This is another one of those “did it because I can” projects.  It’s a USB dial that uses a Teensy 2.0 Arduino unit at it’s core and allows me to emulate my mouse.  I use TinkerCAD avidly to design my 3D printed models.   I wanted to have both this and my mouse at the same time.  The mouse would be used for some activities (i.e object selection/rotation/editing) while the dial would fill in to perform rotate/zoom in/out actions.  It makes for an interesting dynamic with both units operating at the same time.

In Action:

How it Works:

The knob is connected to a rotary encoder (which has a push button switch built in).  Encoded/switch actions are sent through to the Teensy, then over USB acting as a HID mouse/keyboard.  Actions are as follows:

  • Single-click:  Mode 1: Rotates the workspace view in TinkerCAD.
  • Double-click:   Mode 2: Zooms in/out in TinkerCAD.  Also scrolls in other apps like Chrome.
  • A small vibration motor provides haptic feedback when turning the dial.
  • Third and subsequent clicks can be added later if need be.

The Guts: