Wiimote Project

Market Place => For Sale => IR Pens => Topic started by: tino on November 24, 2008, 08:15:48 AM

Title: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: tino on November 24, 2008, 08:15:48 AM
We've completed our modifications for The GrooveTM 1.5 and have made a few updates.


1.) We have adjusted the casing to allow more movement of the red button.  The result is a lighter red button that is easier to press.
2.) We've switched to a better battery holder that wraps around the battery slightly holding it in place should you accidentally drop The GrooveTM.
3.) We have redesigned the board utilizing a better switch, as a result our tip also requires less force to operate.

One thing I thought worth mentioning is that the tip of "The GrooveTM" was designed for use on hard smooth surfaces that can withstand an LED being pressed and dragged against it.  We really hadn't considered it for LCD display applications as it could potentially scratch the surface of the screen.  Ideally "The GrooveTM" should be used on a whiteboard, a wall (painted perhaps), or a table.  If you are using it with an LCD display we would recommend picking up a piece of thin acrylic (1/8") to place over the front of your monitor.  This will give you a better hard surface to write against and will protect your screen.

Thank all of you that support the wiimote project each day.  Through your advice, counsel, and feedback, we are able to continually improve our products.  Please keep the feedback flowing!  Our goal at IRPensOnline is to build the ultimate ir pen, we've taken another baby step, but we'll need your help to take us further.


http://www.irpensonline.com (http://www.irpensonline.com)

Cost: 29.95 + S/H will ship internationally (send an email for details)
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: broorb on November 24, 2008, 08:49:05 AM
Dual switching is great! The design is amazing as well. Congratulations!  :)
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: infradude on November 24, 2008, 09:31:55 AM
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: Wiweeyum on January 07, 2009, 06:10:27 AM
Are these pens made? The ad at the top of my screen right now says that they're expected december 14th... but I don't remember there being an announcement about them when december 14th rolled around.

Having a pressure sensitive tip is necessary for my project.
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: tino on January 10, 2009, 09:11:44 PM
"The Groove" has completed the pre-production work and is now being assembled.  We have started shipping orders with our earliest pre-orders first.  We want to thank all of you that pre-ordered this product.  All of you have been so patient and we sincerely appreciate it.  As you might imagine it has taken many hours of research and a bit more capital than expected to get to the end product but we're very pleased with the result.

Here are some pictures of pens being assembled.  We're ramping up production to handle larger volume.  We expect to be at 100% production by next week and are currently back ordered.  Please allow 3 to 4 weeks to process your order.  To our current waiting customers we sincerely apologize for the delay but we know you'll be happy we spent a bit more time to ensure its usability.

Better button - softer to the touch


But the best part of "The Groove" is that you merely have to press it against a hard smooth surface for it to turn on.  Look mom no button!


How hard do you have to press on the LED?

Do you have a triple beam lying around?  We actually pressed down on a digital postal scale to see how much force was required.  100 gm of force was enough to turn on the LED.

Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: goalieace on February 05, 2009, 03:24:43 PM
I just got my Groove in the mail last night and had the chance to give it a try in class today - my class was pretty excited that we had a Smartboard without the board.

Still working on where to set up my Wiimote to get the best reception, but the pen worked like a charm.  It's fun to use, easy to work with, and the whiteboard has taken on a whole new persona!

I'll be recommending it to my staff at our meeting next week!  :D
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: broorb on February 14, 2009, 09:22:29 AM
that's cool !  :)
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: RickRat on March 20, 2009, 10:50:45 PM
I have the groove pen as well, I like the dual buttons, but it feels rather flimsy, would like it to have more support, I feel like when I grip it, like I'm going to break it apart.

Also, it seems like it needs a lot of pressure to turn on the tip pen, or maybe I am just paranoid to ruin my monitor. lol

This is a good pen for the money.
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: jdkestewart on March 26, 2009, 04:33:24 AM
Hi all,
Got the 2nd gen pen a couple of weeks ago and have used it constantly in my year 4 class. It works GREAT!!!! The kids love the feel of it and is excellent for "clicking" dragging and dropping objects and even writing in all interactive activities. Love your work Tino. It's well worth the wait!
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: WiiTeachers on August 21, 2009, 02:09:04 PM
I got my new Groove version 1.5 the other day and I'm very impressed with this pen.  Although, I loved the original Groove, I found this new version to be even better.  The pushbutton is softer and more responsive.  The tip needs less pressure to activate the IR LED, and the upgraded battery holder keeps the battery in place should you accidently drop the pen.   This may be the perfect pen for the wiimote whiteboard.  Great work! 
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: boonjin on September 07, 2009, 08:07:37 AM

The Groove has indeed improved significantly. The pressure sensitive tip is now more sensitive and require a light touch to activate the LED.

The button is also softer and require little force to click.

Thumbs up!

Boon Jin
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: davidjmortimer on September 25, 2009, 06:53:55 AM
Ordered the "Groove" on Wednesday night, received it in Melbourne Australia following Tuesday afternoon, well packaged and ready to work straight out of the box...

I echo the comments above, it is easy to use and years 7 & 8 took to it intuitively. My only criticism is the battery hatch is a bit hard to undo (I need to jamb a key into mine to get it open). In every other respect it is well worth the close to $40AUD I paid for it. The combination of Smoothboard 1.6 and this pen make this project the equal of any commercial whiteboard.

Love your work Tino... ;D
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: jdkestewart on September 25, 2009, 04:32:17 PM
I've been using my pen since March - nearly 7 months. WOW!!! I have put up a piece of melamine coated masonite (cost $10) to replace the OHP screen. The Groove doesn't scratch this board but the board is slowly wearing away the tip of the pen on one side - as it only works in one direction.

It is the most reliable and best pen that I have used!

How low can it go (wearing down the tip) before the led stops working?

I don't think that this would be a problem with a metal whiteboard as it would have a much smoother surface. Keep up the great work Tino.

Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: davidjmortimer on September 25, 2009, 08:42:56 PM

LED's can take a lot of punishment.

I made myself a pen out of the kids UV marker toys(http://www.made-in-china.com/china-products/productviewgJmxQWYvoEwn/Secret-Message-Pen-HL4003-.html (http://www.made-in-china.com/china-products/productviewgJmxQWYvoEwn/Secret-Message-Pen-HL4003-.html)), however too much of the LED was encased inside the pen. Simple I thought, get a Stanley knife and cut some of the end off to expose the LED. Woops

I slipped and cut about 1/3 of the end of the LED off. IT STILL WORKS!!!

I am guessing that unless you expose the electrode or get pretty close it is OK
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: jdkestewart on September 26, 2009, 07:08:02 AM
Hi Tino,
Is the Groove much different now to the one I received in March (you sent me the 2nd Generation as the 1st one I bought before this was not as reliable and you changed the type of switch) or is the rocker tip switch and pressure sensitivity the same?
The pen is excellent and well worth the money.

Thanks too David. I've constructed dozens of pens of many designs and no matter what you do, it's virtually impossibly to kill them. Dropped them, thrown them, stepped on them soldered and resoldered and melted the base etc. This is another reason to place this product above its commericial counterparts. I wouldn't like to drop some other IWB pens. If they did break, how much more expensive are they to replace than our simple IR pen. Need I say more.
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: tino on September 27, 2009, 10:08:13 PM
Hi Joe,

In March we actually released our 1.1 version of the Groove, I'm pretty sure this is the one you had received.  The biggest improvement from 1.0 to 1.1 was the casing.  Our earliest version used a urethane pour process which is designed for prototype development.  After our first round of feedback we agreed with everyone that the case needed an improvement, our 1.1 represented our shift from this manual pour process into an injection mold process.  Our 1.1 model is much stronger than our original 1.0 design.

In August we completed our re-tooling for our version 1.5 model.  Our 1.5 model has the following updates from our 1.1 model:

1.) The tact switch is different.  We altered both the placement and the switch being used to require less force.  Our latest switch should perform between 40 and 60 gmf.  The result of this was that both the tip, and the button should feel easier to depress.

2.) Our red button was a bit tough to press in our 1.1 model so we widened the casing to allow a more free movement requiring less effort.  We feel this combination along with the adjustment of the tact switch allows for much better performance for younger children.

3.) Circuit boards are now machined and pre-assembled.  This is giving us more control and consistency as we produce more and more units.

4.) Our battery holder has been updated.  We found in some cases the battery would pop out of the older holders.  The new ones hold a bit tighter than I would like, but I wanted to make sure it didn't fall out.

As a side tip I recommend using a Lithium battery when working your Groove.  The voltage stays between 1.2 and 1.4 pretty much the entire life of the battery.

We have been thinking about adding a few colors on our next run.  Any suggestions?  We were thinking black, but we can add more if there is interest.

Thank you guys for your great feedback and support.  This is the kind of thing that keeps us improving our products :).


-- please be kind to the developers uwe and boon jin put a lot of hours in to help support us :)..
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: clpainter on November 23, 2009, 01:46:40 PM
We are in the process of setting up a Wii smoothboard and getting ready to present it at a conference.  Tino has been wonderful with his technology support.  I don't think we would be where we are at without his help.  Thank you for everything.  I will be sure to tell everyone I know that is setting this up, that you are a great resource for not only the hardward but for support as well.   :) :)[/color]] (http://[color=red)
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: Technovation on February 12, 2010, 07:18:18 AM
I received my pen, tripod and spot and have been extremely impressed by how well the pen works (especially when compared to my homemade one). Thanks Tino - I will hopefully open up a market and place many more orders.... Regards, Geoff
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: schmitzmatt on March 03, 2010, 02:11:24 PM
I purchased a Groove last Spring and was impressed with the dual switching functionality and pressure sensitive switch, but the body seemed to be a little less than desirable. 

The newest Groove's that I've ordered are absolutely awesome.  The battery door is somewhat difficult to open, but the battery holder in the pen, pressure switch, and manual switch are all much improved.  For the money, it cannot be beat.  Definitely a great investment.  The improvement in the pen since the initial model is wonderful.
Title: Re: "The Groove" by IRPensOnline
Post by: bbecker56 on January 30, 2012, 05:54:49 PM
Started using the Sabre last school year. Loved how easy it was to work. But some of my special needs students had a hard time maneuvering the pen and the activation button. The Groove is truly GROOVY! The kids just press and write as if they were using a wipe-off marker! I was worried that it might be too big for their little hands (elementary age) but they have no issue. Now they have a choice between the two- although I like the Groove even more than the Sabre (if that's possible).

I also want to say that the support for the product is tremendous! Tino responded right away to my email and concerns. I highly recommend both of these pens. Truly cool! : )