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I want to build a device using an accelerometer. Press a button after a bike ride and have a light turn on if during the journey I managed to attain a certain acceleration.

Thinking of using some kind of flip flop and switch (using a circuit to hold one byte?), but need help with details, how to set up the circuit. I would need to be able to reset it too. The cheaper I can get my results the better.

I have started learning how to use Arduino board, can make simple projects.

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    \$\begingroup\$ You will most likely need some kind of controller (e.g. Arduino) to read the sensor, so that controller can easily store a "max acceleration since last reset" and compare it against a reference value once the button is pressed. My recommendation ist to get a accelerometer shield for the Arduino and go from there. \$\endgroup\$ – 0x6d64 Aug 27 '15 at 10:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ The biggest problem is likely to be distinguishing what you mean by acceleration from bumps and vibration. \$\endgroup\$ – Brian Drummond Aug 27 '15 at 11:24
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Option 1:

This is a perfect application of a microcontroller. Using a micro would allow you be a lot more flexible about the specific operation of your project. You could easily add features such as logging acceleration over the course of a trip, or specialized filtering of bumps.

Option 2:

If you want a solution based on discretes (either for learning or for speed of implementation).

schematic

simulate this circuit – Schematic created using CircuitLab

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You could try the ADXL362 3 Axis Accelerometer. Sparkfun makes a breakout board and there are arduino libraries to make it work with not to much effort. You could continuously read and parse the data and record if you hit your threshold acceleration value. Then, your button input would trigger the arduino to look at the value and then turn the led on or off. It's a little more complicated, but it seems like a good learning project.

breakout board: https://www.sparkfun.com/products/11446

Check out the datasheet and the libraries from the link

Google to see if there are other breakout boards or other devices that may better suit your needs.

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