16 thoughts on “Servo switch assemblies

  1. you’ve got to unscrew the switch cover in order to mount this thing; might as well just stick a relay in there while you’re at it ;)

  2. Great idea. My room also has some annoying automatic lights that turn off when I don’t want them to. They’ve got an IR sensor where the light switch would normally be, and the lights turn off after so much time of innactivity. Unfortunatly, the sensor isn’t very precise, and turns off while I’m soldering or doing other tasks involving little movement. I’ll use the techniques here to wave something in front of the sensor every few minutes until I press a button to turn it off at my convenience.

    @dan: some of us sadly don’t own our living spaces. This project allows most anyone to control their lighting with minimal appologies to the landlord

  3. There is readily available home automation on the market already, most of which won’t cause the switch to arc like this has a chance to. In some cases slower action of a switch may case an arc fault circuit interruptor to trip (afci breakers are what most modern bedrooms are tied to a panel with)

    This is still safe, but may cause inconvenience when you need to go to the panel. Otherwise it’s a great build for those with little home wiring knowledge.

  4. Hmm, or lets not pretend this is the dark ages and high voltage is like “wizard’s fire”

    I don’t know, the idea is intriguing, but you will expose yourself to high voltage by removing the switch cap, so this still isn’t kid safe.

    I may be highly biased because I just re-wired my breaker box and added 250+ feet of wire and 21 electrical boxes to my garage (including lighting fixtures and switches).

  5. @nubie: lol! Good point too.

    Although, this is still a reasonable alternative for anyone who is simply ‘uncomfortable’ with mains work.

  6. hmmm…any uk readers got any idea of a way this could be altered for our rocker switch type switches? the ones in the instructabel seem to be “push up/push down” rather than “push in” type.

  7. @mig: sounds like the “decora” style switch, we have them in the us but they’re considered a designer option. I’d try a guided roller setup, with a bar to keep a roller in contact with the switch and the servo makes the actuator roll up and down. actually, i’d probably just buy some darn relays and be done with it, but then i’m not afraid of the magik wizard’s fyre in the walls.

  8. Nice work in showing an alternative method to accomplish this task…

    I really like the design for the physical piece which toggles the switch… Its very simple, but effective for accomplishing its purpose without affecting normal switch operation. It seems as if you use 3 locations, 2 which flip the switch one direction or the other, and a resting position.

    My biggest problem with this solution is not in the implementation but in the aesthetics. I just can’t imagine having a breadboard dangling from my wall… I’ll assume that this was the proof of concept and that you have plans to put it in an enclosure or otherwise tidy up the appearance :)

    Great work!

  9. “hmmm…any uk readers got any idea of a way this could be altered for our rocker switch type switches? the ones in the instructabel seem to be “push up/push down” rather than “push in” type.”

    I’m not afraid of wizard’s fire either, but you could use two solenoids for a rocker switch. One for on and one for off. I guess depending on how you mounted them it could make normal use of the switch a bit awkward.

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