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'Bird Projects & Modifications Share with us that latest project or modification that you have done to your 'Bird right here.

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  #21  
Old 12-12-2017
badandy badandy is offline
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Originally Posted by Tim M. View Post
So I started playing around with Node-red last night. Am I right in thinking it may be easiest to set up an Arduino for the tank sensors and then either link it to the Raspberry with cat 5 or with a wireless adapter? I like the ease of wireless, but love the simplicity of wired.

I'm also thinking I'd like to mount a 10" touchscreen on the dash and use it as my primary interface and tie in cameras as well.

I like the look of your interface. When you select one of the tabs, does it take you to sub menus? Example "holding tanks" does that open up a tab for fresh water, black, gray? Or does it display the data for all three of the tanks?

The capacitive copper strips you are using, I'm assuming they will be placed inside the holding tanks? Would it work to use 1/2" copper pipe. Or maybe 1/4" stainless rod? I'm just thinking of what I have laying around that may work.

You are on the right track - use node-red on the Pi to generate the gui and just get sensor data to the Pi somehow. I prefer wired stuff for anything that's important and not completely hard to wire up. I have a low-power ethernet hub and use that for a few things as well as RS-485 since that's what the inverter uses. You could be really crafty and get a power-over-ethernet type hub and use the ethernet cable for both power and data. A couple little things might end up wireless, but I'm not ready to do them yet so we'll see.



Node-red can gather up data from a lot of sources, including MQTT. If you don't know MQTT you should look it up, it's very simple and very low overhead. You can use MQTT like an aggregator for all of your external Arduino/Pi/whatever sensors. The server would run on the node-red machine (doesn't have to) and all your sensors push data to it.


On that interface in the screenshot, that's not running node-red. I wrote that in Javascript (using LCARSSDK, Star Trek style) to see how I liked it. It changes screens when you tap the buttons, it's pretty neat. I also have Openhab and node-red running there. I love the look of the LCARS stuff, but at this point I don't have the time to spend writing it all from scratch. Instead I am going with node-red and just making a bunch of custom stuff for the node-red-dashboard. I can always change it later if I get bored.


My goal is to have single screens full of data and show it graphically for the most part. I have drawn up a bunch of graphics for the tank levels and electrical systems. I could get a photo of the node-red dshboard I've got going, but it's pretty ugly right now. I'm just getting all the sensor data mapped out now and will pretty it up later.


The tank sensor is completely outside of the tank. The two copper strips form a capacitor with the fluid in the tank and the capacitance changes as the level goes up and down. There are some very nice and inexpensive chips out now that do all the hard work for you, just connect to the strips and calibrate and read the chip with your Pi or Arduino or whatever. I'm using the TI FDC1004. https://youtu.be/CDwmm0gQsTw this is a good overview by some smarty pants at TI.


Usually people stick the copper strips directly on the tank, but I want to make a "sensor" that the copper sticks to and just glue that on the tank in some kind of removable way. This will also allow me to run a shield tape on the back of the sensor for massive noise reduction. It's a strip of nylon with $2 worth of copper tape and two wires soldered on.
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Last edited by badandy; 12-12-2017 at 10:04 AM.
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  #22  
Old 12-12-2017
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Randy Dupree Randy Dupree is offline
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Carry on boys!
Lots of us are reading,but most of us have no input!
But it is interesting!
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  #23  
Old 12-12-2017
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?????????????????????????

I prefer Strawberry-Rhubarb Pi while smoking my CANNIBUS

But I can change my own oil .
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  #24  
Old 12-12-2017
badandy badandy is offline
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Originally Posted by biobug View Post
?????????????????????????

I prefer Strawberry-Rhubarb Pi while smoking my CANNIBUS

But I can change my own oil .

The geek is strong in this thread
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  #25  
Old 12-12-2017
Tim M. Tim M. is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biobug View Post
?????????????????????????

I prefer Strawberry-Rhubarb Pi while smoking my CANNIBUS

But I can change my own oil .
I love strawberry rhubarb! As for Cannibus, I do work in Ann Arbor, so there may be a contact high.

I've already changed all the fluids, batteries, alternators (both) and compressor coolant hoses. The batteries have been removed, its winter, so I need something to keep me busy.

If it makes you feel any better. A week ago I had no idea what a Raspberry Pi was. I've only heard about Arduino's from seeing "Ave" on YouTube blow a few up. That's been within the last month. (Side note, Ave is the only person I've seen open a cardboard box with a plasma cutter, or a Bridgeport mill).

So thanks to WOG, I've leaned how to do the mechanical stuff, now between WOG, YouTube and the internet I'm learning the the computer side of things.

Being a cheap Irish German that grew up in Amish country (Lancaster PA (Ephrata)) I would rather not pay someone to do something I can fumble through myself.
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  #26  
Old 12-30-2018
chiplamb chiplamb is offline
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Anyone played with one of the bluetooth or WiFi thermostats that can engage a Webasto boiler? Looking for a way to control interior heat on a formerly Primus equipped coach that now has a Webasto 42Kbtu on a toggle switch.
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  #27  
Old 12-30-2018
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Originally Posted by chiplamb View Post
Anyone played with one of the bluetooth or WiFi thermostats that can engage a Webasto boiler? Looking for a way to control interior heat on a formerly Primus equipped coach that now has a Webasto 42Kbtu on a toggle switch.
Is it not on a thermostat now?
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  #28  
Old 12-30-2018
badandy badandy is offline
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http://orbbasto.info/Characteristics_en.htm ? This looks like a replacement for the control on the Webasto itself? Or is there something else?
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  #29  
Old 12-30-2018
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mallie Lennon View Post
sound like some interesting project being kicked around.
I just learned of an interesting new dometic AC thermostat, Bluetooth. Can work them off your phone. If they would just include WiFi, you could monitor and adjust bus temps from anywhere, and it would send notice/e mails if temps get out of set range. Like a animal on the bus where you are out,, could quickly become overheated if elect is lost.

When we were at Disney Ft Wilderness, we had an old dog with us. I was worried about loss of A/C since we would be out for hours at a time. I ended up just using an app on my wife's phone that made it into a remote camera. I set it on the galley counter with a thermometer in front of it. Then, I could remotely access it from my phone while we were out. I could see the temp and the whole front half of the interior of the coach. I hadn't thought about this situation until we arrived. A quick search of the App Store and the problem was solved.
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  #30  
Old 12-30-2018
chiplamb chiplamb is offline
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Is it not on a thermostat now?
Nope, not connected to the remnants of the Primus system. Only other t-stats in this coach are Suburbans for the Fantastic Fan and the former Cadet toe kick heaters (I guess, since they're not there) and of course the Primus boiler controls fore and aft.
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