I have a SaberLight plasma arc lighter, and I have taken it apart for a flamethrower project. I would like to use an Arduino Uno to programmatically activate the arc lighter. Using the Arduino Uno, what is the best method in order to activate the arc lighter?

My initial hunch is to remove the button (pictured), and connect one of the wires to a resistor which feeds into one of the Arduinio pins, whereas the other other wire connects to the Arduino ground. Is this correct? If so, how would I know what resistance value to use?

I would test my hunch, but do not want to break the lighter necessarily.

My arc-lighter taken apart

The attached battery states that the voltage is 3.7V and the current is 180mAh

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ How about we get to see a complete schematic of this device? To the better ability you have of producing one.... \$\endgroup\$
    – jonk
    May 17 at 8:01
  • \$\begingroup\$ Do you have a multimeter? if you do, set it to DC volts and connect the probes to the terminals on the switch (mark which wire is connected to the black probe). Record the voltage, including the polarity. Next, set the multimeter to Dc mA and connect the probes to the switch (this should activate the arc as if you'd pressed the switch). Record the amperage. Then go back and edit your post to add these readings. \$\endgroup\$
    – DoxyLover
    May 17 at 8:12
  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ You’d be better off using a relay or optocoupler as this removes some constraints in needing to know what the actual circuit of the ‘lighter’ is. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kartman
    May 17 at 8:22
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ "Best" is pretty subjective. Most likely you don't want the best but cheapest and simplest way possible. If there are no specs how the arc lighter operates normally then it is hard to suggest how to automate it. If you don't know how it works, randomly connecting the button wires to Arduino pins can damage the Arduino or the lighter or both. For all we know, the button might just connect the battery to the circuit to activate it, so it may require a lot of current. \$\endgroup\$
    – Justme
    May 17 at 8:24
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ You’re trying to hack a device to do something it was not designed to do. The manufacturer does not give you schematics or specifications to allow you to make decisions on how to hack it, so you need to reverse engineer the circuit and make measurements to gain critical information. Once you know how many volts/amps are required then you can make an informed decision otherwise its just guessing. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kartman
    May 18 at 1:58


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