Big Timer Status

I occasionally get comments in the blog about people having problems with BigTimer, virtually all get resolved by users themselves and it is quite some time since BigTimer has actually had any problems, so for clarification, here it is working alongside Blynk, inject nodes and with MQTT. I am currently in the UK and it is currently 11.45am here in Blighty.

This particular timer is set to turn a light on at dusk and off again at midnight, unless manually overridden by an inject node or by Blynk (I’ve created a button on my phone which can turn on the output or restore it to auto).  I hope soon to have a 3-state button as this has been introduced in Blynk (but I can’t get it to actually work (at least not using the local Blynk server). 

Big Timer Status

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Goodies from Inateck

In today’s postbag came three items from Inateck, namely a lovely small, well packaged Bluetooth plus aux input, a USB powered Bluetooth loudspeaker, completed with leads. The unit also supports a microSD card.

Also in the post from the same company, a tiny Bluetooth receiver/transmitter and a quality dual-phone mains charger (not to be confused with a simple USB hub which cannot provide any additional voltage for high speed charging).

Products from Inateck

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Deceitful Advertising

Sometimes I wonder what has happened to trading standards in the Internet age. Today it is apparently perfectly ok to lie through your teeth when advertising, particularly when you can later hide behind the language barrier.

See particularly bollocks advert here at AliExpress. They don’t do themselves or  us any favours allowing rubbish like this…

  5v 6amp means 30w, not 40w as claimed and how can the output be fixed at 5v when the unit also claims to support Quickcharge 3?  Utter waste of time.

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EleksMaker Pro Laser Engraver

After much delay and I have to say patience from Banggood, I am now putting together this A3 laser engraving machine. Nearly done but still waiting for the actual laser module itself to arrive (the laser is not included in the basic kit) but meanwhile, assembling the kit is a day’s work so I figured I’d better get on with it.

Essentially the unit comes as a well-packed set of 3 motors, various aluminium tubes, a host of pre-cut Perspex pieces and an unfeasible number of nuts, bolts, retainers, wheels and various spacers. I opened the box maybe 9am Friday morning and spent the rest of the day constructing. At first it all looks a little daunting but that apprehension soon goes away, It did not take long to reach the stage where a whole table was needed to hold all the parts but by mid-day I’d cracked the back of this. I also broke one of the Perspex fastener/tensioners however.  Thank heavens for Gorilla glue. I hope it is strong enough.

Two of the three motors move the laser assembly forward and backward (left and right sides). The third motor is mounted with the laser and moves the latter left and right.

No documentation came with the unit but the Banggood site has construction info, software and drivers. What you see here are my own photos, in the link below, you’ll see the construction photos available, which I used to help me assemble the unit. The images in their docs are good but I was left in doubt as to where to mount the small electronic control box on the front aluminium support beam because other suppliers showed the box mounted vertically whereas in the Banggood-supplied revision, the box mounts horizontally. This box needs some trivial assembly which only takes a few minutes. I do not have detailed wiring information but it looks fairly simple. A power supply is provided. No info as to whether to mount this somewhere or leave lying on the bench (unless I’ve missed something).

http://wiki.eleksmaker.com/doku.php?id=elekslaser_a3_pro

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The Script

Regular reader will know about the script that Aidan Ruff and I originally developed to put Node-Red and several other packages onto the Raspberry Pi for our own home control purposes. This has been developed with help from several people and in particular my friend Antonio.

The Script, ESP-GO and Nano Peripheral

WELL – here is the script which is intended to help set up certain Raspbian, Debian or similarly-based SBCs which now includes logging and handling Raspbian Stretch (tested on Raspberry Pi  2 and 3, 3B+). As well as it's original purpose of setting up a Raspberry Pi, the script also runs well with several other boards.  See right hand side of the above image for what the script does, given a basic operating system install. Read on…

Continue reading The Script

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FY6800 Signal Generator

In today’s postbag, the new Feeltech FY6800 dual channel Signal Generator, complete with UK power lead, two bnc test leads, USB lead and bnc-bnc lead. However the unit came with no instructions or other paperwork. I assume a manual will follow later. The unit arrived well-packed via FedEx.

FY6800

Lovely to look at and extremely comprehensive in operation, the FY6800 is a compact unit that belies the vast range of functions it handles.

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Home Control 2018

Introduction (Latest update May 20, 2018)

HomeSick of reading about other people’s home control? Want to make your own? Got some electronics and software experience? You’re going to LOVE THIS! Rock-solid home control, flexible, low cost, DIY.

 

image

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More Home Control 2018 Updates

As of version 1.5.61 (now on 2.3.18 – May 2018) of the Home Control 2018 code,  I’ve  expanded the {debug} command considerably, added new Hitachi display commands and introduced a new MQTT topic called “otacomplete”. Here incidentally is the Bitbucket repository for all of this.

The Hitachi commands are documented in the manual.  As for the new MQTT topic, this is so that, should you choose to OTA update a unit remotely, you have some means to know asap that it is working.  In the event of an OTA update, the unit will send out the following MQTT message:

topic : otacomplete
payload: [the ID of the unit]

Typical serial on-demand debug output at the time of writing – for a test unit with ID “freddy” - with passwords changed to protect the innocent:

Time: 09:07:05 11/05/2018
Time Code: 1470906425
Dusk: 21:08 Dawn: 07:22
On1: 08:00 Off1: 12:00 On2: 15:00 Off2: 23:00 Peak: 23c Off-peak: 19c Frost: 14c
IP: 192:168:1:25
Internal ID: ARPS_00A68508
ID: freddy
DESC: empty
FLAGS:
SSID: wififorus (Active)  Pass: xxxxxxxx
SSID2: wififorus  Pass2: xxxxxxxxx
MQTT Host: 192.168.1.19 Port: 1883 User: admin
OTA Host: www.scargill.net  Port: 80
Code Version: 1.5.61
SDK Version: 2.0.0(656edbf)
RSSI: -48
Out0: 0
Out4: 0
Out5: 1
Out12: 0
Out15: 0
Out16: 0
Sensor Type: DHT22
Temperature Port: GPIO2
GPIO13 available for general use: No
GPIO2 is an input
Sonoff setting=0
WiFi button=2
Invert settings=HEX( 1)
Serial2 settings=0
RGB Indicator=1
Electrodragon=0
No LED clock
CPU frequency: 80Mhz
Free Heap: 16680 bytes
Up Time: 0:05:04

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The Nano Peripheral Update

I mentioned recently in an entry aimed at beginners, that I’ve been installing “the script” and my ESP8266 code on various devices. I now have a backed-up Raspberry Pi 3B+ board set up for testing, with the latest Raspbian and fully up to date Node-Red nodes including my own and running “the script”, talking to (in this case) a pair of Wemos D1 Mini boards, one of which has my Nano-based peripheral added.

Nano peripheral

Continue reading The Nano Peripheral Update

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