Tagged: Manual switch start
- This topic has 9 replies, 3 voices, and was last updated 4 years, 11 months ago by Anonymous.
May 27, 2016 at 2:56 am #42644
I use my opensprinkler to control the watering in my fodder production unit. The program flexibility is great but I have one main issue. I don’t typically carry my phone so starting a program manually is a pain. I could just wire a switch to take 24V direct to the valve in parallel with the relays on opensprinkler but I would much prefer that I be able to push a button on my unit and have particular program or set of programs run once, immediately.
I use this feature when I load a new batch of seeds and want to wet them through thoroughly, after tha initial watering I only run 15 secs every 45min for the whole factory. I can’t just set a timed program for this because it depends on when I feed out to the cattle and that drives replenishing the seeds.
Would it be possible to maybe use the rain sensor input to also accept a switch and provide this capability?
ThanksMay 27, 2016 at 10:44 pm #42662
OpenSprinkler firmware does allow you to run a program on the controller by using buttons. Specifically, you can press and hold pushbutton B3 for a few seconds until the LCD screen displays ‘Run Program’. Then click B3 to cycle through a test program and all existing programs. Once you’ve found the program, press and hold B3 again and the program will start running.
If you want to set an ad-hoc program that you don’t want to run normally, but just for testing purpose. You can set the program to be ‘disabled’. That way, the program won’t run normally, but you can still start it manually using buttons (or on the UI/app by using ‘Run this program now’ button)May 27, 2016 at 10:57 pm #42665
Thanks Ray, that’s handy to know but doesn’t solve another issue. Using the buttons in the unit is a real pain because I’ve installed it on the side of my fodder unit in a weather proof housing with a screwed clear front. Originally I thought that would be fine since all settings can be done with the little wifi AP I installed but it never occurred to me that I might need to run a program ad hoc regularly. There is a bunch of stuff installed in this housing so I’m not changing it. If it’s deemed an unworthy feature to request I’ll probably just power that circuit in parallel with a switch. I only run that program immediately after filling the trays with barley seed to give them a starts so it’s no big deal.
Be a handy feature though, ideally I’d like to be able to run any program easily so I can check all the sprinkler are ok and not clogged etc. I don’t carry a mobile because I need to pressure wash the trays after feeding out and I don’t want the phone getting as wet as I do.
RalfMay 27, 2016 at 11:02 pm #42666
Ok, I think to implement what you said, you will need to connect a switch to any of the spare GPIO pins (all spare pins are available in the pin out area at the top-left side of the circuit board). Then you need to modify the firmware code a little bit to define what should be triggered when the switch is clicked (there is already a manual_start_program function that you can call to trigger any existing program). The modifications probably won’t be more than 5 lines of code, but it does require a little bit of programming background to implement.July 2, 2016 at 11:37 am #43294
I think the idea of adding an option to the rain sensor in software / firmware would be an excellent option for many users. The option added would allow either a momentary open contact or closed contact to start the program sequence. Many people either don’t have the programming experience.July 2, 2016 at 3:58 pm #43296
I wouldn’t want to modify only my code. Firstly my system is critical to feeding my cattle and I don’t want to risk an unknown problem somewhere down the line but mainly, Id have to redo the customisation every time a new firmware version is released.
Opensprinkler has been a bit of a mistake for me, the lack of any sort of manual interface makes it very impractical on a commercial site away from the house. Not carrying a phone makes it worse. Even the display doesn’t light up and I need to unscrew the cover of my waterproof enclosure to press the button just to see the ip etc.
I’ll replace mine with a different system when I get around to it.July 9, 2016 at 9:07 pm #43383
Ralf: it sounds like what you wanted is a traditional manual sprinkler controller where the interface is through buttons, dials, and knobs. If that’s your preferred user interface, I am not sure why you bought OpenSprinkler, which uses primarily web-based user interface.July 9, 2016 at 9:22 pm #43388
The original needs were just a simple program and a set once environment was envisaged. I also figured I could just make changes on the phone and it would all be real easy. Unfortunately I have some issues with the unit itself and then with my changing requirements.
Originally the unit just watered sprouting barley in a controlled temp environment as feed for my cattle. I found when I added new trays of seeds after the daily feed out it was better to give the seeds a good soak rather than rely on the mist spray program, since my feed out is dependent on weather that program can’t be timed, hence the need for a button. Carrying the phone is a pain because I pressure clean the trays from the feed out before filling with seeds, it’s a bit of a wet process and the unit is remote from the house. Also I like to run the program manually to check the sprinklers, I do that from the valve now.
I’m going to add some manual switches that will just go in parallel to the controller.
I’ve found other issues, even though I set the brightness of the display to stay on so I can see the IP address, it just goes dim. The IP address changes when the power goes off and using the phone is a pain because you need to set the phone up again. The iPhone app should really just be configurable manually so if it doesn’t connect at say 192.168.2.100 then you can just use 192.168.2.101. It seems to cycle between the two but if you connect and it can’t find that controller it forgets the setup.
Anyway the parallel switches will do it for me. You’re correct if I’d predicted my requirements I’d have just got a more manual controllerJuly 9, 2016 at 9:33 pm #43390
The brightness issue is a bug that we have already fixed and will be included in the next firmware release.
The changing IP is because you have not set a static IP: the easiest way to do so is to use your router’s DHCP reservation (also known as IP reservation) feature to allocate a fixed IP for OpenSprinkler. This way the IP won’t change across power breaks.
Adding a external switch is fairly easy to do. In fact, since the sensor port now supports multi-functions (i.e. can be set as rain sensor or flow sensor), it’s easy to add a third functionality that makes it a trigger switch for a particular sprinkler program. This would require the user to set a program that’s associated with the switch. The current manual start program feature (i.e. use buttons on the controller to start a program) is more general, and allows you to start any program using buttons. I understand that this is not ideal in cases where the controller is locked in a waterproof box. We will consider adding the third function for the sensor port as described above.July 9, 2016 at 11:49 pm #43391
Yes, I’ll change that, I followed the instructions for IP address and I don’t access a router because it’s out near the farm shed. I use the tiny TP Link unit in the same enclosure as an access point for my phones wifi connection. I’ll just set a fixed IP next time I need to change something else, I don’t think the TPLink IP mgmt is very extensive. I originally thought any lease time on the IP would pretty much make it fixed anyway but that’s not so.
Glad the dimming is fixed though.
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