View Full Version : Need help from the pros, android gauge

09-06-2011, 02:49 AM
Hello all, I require your assistance.

I want to make a motorcycle gauge using a android tablet.

There are several lights like oil pressure, water temp and neutral light also some gauges like fuel, speed and rpm.

The light indicators works at 12vdc. the rpm gauge works at ~12vdc, the higher rpm the lower the voltage. Fuel sensor I have to figure out but I think it works at 12v at full (sensor raises resistance as fuel lowers). Speed sensor I have no idea yet, it uses a magnet and sensor to count the revolutions of the wheel. I think I can get/tab into all this info at the stock gauge connector/plug. I am not looking to contol anything, just dispay data on an android screen.

I understand I need some kind of microcontriller or interface unit to pass this info to android or process this info, translate it into usable data and pass it on to android to be displayed. The problem is that I have basic understanding of electronics and some light programing experience. I need to be thrown in the right direction. What I do have is persistence and motivation.

My question is what hardware do I need to make this happened. I was looking at arduino or some pbasic stamps but like I said before I have no clue where to go from here.

Since I have some light programing experience a easy language would be preferred. Price is another issue, I was looking to spend as little as possible. Please help me choose the best board with the easiest language at a good price :)

Your guidance would be much appreciated, thank you.

Loopy Byteloose
09-06-2011, 10:32 AM
Price is always an issue. Parallax can generally save you a bit of money, and save a lot of time as well. But I am wondering why you mention the Android tablet. Do you have an Android tablet device that you plan to use as a display? And I wonder what the main purpose is? Is this a shop tool or are you going to use this while riding the bike?

It seems that you want to convert all the input signals to a lower voltage and pass them on to the Android as digital data. A Propeller Proto Board with a USB interface might be a good solution. It only gets tricky if you want a very compact device to be monitored while riding. Or, do you want to link to the Android via a wireless interface?

09-06-2011, 02:50 PM
The Propeller would be great for interfacing with so many sensors in real time. The choice of development board might be the prototype board mentioned by Loopy, and then later you might consider the QuickStart board, which will run from 6v to max 18vin so could connect directly to your bike, perhaps with a large capacitor and fuse (of course) at the voltage input.

If you have limited experience with interfacing to your sensors, then that will likely be your biggest challenge, but you can learn a lot from the Parallax educational and example documents available for free download: http://www.parallax.com/Support/DownloadsPress/tabid/477/Default.aspx

Also from this forum you will find many of the bike sensors have already been interfaced by forum users and they will have documented their experiences. Just break down your project and try a search for 1 sensor at a time!

Also, there was some extensive Android discussion here, although times have moved on so some of the issues may have been solved:

Finally, good luck and enjoy! If you have persistence then you can definitely solve all your questions, learn a lot of new things and feel a great sense of achievement at the end! (Just remember to document your exploits here so others can help you and also share your success!)

Have fun.

09-06-2011, 03:48 PM
Here someone connected Android with Bluetooth and a Basic Stamp...

06-04-2012, 10:22 PM
Jonagpa, What happened with your project?