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  #1  
Old 11-05-2008, 09:23 PM
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Default Modified Harbor Freight Pinpointer w/ pics

I added a small vibrating motor to the pinpointer. I also removed the white LED and added a toggle switch in its place so that I could switch between the buzzer and motor. The motor was hot glued in place with a piece of soda straw covering the spinning weight at the end. I took measurements and for my setup I used a 51Ohm resistor to get the current of a little over 50mA. My motor was a random one I collected in my 'box-o-parts' but here is one from Radio Shack that appears to be similar but keep in mind your resistance value may need to change if using this one.


I got lucky and the switch barely fit in the casing. I had to drill the hole where the LED was slightly larger. Also I broke off a spare peg near the speaker to allow room for the switch.

Results:

Before modifying, it was pulling ~22mA idle (no metal detected). Since I took off the white LED it now it pulls a little more than 4mA idle.

When detecting metal it pulls about the following:
30mA - buzzer
60mA - motor

Overall I am happy with the results and it seems to work pretty well. Also I saw on another forum (I can't remember where) where they added a plastic 5/8" plastic chair tip to the end. This was to protect the tip from wear and tear and to prevent leaks. Lowe's has a 4-pack for $0.96. Wiring the switch is pretty straightforward but if a quick diagram is wanted I can draw one up.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Thanks,

maddog
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  #2  
Old 11-06-2008, 07:57 AM
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My Whites ballcap is off to you,very creative engineering on your part.
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  #3  
Old 11-06-2008, 08:18 AM
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Thumbs up Mods

Nice Mod I actually dipped the end of mine in liquid plastic used for tool handles Not sure if I will do any other mods it is just a cheap back up pin pointer Very nice work. CNR

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  #4  
Old 11-06-2008, 11:10 AM
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Thumbs up Excellent Post!!!

Very impressive modification and post. There are several HPPP users on the forum who'll benefit from this post.

I made your post a "Sticky" to keep it at the top of the "Fix It" directory all the time.

Thank You on behalf of the forum members.

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  #5  
Old 11-06-2008, 04:02 PM
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Looks good. How much depth do you get with yours?

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  #6  
Old 11-06-2008, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by tony48 View post
Looks good. How much depth do you get with yours?
I get about 1" on a penny(zinc). Though depth does increase with larger objects.

A few months ago I met with some fellow club members and we compared different pinpointers. Its performance was equal to that of a Vibraprobe when testing with a gold ring. The White's Bullseye did slightly better.

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Old 01-27-2009, 12:47 AM
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Inovative mod.

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  #8  
Old 02-18-2009, 01:49 PM
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good work, its a vey nice mod.
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  #9  
Old 02-24-2009, 12:17 PM
Mi$$ouri Jim Mi$$ouri Jim is offline
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Thanks for posting pics. I have been dying to see the inside of this new pinpointer to compare it to the old boxy style whites bullseye pinpointer. I suspected that they were basically one & the same.
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  #10  
Old 02-24-2009, 12:31 PM
Mi$$ouri Jim Mi$$ouri Jim is offline
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Thanks for posting pics. I have been dying to see pics of the inside of this new pinpointer. The pinpointer itself looks very similar to the old boxy white's electronics bullseye pinpointer & I wondered if it was the same. Having seen the inside of this new pinpointer... it is not the same.
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  #11  
Old 03-02-2009, 04:09 PM
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Default Great mod

Sir you just turned an inexpensive pin pointer into one that I will mod myself and carry in the future. Thanks for the lesson.
Doug in OR

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  #12  
Old 03-09-2009, 01:58 AM
BountyHunter BountyHunter is offline
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Originally Posted by Lowjiber View post
Very impressive modification and post. There are several HPPP users on the forum who'll benefit from this post.

I made your post a "Sticky" to keep it at the top of the "Fix It" directory all the time.

Thank You on behalf of the forum members.
Absolutely!

And my Minelab ballcap is off to you Mr Super Moderator for having made the post a "sticky", very Friendly

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  #13  
Old 03-10-2009, 09:55 PM
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Thanks for the positive feedback guys!

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  #14  
Old 03-14-2009, 09:34 PM
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A fellow forum member asked for more info so I decided to go ahead and post to share with others. Here is a basic wiring diagram I put together. The two wires coming from the circuit board are the ones that were originally connected to the speaker. It shouldn't matter which wire is used to connect the switch/motor.

For the switch the following should work well however I have not tried it:

SPDT switch
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  #15  
Old 03-23-2009, 04:36 PM
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I did this mod also, i ditched the speaker and switch though. Works great :>)
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  #16  
Old 03-30-2009, 12:34 AM
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Mega also hooked me up, did the mod. also...For being a cheap PP it works pretty good!! Can't get over how much that little motor vibrates ....

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  #17  
Old 11-30-2009, 12:50 PM
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Default Cheap vibrating motor source

Great post, I do find the piezo speaker a little hard to hear with my headphones on at times.

A good alternate source for the vibrating motors is old cell phone batteries. Many models put the vibrating motors inside the battery packs.

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  #18  
Old 12-01-2009, 09:19 PM
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Originally Posted by cnr_dogs View post
Nice Mod I actually dipped the end of mine in liquid plastic used for tool handles Not sure if I will do any other mods it is just a cheap back up pin pointer Very nice work. CNR
Hmm wonder if that would work with my bullseye PP?
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  #19  
Old 01-10-2010, 08:03 PM
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Outstanding!

Thanks much.

Badger
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  #20  
Old 01-29-2010, 03:28 PM
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Default Harbor Freight ain't no pinpointer !!!!!

Been there, done that. Bought the HF body pointer, made for finding guns, knives etc on someones body. Modify'd it, added vibrators, and all to it! I was impressed.......till I got my hands on a Garrett Propointer, thats when I learned just what a pinpointer was. Now you can yell B.S. and enjoy your little toy, but if you ever get your hands on the Garrett (equelled by no-one) you'll toss the HF in the round can! It's like going from a Whites 1960 BFO detector to a Minelab. No joke.......! Naw, I don't work for them. They make an Exceptional pinpointer, that's all. When you get a penny about 2 inches away from it it starts making a slow ticking noise. The closer you get the penny the faster the ticking gets. Then theres the penny trick. By preloading with a penny, you can find a .177 cal BB or a small nugget about an inch away. I kid you not. That's my 2 cents worth. For what it's worth.
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