DIY Data Glove




Introduction: DIY Data Glove

About: Question: Who is this D10D3 guy, and what is his deal? Answer: I'm a Maker, a hardware and software hacker, an artist, and general dreamer. I have an insatiable need to build things and modify them. I'm a lo…

I always wanted to have a wireless mouse glove that I could use on the go. This glove can perform mouse functions without a surface, just by waving your hand around Minority Report style and clicking the tactile buttons. It took an evening to build since I'm not that great at soldering and was figuring out the design as I went. If I built it again I think I could do it in just an hour or two.


I have revisited this project and created an improved version.
DIY Data Glove V2:

Step 1: Tools and Parts

To build this glove I used the following tools:

Hot Glue Gun
Soldering iron
Multimeter (though a simple circuit tester is all that required)
Wire Cutter/Strippers
Foam tape

I built it of the following parts:

A Work Glove (Set for $7 hardware store)
Some black and red stranded light gauge wire (<$5 electronic shop)
5 Small Momentary Microswitches (<$5 for a lot of 10 on ebay)
A Measy RC9 Gyroscope Mini Air Mouse (<$20 on ebay)

Step 2: The Measy RC9 Gyroscope Mini Air Mouse

I chose this mouse as the guts of my project because it was cheap and had a compact form factor. The board was laid out perfectly for my uses. I removed 2 screws and pried the case apart. This revealed a rubber button pad that come right off. Under that was a sticker that had some springy contact pads. I pealed off the sticker and was left with a circuit board that had a small battery wired to it (the battery was glue taped into the case with a little foam tape)

Step 3: Momentary Micro Switches

I chose some tiny momentary microswitches to use for the buttons. If I did it again I might use slightly bigger ones that are a bit less fiddly. They are super simple to wire, just check the contacts with a circuit tester and solder wires to two of the contacts, I used red and black wire but polarity is not actually a factor.

Step 4: Assembly

I attached the circuit board to the glove with a combination of foam tape and hot glue. Then I soldered wires to each of the contacts that I wanted to use. I measured how far I needed the wires, cut them and soldered them to the microswitches. then I attached the switches to the glove with hot glue.

I added 3 switches to the side of the index finger, Right-Click, Left-Click, and the Track On/Off that allows me to turn off mouse tracking. I added switches to the end of the middle and ring fingers to control Scroll-Up and Scroll-Down. This layout allows me to easily reach any of these buttons with my thumb while making a fist. I designed it as the pointing device for a wearable computer I'm working on and it seems like a good layout, but I'm sure there are other good ones possible.

That's it! It's a pretty low level skill build a good project to learn some tools on.

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    8 years ago on Introduction

    One of the reviews of the device on Amazon say that the cursor moves too quickly to be useable and that pressing the buttons (on the device) made clicking difficult because the cursor would move as the button was being pressed. Obviously, that issue would be different with the glove.

    I really appreciate this instructable as a proof-of-concept. I was just wondering how the glove worked in real application as far as being able to control the cursor and basic functions.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Once I slowed down the mouse scroll speed in windows it smoothed out the input and became quite usable, but yes the default settings were a little rough.

    tech joey
    tech joey

    8 years ago

    This is pretty amazing if i were to do it i would cover up the electronics with another glove


    8 years ago on Step 4

    This is absolutely brilliant!!!

    It'll be fun to tinker with the position of the buttons for ergonomic ease. For example:

    one on the side of the index finger-- (pressed by the thumb)

    one on the top of the thumb (between knuckle & nail) -- (pressed by the index finger)

    one each on the tips of the middle & ring fingers-- (pressed by the thumb)

    perhaps the last one under the knuckle of the middle finger.

    I think this, coupled with various gesture interpreters like Ji Touch or Better Touch tool, would be cool (though not sure if they'd work in this way).

    I have a LEAP MOTION device, but it has a limited range and pushes my fast laptop too hard for most work.

    I think this has potential for musical applications as well. Recently, musician Imogen Heap has been developing more advanced glove technology. But this seems like a very nice entry level approach. Thank you!!!


    8 years ago on Introduction

    Very cool, but could you followup with a description of which functions/buttons from the Measey you wired to which switches/positions on the glove, and whether you're happy with that arrangement or if you'd change it up if you did another one?


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Good suggestion, I added a paragraph to the last step detailing the layout.