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Description: Are you trying to make a quick dime from electronics? Why limit yourself to dimes? This coin acceptor will take up to 6 different kinds of coin! Whether you're building your own arcade cabinet or just charging admission to your house, this programmable coin acceptor makes it easy to monetize your next project.

The sensors in this coin acceptor use the thickness, diameter and fall time of the coins to identify them and it's fully programmable so you're not limited to any particular type of currency. Simply use the buttons and 7-segment display on the side of the unit to select a coin profile, insert a bunch of coin samples (or the same one, over and over) then designate the value. After you've programmed the coin profiles, simply read the serial output of the coin acceptor and it will tell you the value of each coin as they're inserted. It reports these values as binary bytes and the baud rate is selectable on the unit.

This coin acceptor also has a coin reject, so your controller can tell the coin acceptor not to take any more coins, as well as a (very loud) alert beeper. All you need to get the coin acceptor working is a pocket full of change, a 12VDC supply and somewhere for the change to fall after it's accepted.

So maybe you won't get rich building your own vending machines but access control using different sizes of tokens might be cool, or even a virtual vending machine where you can buy MMORPG items. There are a ton of cool coin-operated projects just waiting to be built!

Features:

  • Recognizes 6 Programmable Groups of Coins in Different Denominations
  • Accepts coins from 17-30.5mm in Diameter and 1.25-3.2mm in Thickness
  • Serial or Pulse-Width Output with Selectable Speed/Baud Rate
  • Can be Set to Stop Accepting All Coins
  • Industrial Standard 10Pin Parallel Port Connector
  • Simple 0.1" Spaced 5-Pin Serial Port Header
  • Draws 50mA @ 12VDC Standby, 450mA At Instant of Collection
  • Able to release coins in jam

Documents:

Comments 36 comments

  • Granted I didn’t look at the datasheet, but I find it hard to understand how it uses “fall time” to determine what coin it is. Doesn’t physics tell us that all coins should take the same amount of time to fall a particular distance?

    • That feature prevents people from using currency that doesn’t abide by the laws of our universe. Aliens are notorious counterfeiters.

    • Edit: Look at Static’s comment:

      If I remember correctly, when they’re talking about “fall time” they’re talking about how >long a coin takes to make a weighted arm fall. Example: Take a lever with a center positioned fulcrum. Put a 1 kilo weight on one side. >Now, on the other side put differing weights. A 2 kilo weight will fall slower than a 10 >kilo weight, as it sits on the lever.

      • But that’s still the same physical scenario – the 2 and 10 kilo weights would fall at the same rates. Both in the case of just gravity and this counter-weight arm, you have a constant net force affecting your different coins. Since the acceleration and the initial velocities of all the coins will always be the same, their fall times will be as well. So no, that can’t be right either.

        • Remember that bit in physics class where they force you to state your assumptions for each homework problem? Now, rethink the above where gravity isn’t the only force in play (i.e. perhaps friction plays a role, or perhaps the momentum of the combined arm and coin, etc.).

    • All of y'all are wrong, it does use a magnet if I’m correct, but it uses a feature of physics known as eddy currents. As any conductor moves in the presence of a magnetic field a current is generated in the conductor. Depending on several factors such as the size and conductivity of the object, such as a coin, it will fall at different rates. It falls slower because some of the gravitational potential energy is utilized to move the electrons. Hope this helps!

      • So you can have coins of the same size and weight but with different material composition to denote the “values”. That could be a fun way to mess with people – some coins do “X” some do “Y” but only people with magnetic implants would be able to tell which coin is which.

    • I don’t know if the following applies to this particular device, but it’s common on coin acceptors to have the coin fall past a magnet. A “slug” will stick to the magnet, and stay there until the “eject” button is pressed, which then allows the slug to fall through the return slot. Non ferrous coins are affected to a much lesser, but still significant degree as the go past the magnet. The magnet slows them down enough to change the fall time. So, in effect, the magnet tests the coin for metallic content.

  • Why am I picturing a bunch of Tim Hunkin drawings coming to life…? http://www.secretlifeofmachines.com/

    The fact that this is PROGRAMMABLE to samples is what really makes it shine! Flatten a bunch of bottle caps and make a new form of currency worthy of that Pip Boy you planned on making :D

  • Just purchased one of these and have discovered that it will not accept Australian 50c coins. They are 31.5mm. Just 1 mm off, but it won’t go in at all.

  • Please note that this coin slot is not compatible with Australian 50 cent coins. Perhaps all that is needed is some slight modifications to the front coin slot. I will give it a go later.

    • Just discovered this for myself. Not sure how useful it’s going to be for me now :-(

    • No possibility of modification for AU 50 cent coins :(

  • I can confirm that this works with a mixture of US and Japanese Yen! I have a modified “Hater-Matic” at my clinic in Japan giving out jokes to patients!

  • The one that I got had markings on a paper label saying “CURR. :USD”. This made me think it might be pre-programmed for U.S. coins, so before going ahead and tinkering with the programming, I grabbed up a bunch of coins and tried it. Before even connecting it, I dropped several coins through. Pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters, and dollar coins dropped out into the “reject” slot. I even happened across a 500 Yen coin (about the same size as a dollar), and it also dropped out into the “reject” slot. However, when I tried half dollar coins, they got “stuck”, and even pressing the “jam” button didn’t help. I managed to get a glimpse in, and discovered that the half dollars get “stuck” on a screw post that has an unfortunate position.

    Powering it up, I found that it rejected pennies entirely. When a nickel was put in the slot, it would fall “into the bucket” and the display would read “01”. A dime would also be accepted, and would read “02”. A quarter is accepted and gets an “05” on the display. THE HALF DOLLAR STILL GETS STUCK! It does not accepted. I was able to get them back out, but doing so generated error messages on the display. A one dollar coin is accepted and generates a “20” on the display.

    I’m planning on re-programming it (I want it to accept pennies, and would rather have the “result code” be in cents than in nickels). I’ll probably just put a sign on it saying “NO HALF DOLLAR COINS!” I think that there’d be room for the halfs to be accepted, but if rejected, they’ll jam, and it’s gonna be tough to get it to “program” them.

    Oh, just for the record, it did reject the 500 Yen coin.

    • Damned poor planning on the part of the manufacturer here, IMHO. The datasheet gives a maximum of 30.5mm. The United States Mint gives a size of 30.61mm for the half dollar. ARGH! And the slot at the front is a LOT wider than that!

  • Somebody knows the part number (or family) of the header 5 pin connector? I have not been able to identify it. Thank you!

  • Here is some example Ruby code in case anyone is interested: https://gist.github.com/bithive/8063097

    • Hi, do you have another link? That one appears to be broken? Also would you be able to write me some code for this to do a keystroke upon the correct amount being entered? (for payment of course).

      • I have updated my post to fix the link. I might be able to write some code to convert serial inputs into keyboard events, depending on your platform. Email jason at <my username> dot net with more details.

  • The penny is perhaps the most debatable coin in circulation, as it costs more than one cent to make one and nobody likes the things. A sports shop is so fed up with them that the store owner has declared pennies prohibited from the premises. Source of article: visit at present your websites.

  • Hi guys. Is it possible to get a 3D CAD model (solid works) for this coin acceptor. I would like to incorporate this product into ours.

    Thanks

  • Does it accept coins with holes in the middle? (Norwegian 1 kroner and 5 kroner) I know other types does NOT accept coins with holes.

    • I recived mine today, programmed it for norwegian coins, works for NOK 1 (Hole), NOK 5 (Hole), NOK 10 and NOK 20 coins. Looking at the vid it was easy to program it, put each coins thru for about 20 times then it was accepted.

      Trying to connect to pc via rs232 RX channel and view in Real Term, but only shows a ho lotta bunches of pulses as Hex or integers. tried setting switch 1 to on and 3 to on but no luck, so any one know how to wire it up?

      Edit: fixed it :) 5 pin serial - > red to + and black to gnd on ac power and rs232 gnd and white to serial RX and voila :))

  • How can i connect my coin acceptor with my pc in usb ? Help please

  • How does this acceptor communicate with MAME?

  • Years ago, I built a coin box that would turn on a 110V outlet for a set interval. Nothing adds hilarity to a household appliance like your quarter running out at an awkward moment.

  • will this work attached to the top of a box with the inards pointing down?

    • Nope, not at all. The spec is vertical installation plus/minus 2 degrees.

  • I can see this used in a high-tech piggy bank that keeps track of how much money is inside it! Sweet. :)

  • Comes with 5/8" carriage bolts for panel mounting, so it can be used with panel thickness up to about ¼". The included cable is about 19" long. The coin slot is about 30 mm, so dollar coins won’t fit. The coin sensor section has 3 pairs of IR sensors and 2 pairs of electromagnetic coils; there are no moving parts in the sensor section, just a ramp that coins roll down. Unrecognized coins or coins inserted when there is no power come out the coin return. When a coin is recognized a solenoid kicks in and routes it out the bottom of the module into your cash box. Two more IR sensor pairs detect when the coins drop out of the module. It uses an unmarked 32 pin microcontroller, and is manufactured by Baoli (baoliyx.com)

  • Coins with different moments of inertia roll down a ramp at different rates. Moment of inertia contains information about mass and shape.

  • Fall time checks could also mean the ability to detect captive coins. (thread tied to a small hole in the coin)

  • If I remember correctly, when they’re talking about “fall time” they’re talking about how long a coin takes to make a weighted arm fall.

    Example: Take a lever with a center positioned fulcrum. Put a 1 kilo weight on one side. Now, on the other side put differing weights. A 2 kilo weight will fall slower than a 10 kilo weight, as it sits on the lever.

  • can some one plz help me with programming this too work with the arduino


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