Introduction: RePurpose a TV Remote TOTALLY!

There are many ways to "hack" a remote.

In this Instructable I will show you how to go a step further a Totally hack, redesign and repurpose a TV remote in a few easy steps.

Before attempting this project you should have a design in mind and a new enclosure design. 3D print access possible laser cutter.

FYI: I used a laser cutter for the top of the remote and 3D printed design for the lower enclosure. My ultimate goal was to design a custom remote for an Arduino based robot rover.

IR sensors are great and easy to use. Please vote for this project, it is entered in the Sensors contest. Thanks!

Link: Check out my rover!

Step 1: Tear Down

Once you have a remote to work with you will need to tear it down. Tools needed will include a screw driver. Having a set of different sizes will be helpful.

  1. Remove all screws.
  2. Carefully trace the edges with a plastic tool. *Some tool kits have spudgers
  3. Remove remote circuit from enclosure.

Step 2: Hack by Design

I call this next step hack by design. This is a true hack, it is up to you to redesign your remote to your preference.

What I wanted in my design is a typical four arrow direction. In addition, I wanted a few buttons for my robot rover to flash lights, beep a horn, and rotate. So this is how it was done:

  1. Using scissors, carefully remove all unwanted buttons.
  2. Take measurements for the remaining buttons i.e circumference of each button and its distance from the edges
  3. I used PowerPoint 2013, it has great aligning features.
    • I started by creating a rectangle shape with rounded edges.
    • Next I added the circular shapes for the all the remaining buttons.
    • FYI it took a few tries to get things perfect.
  4. Once I was happy with my paper printed design, I saved the .ppt file to a PDF file for laser cutting.
  5. I laser cut my saved file on an 8 x10 acrylic sheet.
  6. For the bottom enclosure I used Autodesk Inventor. This was a simple rectangular shape with two screw holes the exact size of the top acrylic piece and a 1cm hole for the IR. *roughly 6 inches by 4 inches
  7. Next I 3D printed my design.
  8. I used zip ties to keep the circuit and silicon aligned.
  9. To change the orientation of the remote I desoldered the IR transmitter and added +/- 3cm of wire for flexibility.
  10. Lastly, I soldered a 3V battery holder to the coil and exposed wire (+ & -) supply.

Step 3: Recase| Finished Product

Now that the new enclosure has been laser cut & 3D printed it is time to give this circuit a new home. Add batteries and test it out.

I encourage you to test your limits and reproduce this Instructable for your cool projects!

Please leave comments and questions below. Follow me here watch my YouTube channel here.


BeachsideHank made it!(author)2016-05-03

Good idea, one can find remotes for cheap in thrift stores or for real cheap roadside with discarded t.v.;s.

Bits4Bots made it!(author)2016-05-04

That's true.

About This Instructable




Bio: I enjoy creating 3D models of pcb circuits. I am a student studying Electrical Engineering. I will share some cool projects & try out a few. More »
More by Bits4Bots:RePurpose a TV Remote TOTALLY! Arduino Omni Wheel Robot Rover - MAKE Course Message on an Alphanumeric Display| Arduino
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