Magnetometers?

Has anyone tried wiring a magnetometer into their build? I’ve seen that Ada fruit has some somewhat small ones for only a few dollars, and thought it might be interesting to experiment with one.

CFX boards have magnetometers in their motion chip I think.
AFAIK, it’s only used to support their magic ring activation feature.
What are you thinking of using it for?

I was thinking of the magic ring type functionality mainly, but it could have other uses as well. If used on a blaster prop it could be used to wake up the blaster when you remove it from the holster, for example. On a saber it could be used for triggering stuff like mode changes, blaster deflection, or even as a replacement for the main button, making a buttonless saber possible. Not sure what I would try to do with it, but it would be a neat option to play around with.

Edit: could even use it to make a replica of the electro baton the angry storm trooper used in the sequel trilogy. Magnet detects when it gets extended.

Edit 2: having the magnetometer integrated into the main board like CF does is good for not having to add it o. As a separate module, but I think having a separate board could be useful so that you can choose where to put it, or even have multiple locations.

Most of the magnetomers available would be easy to hook up to the I2C bus.
It would require a little bit of programming to get the data out of it, and then a little bit of programming to do something with that data, but it’s not overly difficult, and I could help.

I looked at a couple of the modules intended for arduino use. They have most of their board space dedicated to caps and pads. I’m thinking it could be pretty easy to relocate all that business elsewhere inside the hilt, and with some careful soldering of tiny wires end up with a very compact item barely bigger than the chip that could be stuck on the outside of the saber in a decorative plastic bit. Maybe even have it hide in a traditional switch hole, with the plastic bit made flush with the outside of the hilt, if that makes sense. I think I’m going to give it a try. Still trying to figure out what all I will need in terms of saber guts.

Oooh, I just had a thought for a neat use for a magnetometer if it can function as a compass!

You could set it up so that the saber could make a “that way” type of sound when pointed in a particular cardinal direction. This could be used in an orienteering type of game, where the player would have to go to a location to find a clue, which would be some device that could somehow communicate with the saber, and which would then transmit a new location or direction to it. The player then ‘uses the force’ so to speak, to figure out which direction to go next. Could be coupled with a GPS receiver for more complicated use. Not sure exactly how you would set up an event that would make use of such a feature, but I could totally see it happening, a la SCA style larping.

The latest version (mk3, I think) actually lacks the magnetometer due to a lack of parts. I think they uses a MEMS accelerometer that had a magnetometer, but it became impossible to procure and the feature was so seldom used that they did away with it. I think many of the features that are proposed on this threads could be implemented with a much simpler hall sensor. In fact, some easy lines to get a physical event like BladePresent but wired to a hall sensor or pin could do basically anything proposed here except the actual compass part.

Yeah, I think you’re right. Or even a simple reed switch, if we wanted to be really old school about it. I did notice that the currently available CF boards didn’t have the magnetometer, and that was actually what prompted me to start investigating Proffieboard. Glad I did. :slight_smile: