I am working on a smart rat trap project with my students. We followed some instructions from make magazine. We have not received any response from those makers so I thought I’d ask here…
The cage is supposed to be released by 2 solenoids creating a reverse polarity magnetic field. They are powered by a 4700microfarad capacitor and triggered by a relay. We measured a 3.5 V discharge across the solenoids over about 20 ms. But the cage won’t drop. If we apply a constant 1.4 V with a power supply, the cage drops.
We have tried various capacitor banks in series, parallel, and up to 10000 microfarads.
Any ideas of what to try next? We hypothesize that the discharge time of 20 ms is too short.