Nosepokes + Operant Panel

1       Nosepokes

1.1   Hardware needed

1x Visible green LED

2x Infrared emitter LED

2x Infrared photodetector

24g hookup wire (red and black)

Heat shrink tubing

10x M20 Harwin female crimp contacts (22-30 AWG)

5x 2-position M20 Harwin female crimp housing

metal spout

Tygon tubing:  1/16″ ID / 1/8″ OD to run from pump to spout

1/8″ ID / 1/4″ OD

1/2″ #4 screw to secure spout position

1.2   3D Parts needed

LED nosepoke

Spout nosepoke

4x snap-in protective side panels

For spout nosepokes, a spout cap accessory is helpful to standardize position.

1.3   Tools needed

Soldering iron & solder

Crimper (for 24 g wire ends)

Phillips Screwdriver

Needle nose pliers

Heat gun

Wire cutters/strippers

1.4   Connect wires to the LEDs

Using 24G wire, soldering iron, and electronic devices, solder approx 1 foot of wire onto each device (at LED legs), closely checking the necessary polarity as in the figures below (black phototransistor is reverse of standard configuration).

Use heat shrink tubing and heat gun to cover the new connections (can be even more generous with heat shrink tubing than depicted below).

Use crimpers to attach crimp terminals on the opposite end of each soldered wire. Fit both wires from each component to a 2-pin terminal plug, maintaining a consistent rule for which side is positive/negative (this will make things easier later).

1.5   Insert the LEDs

Fit IR emitters into the channels on one side of each nosepoke and photodetectors into the opposite side (make note of which side is detector and which side is emitter). Our standard configuration in looking at the front of the nosepoke is that the Emitter (clear) is on the Left, and Detector (Black) is on the Right. Bend the legs of each device so they lay within the wire track.

Press fit the nosepoke side panels into each side of each nosepoke to cover the wires.

1.6   For LED Backs:

Insert visible LED from the back into the center hole. The LED should fit snugly. If the fit is too loose, then you can wrap some parafilm around the base of the LED lens.

1.7 A For Spout Backs (plastic spout):

Cut a length of 1/16″ ID / 1/8″ OD tubing to reach from the spout to the pump device. Thread the tubing through the back of the spout until showing through the other side. It may be helpful to cut a bevel to help thread it through. Cut it flush with the spout tip with scissors or wire cutters.


1.7 B  For Spout Backs (metal spout):

Cut a length of 1/16″ ID / 1/8″ OD tubing to reach from the spout to the pump device. Cut a length of 1/8″ ID / 1/4″ OD tubing about 1/2″ longer than the length of the spout. Fit smaller tubing into larger tubing to act as a guide to thread the small tubing through the end of the spout.

Cut the tip at a bevel to make it easier to slide and grab through the spout. Use parafilm to keep this tubing in place within the spout (wrapped around the oustide, not shown in pictures).

It is easiest to install the spout after attaching nosepoke to operant panel, but the below picture illustrates ideal spout position – just beyond infrared beam

2       Operant Panel

2.1      Hardware/Electronics


24 G wire (red and black)

2″ Metal spout – 5⁄16” diameter with 1⁄8” end opening

Parafilm wax

20 ch. Ribbon cable

2x  10×2 ribbon connectors

Heat shrink tubing

4x 4-40 screws self-tapping 3/8″

4-40 bolt 3/8″

2.2      3D Printed pieces


Wired nosepokes

Spout calibrator (Or cover/cap combo piece)

2.3      Tools

Crimpers (for 24 g wire ends and for ribbon connector)

Phillips Screwdriver

Soldering iron

Needle nose pliers

Heat gun

Wire cutters/strippers

2.4  Houselight & Speaker

Solder wires onto the ends of the Houselight LED and Speaker. Long leg = Red for LED.

Press-fit speaker into large hole on the side with the lip visible. Houselight is installed directly in chamber wall (may need ~2 layers parafilm to fit snugly)

2.5  Connect nosepokes to operant panel

by threading connectors through wire holes and securing to panel with 2 4/40 self-tapping screws. Be sure the nosepoke with the larger opening is under the speaker hole.

4 screw holes per nosepoke are present, but 2 screws per nosepoke (on a diagonal) are sufficient

2.6 Install and align spout

While holding spout calibrator in place, fit metal spout through hole in back of panel/nosepoke until it hits the back of the calibrator. Tighten tension screw to hold spout firmly in place.

2.7 Make ribbon cable

Cut a length of 20 ch. Ribbon cable to reach from behind the panel to wherever the Arduino will be sitting. Use the large crimpers to attach a 2×10 connector onto both ends. Fit 2 rows of 5mm pins onto one end so that the devices can be attached.

Fit all 2 pin terminal plugs onto 20 pin connector (Some pairs of pins will be unused).. Red wires are facing “in”, black “out”. The order from the brown wire for our configuration of 2 nosepokes (1 LED, 1 spout) is: speaker, houselight, NP visible LED, Lick port detector, Lick port emitter, Nosepoke port detector, Nosepoke port emitter). Tape them over with lab tape when done to help keep them securely fastened (not shown).