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« on: March 14, 2009, 06:11:59 AM »

Hello everyone,

I've been meaning to post a video of the Tide-to-go pressure tip pen for quite some time now.  I've finally gotten around to it. 

When I made my first push button pen, writing was quite a challenge.  To constantly push a button was too fidgety - the strokes had to be very deliberate and the writing was very slow.  Handwriting was definitely easier than printing, since you could keep the button pressed continually, but printing, writing formulas, chemical equations, and numbers etc... was quite slow.  I went from being very excited about an interactive whiteboard to being doubtful about its usefulness to me as an actual whiteboard.  To be able to use an interactive whiteboard in the classroom on a regular basis, I needed to be able write much, much faster on it. 

The solution of course was a pressure tip pen.  After many iterations,  I finally came up with one that writes beautifully - the Tide-to-go pressure tip pen.  It feels very much like writing with a regular white board marker.

The main reason for showing these clips is so that others who have tried the wii whiteboard but found it to be more of a novelty and too impractical to write with on a regular basis can see that it is very possible with the right pen.

The first clip shows the pen's weight and how little force it takes to activate the LED.  I've read some posts of pens requiring "only" 50 or 100 g of force to activate the pen.  My pen weighs about 22 g and the tip will light up at maybe 5 g - it's hard to tell exactly by looking at the balance.  The weight of the pen itself is definitely enough to activate the pen.  Naturally, the less force the better - writing is very natural and easy feeling and there is less abrasion on the LED.

The second clip shows some actual writing.  I teach chemistry, so I've used a chemistry example.  I hope the ease of writing comes across in the clip.  I'm writing on a 1/8" wood fiber board with a melamine surface which has been taped onto a blackboard.  I find it to be a pretty good surface to write on.  I've found that if the board is too smooth or glossy (eg. plexiglass, glass, plastic, smooth painted surface like a table or wall, varnished surface) the LED rubs against it with a lot of friction (it's very noticeable if you rub the led against the surface quickly).  I think a  lightly textured surface works much better.

If you want to actually write with the wiiboard, not just doodle, or write the odd word - but write for an entire lesson : notes, examples, diagrams, etc... you need a good pressure-tip pen.  I'm still on the hunt for a pen tube (other than the tide-to-go tube) which will accommodate a AA battery but still fits the tide-to-go tip.  If anyone finds one, please let me know.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8jcRJKvIb4I" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8jcRJKvIb4I</a>
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y8h9iCtmf5U" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y8h9iCtmf5U</a>
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« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2009, 11:52:02 PM »

Very good videos. Also a good example of its functionality. It's always good to see a proof of difference with functionality.
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« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2009, 04:23:06 AM »

thanks for posting. Now to hunt for tide to go. 5 bucks is expensive though... Any other alternatives?
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« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2009, 06:52:01 AM »

I don't know of any alternatives.  The tip mechanism of the Tide-to-pen is really quite perfect: holes where needed, spaces where needed, good size, good fit.
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« Reply #4 on: March 29, 2009, 01:18:17 AM »

So the Tide pen already has a spring mechanism built in already?

This may be my next project.
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« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2009, 04:13:16 AM »

Yes, it has a spring mechanism already in it.  However, the spring is really stiff.  There are some posts already on the tide-to-go pen design.  You should have a look at earlier posts.
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« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2009, 02:32:26 PM »

Can someone give little description about how to transform Tide To Go Stain Remover into pressure sensitive infrared pen? I just want to know about the part inside Tide To Go, because there are no such thing in my country and I have to import it.

It looks like Tide To Go have very very sensitive spring mechanisms and just replacing the tip part with IR Led and adding batteries and cables could turn this into awesome IR Pen!!! Is it right?

Iwan Suryolaksono
Bandung, Indonesia
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« Reply #7 on: July 06, 2010, 04:26:04 PM »

Great video shared by you, it really helps to understand the functionality very well. Because it is bit practical and one can also see that how actually it works. I got a lot new information and knowledge from these. I will sure buy one of the IR pen very soon.
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