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Author Topic: WIP: Saber Calibrator Prototype & Initial Test Data  (Read 514 times)

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Offline jbkuma

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WIP: Saber Calibrator Prototype & Initial Test Data
« on: October 22, 2019, 11:49:45 AM »
Saber Calibrator Prototype
MSWS-CAL-A2T-MK1

The Saber Calibrator MSWS-CAL-A2T-MK1 is a prototype saber tester and calibration tool that can measure the voltage, current, and brightness as well as a few other in development features.  The current version can take power from an external source or from a saber plugged into one of the sockets.  One of the sockets uses a pogo pin style connector, the other is a GX16 connector. 

With one simple adapter I can plug a saber into either side with it's compatible blade, or the unit can be used to test just a blade using an internally provided signal and external power source.  A battery holder can be connected to either socket to eliminate the need for an external plug.

This is one of those projects that has taken on a life of it's own.  I originally started when I bought a nice new clamp style multimeter to troubleshoot an unrelated project I had been having trouble with.  From there I started testing some random saber related items and made some interesting discoveries.

In the nearish future I plan on posting a series of videos sharing my results. I will be testing various batteries, connectors, wiring options, blades, etc.  The limited testing I've done so far has been VERY surprising in some cases.  (I may end up moving before the end of the year which would push back the projct to the beginning of next year.)

Here are some progress pics of what I've done so far.  I have designed a custom circuit board to clean up the guts and use some components that are more specific to my effort.  Which will give me some more reliable results with vastly reduced complexity.

« Last Edit: October 28, 2019, 03:25:53 PM by jbkuma »

Offline Darth Chasm

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Re: WIP: Saber Calibrator Prototype & Initial Test Data
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2019, 04:41:55 PM »
I had the privilege of watching this thing come to life. It's such a cool tool and even looks like a great in-universe star wars prop. Can't wait to see actual tests of components done!

Offline JakeSoft

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Re: WIP: Saber Calibrator Prototype & Initial Test Data
« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2019, 06:56:29 PM »
Wow, look at that. It's a prop with a practical purpose! Is that an Arduino Pro Micro I see in there?

Offline jbkuma

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Re: WIP: Saber Calibrator Prototype & Initial Test Data
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2019, 08:22:38 PM »
Wow, look at that. It's a prop with a practical purpose! Is that an Arduino Pro Micro I see in there?
Thanks!

That's actually a LGT8F328P which I just happened to have at hand when I was working on assembly. I actually original started with an ESP32 so I could get BLE or WiFi reporting, but ran out of room. I made some changes so I could fit now, but there isn't much reason to do that at this point.

I've actually already used it as a custome piece in a photo for something. I quickly realized the prototype was a bit snug to fit everything, but the compact size makes it more portable and better for use as a prop which is part of why I kept going with it instead of making a new box. There design constraints force some clever thinking. As it has been said, limitations are edge again which we hone our craft.



Offline EXAR KUN

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Re: WIP: Saber Calibrator Prototype & Initial Test Data
« Reply #4 on: October 23, 2019, 01:32:38 PM »
This is awesome! And awesome looking!

Finally... we will get some actual battery tests. And find out which setups are the best. Thank you JBKuma!




I'm afraid the deflector shield with be quite operational when your friends arrive.

Offline jbkuma

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Re: WIP: Saber Calibrator Prototype & Initial Test Data
« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2019, 09:56:52 AM »
Here is a glimpse of some very interesting data


This chart shows the current, voltage and brightness as a percentage of initial value over time (about 15 minutes here).  During this test the battery level remained fairly constant (from around 3.95V to 3.78V and 1.25A to 1.18A) while the brightness took an approximately parabolic course (starting at 6200lux ending 4420lux).  The culprit here seems to be something I was not measuring: heat.  The blade was very warm to the touch.  When testing with bare strips I found it to be hot to the touch.  I will be adding a temperature sensor to my blade that can be used to track this as well. Luckily my blade is built with a 10 pin connector so this won't be too difficult. 

Another metric not being tracked is the color rendering.  The initial condition is a very white looking full RGB blade.  By the time I turned off the blade it was an icy blue.  I have tried a couple RGB sensors, but they didn't work for this application if anybody knows of a sensor that would work well for this, please let me know.