Looking for some guidance on a project.

Thread Starter

spagettilegs

Joined Sep 11, 2019
1
I have a machine that fires tennis balls for my labrador and it works fine. There are a few things I'm not happy with so I have decided to build a machine myself that does what I want it to do.

It's not a particularly complicated machine. It comprises of a plastic body, an electric motor that pulls back a spring and a circuit board with a AC power inlet. There is obviously a little more to it than that but I just want to focus on the main electronic components.

My goals are to create..
A whole new circuit board or modify the existing one, which ever is cheaper and to have the board, wi-fi and bluetooth enabled so it can be controlled by a phone.
I have no problem hiring a professional but I'd like to do as much as possible myself.

I'm a COMPLETE beginner but i'm quick to learn. I've built drones from scratch and many other projects and am very happy with the results.

Any pointers as to the best place to start would be great!
 

MisterBill2

Joined Jan 23, 2018
3,863
A machine that tosses balls for a dog is not a weapon nor dangerous. Not at all like my apple cannon.
Modifications to a product are often interesting but since I am not able to read minds, especially at a distance, it will be very useful to give us a rather detailed description of what you want to add to the machine. Otherwise you will be getting random guesses from people.
 

Reloadron

Joined Jan 15, 2015
4,501
It's not a particularly complicated machine. It comprises of a plastic body, an electric motor that pulls back a spring and a circuit board with a AC power inlet. There is obviously a little more to it than that but I just want to focus on the main electronic components.
That would be the heart of it and apparently that will not change. The only thing you are really looking to change or make a board to do is control the motor you already have. I guess simply put how to trigger it to cycle differently that it is currently triggered. So how does it launch a tennis ball as of now? Do you just push a button on a lanyard cord or similar?

The likely most difficult part, well for me anyway, would be writing the smart phone app. A simple approach would be just to buy a Bluetooth Relay Card that already includes the smartphone app. Just depends on how the current system is activated to throw the ball. Bluetooth and smartphone aside you could likely also use a simple remote relay card and use a key fob (think automotive key less entry) to trigger the machinery. There is no shortage of ways to go about what you want to do. Especially using a few cheap off the shelf components.

Ron
 
Last edited:

Bernard

Joined Aug 7, 2008
5,260
Under "Search Forums", I put in Ping pong ball shooter & came up with ping pong & tennis ball shooters using
" Counter- Rotating Wheels for shooting PingPong Balls .... ; 6-19-2010.
Same system is used for base ball pitching & cable handling.
In your title " guidance " look down to find Search Forums.
 
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