|65||Electric Paintbrush Cleaner
|Group Members :[Luis Bibian], [Yael Legaria]
Net IDs: [bibian2], [legaria2]
Problem: When painting, most people like to keep a cup/bucket of water around to clean their brushes in but, this can get very messy especially when you're cleaning the brushes with your fingers. Eventually, the water gets dirty, you get all wet, your paintbrushes aren't clean, and your masterpiece gets ruined. Now, what was supposed to be a relaxing hobby has become a stressful situation.
Solution Overview : An electric paintbrush cleaner that perfectly cleans your paintbrush every time. All you have to do is insert your brush. Think of it as an electric pencil sharpener but, instead of sharpening pencils that are inserted, it cleans paintbrushes.
Ideally we want to be able to plug the device into a wall so we will need to use an AC-DC converter with several available output voltages to power the system.
-A clean water tank with a small water pump to send water to the cleaning mechanism.
-A sensory system that senses when a paintbrush is inserted which tells the machine to start/stop operation.
In order to sense the motion of the paintbrush being inserted to begin the cleaning process, we can use a PIR sensor that will be placed inside of the device that will sense when the paintbrush is inserted. This signal would be processed by a microcontroller, and in order to avoid the PIR sensor continually triggering once the paintbrush has been inserted due to any additional movements, we can set a cleaning cycle duration where the PIR sensor data will be ignored until the cleaning cycle has officially ended.
-A cleaning mechanism such as spinning cleaning brushes that will work with the water to clean the brush.
The spinning brushes used to clean the paintbrush can be driven by a DC gear motor. The brush cleaners will need to spin parallel to the direction of the bristles in order to avoid damaging the paintbrush. In order to not interfere with the water coming from the clean water reservoir, we can have the motorized brush cleaning mechanism initially positioned further back within the device housing so that the paintbrush can first be rinsed by the water coming from the water pump. The brush cleaning mechanism can then move forward to position the cleaning brushes above the paintbrush, and for this we would have to build a belt drive system to move the cleaning mechanism back and forth.
-A drain and disposable tank to collect the dirty water used during the cleaning operation.
Criterion for Success: The main goal of this project will be to create an machine which is capable of sufficiently cleaning a paintbrush which has recently been used. This means that if you were to touch the brush to paper after the cleaning operation, you should see no color. This should all be done without harming the paintbrush, at least no differently then you would when cleaning it with your fingers. This should all be done automatically with the person only having to insert and hold his/her paintbrush.
Overall, the group will need to design an appropriate power distribution layout for the machine, create a working sensory system, waterproof the circuitry, design a harmless cleaning mechanism, properly set up a start/stop water pump system, and design the structure where all the components will be placed to be efficient and visually appealing for the user.