Digital Multi-Tool Is a Great Use for Spare Sensors

"It's like a Swiss Army knife, but for sensing."

Jeremy S. Cook
6 days agoSensors

If you're like Albert Barber (AKA splat238), you probably have a bunch of sensors lying around from incomplete projects, or purchased on a whim. After being inspired by another DIY measurement tool, he decided to make his own, incorporating sensors that he thought were useful in a workshop setting.

The resulting device runs on a Wemos D1 Mini V3.1.0, and comes in a pocket-friendly 4.4 "x 1.6" x 1.8" (11.2mm x 40.3mm x 46.8mm) enclosure. A custom PCB is used to mount and connect the sensors, and it’s designed to be modular so that if you don’t have certain items, or don’t need different functionalities, you can simply leave elements off. User interface is via a series of buttons, along with a potentiometer and an on/off switch, and measurement results are shown on a 0.96” yellow/blue OLED display.

Sensors include an MPU6050 IMU for angle measurement and digital level capabilities, a mouse encoder that can be used to measure distance or act as a tachometer, a non-contact IR tachometer, an IR thermometer, and more. The handy unit is powered by a single-cell LiPo battery, which is charged via USB or through a solar panel integrated into the case.

The multi-tool's features are demonstrated in the video below. Given its Wemos/ESP8266 processing and interlace capabilities, it could form the basis for any number of related projects.

Jeremy S. Cook
Engineer, maker of random contraptions, love learning about tech. Write for various publications, including Hackster!
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