Trigger Your Camera Using Automatic Air Freshener Parts

Per an earlier post, Glade was nice enough to provide a very hackable set of components in their “automatic spray” air freshener.  Once I had the components in hand, an obvious use was for a remote camera trigger.  After some work in the shop, here are the results:

What you see in the above video is an early feasibility test (there’s a better video later), but I eventually got everything mounted securely and put it on a tripod.

wood assembly for air freshener camera trigger

wood assembly for air freshener camera trigger. Note the hole on left for securing camera and 1/4 - 20 tapped hole on the right for use with a tripod.

Once I had the components from the air freshener free, setting it up as a remote trigger was surprisingly easy.  Taking a piece of 1/2″ and a piece of 3/4″ plywood that I had around from some other projects, I cut the 3/4 inch plywood to a 2 1/8″ x 3 3/4″ rectangle and the 1/2 inch plywood to  a 3 1/2″ x 3 3/4″ rectangle.  I put the 3/4″ plywood on the bottom and nailed the 1/2 inch plywood to the back of it as shown to the right.

motor attachment

Air freshener motor attachment

Towards the top of the 1/2 inch plywood, I attached a small wood screw through one of the holes originally meant to attach to the air freshener.  There is a post on the bottom of the motor housing that will help in aligning the motor at an angle as shown to the right.  It should also help keep it in place.  When it pushes the camera’s button, the post will push down on it in the opposite direction.  Once everything is tightened down, it shouldn’t move much anyway.

assembled Glade front view assembled

Assembled air freshener camera trigger.

Align your camera so the “finger” coming out of it depress the camera’s trigger button.  Depending on your camera, this may take some modification of how high this strip is and the position of the motor.  I used a compact Casio Exilim.  Once you have everything aligned, you can test the camera out.  If everything works, drill a hole and use a 1/4 – 20 screw to secure the camera to the base.  After this, you can drill and tap a hole in the base for a 1/4 – 20 screw to attach the assembly to a tripod.

Here’s a video of the “completed” project.  The whole thing is definitely a prototype, but for something hacked together I’ll call it complete for now.


About Jeremy S Cook

Jeremy is an engineer with 10 years experience at his full-time profession, and has a BSME from Clemson University. Outside of work he’s an avid maker and experimenter, building anything that comes into his mind!
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15 Responses to Trigger Your Camera Using Automatic Air Freshener Parts

  1. Pingback: Remote camera trigger built from air freshener parts - Hack a Day

  2. kevin mcguigan says:

    beautiful! now all i need to do is find one of those things. i want to use it for my ballon project.

  3. Pingback: Automatic camera trigger built from an automatic air freshener | GadgetBB – Gadget for you – Gadget for Future

  4. That’s seems to be very brilliant! Are you sure it’s working?

  5. Pingback: Glade Sense and Spray Teardown |

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  7. Will says:

    Surely the next step must be to replace the trigger switch with a PIR sensor, so that you take a picture of the birds in your garden / the neighbour’s cat stealing your chicken / the guy robbing your house / whatever floats your boat.

  8. If you hack a motion sensor from a Gemmy product like the singing fish one could take your your air freshener camera hack and build a “Motion Activated Covert Still Picture Survielance Camera” to help protect a home, business, or office.

  9. pwblackmore says:

    I had thought that you had hacked the device that automatically sprayed once in a whips-while… if you know what I mean. Perhaps hacking one of those would give you a series of photos similar to security pics – or string them together to give a time-lapse of your subject. (For what it’s worth)

    • JC says:

      Yeah, there’s really a lot of different directions one could go with this. I was thinking time-lapse photography originally, but 9 min is too long for most stuff. I may try hooking it up to some sort of microcontroller to get more control, but haven’t gotten around to it yet.

  10. Pingback: Jamie Angel » Blog Archive » Hack an Air Freshener into an Remote Camera Trigger [DIY]

  11. Pingback: Hack an Air Freshener into an Remote Camera Trigger | Nogginupgrade

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