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Joystick Port Power Glove

Here's something useful to do with those old Nintentdo PowerGloves collecting dust in the closet! I will present to you how you can use parts of the

Mattel/Nintendo Power Glove to make your own input devices.

Step 1. Remove the flexible resistor strips from the powerglove's fingers. To do this, you must peel the black "glove" from the grey plastic part, as shown:

Note: If you choose, you may remove the rest of the electronics on the glove and use it as it is. I chose to remove the strips and sew them onto a glove that fit my

hand better.

Step 2. Cut along the clear plastic tubes surrounding the brown flexible sensor strips, to free the strips from the grey plastic. De-solder or cut the wires connecting

the sensors to the glove.

sensor strip

Step 3. Sew the sensors onto a glove that fits your hand. Notice that the sensors bend one direction better than the other. Keep this in mind when placing them on

your glove (or whatever else you build). I used this soccer glove because it had fabric pieces sewn over the fingers. I simply cut the stitches and put the sensors

under the fabric. I later found it necessary to sew one end of the sensor to the glove to hold it in place.

The maximum resistance value of the sensors I used was 150K ohms. I connected my glove to my pc through the joystick port, using positions 0 and 1. I later

added a 19K ohm resistor in parallel with each sensor to increase the sensitivity for the pc joystick port. I have included the pin diagram of a typical pc joystick

port. Table was referenced from The Pocket Ref, compiled by Thomas J. Glover, published by Sequoia Publishing, Inc. You connect one pole of the resistor strip

to +5 volts and the other pole to one of the coordinate positions on the joystick port.




+5 volts (from computer)


Button 1 input


Position 0, X - Coordinate






Position 1, Y - Coordinate


Button 2 input


+5 volts


+5 volts


Button 3 input


Position 2, X - Coordinate




Position 3, Y - Coordinate


Button 4 input


+5 volts


Do not attempt to plug anything you build into you computer unless you are ABSOLUTELY certain you know what you are doing. You can cause permanent

damage to your hardware!

The Visual Basic program and joystick driver I used to test my glove is available for ftp.

This program runs out of windows. To use it you must install the joystick driver included in the .zip. I have included the source code and make file for the program

so you can see how it works, if you have VB.

The program is simple to use. Run it, make the gesture you want to recall, press the corresponding button, and watch the recall window for results. The text on the

button will change from red to green when a gesture is stored. Adjust the fuzz factor to increase or decrease sensitivity (between 2500 and 8000 is usually good).

Position values are also displayed for the finger and thumb.

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