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Discussion Starter #1
So, my local spirit gave me the display try me button yesterday because I wanted one for my jumping spider, but when I opened the battery compartment, the contacts and batteries were missing. I decided to take it apart to see more about this, and it looks like there is no wire connecting to the compartment. Any ideas about this?

Button1.jpg

Button2.jpg
 

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Most Try Me buttons don't have batteries - they are just a switch that plugs into the prop. The batteries in the prop provide the power.

It looks like the manufacturer used the same case for the Try Me button and some other stuff. That grey button on the green circuit board is the button that will activate the prop; you should be able to plug the Try Me button into the prop, set the prop's switch to "Try Me", press the grey button and see the prop go off.
 

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Yeah, ditto what Jeff said. Any normally open button will work for a "try me" switch. Same goes for a step pad, it's just an open switch, no batteries.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I got the button to work, I just had to plug in my spider with the adapter. Using batteries was what caused the button to not activate.
 

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This is interesting - it's probably just saving molds to work with fancier future versions, like a lighted button or sound effects, but I wonder if it's set up for a version to emulate the Spirit step pad, which actually isn't just a switch, but generates a small voltage when stepped on. I use a battery to emulate the Spirit pads, so it's not out of the question they might do the same. It's probably just for lights and sounds and such, but you never know...

By the way, what did you mean about "using the batteries was what caused the button not to activate"? If there are no contacts, why would it matter whether the batteries are in or not?
 

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This is interesting - it's probably just saving molds to work with fancier future versions, like a lighted button or sound effects, but I wonder if it's set up for a version to emulate the Spirit step pad, which actually isn't just a switch, but generates a small voltage when stepped on. I use a battery to emulate the Spirit pads, so it's not out of the question they might do the same.
I have never seen a step pad that requires a battery.
 

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They don't require a battery - cut open a Spirit step pad from the past several years and you'll see this:

171284d1379359116-spirit-halloween-try-me-button-vs-step-here-pad-0902131756.jpg

The piezoelectric disc generates voltage when stepped on. It's me that uses a battery to emulate that voltage when interfacing a dry closure switch like a relay or normal step pad.
 

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They don't require a battery - cut open a Spirit step pad from the past several years and you'll see this:

View attachment 267943

The piezoelectric disc generates voltage when stepped on. It's me that uses a battery to emulate that voltage when interfacing a dry closure switch like a relay or normal step pad.
I have built home made step pads from aluminum foil that are just an open switch and they work with Spirit props.
 

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That's the "fun" thing about the step pad inputs on props designed for these pads - they're looking for a pretty small voltage and current disturbance, so switches will often trigger them just from the electrical noise. I've seen reports from people that switches work fine every time, reports that they never work, and reports that they work intermittently. My own experience falls into the last category. I suspect it's heavily dependant on things like humidity and wire length that are hard to systematically test. In any case, I do the battery trick because I have yet to see a trigger failure that way.

It's my understanding, though not from personal experience since I don't have one, that older Spirit props did use switch-type step pads, but they changed some time in the past few years. I have no specific citation for that, so I could be wrong.

Also, the try me button inputs are definitely switch closures. That's why I was wondering about this; it seems against the nature of cheap Chinese prop manufacturers to build two different trigger systems when they could just build one.
 

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Last year I made step pads from 2 foam board covered with aluminum foil on each side , separated with stick on weatherstripping. I stripped about 6 inches of speaker wire and used foil tape to stick it to each side. Then used a 2 ring jack to connect to the prop. I had fair results but could not make them work Every time. Then it rained and ruined them. The paper separated from the foam board when it got wet. So how could i add the battery to improve reliability and what size?

I also noticed that my remote for my foggers seem to set off some of the noise /motion activated props as well. Anyone else seen this?
 

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Last year I made step pads from 2 foam board covered with aluminum foil on each side , separated with stick on weatherstripping. I stripped about 6 inches of speaker wire and used foil tape to stick it to each side. Then used a 2 ring jack to connect to the prop. I had fair results but could not make them work Every time. Then it rained and ruined them. The paper separated from the foam board when it got wet. So how could i add the battery to improve reliability and what size?
That's consistent with what I've seen plugging aluminum foil step pads into Spirit step pad inputs. I just use a 1.5V battery in series with the step pad, AA, AAA, or coin cell should all be fine. If you're not getting the results you want, let me know - I only have experience with my jumping spider on this. The wiring should go prop----(-battery+)---(pad)---prop. Polarity doesn't matter, even for the battery, I just put it in there to make clear how the wires go.

I also noticed that my remote for my foggers seem to set off some of the noise /motion activated props as well. Anyone else seen this?
Yes - setting aside whether the noise of the fogger alone could set off the noise sensors, if the fogger is close enough the EM field and electrical noise created by the pump can induce enough voltage in the wires to set off piezo sensors, which is what most noise sensors I've seen are. Or any of a thousand other weird electrical interactions, for that matter. Piezos are sensitive.
 

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That's consistent with what I've seen plugging aluminum foil step pads into Spirit step pad inputs. I just use a 1.5V battery in series with the step pad, AA, AAA, or coin cell should all be fine. If you're not getting the results you want, let me know - I only have experience with my jumping spider on this. The wiring should go prop----(-battery+)---(pad)---prop. Polarity doesn't matter, even for the battery, I just put it in there to make clear how the wires go.

I'm curious how you connect your battery in series. Do you just solder some wires to it or have you come across a "battery holder" of some sort with some pigtails? I am planning on setting up a few props next year with a wireless relay or a relay controlled by a motion sensor or both. Glad I came across this info as I just thought this was a simple "normally open, momentary contact switch"
Edit- I did find some aaa battery holders with pigtails on amazon for fairly cheap. I think I may go that way with my setup. :D
 

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Search ebay for small electronic parts like this - if you're willing to wait for delivery from China you can get them very cheap. In this case search for "coin cell battery holder". You can find them with on/off switches too.

Same thing with coin cells, you can get them in groups of five or ten on ebay very cheap. In this case just get them from a US seller, they pop them in an envelope and you get them in a few days.
 
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