Countdown timer to cuckoo sound

Thread Starter

AlanMccabe

Joined Nov 11, 2012
4
Hi folks. Wondered if any one can help. I need to be able to play the sound of a cuckoo clock 4 mins after a button is pressed. We are going to us it in a santa's grotto to let Santa have some idea how long he has been chatting to a child. The button would be pressed when the child enters the sound would come out of a fake cuckoo clock and Santa could start to wind up his conversation. I had thought of an mp3 player possibly but would welcome suggestions. Many thanks. Alan
 

wayneh

Joined Sep 9, 2010
17,167
The mp3 player is a fine idea. I believe standard egg timers are 3 minutes, so if you can find one you like, that would work.

It wouldn't make sound, but an hour glass would have a nice Santa touch.
 

spinnaker

Joined Oct 29, 2009
7,835
I simple solution would be to use the alarm clock feature on your phone (if you can play any mp3). But you need the push button feature, so perhaps there is a timer app?
 

JDT

Joined Feb 12, 2009
657
For a zero cost solution, use a computer or laptop. Write a simple application in VB.net or similar. Press space bar (or any key) starts timer, plays short wav file after time-out. Waits for space-bar to start timer again.

Could even be a command-line script.
 

Thread Starter

AlanMccabe

Joined Nov 11, 2012
4
Thanks for the idea's. Like the idea of from JDT zero cost. I dont have any programming experience so will have a look for a countdown timer. I could use a stealth-switch to start the timer :)
Thanks everyone
Alan
 

wayneh

Joined Sep 9, 2010
17,167
I suspected as much. But it will be a nuisance to keep powered, haul around, protect, etc. when something so small as an mp3 player would do the job. All you need is a 4 minutes of silence added to the front of your sound. Restart the song with the "previous" button for each kiddie.
 

elec_mech

Joined Nov 12, 2008
1,500
It would not be free, but if you are comfortable making circuits, you could make two timers with 555s - one a 4-minute timer, the other a timed player for your sound. The 4-minute timer would trip the second one which could be connected to either an MP3 player or a musical greeting card - you may be able to skip the second timer altogether. There are recordable greeting card modules you can buy either in card stores or eBay.

If you don't already have a stash of circuit components handy, then a pre-made solution is probably more cost-effective.

Another thought is buying a cheap digital timer and connecting the output to a greeting card module. On the down side, the timer would need to be manually set to 4 minutes everytime.
 

JDT

Joined Feb 12, 2009
657
After my last post, I thought I had better see if it can be done. Not as easy as I thought but try this:-

Rich (BB code):
Option Explicit

'Define the variables
Dim SecDelay, SoundFile, Message, ReturnVal, shell

set shell=createobject("wscript.shell")

SecDelay = 10 'The delay in seconds.
SoundFile = "C:\Windows\Media\tada.wav"  'The wav file to be played.
Message = "The sound " & SoundFile & " will be played in " & SecDelay & " seconds"

Do
'Display a message box.
'OK click or Space-bar returns 1. Cancel or Escape returns 2.
ReturnVal = MsgBox (Message,VbOKCancel,"Space-bar = OK, Esc = Cancel")

'If Cancel clicked - Exit
If ReturnVal = 2 Then Exit Do

'Wait for pre-set delay
WScript.sleep SecDelay*1000

'Play the sound in the default player.
shell.run SoundFile,,false

Loop
Save this as soundtimer.vbs or similar and run it. It will play the sound in the default player on your system. Edit the file for your required time delay and wav file.
 
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