Instructables
Picture of Rapid Fire Mouse Button

Many computer video games involve a lot of rapid mouse clicking. But there are limits to how fast your finger can click and how long you can keep it up before your hand starts to ache. So I modified a mouse to add a rapid fire button to it. That way you can rapidly activate the clicking function by simply holding down one button.

To do this, I connected a 555 timer circuit to the terminals of the left mouse button. When the rapid fire button is pressed, the timer circuit sends a series of pulses to the controller that simulate the button being clicked. This circuit lets you click up to 800 times per minute. A similar circuit could even be used for console video game controllers.
 
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Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials
Img_0188.jpg
Here are the materials and tools that you will need for this project.

Materials:
Mouse
555 Timer IC
10 µF Capacitor
4.7 kohm Resistor
Diode
Jumper Wires
PC Board
Small Momentary Switch (not pictured)
Heat Shrink Tubing (optional)

Tools:
Soldering Iron
Wire Strippers
Knife
Rotary Cutting Tool (optional)
Multimeter (optional)
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JSwensen7220 hours ago

Hi! I made the rapid clicker, but it doesn't seem to be working
When I click the button, It clicks once, instead of rapidly clicking.
Any idea why?

First test that the circuit is working with an LED. It may also be a problem with the click rate. Computers can only register click up to a certain speed. So you may try changing the resistor to drop the click rate.
rylo1001 month ago

I have an HP mouse, but I can't seem to find the negative and positive terminals. Please help me. I have uploaded some pictures to show the circuit board. If you need any other voew of the mouse, please reply and I will upload it aswell.

IMG_1100.JPGIMG_1098.JPG
AARENAARON2 months ago

Mindblowing

knexbug2 months ago

i can do 385 per minute without mods but awesome idea

pucksurfer3 months ago
Genius

I can click 684 times Minutes without Modded Hardware, thank you very much... :P

(removed by author or community request)
Thanks
does any 555 work? or is there a specific 555 (ex. NE555P) that only works for it?
I think that any 555 timer should work.
oh.ok. thanks.
sconner14 months ago

I made one myself. The had a couple problems that almost stumped me until I got out my oscilloscope.

First, mice run on a carrier signal on a signal bus of some sort. The buttons do different things, the left will short the bus to the full 5V source. The right shorts the bus to 0V. The middle button, if any (sometimes the scroll wheel is also a button), attenuates the buss signal by about half. The bus signal has it's own frequency and shape. The frequency I was shooting for was apparently too high and registered as the button being held down steady.

Second, the low period was triggering a right click on the bus, making it a rapid right clicker. I tried blocking that with a diode on the output but it didn't work. It turned out the high output of the IC being only 2/3 of the 5V needed to trigger a left click on the click bus wasn't high enough and the diode's turn on voltage made matters worse. Using the high signal to trigger an NPN transistor between 5v and the bus didn't work, also
because the high output wasn't high enough to get full turn-on.

So to fix this I used a PNP transistor as a switch inverting the low out signals to allow the full 5V to be seen on the click bus. Works great now. I even added a switch to choose between two different capacitors to allow two different click speeds the higher being roughly 2X the lower speed. I tried 10X, but too high a frequency ended up registering as a button held down even if I fiddled with the duty cycle.

The biggest lesson I learned from this project is that the low side of the 555 output is the stronger and more duty cycle flexible part of it's output. If you need a signal at full Vcc or a duty cycle less than 51%, inverting the output with a PNP is your solution.

DIY Hacks and How Tos (author)  sconner14 months ago
Good job at trouble shooting.
samjohn4 months ago

Cool! But, isn't this sort of like cheating? haha. I never thought of this.

lbrewer42 samjohn4 months ago

Also many moons ago in the 8-bit/early 16 bit world of computing, one of my joys was to hack into a game's code an make the player invincible/give myself infinite lives etc. (Oh the joy of running through the robots the first time on Impossible Mission!).

Finally found the pic of the magazine online that has the article.

When asked if I thought I was cheating, my reply was a question, "how can I be cheating since its more difficult to figure out how to hack the code than to simply sit there and play the game until I win?" :^)

Same thing with this concept of a rapid fire peripheral... coming up with the idea/solution and then designing it is more difficult (for most) than simply playing the game. So at least the *designer* has taken a more difficult road to achieve the goal of beating the game ;^)

varafire.jpg

No. no more than someone playing with a wider fov or 16.10 compared to someone playing on a 4.3 monitor or someone using a mechanical keyboard or a higher dpi gaming mouse etc

How is a mechanical keyboard an advantage? I can understand when typing, but the higher actuation point on most makes rapid presses more difficult. Also, a side note about monitors, some game engines actually clip the top and bottom instead of expanding the sides.

Gslash25 Kasm2794 months ago

For mechanical keyboards, it is more effective because in computer gaming, such as Minecraft (or maybe WoW as well, idk the control scheme) keyboard controls movement, so you wouldn't be rapid-firing with the keyboard buttons, you would rapid fire with the mouse.

It was given as an example as mechanical keyboard is better than a membrane keyboard - n key rollover for 1. faster response times etc As for your screen size statement "some". nuff said. The point I was making is there are advantages in the equipment you use and a macro is not considered cheating else there would be checks for such via vac or any other cheat engine which there is not.

The discussion has been brought up by many on games forums and devs have never once chimed in and said "no".

I & many others used a macro in APB Reloaded, we even sent the macro to the publishers/devs (G1) who said nothing (fore or against) so we continued to use it in game (until I got a proper gaming mouse that had the feature in built.)

Actually Punkbuster has the option to kick/ban if macro software is detected. It's not a default option, but many Battlefield server admins do turn it on. Rather silly option since it can be side stepped with a hardware hack like this.

I get your point for that better hardware isn't cheating, and agree for keyboards and mice in general, I was merely pointing out that a keyboard being mechanical makes it better for gaming; NKRO and response time are functions of the keyboard controller, not of the actuation mechanism. The screen statement was just an aside and not really related to the rest.

Actually, it kinda is. This is basically a hardwired macro that spams the left mouse button

Don't bring a knife to a gun fight.

DIY Hacks and How Tos (author)  samjohn4 months ago
This is exactly like cheating. It is almost the same level of cheat as my project that uses an arduino to automate button combos.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Hack-a-Video-Game-Controller-with-an-Arduino-for-G/

Also I an find you a script (i probably have it on an hd somewhere) that will do exactly this (and more) that can be enabled on the fly, set to any key/mouse click and at variable milliseconds. Not to mention most gaming mice have the option in built and in the software that ships with the mice.

Then why isn't it stopped? Because its impossible to monitor not to mention virtually every (at least 90% upward) gaming mouse and keyboard all have macro abilities, there are no provisions in place to prevent any one using these whether in fps or mmorpg's / mmofps's etc - if you gamed at even entry level you'd know this.

lbrewer424 months ago

Very cool to implement it in the mouse.

I did this years ago (early 90s) with a Wico Joystick. It was even published in AC Tech Magazine as, "The Varafyer Solution" (as in verifies the demise of the enemy) - but the design had an addition to it...

I had a small potentiometer in the circuit to make it a variable speed rapid fire b/c sometimes program code can cause "groups" of shots instead of having a steady stream. It seemed the buffer for the shots would fill and the game would continue on until the shot buffer was empty. Of course the shot buffer instantly refilled again, but in between bursts, I was vulnerable in the game. The potentiometer allowed for adjusting the rate at which shots were put into the buffer and allowed for a solid stream output to be achieved.

At one time I had considered trying to build the circuitry into the connector so anything could use it, but this was a long time ago.

So I would be able to connect a potentiometer instead of a resistor to vary the frequency?

sconner1 Gslash254 months ago

certainly, use the potentiometer instead of one or both of the resistor s in the voltage divider area. Experiment where you put it to get the frequency and duty cycle ranges you want.

It worked for me on my joystick 20 years ago. It would be interesting to fit it to a mouse - maybe some sort of a small dial (if they make such a thing) sticking out the side. Its been so long I do not even know where my old schematics or anything are. Although i know I have a copy of the magazine ... somewhere buried in old archives/boxes!

Blaise_Gauba4 months ago

Whoa! VERY cool! I hope my simple monkey brain can achieve what you have instructed in this video/Instructable. Great job! Nice! I love it! I play: Day of Defeat: Source and there are certain weapons in the game that some other players fire off at unbelievable speeds and therefore have the upper hand over "honest" (or technologically stuck) players such as me. Thank you for this Instructable. I'm going to try and do it. Wish me luck!

For a fraction of the cost of the parts (not to mention the time spent) you could buy a budget gaming mouse that would do all this and much more.

With a fraction of the cost of the parts?
Well dude, please tell me what kind of mouse you can buy with a fraction of 2$ and 30 minutes?

I can make numbers up off the top of my head too.

mouser.com has tactile switches for $0.29, 4.7 kOhm resistors for $0.17, 10mf Caps for $0.05, diodes for $0.20, and the expensive one is the 555 Timer for $0.34. This looks to be a pretty inexpensive project if you already have a mouse an some wire.

Meaning?: Rapid fire? Because that's what I would like to have above all else. Thanks for the alternative idea...it's appreciated.

Yes exactly that.

The software allows extensive tweaking for macro set ups.

A macro can be used for rapid fire as well as setting up a 1 click to activate a sequence combination of multiple key presses though this is normally for mmorpg's (Logitech G600 (£40), Razers Naga Hex (6 side buttons) £50+ & or Naga (9! side buttons) £80+ to the Mad Catz mmo 7 (£90+) mice are popular purpose built examples but there's no need to spend anywhere near that much (though they are pretty awesome.)

I have a very affordable (cheap) gaming mouse that has an extensive macro set up software as well as mutiple dpi that are all changeable on the fly with no need to leave the game, it also is comes with a set of 7 removable weights.

It's a Trust - Xtreme Red Bull racing mouse but I'm certain you can find a multitude of suitable mice in and around the £20/$15 mark just avoid the Roccat, Steelseries, Razer, MadCatz etc brands unless you want to pay 3 times too much (even though they are very competent manufacturers you pay for the brand).

There's also a vast selection of lesser known (in the west) great value Chinese brands that are as good if not better and certainly worth considering. Amazon is a great place to start looking.

Wow...very cool. Thank you for the information. I have a Logitech Optical Gaming Mouse G400. I never looked into whether I could actually program any of it's buttons. It has two buttons...one marked with a "+" sign placed (above) the mouse wheel and another one marked with a "-" sign placed (below) the mouse wheel. I have never used them for anything. I guess you can say that I have been too lazy to find out what they are for. This is the perfect opportunity for me to grab the instruction manual and LEARN about my mouse. lol! Thanks again for your advice.

I had a quick gander on amazon at the g400 its likely the +&- buttons are for changing ion the fly the dpi but if i'm correct you do have 2 side buttons as well? These can be used for macros (rapid fire etc).

It either has the software for it or logitech (most likely) make their own all encompassing mouse set up software available at their site(?) or a quick google search will find something suitable.

Hang on I think i remember seeing some where below someone mentioned a common/popular mouse macro software, yep they did - "Autohotkey" - I've never tried it myself so good luck :)

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