Tired of having to find the dog food to feed the dog? Tired of having to get up early so your dog doesn't attack you for his food? Are just plain lazy? If you answered yes to any of these questions, this instructable is for you. Powered by the intelligent Arduino, this gadget will automatically dispense measured amounts of dog food at user designated times. No longer the days of manually feeding your dog. Join the Revolution! Build this so you will never have to bust out the measuring cup or manually feed your dog again!
This instructable is part of the Sparkfun and Epilog challenge so if you like it, vote for it. Also you can leave a comment or rate or subscribe!
Also a video of this in action will come in a little bit
Step 1: Bill of Supplies
1 x Bucket
1 x Standard 3 pin servo (This is the one I am using)
1 x Blank or unwanted CD
1 x Arduino or ATmega328 (I am using the Arduino Uno)
1 x 10K Ohm Resistor
1x Proto/Maker Shield or breadboard (You could use a Etched board, but it would be a lot easier to use aThe Makers Shield or Protoshield)
1 x Push button (This will be a override button)
1 x Sharpie Marker
1 x Large Cardboard Container (I used a Chips box from Costco)
1 x 9V arduino Battery pack or Wall Adapter
1 x Hot Glue Gun
1 x Dremel w/cutting wheel
1 x Soldering Iron
1 x Scissors
Step 2: Cutting the CD
Before we do anything, we must cut the opening in the CD for the food to go through. This will be slightly difficult, as we want a straight line. You may want an extra CD in case you make an error
Step 3: Affixing the CD to the Servo Head
This step is kind of self explanatory, All you need to do is glue the servo head to the inner rim of the cut CD
Step 4: The Circuit
Make the circuit from the schematic in the second picture. You can use a breadboard or Proto/MakerShield for the circuit.
Step 5: Making a Bracket for the Servo
We don't want the servo turning around, so we have to make something to hold it in place.
Make one of the things in picture 2 with hardwood, make sure the servo fits in it. Then cut two long pieces of wood and glue them on the side. Lastly, glue two more pieces on the pieces you just glued. Use picture one as a reference.
Step 6: Preparing the Container
For this step, you will cut the extra cardboard up, so the box will funnel toward the opening at the front. Make sure you cut the pieces of cardboard so the length is 8 inches and the height is around the height of the container. Hot glue it so the side that is eight inches long is parallel to the bottom of the box.
MAKE SURE THAT BEFORE YOU GLUE IN THE CARDBOARD, YOUR ARDUINO AND CIRCUIT WILL FIT INSIDE THE CORNER COVERED BY THE CARDBIARD LIKE IN PICTURE 3
Next staple the servo cord up so it doesn't fall into the food. Then glue in the servo inside its mounting bracket from step 5 and slide another piece of hardwood under the top of the bracket like in picture 5
Now, Mark and cut a whole where the CD slit will be when its fully turned like in pictures 6 and 7.
Step 7: Adding the Chute
This is the last step of assembling. All you have to do is attach the chute (Make one like shown in the picture by folding cardboard in half or gluing two pieces in a V shape) to the front of the box. Make it as long as you want to
Step 8: Coding the Arduino
The only thing complicated about this step is installing the libraries. In the download, I made it easier by including them. Just copy the 3 Libraries from the Library folder in the .zip into the Libraries folder in the Arduino IDE folder. Then just open the .pde file in the IDE and hit upload to board.
(For more help on libraries see my instructable about that here )
WHEN YOU CODE THE ARDUINO, MAKE SURE ITS PLUGGED INTO THE POWER AS WHEN IT RESETS, IT WILL RESET TO THE TIME GIVEN IN THE SKETCH
Step 9: Start It Up (And Some Final Words)
Just prop it up on an angle and press the button to test. If you find it dispenses too much, just make the number after the delays in the code smaller, and re sync it with the correct time.
Also if you have a container with edges in the box that stop the flow of food, glue a piece of paper over this.