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Old 06-09-2019, 12:47 AM
K'Tesh's Avatar
K'Tesh K'Tesh is offline
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Lightbulb Waterproofing Electronics Discussion

In thinking about Reed Timmer's recent success for getting an electronics sensor package into a tornado using a Quest Magnum Sport Loader (3012), I've been thinking about how I'd do it.... Tornadoes frequently are rain wrapped, and I'm thinking that to protect the sensor it could be inserted inside a large uninflated balloon (clear being the best color option). I feel that it shouldn't affect the electronics ability to do pressure sampling, but would greatly reduce the chance of water infiltration of the unit greatly increasing it's lifespan and preventing data loss.

Another option could be to use a condom, but that's a lot thinner, and I'm thinking that it could be more easily damaged. Balloons can be bought in packages of 100 (or more), and a single color (and likely for far less than a supply of unlubricated condoms) . I know, I've bought several thousand balloons over the years in my street preforming days and a bag of 100 is typically less than $10 USD from a wholesaler.

The only concern I can think of is the powder used to keep balloons from sticking to each other (and the insides to themselves).

I also think that (at least in his case) a piece of foam could be glued inside the nosecone (for buoyancy), and a couple pieces could be wrapped around the electronics to prevent it from being damaged from being bashed about should the unit come down and snag on something while the wind is still strong.

So, am I onto something? Would this work for us with our applications (say launching at BONG)? Or am I way off base here? I don't remember seeing any discussion on this topic directly.

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Old 06-10-2019, 10:38 AM
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tbzep tbzep is offline
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Tape over the sensor and clear coat it or dip it in acrylic, then pull the tape off the sensor. You could even dip it in plasti-dip if there's nothing on it that would get hot enough that the dip would prevent it from dissipating. Plasti-dip would make it pretty rugged. What specific electronics are you wanting to protect? Altimeters have become cheap and the USB stick types are already protected by the plastic covers from anything short of a dunking.
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Old 06-17-2019, 08:25 AM
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Ez2cDave Ez2cDave is offline
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Originally Posted by K'Tesh
The only concern I can think of is the powder used to keep balloons from sticking to each other (and the insides to themselves).

What about turning the balloons inside-out, washing them with soap & water and, then, turning them right-side-out and repeating the process to remove the powder ?

Dave F.
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