As I was sitting in my apartment late last night, I was thinking of something that I could turn into a switch. I took down a bag of miscellaneous junk my girlfriend hid from me in the closest and found an old treat: a Mike Mussina pin from 1995. “He may have not been conducive to winning a World Series but I bet this pin is conducive!” I checked with my digital multimeter and sure enough, good ol’ Mike was conducive. But now what to do about it?
I decided since he threw baseballs for a living, and there was an old foul ball in my bag, maybe I should do something where when the Moose threw a strike, an LED lit up! I started with the bare essentials: my pin, my ball, and my ….vernacular schematic
I knew I would have to run wire from the conductor – the pin – to my source of power – my Arduino Uno. So I stripped two wires and soldered them to the pin: one to go to the breadboard and one to be my switch.
A baseball however isn’t conductive, but a sheet of tinfoil is. It wouldn’t be enough to simply cover a ball in tinfoil however, I would need to also run the ball to ground (as Dhruv very helpfully pointed out). So I covered the ball in tinfoil and tried soldering to it but as Emmanuel pointed out – man that’s one helpful shop staff – the tinfoil wouldn’t be able to get to the right temperature for me to solder to it and if it did, it could just burn up. So, I stripped a long piece of wire, wrapped it around my ball like a big piece of yarn and soldered at points where the wire met.
Now theoretically, all I would need to do is run the excess wire into ground, and touch the wire coming from the pin to any of the exposed wire on the ball. So did it work?