PET - TOY need fix (. . . - - - . . . )


Recently my girlfriend was gifted with one "puppy toy" for her cat, this small device looks like a small mice, and use two AAA cells, and fully rubber design, match with one collar for the pet, so when the pet reach the toy it start to bounce and vibrating, so that catch the attention of the cat, and start play with the gizmo.
Excellent toy, but the damn cat "kill" it, we hear "Whackkk...mauuuuuuuuuuu" and the cat run away like following the devil... (I suspect the cat bite it and catch some electricity) and the mice not work any more (change several cells to test it), and a close look to the collar reveals that was made with one permanent magnet in it.
The mice inside look like one big relay, all melted on resin or epoxi stuff dice, so nothing to test or even look at. The bottom side have one some kind of solenoid (jumping device maybe?) and the head have one excentric rotor little motorized (vibrating device maybe?). So the task asigned was... ???

yeah! you guess it...

How the hell can I "bring back to life" the mice... (Like "The green mile" perhaps) or replace the whole controller box with one picaxed new gizmo????

Certainly I feel doomed. But she don't understand how I can spend too much time buildings things (useless, to her perception) and I can't "fix" that cute Mice toy...

So IF anyone have one nice idea about HOW... PLEASE tell me.


1).- I guess the mice "read" collar with one Hall effect sensor. (or maybe one coil?)
2).- The solenoid and rotor works perfectly with 2.4v to 3v.
3).- One P08 maybe beat the task...
4).- ???????? agggghhhhhhh dooooommmmmm doom doom...

...---... (mayday, s.o.s, HELP !!!!)

Edited by - rookie on 03/09/2007 14:01:33


I expect the sensor is probably a simple reed switch (hall sensors are too expensive for mass produced toys).
Start at the beginning and consider what you want the mouse to do.
The PICAXE will not be able to drive either the motor or the solenoid direct. You will need at least a transistor for each. If they need to be driven in both directions then consider getting an H-Bridge driver such as the L293D but I doubt it will drive much if you only have 3v available.
Whatever you do, resign yourself to the fact that it will never be as compact as the original. Those "blobs" that seem to do so much are custom chips which include the micro and all required drivers. Your version will require descrete components.

My sentiments on the girlfriend aspect. Some people will never understand the wonderful world of hobby electronics. They can't see the point but still expect miracles when THEY want something out of it.
Wishing you the best of luck.


Thanks BeanieBots
So... H.E.S. probabily not be... any clue about how I can make one coil to detect the collar one half foot away? cause I not believe one reed switch can achieve that...
unless I use one "parking garage door" type... but seems too big to fit inside.

I start to look if I can buy one similar toy... but that was buyed in one "duty free shop" style in some corner of the world...


<img src="sad.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle>


I would guess that activation from 6&quot; away is possible with a reed and a strong magnet but maybe I was wrong and it really did have a hall sensor. If the cat keeps getting stuck to the fridge door via his collar then it probably is just a magnet/reed arrangement.

Anyway, it should be possible to fix but flowers might be a cheaper &amp; less stressful solution until your next trip via duty free<img src="wink.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle>


Ha,ha,ha... I can imagine the cat hanged by his collar... [:p]

The collar fall down itself from the fridge door, but strong enough to catch one inch screw from the floor.

I found one HES cheap enough to try... one UGN3503 by U$S1.25
datasheet =&gt;<A href='' Target=_Blank>External Web Link</a>
Do you think that worth the effort?

The toy don't look to be cheap at all... Mmmmm...
Strong construction, two play selectables modes...
As was a gift... no real known about it price.
And her friend, who buy the gizmo... she's traveling again...

If only I can contact her... maybe with Messenger... To ask where she bought it... or price. (crap! probably cost more than the damn cat ! )

Well... I try to buy flowers &amp; Chocolat instead... to calm her down until find a solution. (or probably keep &quot;sleep out&quot; of bed nexts weekends until then) <img src="wink.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle>



Senior Member
A rebuild with a simple off center weight motor (which you have) and a transistor/MOSFET to drive it on a timer function driven by an 08 triggered by the reed switch should do - Or indeed include an LED to sense the dark hovering shape of the cat and set it off then, or put a tilt switch in and set off after cat swipes it.

As long as it appears to do something your GF isn't going to ask about the technical details so something should be recoverable.


I don't have a &quot;gut feel&quot; for magnetics so I might be completely wrong but 1.3mV/G does not sound very sensitive. It also has a 2.5v offset which adds to the difficulty of putting in a simple amplification stage.
Certainly cheap and worth playing with if only for the education.
Maybe a magnetics expert can chip in and tell us if that would pick up a cat collar magnet from 6&quot; away.

I like Rick's idea of adding a light sensor. You could sell that your GF as &quot;an extra feature&quot;<img src="wink.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle>

Edited by - beaniebots on 03/09/2007 19:02:58


Senior Member
might be easier to just forget the &quot;cat detection&quot; aspect, and just put an on/off switch on the mouse toy, along with a random timer circuit to make it interesting.


Senior Member
Can you send me one pic of the dice?
Do you have &quot;the box&quot; of the gizmo to provide some enlightment?
I agree with Rick an BeanieBots, search the eyes of the rat to put one photoswitch...
Or one IR trigger, maybe.



Thanks pal's I will try to do that solution meanwhile.
trough the epoxi dice I can see one toroidal red coil like a coin...
(maybe one &quot;pick up&quot; coil or something) and in the loin one &quot;loop&quot; or pad of something dark material...

Anyway... at least I have 4 more days to get one &quot;spare&quot; solution.

Sorry, but no box provided, was a gift &quot;put on the cat&quot; belt and throw the mice around.
Aggghhhh... girls...Don't keep useful printed info, they see that like &quot;Scrap trash&quot;.

Pics? hehe... is a dark dice only...

See you around gentlemans... <img src="smile.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle>


Senior Member
See if you can find out where it was purchased and get a new one ASAP!
Make it look a bit used like the old one,
dispose of old mouse and if you can pull it off, so she thinks you fixed it, your gf will think your a genius. And you can then continue to waste time on your own projects.
Think of it as an investment. Ha Ha.