How to create flex/bend/pressure sensor

I have written this tutorial in Hungarian, now I translated (tried to translate) it to English.

I'll show you, how to create a sensor which changes resistance when you flex, bend or press it. Main part of sensor is conductive foam used to store ICs and other ESD sensitive parts. This sensor is very cheap, but not so precise. I tried two types of this foam: I built 5-20 kOhm sensors from a harder foam, which resistance fall to 0.5-1 kOhm when I flex it. The sensors from a softer foam have 50-500 kOhm resistance. You should try many types to find the suitable foam!

Ingredients:

  • conductive foam (black one)
  • aluminium foil (from kitchen)
  • thin wires
  • adhesive tape

Watch the video instead of reading the text below (better text is highly welcomed).

Cut two 2x10 cm parts from the tape and put the thin wires parallel to the longer side on it. The thin wires should be 3-4 cm longer than the tape. Then put a 1x9 cm aluminium foil on each tape. The last thing is the foam which should be between the foils. The two tape's border must be tightened to each other. Only the two wires should be visible on the two short sides of the tapes.

What is this for? It can be used to build VR gloves or measure force or weight. Or you can create "analog" buttons.

VR glove (it needs improvement):

Analog keyboard: