Remote camera trigger built from air freshener parts

Remote camera trigger assembled front view

[jcopro] took a look at a Glade automatic air freshener he had sitting around and couldn’t help but open it up to determine how the mechanism worked.  After taking it apart, he found that the automated system was comprised of a 3v motor, a series of gears, and a mechanical arm.  When actuated, this arm simply pressed the spray nozzle of the air freshener canister contained within the device.  After some consideration, he decided that the components would make a great remote trigger for his Casio point and shoot camera.  He fabricated a small plywood rig including both the camera and air freshener components, which was able to be mounted on a tripod.  [jcporo] also mentions that the air freshener has the ability to be triggered by a built-in timer.  Although the presets are locked at 9, 18, and 36 minutes, he suggests that a 555 timer could easily be used to add some custom timing intervals when wired to the manual trigger.  Be sure to check out his video of the remote trigger in action.

Comments

  1. echodelta says:

    Stink-bombs. Helping rid the world of air pollution one device at a time.
    Some people are irritated by excessive intentional odors. These things are the worst offenders, and the ones with heaters in them should go with incandescent bulbs by law.

  2. Grovenstien says:

    You can also buy ones with PIR detectors in them, combined with the above setup you could take motion detected snap shots of fragrant burglars!

  3. NNM says:

    Great idea!
    I have 2 of those air fresheners. After this weekend, I might have 1…
    Automatic doorbell?
    I wanna use the idea, but not sure for what yet… lol

  4. NNM says:

    ..And, btw, (sry for double post..)
    But yes, they do stink like hell. I’m going to enjoy taking it apart and pretending “huh? What are you talking about? What air freshener?! :P”..

  5. JC says:

    @NNM – Yeah, this gave me a ton of ideas. Only bad thing is that I would have to buy the actual air freshener that goes with it! Haven’t seen them sold as just the outer part unfortunately.

  6. blue carbuncle says:

    Yep these things are too much fun! My family looked at me quizically when I asked for some for xmas. Light circuit bending makes the clock easier to control. Voltage starving can work with this device but it seems to starve the squirter motor too. Hack on folks!

  7. swighton says:

    Haha – he tapped a machine screw hole in a piece of wood! That IS a hack indeed. So awesome…

  8. TDJ says:

    Nice job :)

    Only, I would have made sure the camera stay in place when activated. In the video it appears like the camera is moving (tilting backwards).

    Are those airfresheners available outside USA ?

  9. JC says:

    @TDJ – Thanks, yeah, the first video seems to have gotten the most play, but there is a second one where I actually lock it down with a 1/4 – 20 screw in the wood. Pretty useless without it. Guess I need to always put the best video first on my website!

    No idea about availability as I’m in the USA. Probably some factory somewhere cranking out thousands a day if you could find it!

    @swighton – Yeah, machine screw in wood – oddly enough it doesn’t work too bad! I’m sure it would wear out pretty fast though if I had to use it a lot.

  10. JC says:

    So if anyone cares, I actually updated this project to work with a remote control device:

    http://www.jcopro.net/2011/02/28/how-to-remote-control-your-camera-with-20-in-parts/

    I was surprised how cheap remote control cars are.

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