TTT Microcontroller(s?)

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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby friz » Sat Sep 12, 2015 2:58 pm

I hope you get the bulk of this figured out before I start my project this winter. I do believe my Grumman Woody will need a TDCM (TearDrop Control Module)
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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby troubleScottie » Sat Sep 12, 2015 4:34 pm

I will start prototyping sometime in October. Life gets in the way of fun.

I have been looking at the various bits and pieces -- The switch to drive a latch is easy ( two lines of code and the appropriate connectors ).

The hard thing is getting all the other pieces ie TFT, extra output pins, possible memory expansion and the code for a menu. Starting with a Mega and TFT touchscreen and see how things go.

Actually the most challenging might be how to make this into a non-breadboard solution for a hot, high vibration environment.
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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby dales133 » Sat Sep 12, 2015 5:02 pm

Couple of guys over here have added fluid flow meters to calculate water tank useage
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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby MtnDon » Sat Sep 12, 2015 5:04 pm

I peek under the bed tosee the fresh water level


I know..... it's all about what can be done. I could not resist the remark though.

:D
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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby dales133 » Sat Sep 12, 2015 5:19 pm


Im looking at getting a flow meter and gauge for mine but nothing to fancy.
Not realy all that keen on drilling holes in my stainless tank to fit float gauges and the flow meters are way more acurate plus tell you what youve usex not whats left
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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby friz » Sat Sep 12, 2015 11:21 pm

troubleScottie wrote:I will start prototyping sometime in October. Life gets in the way of fun.

I have been looking at the various bits and pieces -- The switch to drive a latch is easy ( two lines of code and the appropriate connectors ).

The hard thing is getting all the other pieces ie TFT, extra output pins, possible memory expansion and the code for a menu. Starting with a Mega and TFT touchscreen and see how things go.

Actually the most challenging might be how to make this into a non-breadboard solution for a hot, high vibration environment.

Do you think that demand would be enough to warrant design and manufacture of PCB's? I think the quad racers are getting power distribution boards, with some LEDs and a few other bells and whistles, made up in fairly low quantities and reletively cheap.
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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby friz » Sat Sep 12, 2015 11:24 pm

BTW. Some temp sensors for monitoring wheel bearing temps while on the road might be a nice function.
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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby troubleScottie » Sun Sep 13, 2015 12:04 am

Here is the continuous fluid level sensor -- not exactly sure how one installs it -- thinking take advantage of the vent and drain ports to attach the top and bottom.....

The eTape is pricier as it most likely needs another part ie eTape 0-5VDC Linear Resistance to Voltage Module to make the thing work well. Obviously the tape can be read at any time to get the level.

Browsing around a little more, there are flow meters also. There is some old code ( deprecated name for interrupt ) but it looks like it would work.

https://www.adafruit.com/categories/106


BTW: found still other bits and pieces. Several place discussing/building voltmeter/ampmeters:

http://www.codeproject.com/Articles/831 ... ve-Battery
and
http://www.janspace.com/b2evolution/arduino.php (Krut's Arduino Projects )
and
http://cratel.wichita.edu/blogs/eecsfin ... rangemeter

They each have a slightly different look at a very similar problem.



Kurt's page has everything -- code, wiring, parts, etc. And additional toys and parts than you might want to include in your light controller/battery system/GPS/odometer/cell phone/realtime clock/etc arduino system.

There are suggestions for logging the data to SD. I am not sure how often you want to actually sample the voltage, etc. I believe the Arduino can sample 1,000,000's of times per second. I am thinking for the TD, sampling every 1 second, maybe every minute would be fine. Even at once per minute, voltage is not going to change so fast it matters. And you are sampling for days at a time.

Also, Kurt's page includes yet another project to build a two axis solar panel tracking system. It will require an additional arduino (too far from the TD to use one in the TD) and its own power source (small 5-9V lead battery I would imagine) and the motors are not particularly cheap. However, who is counting costs when doing a labor of love. My only addition would be to add a tilt detector to stop everything if the stand/solar panel fell over.
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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby capnTelescope » Sun Sep 13, 2015 10:36 am

Hi Friz. Welcome to the thread!

friz wrote:TDCM (TearDrop Control Module)

Oooo! I love that kind of talk. I hereby decree that TDCM shall be the official designation of our microcontrollers. "So let it be written, so let it be done."

Interesting discussion, Friz and TroubleScottie. Don't worry that you might be hijacking the thread. This is just the kind of discussion I was hoping to start. :thumbsup: :D

troubleScottie wrote:Actually the most challenging might be how to make this into a non-breadboard solution for a hot, high vibration environment.

and
friz wrote:Do you think that demand would be enough to warrant design and manufacture of PCB's?

Funny you should mention that. I've been tooling up to do PCBs on my CNC(check out my build thread). Because I can. I will eventually be willing to cut PCBs for others at cost, but I have to figure out how to get from design to G-code. PCB design software appears to generate a "Gerber file." Whatever that is. Maybe a Gerber to G-code converter? Give that up and just go with one of the PCB services? Anyone out there have a solution?

MtnDon wrote:I peek under the bed to see the fresh water level

That's what I love about technology, it allows you to come up with a complex solution for a simple problem. :roll:

friz wrote:Some temp sensors for monitoring wheel bearing temps while on the road might be a nice function.

That's a good one. We need a way for the TDCM to communicate with the TV.

troubleScottie wrote:I believe the Arduino can sample 1,000,000's of times per second.

Close enough. FWIW, the event loop in my last code listing takes 11-12 millis to execute. We're taking sips from a fire hose.

troubleScottie wrote:My only addition would be to add a tilt detector to stop everything if the stand/solar panel fell over.

:lightbulb: Sun tracking for the solar panels! A worthy project in itself.

I hadn't posted in a few days cuz I was waiting for a few goodies to get here. I'm working on a driver board for the lighting loads.

Discuss amongst yourselves. I'll be back. :beer:
I'll burn that bridge when I come to it.

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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby WoodSmith » Sun Sep 13, 2015 4:40 pm

Seriously consider using oshpark. I'll grant that being able to mill your own boards has a cool factor, but there's no plated vias, no solder mask, no silkscreen component labels and so on. I'm pretty sure that kiCad will do most of what you want to do, and it's likely that someone has figured out how to go from the Gerber data that kiCad will output to your CNC system. But still, unless you are looking to make a fairly large pcb, oshpark is the way to go. Do you really want FR4 dust all over your shop?
They also have a design rule check that will help diagnose obvious errors like dead shorts.

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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby friz » Sun Sep 13, 2015 4:46 pm

Sweet! I got to name it! Count me in for one.

If you included some accelerometers they could be used to assist in leveling also.
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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby bobgbob » Tue Sep 15, 2015 10:12 pm

I've haven't played around with Arduino, but I have done some fun things with Rasberry Pi. I am sure there are a few gadgets that you could implement with a Pi as well.
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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby capnTelescope » Tue Sep 15, 2015 10:22 pm

Howdy BobGBob, and welcome.

bobgbob wrote:I am sure there are a few gadgets that you could implement with a Pi as well.

I'm not familiar with the Pi, beyond knowing its name. I'm guessing anything one can do, the other can do too. You pays your money and you takes your choice. I'm using Arduino because there aren't many computer-learning brain cells left in my head. Since the Pi is newer, it must be better in some way. :NC It does have a catchier name. :D

I would expect that any add-on circuitry we "invent" would work on either. You are welcome to participate and I doubt anyone will care what board you're using. :thumbsup:
I'll burn that bridge when I come to it.

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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby troubleScottie » Wed Sep 16, 2015 1:47 am

The PI is a micro-computer in a small format and low price generally running some form of unix/linux.
So lots of memory, things like screen support ( HDMI ), USB, ethernet are part of the base unit. This comes at the cost of generally burring power all the time.

The Arduino is a micro-controller. Much less memory but more input/output pins. It is really designed to control things like switches, light, etc. It is designed to be interrupt driven, so it wakes to deal with the change/transition. In addition, the Arduino can be powered almost completely down.

The Arduino is programmed using scripting language. I believe it can generated by various cross compilers. It is pretty simple language. A major issue is software storage. The various versions of the Arduino has very little memory -- so you can run out. But that is half the fun of a micro-controller. How much can you do in the constraints.

Both can be expanded, extended to have more everything including memory, IO pins, additional devices like sensors for heat, light, temperature, motion, gps, wifi, etc. There is a whole cottage industry out there building kits and fully assembled shields as the various components are called.

Both could be used to solve the issues for controlling the TD. It becomes a question of what else do you want to do or need.
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Re: TTT Microcontroller(s?) -- Dimming the lights

Postby capnTelescope » Wed Sep 16, 2015 12:47 pm

Thanks, TroubleScottie, that was an illuminating response.

troubleScottie wrote:... generally running some form of unix/linux.

Well, that just did it for me. I know just enough *-nix to realize how much I don't know. Not enough room in my poor old brain to learn unix/linux and C and the micro-whatever. Sorry, Pi lovers. I want to get mine done in this lifetime, and not the next one. YMMV.

BUT! That doesn't mean that those who like Pi better than cake don't have anything to contribute. The TDCM processor itself is much less important than what we do with it. Let's focus on the physical computing, and choose your own platform according to what you think is right for you.
OTOH, what could a tiny *-nix system do for us that would require the larger capabilities? Seems like the possibilities are endless.

All platforms are welcome here. Show us what you can accomplish on your "other platform." We'll all be interested.

friz wrote:If you included some accelerometers they could be used to assist in leveling also.

:lightbulb: Push one button auto-leveling! Show us how, Friz!

I'm off to pack up for a gathering this weekend. See y'all in a few days! :beer: :wine: :FNP
I'll burn that bridge when I come to it.

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