Ultimate Mr. Clean




About: I am a Physics and Creative Tech Double major at Berry College.

For my Physical Computing class I needed to build an Interactive Kitchen Object. Since I am in college I don't really cook or do much of anything in a kitchen. However if I ever use silverware or plates or bottles I have to clean them after and I don't like cleaning so I came up with this to make the process faster and more fun.

The Ultimate Mr. Clean is basically a sponge attached to a big motor where the speed of the motor is controlled by how hard you press on a force sensor (The harder you press, the faster it goes).

Step 1: Force Sensor, LED's and Powerswitch Tail

I started out by wiring the force sensor and LED's to my breadboard which was pretty simple. I am using the LED's as an indicator to show how hard you are pressing on the force sensor. If you don't touch the force sensor, no LED's are lit and If you are pressing kinda hard you can get all 4 green LED's to light up.

Since the Motor I was using came from an old Handheld Blender and was meant for 120V AC current I had to use the Power switch tail (https://www.adafruit.com/product/268) to control current to the motor. Basically this thing is just a big relay that when you send a signal to with your Arduino. All you need to do to open and close the relay is digital write HIGH's(closed) and LOW's(open). By varying how fast I opened and closed the circuit, I was able to control the speed of the motor.

Step 2: Remove Old Motor Controls

The Blender that this motor came from had a button that you would press to turn on the motor but since I want to control the speed of the motor I am getting rid of the button and soldering the wires directly to the motor. Now If I were to plug in the motor it would start turning over right away. So when connected to the power tail which is wired up to the arduino, I can use the arduino to start and stop the motor.

Step 3: Preparing the Enclosure

I removed the guard from the blender to give me room to attach the sponge on the end of the shaft. At the end of the shaft were the blender blades which I did not want having exposed so I bent them with some pliers to make this thing a little bit less dangerous. I hot glued the sponge to the end of the shaft where the rounded blades are now. This was not the best solution as you will see.

Step 4: Making Longer Wire

In order for me to connect the Arduino, which will be on the enclosure, to the power tail, which is at the end of the cord, I had to solder some connector pins to some old wire I found lying around that was about the same length as the cord to the blender.

Step 5: Putting It All Together

I stuck on a mini breadboard for the LED's, and taped on the Arduino & Force Sensor. After some testing and altering of my numbers in the code I was done.

Here is a video of me using it to remove some old Fake snow in my room.




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    5 Discussions


    7 months ago

    I think that youtube link is bad. I, for one, would still like to see this in action.


    Reply 2 years ago

    Thanks! Not sure yet, it probably won't be graded for a couple more days.


    2 years ago

    Does the device work well? It looks strange but I think it works.

    1 reply

    Reply 2 years ago

    Everything works really well except keeping the sponge attached to the end is kind of difficult. In the video that I linked you can see I used it to clean off some Fake snow off of wood and I got halfway done but then sponge flew off. It was only hot glued on there so if I had some way of clamping it on there without throwing off the balance it wouldn't have that problem. I haven't tried actually cleaning any dishes either because most of the wiring is just sticking out and the whole thing isn't waterproof.