Most of the time, when engineers are adding pushbuttons to a design, they’re doing something like adding tactile switches such as these 6mm square ones or these panel-mount arcade switches. These buttons are available in a variety of different mounting types and sizes. However, they are still really only meant for use with hands or fingers (or noses!) – soft human bits with precision sensory feedback to keep from over-mashing the switch.
But sometimes our hands are busy and we need foot control. Most popularly, cars use feet for controlling speed and break so that both hands can be used for navigation or shifting. Or, sewing machines often have foot-pedal speed and mode switches that use foot and need angle. Likewise sometimes electronic or mechatronic devices can benefit from having a non-‘digital’ input. Some folks may consider using voice activation but most folks feet are very adept and fast enough.
So while these fancy and durable buttons are famous for their guitar pedal use cases, they can also be great for any industrial / robotic uses where reliability and hands-free use is important. The first time we saw one of these is in a dictation system (where the person types and uses the switch to play and pause the audio).
These foot switches come in a few different configurations, but we’re the biggest fans of the 2388-SSWFS-S01-AE11-HWH-C25-ND version with a JST XH connector for quick plug-n-play. And, if the switch does eventually get damaged, it’s user replaceable. Bonus, our order even came with a matching socket connector!
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