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My first project - multi-sensor

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  • My first project - multi-sensor

    I've just recently learned about Arduino. I've been using HomeSeer for quite a while and love it. Most of my devices are Insteon. No z-wave. I wasn't pleased with the variety and cost of Insteon sensor devices so I decided to build an Arduino nodeMCU based device using wifi. Ultimately I plan on having PIR motion, temp, door/window, and a CO sensor. I've been able to get the sensors working on a UNO and breadboard. Then I needed wireless connectivity to HS3 and decided on Greigs Arduino plugin. That is working out pretty well except for some additional support in the nodeMCU implementation. Those will come in time.

    Anyway, in the last couple of days I have been moving the project from breadboard to a prototype that I will be using for real life testing. I really have no electrical engineering experience. I'm an old IT guy. I'm more comfortable twiddling bits rather than messing with electricity. I now have the prototype v1 finished and beginning to test. Only two sensors now since the other two require functions not yet ported to the nodeMCU implementation.

    While it is not impressive in terms of wiring skills, I thought you might be interested in seeing some pics. The clear box is one that some Harbor Freight stuff came in. It was handy. It measures 3.5" x 5.5" x 1.5". In the pics you will see lots of space at the bottom. That is where I will add the temp sensor and the CO sensor. Also, as soon as I can get to a store, I'll add a mono headphone jack so that the door/window sensors can plug in. The door and window sensors will be run serially so that any one of them tripping will notify HS3. I didn't really care which one trips. The device is powered by a 6+ volt wall wart. I have plenty of them I've saved over the years. I take that 6 volts in and run it thru 3.3v and 5v regulators which gives me 3.3v for the nodeMCU and 5v for the sensors. I can support up to 12 volts but that might generate more heat if I understand the power regulators right. Right now they are running only mildly warm. You will also notice in one of the pics that the chip is removed. I did that to show you that there are 3 headers for the chip. Turns out some nodeMCUs are wider than others so I needed another header so that I can support either chip width.

    Comments and ideas for improvement are welcomed!
    Attached Files

  • #2
    Very nice work
    Do you have a parts list for this?
    I would like to try this one out
    Cheers,
    Bob
    Web site | Help Desk | Feature Requests | Message Board

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by logbuilder View Post
      ...
      I take that 6 volts in and run it thru 3.3v and 5v regulators which gives me 3.3v for the nodeMCU and 5v for the sensors. I can support up to 12 volts but that might generate more heat if I understand the power regulators right. Right now they are running only mildly warm. You will also notice in one of the pics that the chip is removed. I did that to show you that there are 3 headers for the chip. Turns out some nodeMCUs are wider than others so I needed another header so that I can support either chip width.

      Comments and ideas for improvement are welcomed!
      There is already a 3.3V analog regulator on the NodeMCUboard. You can reduce your parts count by supplying 5V to the board on the 5Vs pin.
      Randy Prade
      Aurora, CO
      Prades.net

      PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino

      Comment


      • #4
        I didn't start with a parts list other than knowing what I wanted to do.

        Here it is off the top of my head.

        Arduino nodeMCU12-E - Amazon has them for about $9
        60mm x 80mm prototyping board
        Male and female header strips. I like the male breakaways.
        5v regulator (M7805C)
        3.3v regulator (LD33V)
        PIR motion sensor
        2.1mm female power socket
        F-F Dupont cables - 10cm and 20cm
        CAT 5 individual wires for back wiring. Solid core, not stranded
        Plastic standoffs

        I think that's everything other than a box and additional sensors. Use any DC wall wart with 6V or higher and 2.1mm connector.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by rprade View Post
          There is already a 3.3V analog regulator on the NodeMCUboard. You can reduce your parts count by supplying 5V to the board on the 5Vs pin.
          The nodeMCU has no 5V pin. If you feed it 5V (other than the usb port) it gets real hot and never works again. I have 2 dead ones 'cause of that.

          Comment


          • #6
            Is this the nodeMCU?
            Cheers,
            Bob
            Web site | Help Desk | Feature Requests | Message Board

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Blade View Post
              Is this the nodeMCU?
              That's the right chip but don't buy it from the default seller. They ship slowly. When you are on the amazon item page, in the lower right there is a link to other sellers. In there pick the seller that ships using amazon fulfillment. Ships quick.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by rprade View Post
                There is already a 3.3V analog regulator on the NodeMCUboard. You can reduce your parts count by supplying 5V to the board on the 5Vs pin.
                You got me to thinking. The USB provides 5V so there must be a regulator. Hooked a chip up to USB. Checked the output of the 3.3v pins and got 3.23v on both of them. Yep, there is a regulator on the top. Checked the legs of the reg and get 4.60v and 3.23v. That's interesting. I wonder how much current you can get off that leg. But, I wouldn't want to be soldering onto that leg.

                One of the nice things about doing it like I did is that the input voltage is not that important as long as it is 6v or more. I've read to allow for 1v more than you need (5v for the sensors) so that is where I come up with 6v.

                Comment


                • #9
                  @blade

                  In regards to the plastic box, I was mistaken. It wasn't a HF box, it was what my Arduino UNO kit came in that I ordered from Amazon.

                  It was a good start to get into Arduino. Has the UNO R3 board, breadboard, jumpers (which are a junk but do work), LEDs, and resistors. And a cool box. Every builder needs a good UNO. Good benchmark device.

                  https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01DGD2GAO

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by logbuilder View Post
                    The nodeMCU has no 5V pin. If you feed it 5V (other than the usb port) it gets real hot and never works again. I have 2 dead ones 'cause of that.
                    I think there are some real variations on these boards, I'm a big addict on the NodeMCU 0.9 kits ($3.49 on eBay is nothing for a Wifi board with this capability) and I feed it 5V by the VIn pin and it works just fine...
                    My Plugins:

                    Pushover 3P | DoorBird 3P | Current Cost 3P | Velleman K8055 3P | LAMetric 3P | Garadget 3P | Hive 3P |
                    Yeelight 3P | Nanoleaf 3P

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by logbuilder View Post
                      The nodeMCU has no 5V pin. If you feed it 5V (other than the usb port) it gets real hot and never works again. I have 2 dead ones 'cause of that.
                      in the final version of this project: https://forums.homeseer.com/showthread.php?t=187272
                      I feed the NodeMCU with the 7V power supply of the BetataBrite through the Vin pin, and it works just fine, because it has a voltage regulator.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by logbuilder View Post
                        The nodeMCU has no 5V pin. If you feed it 5V (other than the usb port) it gets real hot and never works again. I have 2 dead ones 'cause of that.
                        When I was testing the NodeMCU for Greig, all 4 of my test boards ran for a month with 5V supplied to the V in (5Vs) pin. From the pictures of your boards yours have a V in pin as well.

                        Click image for larger version

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                        The bottom pin of the left row.
                        Last edited by rprade; April 10th, 2017, 08:10 AM.
                        Randy Prade
                        Aurora, CO
                        Prades.net

                        PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          It is so great to have a community of experienced folks!

                          I'm sure y'all are right about the Vin pin being able to take 5v and maybe more. So my circuit could have been simplified. However, I guess I did learn something about regulators so it wasn't an entire waste. And from your replies, I learned more about the nodeMCU.

                          I'll mark my two board failures up to beginners inexperience and a bad breadboard power supply.

                          Thanks for the feedback.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            How hard would it be to change it to use a 9v battery or AA batteries. I wonder how long the batteries would last?
                            Cheers,
                            Bob
                            Web site | Help Desk | Feature Requests | Message Board

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Blade View Post
                              How hard would it be to change it to use a 9v battery or AA batteries. I wonder how long the batteries would last?
                              The design I came up with can take any voltage above 6v so a 9v bat or 4 AA bats should work. No clue how long it would last. If battery is essential and you need longer running time, you could even consider this 6 volt 4.5 Amp hour battery.

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