Analog tilt sensors


I need two one-axis tilt sensors or one two-axis tilt sensor for messuring the angle of my hand. I have googled for analog tilt sensors, but they all look industrial and heavy. Maybe of of you guy’s know exactly what sensor I need for the purpose and possibly where to find it?

I have looked at the “AirStick” game controller which has a build in analog tilt sensor, but I don’t know if it’s possible to hack. I need to make it as small as possible.

Carl Emil

Can you use an accelerometer?

I thought an accelerometer only detects movements. Can it detect angles too? I need the angle of a hand.

An acceleromteter measures acceleration, including the constant 32 ft/s2 acceleration due to the earth’s gravity. You’ll have to do a bit of math, but a three axis accelerometer will tell you lots about orientation of the device.


Thanks kg4wsv

I read the two-axis accelerometer tutorial and it looks managable. However, I have no clue how to read a three-axis accelerometer. Can the forum provide help on this?

Should i go for any three-axis accelerometer or is there a model I sould look for?

Anyone know any good online electronic stores in US?

Carl E

Sorry, I don’t remember enough about the math to help you out, but you can get the hardware at Sparkfun - they have several models, both bare ICs and breakout boards.


Can this sensor be used with the Arduino?

Yes, but not directly powered from the arduino; th arduino is 5V, and this one needs 3V (2.0 ro 3.6V, according to the spec sheet).

In addition, you’ll need to either configure a 3V analog reference, or sacrifice 40% of your resolution because the Atmel’s ADC is in reference to 5V.

Instead of the one you reference, I’d try this one (or one in that family) since it can operate on 5V.


Oh blast. There is no 3-axis sensor in the ADXL320 family. They all run under 5V.

the one I linked to is a 5V 3-axis.


I bought the ADXL320. I think 2-axis will do for my project. I’ll probably return with questions when I receive it. Thanks for all the tips so far =)

Carl Emil