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Solenoid vs actuator Answered

I'm planning on adding network capabilityto my current remote car starter (like the viper systems)
At first i was thinking of hacking a remote and connecting it to my microcontroler. But since the spare remote cost 80$ I chose to go out with a mechanical pushing of the button instead, at least for the prototype.

Considering the following facts, what do you think i should use?

The solenoid/actuator must operate at -22 f (-30c)
I dont want the thing to smash the remote too hard and break it

Thanks

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Hmm. You have to be really careful with solenoids, they can deliver an almighty thump. If you go that route, think of isolating the whacker with a spring, to reduce the forces to sane levels.

I'd go with the solenoid, Simpler to wire (Doesn't require a command to retract right?) Even a servo could work. the servo will have a more precise force rating then either a solenoid or an actuator, so it would be more genital on your keys.

Either way, attach whatever you choose to a larger plastic or rubber pad. use the pad to push the actual button and it will help disperse the load across a larger surface.

oh my... "it would be more genital on your keys"

Methinks you meant gentle, no? ;)

If your actuator (a solenoid is a type of actuator btw) you could easily design a threaded push rod with rubber tip that can be adjusted to limit movement in the actuator. Then adjust it in the field.

In terms of the specific solenoid/etc. idk. that's too much work for a free advise column.