Introduction: The Kinemeter: Part 3: Circuit & Code

Hello again, Viewers and Makers alike.

Today we finish the project we've started. The KINEMETER!!!

As usual, if you have no idea of what I am talking about, then please, pretty please: GO SEE THE PREVIOUS PARTS NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Part 1:

Part 2:

Done? OKAY, let's do some reflection!

On the last instructables, I showed you how to take the adobe illustrator design I gave, and assemble the pieces into a fully fledged Kinemeter body. The final result is shown in the first image. By the time you finish this instructables, you will have a finished, working, EXCELLENT piece of equipment capable of measuring g within an error of 5%!

If the first part is about what laws of physics this used, and the second part is how to assemble the body, then what's this part about? If the title doesn't give it away, then I will say that is this part where we BUILD THE CIRCUITRY AND DOWNLOAD THE CODE ONTO THE DEVICE!!!!!!!!!! STRAP UP FOR THE CLIMAX OF THE KINEMETER TRILOGY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Step 1: The Parts You Will Need

When cooking up a Kinemeter, you will need the following ingredients:

a) a fully constructed Kinemeter body. The wallsside holes are where you will slide in the sensor.

b) 5 Pairs of Adafruit IR break-beam sensors. These are the mechanisms that you will use to track an object's motion.

c) a 5V Adafruit metro Mini. This is the miniature equivalent of Arduino Uno, so no new IDEs will be needed for your computer when coding.

d) an HC 06. This is how your Kinemeter will communicate your data to your phone. The classic icon on the device shows that it is a blue tooth device.

For those who are more interested in Blue tooth and want a good understanding, I found a link to an instructables about this chip here:

e) Next you will need an Adafruit Perma Proto half sized. This acts exactly like a bread board.Instead of using jumper wires, you will solder all of your connections in your circuit. This device has a ground and VCC (5V power) but also has TRANSMIT and RECEIVE pins. They are what you want to focus a lot on in building the circuit. NOTE: THIS BLUETOOTH DEVICE IS STRICTLY OPTIONAL! Don't bite off more than you can chew.


Now that you have all of your parts, lets see how we assemble the rest of the Kinemeter.

Step 2: Building the Essential Circuit

When showing the connections for the Circuit, I will not show what it looks like on a perma proto. The idea of the above images is to give you an idea of Where you connect your wires.


As seen in the first image, the parts you are starting with is a pair of sensors, a Metro Mini and an HC 06. DO NOT do anything with the HC 06 yet. That will come later.


The first thing you want to do when making your Kinemeter circuit is connect the grounds and Powers. In the second image, I only connected the grounds and powers of the SENSORS.


Since one of your sensors (in a pair) is an actual sensor, connect the third pin (marked in yellow) to a pin on the Metro Mini. On the Kinemeter I made and in this 3rd image, I attached the input pin of the first sensor to pin 3 on the Arduino. At this point, you should have one working mechanism that would work with the code.


Now, just repeat steps 2 & 3 for the remaining pairs of sensors you want. To get any meaningful and reliable data from your kinemeter, you need at least 3 SENSOR PAIRS!

If you are finished with building that circuitry, then A) CONGRATULATIONS!!!!! YOU JUST FINISHED BUILDING A KINEMETER!!!!!!!! and B) Do you want to make it blue-toothed?

Sure Making it blue-toothed is a few extra steps but think of it this way, all you would then have to do is have your phone with you and see the data come to you, all wireless.

Step 3: Connecting Blue-Tooth

Now when it comes to setting up your blue-tooth connections, there are a few KEY THINGS you need to keep in mind.

Follow along and I will explain.


Like earlier, connect your VCC pin to 5V and your ground to ground. This is nothing new.


Now here is the tricky part. When attaching your RECEIVE pin on your HC06 to your arduino, you need to add something called a voltage divider.

The receive pin cannot get anything more than 3.3 V. or else it will cause the device to burn out. To avoid this, you need 2 sensors (marked in blue and magenta on the second image). In order to get 1/3 of the 5V removed, your two resistors of choice MUST HAVE RESISTANCES IN A 2:1 RATIO!! It does not matter exactly how much they actually are, so long as 2 is their ratio. The larger resisting of the two resistors will connect to ground. The smaller will connect to a wire that connects to the RECIEVE PIN on the HC 06.

ONCE YOU ARE DONE... Then you will have not only finished your very own KINEMETER, but also one that can connect to YOUR PHONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Step 4: Building Tips

Now, now, I know that these past three instructables are part of a big project, the biggest I've had, so I decided to give a few tips that you might need when actually assembling this device.

TIP 1:

When making powers and grounds, you are going to need to make a universal 5V and Ground. The way I did this was by taking two long wires (as seen in the first image) that were connected to ground and power, and placing them on the slack edges of the Kinemeter. This gave me easy access to attaching the sensors and transmitters to powers without complicating the wiring.

TIP 2:

For those who are not quite aware on how or where to place the sensors, then see the last two images. On each wall, there are 5 holes which are 1 cm wide and 2 cm tall. These should fit the sensors. Make sure that when inserting them into the holes that ALL TRANSMITTERS are on one side and ALL SENSORS ARE ON THE OTHER.


COMMENT!!! Seriously, I cannot say this enough, please please comment. If you have any troubles or confusion on building or just understanding the Kinemeter, then PLZ TELL MEH!!!!!!!!!!! I AM WILLING TO HELP!

Step 5: Get the Code At:

To get the code for the Kinemeter, go to my Github account under GearsnGenes.

Here is the direct Link to the Kinemeter code:

To download the code into the Metro Mini you will need a Micro USB. Other than that, you can use regular Uno code.

On a Final Note...

I Hoped you enjoyed this project as much as I did. Please like and share this instructables as the Thriller conclusion of the Kinemeter Trilogy.


I will be switching gears a bit. Instead of messing around with electronics, how 'bout your own body? Biomedical topics coming to GEARSNGENES. NO MORE CLUES!!!!!!!!

Till next time! Stay tuned and stay smart.


Asher the Engineer (author)2016-03-30

Can you send me the plans and more pictures. I am trying to help a professor teach his engineering class in kinematics. My email is

By the way great job!!! Not only was the design and the project was awesome but the way you made the viewer attention in spike mode. Great job.

i seem that you are young and extremely bright. What grade are you in?

Sandia National Labs offer creative high students and top college students positions in research.


Glad to see you're interested. I got the e-mail you sent to me. To answer your question of my age, i am about to finish 9th grade (freshmen, highschool). I can totally send you some links and docs for u to look at the kinemeter. In fact, I am actually working on making a PCB for this circuit to make this whole wiring business be reduced a lot. The end goal is that, keeping the same tech, someone completely unexposed can assemble this set in under an hour. I'll send some of these things to you thru the email account you gave.

Could u send me some links about sandia labs through my email? Thank you very much.

gearsngenes (author)2016-01-19

Thank you for your thoughts on the subject. I have heard of these apps and seen them myself. Like I said in my video of the First Part (see that, I could use your insight), I built the kinemeter so that it can not only measure acceleration, but velocity and position at different times, too (x-t graphs, V-t graphs). The other unique trait that I was trying to get across is that the parts I used are not kept to any one company alone, but are accessible to others and are easy to use. The code this runs on is arduino, it is open source. While it is far from free to make, think of it this way, it cuts the price that would only be dreamed of in some schools down by 4! I cannot stress this enough, it is modable, portable and affordable.

The problem with the apps you describe is that they take away the very point I am trying to enhance: the experimentation process. The kinemeter is NOT about collecting all the data and putting out the numbers, rather it is about collecting the data from which students can make patterns and deduce these laws of motion. I appreciate that you point out other sources that have accomplished making the equivalence of what I made, but the key is not only how accurate I can get my data, but also getting, overall, believable data that can come to students fast enough to get a better resolution picture of science.


Gearsngenes. Please do not explain yourself to spacepymp. He has no idea of your creative mind. From a engineering perspective. This is a awesome project. This type of in depth analysis what you have accomplish is a senior year student in mechanical engineering design class. Kudos to you. Please don't explain your concepts to people that don't take the time to understand your work. That's why engineers do not waste time talking to people like spacepymp. They simply don't understand the subject or the background behind the work being demonstrated.

spacepymp (author)2016-01-19

I really hate to burst your bubble but there are free apps with both apple and android phones that records all the data you are trying to get. Plus it also has a gyroscope and magnetic field sensor. Very high precision as well. If you maybe used analogue parts and display then this would be useful for specific kinds of experiments


Hey spacepynp. I really hate to burst your bubble but your creative sense of life is dull. Gearsngenes is way above your level for your input. This is actually a master level project in engineering. It's easy to use cell phone apps, which by the way are not a great level of precision due to the fact that it's a cell phone. For example, you can purchase programs on the cell phone to play around. But in the files of engineering we spend thousands of dollars to measure small increments on prototypes. Then again your argument is why spend money on a measuring device when you have a ruler. It's called precision and accuracy. That's what this device is. He proclaimed it has 5% error! That is awesome. I'm pretty sure a cell phone app can not do or will ever be close. A cell phone app is only good for games, on the way small work assignments and social media. Other than that you need expensive machinery that calculates precisely. If you don't understand what precise actually means, try a simple group experiment. Get 10-15 people to measure a object with a simple ruler. Record all their answers. Then you'll see the variation of the data collect. That's what a cell phone app does. It is a simple little program doesn't not my scientist but computer minded that never built anything and they basically implement equations from the background program which they infer is correct for all things.

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More by gearsngenes:Backyard Brains: A Size DownThe Kinemeter: Part 3: Circuit & CodeThe Kinemeter: Part 2: Building the Body
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