade equipment
Thanks - I have yet to get creative with the latest 'gizmo' , but once I iron out the kinks ....
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Old 01-02-2010   #4
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Default Re: Motion sensor flash trigger

Last night I set up a rig to direct a battery past the sensor and work out my distances ...



That's quite a delay and will require some fine tuning - still trying to figure out a use for it so I may go with water drops ....






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Old 01-03-2010   #5
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Default Re: Motion sensor flash trigger

The flash-triggering system is going to be a bit too complicated since I will need to use slow exposures for it as well . Today I decided to take a new approach to the issue and opened the remote trigger and shaved away the black stuff in the switch area .



With my D50 on 'remote' mode when I have the two wires from the solid state relay pressed against those two scratched-away patches the camera fires when I move ... yeeehaaaaa !

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Old 01-03-2010   #6
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Default Re: Motion sensor flash trigger

Total change of plans : It was difficult keeping the wires in decent contact with the black stuff so I taped a piece of foil over those contacts to keep them permanently on and removed the battery which said "3v" on it .
I tried something different and removed one of the three 1.5 volt batteries from the power supply of the motion sensor and joined a piece of wire across the gap making it a 3 volt system [ hopefully ] . I totally threw out the [ expensive ] solid state relay and took the wires that used to take a 4.5 volt feed [ now 3 volts ] to the motor and soldered them onto the battery contacts of the remote trigger . Since the switch contacts are permanently 'on' as soon as it gets power [ after the sensor detects movement ] it fires the camera .



I think I have it nailed now for some test shots that no longer require darkness !



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Old 01-03-2010   #7
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Default Re: Motion sensor flash trigger

and the video ....

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Old 01-04-2010   #8
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Default Re: Motion sensor flash trigger

cool stuff Desmond. I only vaguely understand the technical stuff, but get the gist of what you are after and am looking forward to your using this creatively.
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Old 01-04-2010   #9
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cool stuff Desmond. I only vaguely understand the technical stuff, but get the gist of what you are after and am looking forward to your using this creatively.
Thanks - judging by the distances and sizes needed it may only prove useful for someone photographing birds or animals on a track or something like that - but I haven't given up totally yet [ with regard to using it creatively ]
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Old 01-07-2010   #10
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Default Re: Motion sensor flash trigger

This is my next 'victim' . I actually need to get hold of the door sensor that chimes each time someone walks past because this thing is an alarm that needs to be reset each time .
BUT : I tested it outside in direct sunlight and it still detected me walking past 5 metres away !



And it has this plug for an external speaker - no ripping its guts out this time [ slightly disappointing but I'll live with it ]




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