I needed to be able to turn the page in a sheet music organizer I made ( http://www.gschoppe.com/repertoire ), without stopping playing. After a bit of thought, this usb foot pedal was born. Some companies sell these for over $200. Mine cost $30-$40 to make.
Step 1: Purchase Materials
The main materials used were:
-2 SPST momentary switches from RadioShack
-1 RadioShack Project Box
-1 Mobility USB 2.0 Travel Hub (staples SKU #564851)
-1 GE retractable keypad (staples SKU #603891)
-1/16" sheet steel
-1 superpad extra large mousepad (staples again)
I also used:
-3m super 77 spray adhesive
-conductive epoxy (if you're prepared)
-hot glue and a circuit writer pen from radio shack (if you're down and dirty)
I'll add part numbers soon, but thats what I needed.
for tools, I used:
-a table saw
-an adjustable wrench
-basically, a well stocked workbench.
OK, now lets get down to buisness.
Step 2: Remove All Casings
remove the casing of the hub and keypad. remove the circuit boards, and use electrical tape to isolate them and stack them in a neat bundle.
Step 3: Connect Wires to the Keypad
remove the film contacts from the keypad. Counting from the little plus sign, you need to connect to traces 2, 5, and 6.
you can now cut the film to size, and use conductive adhesive (or a circuitwriter and hot glue if you're lazy like me) to connect 1 lead to trace 2, 2 leads to trace 5, and 1 lead to trace 6.
at this point you can connect everything and test.
touching 2 and 5 should yield a 6, or a right arrow
touching 5 and 6 should yield a 4, or a left arrow
disconnect and continue...
Step 4: Cut and Drill
now you need to cut the project box on a bias, measure and slot for the connections to the hub, and drill and mount the switches. Whew, that went fast, didn't it.
you'll also need to cut down some posts to fit everything inside.
really, cut and fit to feel... and take your time
Step 5: Cut the Base
measure, cut and drill your steel base plate...
also measure and cut your non-slip surface (the mousepad)
measure large; its almost impossible to cut a mousepad exactly
Step 6: Assemble the Innards
stick the innards together, test, and super glue to the metal base, after double checking your electrical tape insulation.
then, connect the switches, solder, and screw it shut.
Step 7: Test
plug it all in, drop in your software (in my case Repertoire, soon to be available for testing at http://www.gschoppe.com) and test the darned thing.
Step 8: Add Nonslip Base
use spray adhesive to attach your mousepad to the base (fabric to metal)
Step 9: Admire Your Handiwork
stand agast in awe mere mortals...
i.e. use the infernal contraption, and enjoy.