Instructables

Fart Operated Random Channel TV Remote

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CH4FinishedTopView.JPG
OK, I know that sounds weird, but bear with me for a moment.  My Pops really enjoys two things; 1) channel surfing and 2) farting. 
So one day I was over at http://hackaday.com/ and read about a guy who used his Arduino to turn a TV on and off with one of those brainwave reading headsets.  Then later on that same day I was here at Instructables and a fellow had made an office chair that twitters every time he farted.  So, I got to thinking and decided to mash those two hacks into one remote that changes the TV to a random channel every time he tutes! 
Plus, if you throw it in a plastic enclosure and hide it between the couch cushions, you've got a purdy dang good prank! 

(As an aside, I've done some internet searching and I think this might be the first flatulent operated remote control in the history of the world... I'm happy to be an innovator.)


*****VIDEO UPDATE*****
You asked for it, here's a short video of the remote in action.

 
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Step 1: Parts And Sketches

Picture of Parts And Sketches
The idea here is you have a Methane sensor that smells a fart, then sends a high signal to an Arduino that picks a random number (which will be your new TV channel) and then sends the correct light pulses to an Infrared LED to change the channel.  So to do that I'm going to break up the components list into two parts.  Part One is all set up components and Part Two is stuff that's actually going to be a permanent part of the project.

Miscellaneous Parts:
Arduino (I use a Duemilanove... $30-$35 depending on where you buy it.  I bought mine from Make: as part of a kit http://www.makershed.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=MSGSA which comes with a Tactile Switch.  But a cheaper option might be to go to Spikenzie Labs and buy an Arduino/Switch combo from them http://www.spikenzielabs.com/Catalog/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=12&products_id=40 is the Arduino and the switch is linked lower)
Prototyping shield ($12.50)
http://www.adafruit.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=17_21&products_id=51
1/4-Size Breadboard ($4)
http://www.adafruit.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=65
(Or you could replace the ProtoShield and 1/4-Size breadboard with a solderless breadboard)
1X Working TV with,
1X Working TV remote

Part One Components:
1X 10K Ohm 1/4Watt resistor ($0.99 for a 5 pack)
http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2062347
1X 100 Ohm 1/4Watt resistor ($0.99 for a 5 pack)
http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2062339
5X 15 Ohm 1/2Watt resistors ($0.99 for a 5 pack)
http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2062310
1X Momentary Tactile Pushbutton Switch ($0.35)
http://www.spikenzielabs.com/Catalog/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=34&products_id=185
1X 38kHz Infrared Receiver Module ($3.95)
http://www.parallax.com/Store/Sensors/ColorLight/tabid/175/CategoryID/50/List/0/SortField/0/Level/a/ProductID/177/Default.aspx

Part Two Components:
1X CH4 Methane Sensor ($29.99)
http://www.parallax.com/Store/Sensors/GasSensors/tabid/843/CategoryID/91/List/0/SortField/0/Level/a/ProductID/592/Default.aspx
1X Infrared LED ($1.99)
http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2062565
(Some of the resistors from Part One; I'll explain this in a later step)

Optional:
1X Plastic Enclosure (RadioShack sells them, but I was going to use one I picked up at Fry's a while back)
1X 9V battery and battery holder

Tools:
Multimeter (for calibrating your CH4 Methane Sensor)

So if you're starting from scratch you're looking at about USD$86.00.  I'm guessing most folks on this site and looking at this 'Ible already have the tools, Arduino and ProtoShield which would put the cost around USD$40.00 (A $34.00 CH4 Methane Sensor/IR Receiver Parallax order and a trip to RadioShack for resistors/IR LED).

Sketches:
Sketches are linked on the steps that they are used in.  I did my best to document and put notes into my code but I'll be happy to explain anything that isn't clear.  Just ask.
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djsfantasi7 months ago
You just gave me an idea for a device to be placed in the bathroom, to indicate to others (wife, specifically) when it is "safe" to enter.
I bought 4 of these off of ebay! thanks Schmidtn. I was able to calibrate the tuner module so that every time my sister farted, Oprah turned on.

j/k
Can't wait to try these!
techboy4111 year ago
LOLOLOLOL!!
so cool
i wish i had an Arduino........
Have you officially named this amazing creation of yours? It needs a name worthy of its ingenuity and awesomeness. The assmote?
dudesurge2 years ago
i have an arduino nano from http://www.dealextreme.com/p/arduino-nano-v3-0-81877 its uber cheap the only down side is it takes a while to arrive but its worth the wait and kinda wanna make this at some point
lesizz2 years ago
Totally deranged. I Love it!
Instead of connectting to a TV, one could connect to claxon horn and flash warning lights and switch on a fan. Never sneak one by again.
Schmidtn (author)  lesizz2 years ago
Yes, it's a pretty cool platform for doing just about anything once a fart is picked up.
almamater2 years ago
LOL its great for zapping
NE patsrock3 years ago
was that a REAL fart????
Schmidtn (author)  NE patsrock3 years ago
Yes it was, the gas sensor will only change the channel if it smells a real fart.
Hello Schmidtn,
I am using 0021 and an Uno . I read some more on line and in the end copied into Hyperterminal. I didn't copy it right ( it was late at night) so the code didn't work right. I will try again and keep you posted .
I also wanted to compliment you on your step by step approach to putting a project like this together and testing it as you go along...very wise! It also makes it much easier to trouble shoot each step as opposed to when the project is complete and a puff of magic smoke is all there is to show for it.
Thumbs up and bravo,
Build_it_Bob
Schmidtn (author)  Build_it_Bob3 years ago
Yes, please keep me (us) posted. I'm interested to see how it turns out.

Also, thank you for the kind words.
Sucess using Hyperterminal and copy paste . I just had to make sure the commas were correct and then it worked for a samsung tv power off/on command . I removed power from the arduino , re-powered and tried it again a few times and it worked each time . This is something that can now be expanded and used in other projects !
Yea Team!
Arduino coupled with good instructables ( and teachers!) make for awesome learning.
Many Thanks!
Build_it_Bob
franspaco3 years ago
hahaha good one
I am trying to "Copy" the readings and can't seam to highlight them ?? Is there a step that i am missing?
Thanks for your help with this as i was able to to decode my Sherwood RC-119 remote by disconnecting pin 11 every time I seen the NEC 32 bit code come up on the serial monitor.
Build_it_Bob
Schmidtn (author)  Build_it_Bob3 years ago
So you can't highlight the pulses in the serial monitor window? Are you using the version 0018 IDE? When I did this project I pushed each button, one at a time, and then copy/pasted the entire thing over into a notepad document. If it wont let you do that (and this would really suck) you might have to enter them in by hand.

It should work just like copying something from a normal word document, just highlight everything and Ctrl+C it, then go over to your notepad doc and Ctrl+V.
etopsirhc3 years ago
most epic device ever made!
PaulCote3 years ago
Now put it in a chair :) it would be a funny prank xD Nice job!
agis683 years ago
prrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr, prrrrrrr, prrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr,prrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr,prrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr,prrrr,=well job in electronics, change your diet, Instructables Admin open the f@T## windows!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
lazyjoe214 years ago
You should add a mode that changes the channel based on the intensity of the fart. Like channel 1 when its a silent but deadly and channel 999 for the loudest and longest in duration.
kitik lazyjoe214 years ago
Loudest and longest isn't always most powerful though. But the SBD should get extra points for its potency. Total fart power reflects a combination of 3 variables -- intensity, spread, and persistence. If there were a way for the sensor to reward farts that were terribly stinky, covered a large area, and/or lingered profusely, that would be the ultimate.
Schmidtn (author)  lazyjoe214 years ago
You could do that. I'm assuming a more intense fart would linger longer, so I'd start a timer when the CH4 Methane sensor's Alarm triggers HIGH and stop the timer when it triggers LOW. Then, based on how big the number on the timer got up to, you would used that timer value to set the TV channel. Bigger number = higher channel. You could make a party game out of it.
what if theres multipul farts would it then channel surf for him?
Schmidtn (author)  riverreaper4 years ago
Yes, within a limit. There's a one minute debounce for the fart to clear out. So, as long as the farts are a minute apart, he could channel surf by farting.
NOW, we're talkin' I like where this is going
Questor4 years ago
better than a "Clapper"
Speaking of clapper, that would be interesting to link it to the light's so the light's flicker when every they fart.
or mount the vibrating unit from a "Magic Fingers" to the frame of the chair they're sitting on . . .
databoy4 years ago
In Australia you can buy a fart remote unit from Jaycar for $12.95 AUD. http://www.jaycar.com.au/ Cat No: GH1088.
vmod32 databoy4 years ago
That's not the same as this at all... Try reading things closer next time..
Not the same, but fart related. He was just trying to contribute. It's better if our maker family is nice to each other and less judgemental.
Aw come on, Vmod wasn't being rude. Very diplomatic and neutral with a helpful suggestion. I'll take whatever flak ensues if my comment to the MadCobbler is misinterpreted. (This is not an attempt to "troll.") Have a great day Mr. MadCobbler!
No problem, just a difference of opinion. I just thought telling Questor to "read things closer next time" was a bit confrontational and making an assumtion on the intent and purpose for his posting. I felt Questor was not "off topic", but just providing info about another fart related gadget (admittedly not a remote, or in the same league though) for those that might be interested. Sorry if I have caused a stir, I certainly don't want to cause a distraction to Schmidtn's fine project. I'm done. - Peace out. -
well a fart machien could be of use if your fartless an wanted to test it as your ajusting the settings or even if you just plainly wanted to swich the channel right befor a climax in a stupid show he was watching when you wanted to watch barrny the dinisor insted . just a thought ....
Questor databoy4 years ago
that is an electronic whoopee cushion
pollom4 years ago
specially designed for this guy http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qJDbLWROTII
michabailey4 years ago
The problem is, many channels don't actually exist, and entering them gets you nowhere. What you would need to do is compile a list of all the channels that work, and have it choose from those. Of course, you could always set it to something specific, say, Nicktoons...
Schmidtn (author)  michabailey4 years ago
I actually did make it so it only changes the TV to real channels that work. To alter the code to work with your TV provider's channel listing go to, "Step 4: Test Your Remote" and follow the instructions under "Work to do on your sketch"
Oops... *facepalm* Apparently I missed that... .
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