Intro: Spy Garage Opener
This was a school project. We had to incorporate 2 out of the three C's (Coding, Circuitry, and Cad) into our projects. I found a intractable exactly like this and I based my project off of his. The link to that instructable is right here. This is a fun and easy project and I highly suggest doing it.
Step 1: Materials and Tools:
1 x Push button switch
2 x wire piece about 3-5 inches long and around 18 gauge.
1 x shrink tubing that will fit your wire.
1 x garage door opener (Any garage door opener will work. They are all designed for easy battery removal and so it also easy just to take out the circuit board.)
1 x cover plate of your choice (3D printed is optional).
*The amount of materials needed will vary depending on the amount of buttons you are looking to set up. Each button requires two wires each.
3D printer (Optional)
I got all of my materials from RadioShack and Home Depot. The amount of wire you get will determine the cost and each buttons cost a different amount/ You can us a garage door opener you already own or you can get a new one like I did from Home Depot.
Step 2: Finding the Place You Want to Put This:
Find the spot in your car where you would like to place this and then measure the dimensions. The dimensions will come in handy later for either 3D printing your cover or making it out of another material. The picture above shows where I out my garage opener. I measured the dimensions and then built it on Onshape.
Step 3: Building Your Cover Piece:
Once I found where I wanted to put my garage opener I measured the area and then built in on Onshore. You can use any CAD software that you would like though. Once I was done with the CAD I cut it out onto a piece of Birch Wood using a laser cutter. For this piece you do not have to laser cut it. You can make it however you want. You can 3D print or you can make it the good old fashion way by hand. Once I printed it out I spray painted it black so that it would match the car and I started to work on the wiring of it.
Step 4: Starting Your Circuitry:
Once you have all of your materials and your cover piece you can now start with the circuitry. First we have to get the circuit board out of the garage door opener. To do this you you figure out how to replace the battery on it and instead of replacing the battery you just take the circuit board out of the container it is stored it. Look at your buttons and flip the circuit board over. There should be 4 shoulders holding the button to the board. Two of these shoulders are important and the other two are there just for support. We must figure out which of these buttons are significant. With my garage door opener every time I clicked a button a blue light would light up at the top and so I used this to my advantage. I hooked up some alligator clips to the shoulders connected to traces and then connected the other side of the alligator clips to one of the buttons I bought. I then clicked the button to see if it worked, it did, and so I knew that these were the important shoulders. Next we solder, don't be intimidated by it though because this is a very easy soldering job. This was my first time ever soldering and I figured it out pretty quickly and easily. I soldered the wires to the circuit board and then I set up the buttons onto my cover board. Once I got the buttons on my cover board I soldered the wires to the buttons and voila. Test your buttons on your garage and if it works you are now done. I do not have any pictures of the opener installed because I have yet to put it into my car but the dimensions are right and the buttons work.
Step 5: Final Notes:
I loved creating this project. I did by myself with the help of a previous intructable but it was a lot of fun making. I only had one problem though out the making of this and that was the first garage door opener broke. I do not know how but I believe I might have fried something. It was an easy fix though because I just bought a new garage opener and re-soldered the wires. This project was easy and fun to make and so I recommend this to any body who wants to make something that is quick and easy and pretty cool. If you have made it this far: Thank you, and I hope you enjoyed building this as much as I did.