Build a $30k CyberGlove for $40 - Submitted by BayLab for the Instructables Sponsorship Program

Picture of Build a $30k CyberGlove for $40 - Submitted by BayLab for the Instructables Sponsorship Program
The glove on the right is a CyberGlove, made by a company several years ago who charged $30,000 per glove. I know this because I found a pair in the lab I work in at school...

So I built my own pair with 70% of the functionality for three orders of magnitude cheaper. These gloves will measure the position and movement of your fingers and dump it into a computer so you can teleoperate a robot, control animatronics, manipulate digital content, or whatever you want.
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Step 1: The Glove

Picture of The Glove
Finding a good glove is more important than you might think. It turns out I picked probably the worst glove I could have, but I still made it work. Ideally, you want a glove that fits very snugly. I imagine a leather or spandex glove would be great. It must have fingers and it should be smooth without any decorative ridges or patches or anything. I used some $4 gloves from home depot that we had laying around my shop. You can make this project as cheap or expensive as you want in picking your glove. If you're just building one, use the glove for your dominant hand. 

Step 2: Detecting movement

Picture of Detecting movement
The way we detect where your fingers are is with resistance. The CyberGlove uses strip flex potentiometers like these. You can certain hack these into your glove, but I didn't have any when I built mine. I did have some spring loaded pots from a game controller through. You can either tear apart anything with a joystick (like a PS2 controller, Xbox controller, etc), or you can buy one from Digikey. These are actually two axis, so you can improve this project to detect lateral finger motion if you want, but I didn't need it for my purposes, so I just used a single axis.

To use these pots, just use an ohmmeter to see which pins change resistance when you wiggle the joystick. Solder some long wires to the pins and put a little heatshrink over it to keep it from accidentally shorting. I used zip ties to keep the wires organized.