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  • Advice on front gate motors & integration

    Hi Guys,

    I'm looking to purchase a front gate motor, but want to get one that I can integrate into HomeSeer. I'm in Aus so my options are a bit more limited so I was wondering if people were willing to help me out.

    Proposed solution is as follows:
    - Powered motor at gate (none selected yet, wanted to get some advice on how to integrate first)
    - Matching remote controls for our cars to open/close
    - Gate will auto-close after x seconds
    - Integration component XY to remotely trigger "open gate event" in HS3. This would connect to the motor and get it to open and then close it after 30 seconds or so
    - Internal zwave remote / webpage / other method for calling the event

    Constraints
    - Gate is approximately 30-40 meters (90feet) from house
    - Rack with homeseer kit is approximately 95 feet from gate
    - I don't have a RFXCOM currently (thinking about it)
    - The gate motor will have power
    - I can get a CAT5 or other cable to the gate motor, but the run would be approximately 100m (300 feet) and for the last 10-20 meters, it might need to be in the same conduit as the power which i'd like to avoid as it tends to cause interference / be slightly dodgy!

    Grateful if anyone can make some suggestions, I've looked into the following:
    - Somfy motorised front gates - not available in AUS ;-( as the rest of my blinds / awnings are Somfy and this would have been easy
    - RFXCOM - looks like an option depending on range limitations
    - zWave - i've got an extensive network already but i'm concerned about distance. It would however be a relatively easy way
    - GlobalCache - already got some of this kit and it works well in HS3. Just concerned about getting cabling to it (as noted above) and would prefer not to extend wifi to this location
    - Other solution

    Grateful any suggestions for what people have done themselves

  • #2
    Hi,

    My front gate is automated.
    The control box that came with it allows for automatic closing and stuff, I can look up the type if you want.

    At the control box, I attached wires from a cat5 cable.
    *2 wires for signal lamp -> so I know when the gate is in movement
    *2 wires at clamps that switch high/low when the gate is open/closed
    *2 wires at clamps to shortcut a wire, so the relay closes and opens/closes the gate.

    This cat5 wire runs to my electric cabinet, where it is attached to the relays of a ProntoExtender (I am reworking this so I can do it with an arduino though).

    Been running without any problems for over a year now.

    Comment


    • #3
      How do you guys monitor whether or not the gate is closed? I was thinking of using a Z-wave door/window sensor but am having an issue with how to weather proof those.

      Comment


      • #4
        Most gate controllers have a switch that reports gate open/closed. As kriz83, I ran a cat5 back to my wiring closet. I use an IO board to detect gate status and a relay to let HS open the gate. Once you have the wire run inside you could also attach a Z-wave device, of course.

        Instead of a remote control, I use two magnetometers to detect vehicles, so my gate opens automatically whenever a vehicle approaches. One of my cat5 pairs also reports to HS when a vehicle enters or leaves. (If the gate is open before the vehicle is detected HS assumes the vehicle is leaving.) Again, most gate controllers have provision for remotes, providing power for the receiver, and connections for a momentary switch closure, which is the output of the remote receiver.

        My controller was made by GTO, but I have no idea if they are available outside the US. FWIW, it's worked well with simple maintenance for almost 10 years. In my installation the biggest headaches are caused by snow and ice, not by the gate controller function.
        Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
        HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548

        HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF, Rain8Net+ | RFXCOM | QSE100D | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | X10: XTB-232, -IIR | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3

        Comment


        • #5
          Schnark

          Since its all low voltage I'm thinking why not use the CAT5 as the signal leads rather than ethernet ? You really only need 2 pairs, maybe use the 8 wires as 2 pairs. You can control the I/O with an arduino

          I an about to try z-wave stuff up here in Alice Springs (I'm currently in the US and will bring some home with me), from everything i've read it sounds quite reliable though you say you've already got an extensive network, you'd probably know better than most.

          There are LOTS or Arduino Remote RF units you could use, scour e-bay for them.

          Honestly I'd try using the ethernet as the signal lines as a first step....All you are doing is closing contacts and detecting a close from the gateswitch....

          Pete
          HS 2.2.0.11

          Comment


          • #6
            Whilst I don't have a gate, I can see there are a number of ways you might be able to achieve this (assuming the gate has contacts for open / closed, and another for open/close the date (e.g. button).

            The first is you could use the pairs from the Cat5 cable directly, connect into the outputs of the gate controller, and the input (e.g. button) back to the rack where you could have something like a Global Cache, Arduino or some other form of IO device.

            The second, and I think more desirable is to use the Cat5 as a network cable, the reason I recommend this if you can is that it means if you decide to put a camera at the gate later on, you can put a small hub at the gate to connect the camera into, then run your IO hardware at the gate as well.

            I use the Arduino plugin at the moment, and use it to control PWM outputs to control the speed of a fan, as well as a number of temperature sensors. It supports an ethernet connection so you could have the Arduino at the gate, then with a few relays and Optio-isolators you could wire the gate into the Arduino so that if the gate opens it triggers the input which tells HS that the gate has opened, then when the gate is closed the input would be the opposite (e.g. OFF). You could have an output which controls the gate if needed, plus the other thing is you could also do what a number of people have done here and put magnetic sensors each side of the gate, so that the arduino can 'sense' when a car is at the gate, and if configured open it, otherwise if not configured it might just track if a car has entered of left.

            E.g. Sensor 1 outside the gate (Street Side),
            Sensor 2 inside the gate (house side),

            Logic: If sensor 1 is high, and sensor 2 is low and has been low for greater than x seconds / minutes then car is entering the property.

            Logic: If sensor 2 is high, and sensor 1 is low and has been low for greater than x seconds / minutes then car is leaving the property.

            I personally would steer away from Wireless for longer distances, and go for something like wired IO, although if your mesh network is fine you could use something like a Z-Wave door/window sensor wired into the contact closure output of a modern gate controller, and use a Z-Wave relay to trigger the gate to open / close.

            Hope that gives some ideas?
            HS3 PRO, Win10, WeatherXML, HSTouch, Pushover, UltraGCIR, Heaps of Jon00 Plugins, Just sold and about to move so very slim system.

            Facebook | Twitter | Flickr | Google+ | Website | YouTube

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by schnark View Post
              Hi Guys,


              - Gate is approximately 30-40 meters (90feet) from house
              - Rack with homeseer kit is approximately 95 feet from gate

              - zWave - i've got an extensive network already but i'm concerned about distance. It would however be a relatively easy way
              Ok, I have a GTO / mighty mule dual gate opener. It opens w keypad(GTO )remote(GTO ),or hstouch(zwave). It closes after a x amount of seconds. I also have electromagnetic device (GTO ) next to drive for that's opens gate when it senses a car drive by.

              Zwave: now I had the same concerns as you. My gate is 200-20ft from the z-stick. Here is what I did. I put z-wave outlet devices every 50-60 ft(line of site) all the way to the gate. The opener has a open close terminals for push button opener. Instead of push button I put a LMF-20 ( dry contact zwave switch) on the terminals. This simulates a push button. Then created an event that rests the LMF-20 21 seconds later every time it's activated( turned on). There can be a few seconds delay ( now and then) in zwave transmission over 200 ft due to distance but it's always works
              Hope this helps


              Tom
              Tom
              baby steps...starting again with HS3
              HS3Pro: Z-NET & 80 Z wave Devices,
              HSTouch: 4 Joggler (Android Kitkat), 2 iPhone, 3 iPads
              Whole House Audio: 5 SqueezePlay Jogglers w Bose Speakers
              In The Works: 10 Cameras Geovision, new Adecmo/Envisalink Alarm, Arduinos
              System: XP on Fanless Mini-ITX w/ SSD

              Comment


              • #8
                Sounds like a good idea, the only concern I have is getting a dry contact switch zwave device in Australia as our range is limited here ;(

                I'll get in contact with some suppliers and see what I can organise as last time I went with a Globalcache device to achieve the ability to switch low voltage. I'll also have to start talking to some front gate motor companies.

                Many thanks to all who helped - very much appreciated.

                At this stage, i'm leaning towards a Global Cache (either out there or in the rack) with a 100M run of STP where the last 30 or so has to share the same conduit as the power (unfortunately). I'm probably leaning towards leaving the Global Cache in the rack so I have less electronics outside in a box, but will test it first out there to confirm my cabling works!

                If I get it to work, is there a forum where I can post a "here's how I did this" so that other people can leverage the knowledge? I know personally these sort of things always help me when i'm trying to make my ideas into reality!

                Comment


                • #9
                  You might be able to consider something like a Power over Ethernet (POE) solution if you wanted the GC at the gate side, this would mean you could run power through the cable up to length or so, and power the device from inside with a converter at the end.

                  Let us know how it all goes, I will be very interested to see your solution!
                  HS3 PRO, Win10, WeatherXML, HSTouch, Pushover, UltraGCIR, Heaps of Jon00 Plugins, Just sold and about to move so very slim system.

                  Facebook | Twitter | Flickr | Google+ | Website | YouTube

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Uncle Michael View Post
                    Most gate controllers have a switch that reports gate open/closed. As kriz83, I ran a cat5 back to my wiring closet. I use an IO board to detect gate status and a relay to let HS open the gate. Once you have the wire run inside you could also attach a Z-wave device, of course.

                    Instead of a remote control, I use two magnetometers to detect vehicles, so my gate opens automatically whenever a vehicle approaches. One of my cat5 pairs also reports to HS when a vehicle enters or leaves. (If the gate is open before the vehicle is detected HS assumes the vehicle is leaving.) Again, most gate controllers have provision for remotes, providing power for the receiver, and connections for a momentary switch closure, which is the output of the remote receiver.

                    My controller was made by GTO, but I have no idea if they are available outside the US. FWIW, it's worked well with simple maintenance for almost 10 years. In my installation the biggest headaches are caused by snow and ice, not by the gate controller function.
                    What IO board are you using to connect into HS?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Mwillis View Post
                      What IO board are you using to connect into HS?
                      I use two methods to detect switch open/close. I have an old JDS Stargate with IO capability, and I have extra zones on my security system. In the case of the gate, I use the Stargate digital interface, but I could have just as easily used a spare zone on my CADXX panel. (I lump those zones into their own partition, so they are not included in my alarm control.)
                      Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
                      HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548

                      HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF, Rain8Net+ | RFXCOM | QSE100D | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | X10: XTB-232, -IIR | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Uncle Michael View Post
                        I use two methods to detect switch open/close. I have an old JDS Stargate with IO capability, and I have extra zones on my security system. In the case of the gate, I use the Stargate digital interface, but I could have just as easily used a spare zone on my CADXX panel. (I lump those zones into their own partition, so they are not included in my alarm control.)
                        would you mind sending me a link to where I can purchase or your exact model.

                        Thanks

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Mwillis View Post
                          would you mind sending me a link to where I can purchase or your exact model.

                          Thanks
                          If you're talking about the alarm panel, any one that works with HS will do. I do similar things with my DSC panel.
                          Originally posted by rprade
                          There is no rhyme or reason to the anarchy a defective Z-Wave device can cause

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Mwillis View Post
                            would you mind sending me a link to where I can purchase or your exact model.
                            The Stargate hardware is quite old and hard to find. I wouldn't recommend it unless you already have it and are familiar with its operation. As Colin noted, virtually any alarm panel will be able to monitor a relay. I'd also second his recommendation of DSC. It is affordable, popular with HS users, and is well supported with at least two plug-in options.
                            Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
                            HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548

                            HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF, Rain8Net+ | RFXCOM | QSE100D | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | X10: XTB-232, -IIR | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3

                            Comment

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