February 15, 2015

Wanting a clock for my work area, I made one using a ChronoDot RTC , or real time clock, and a 7 segment display.  I had the box custom 3d printed on Makexyz.com.  The lid slides off, out the back.

I used an old Arduino Deumilanove because I will need to change the time for daylight savings and want an easy way to do that.  If I had used one of my stand alone Arduinos, that would mean removing the chip and putting in another Arduino and then updating the time from the computer.  This way I can just connect the clock to the computer without the need to remove the chip.

I also added a light sensor to automatically adjust the brightness of the display.


JeeNodes Update

December 7, 2014

Last year for Christmas I gave my sister a green house monitor made out of 2 JeeNodes and LCD screen and some leds.  See the post  about it here.   Basically a JeeNode is a small Arduino with a radio added.JeeNode v6 -2

I works great, but the battery life on the JeeNode in the greenhouse didn’t last long.  Reportedly it lasted 2 to 3 days. This year I’m giving it an upgrade or version 2.0.  I have added 2 parts from Adafruit.   First is this solar charger piece, and second is this solar panel.  We already had this 2500 mAh battery.

Last year I couldn’t quite get the code to sleep properly. Now I have updated the JeeNode in the greenhouse to sleep, almost a minute at a time.  This should extend the battery life greatly, hopefully at least a month at a time.  See the code below if you are interested.

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September 13, 2014

Sorry I haven’t posted in a while.  I was deciding if I should plunge into 3D printing or drones.  I’ve been completely distracted by quadcopters and am now attempting to build one.

A quadcopter combined with a GoPro camera is a great way to take aerial photos.

I am trying to build a Hoverthings Flip FPV Pro Gimbal using a Pixhawk from 3D Robotics as the brain.

For those just getting started in quadcopters or drones, DIY Drones or Drones Are Fun are good places to start.

Below is a sample picture of a quadcopter from Flickr.

FPV quadcopter

Photo by Steve Lodefink from Flickr


Digital RGB LED Strip

February 6, 2014

Using 2 meters of Digital RGB LED Weatherproof Strip from Adafruit I am making some artwork for our dining room. Also using a picture frame with a 12″ square opening, I cut the LEDs into 8 strips with 8 LEDs on each one and began soldering them together.

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Jeenodes Weather

January 5, 2014

Yesterday I deployed a Jeenode and a tmp36 temperature sensor.

To power this setup , I used a lipo 1200 mAH battery and a lipo solar charger from Adafruit. I already had a 6 W solar panel.

I am receiving the data inside on a receiving Jeenode with a real time clock and a 20X4 LCD screen.

I still have to add the rain and wind sensors and also plan on setting up a room node (inside temp and humidity along with a PIR sensor).

I wonder how long the battery will last with the solar panel?  Update- 12 days, see below.

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November 21, 2013


I’ve been working on a holiday present for my sister which is a temperature monitor for her greenhouse.  Originally I wanted to use  Xbee radios as I had tried them before and have Rob Faludi’s book Building Wireless Sensor Networks.

I recently discovered JeeNodes and decided to give them a try instead as I had found Xbee radios not the easiest to work with.  What you get for roughly $22 is a small Ardunio based on the Really Bare Bones Board with a radio.  Made by JeeLabs with an extensive library that can be found on Github. Read the rest of this entry »


Eat Sign Done

October 1, 2013

Finally finished my EAT sign. It has 3 modes you can click through using the button on the side. Mode one lights up one led at a time, mode 2 blinks all the led’s and mode 3 fades all the leds up and down.

I used a standalone arduino and 2 TLC 5940 chips plus 23 leds.
Here is my complete parts list.

1. 3 letters from junk store
2. plywood for base of sign
3. 2 Adafruit proto boards.
4. 2 TLC5940 chips
5. 1 photocell to know when it is dark enough.
6. 1 momentary pushbutton
7. 23 10.3CD leds
8. led mounts
9. Some resistors
10. Lots of wire
11. Paint
12. Wooden Dowel Pins

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