DIY Control System I am building

njtiger aquariums

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 9, 2015
Messages
497
Reaction score
500
Location
NJ
Guys check out my video on my DYI control system. This project is taking my longer than I wanted but taking it slow. Here is Episode 3 of my custom control system for my reef tank. If you have questions feel free to watch my other videos or reach out to me.

Thanks

 

Harry_Y

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Aug 30, 2009
Messages
1,084
Reaction score
200
Location
Liverpool, NY
I had seriously though about building one from the ground up before. I was going
to use an Atmel AVR at the heart of it all). But I figured why reinvent the wheel.

With the Pi a lot of the underlying work has been done so it should be a
whole lot easier since you already have a good foundation to build upon.

Good Luck
 
OP
njtiger aquariums

njtiger aquariums

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 9, 2015
Messages
497
Reaction score
500
Location
NJ
I had seriously though about building one from the ground up before. I was going
to use an Atmel AVR at the heart of it all). But I figured why reinvent the wheel.

With the Pi a lot of the underlying work has been done so it should be a
whole lot easier since you already have a good foundation to build upon.

Good Luck
I can understand not wanting to reinvent the wheel. When I started out in the hobby I jokingly post a WiFi controlled light/power heads saying "oh I can join my two hobby IT and saltwater". A friend of mine said "well you know how to code why don't you build one out of a pi?" I been wanting to do a pi project just never knew what until now lol.

Now nothing on those other controllers but a custom one allow for different options. Also price is a whole lot cheaper lol.
 

Harry_Y

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Aug 30, 2009
Messages
1,084
Reaction score
200
Location
Liverpool, NY
The Pi has opened up a lot of doors

I use one as a time server (hooked to GPS) for my local network
and another in Amateur radio (connecting radio systems together)

They really are a slick piece of HW
 
OP
njtiger aquariums

njtiger aquariums

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 9, 2015
Messages
497
Reaction score
500
Location
NJ
So it been a while since I updated this post. In fact I joined NJ Reefer and started a thread over there and kinda been absence from R2R but starting to get back into it.

I figure I will provide everyone here an update on my project. Please feel free to comment and what not but please note I am not sharing my code.

Devices
  • Raspberry Pi B+
  • 7in Touch Screen
  • Water Proof temp sensor
  • 4 channel relay
  • Leak detector (not wired up yet)
Options
  • Text and email alerts of low/high/return temps
  • Weekly emails listing what type of maintenance is due
  • Schedule for the four outlets
  • System auto check schedule after a reboot and make sure proper equipment is on when needed to be on (say after a power failure)
  • Quick Buttons (four buttons that handle set task just as feeding, maintenance, lights, all off)
  • Log for maintenance
  • Log for test results
  • Log live stock
  • 24 hour temp graph
  • Report temp history
  • Option to turn on/off outlets
  • Options to enable/disable schedules
  • Auto monthly backup
Overview (with images)
The system
20160824_172533.jpg


cover is to prevent the cats from walking on the equipment
20160824_172548.jpg


7in touch screen (quick buttons and 24 hour temp graph)
20160824_172538.jpg


Dashboard:
Displays what maintenance is due within 7 days.
Display what the 7in touch screen shows
Quick buttons (blue mean clickable, orange means that button is active, and yellow means its resuming to normal mode [example: Feeding turns off my skimmer and reactor pumps for 10mins and then goes into resuming mode which means equipment is turned back on but a 5min delay for my skimmer to allow water level to not freak out my skimmer])
Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 5.26.07 PM.png


Tanks:
Displays the tanks I have. Still working on adding more data fields.
Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 5.46.03 PM.png


Water Levels:
This area is where I log all my test results.
Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 8.19.19 PM.png

Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 8.19.33 PM.png


Maintenance:
This is where I log all my maintenance. If the font is green means there more than 7 days before I need to do it, yellow means its due within 7 days, and red means passed due.
Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 8.20.53 PM.png


Live stock:
This is where I log everything I put in my tank.
Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 8.24.07 PM.png


Dosing:
Still working on this area but this is where I would log/handle my dosing.


Admin:
This is the area where settings are set.
System Information: List when the system was installed, software version, last updated, plus storage left on drive plus backup location. Still working on this as well.
Report: This will hold the different reports. Right now just the temp report but will hopefully have more.
Email settings: Setting for sending emails
Tank Maintenance: This is where I can enable and disable the maintenance list of the dash plus weekly email.
Alerts: This is where i set my temp alerts. Still working on this.
Schedule: This is where I set the schedule for the outlets
Outlets: This is where I can turn outlets on and off

Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 8.25.36 PM.png

Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 8.25.47 PM.png


Report screen shots (opens a new window)
Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 8.29.23 PM.png

Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 8.29.37 PM.png


Alert screen shot: (today I got my first real alert)
Screenshot_20160824-160740.png



There more options I am working on. Projector is coming along nicely.

Notes:
Unlike the other controllers out on the market this system is developed solo with my own money. I think the other controls on the mark are nice and they have backing and a company of employees to help out. If you are in to tech and like to tinker a DYI system can be nice. So far for everything it has only cost me about $100 for my system (does not include my time in the cost lol)
 
Last edited:
OP
njtiger aquariums

njtiger aquariums

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 9, 2015
Messages
497
Reaction score
500
Location
NJ
sorry but I am not sharing my code. I will say its PHP, Python, HTML and a little Javascript. I am using push bullet for the notification to my cell phone. Good luck with your system and feel free to ask questions and I will try my best. I just not willing to share my code and I hope you understand that.
 

cowbot7

New Member
View Badges
Joined
Mar 25, 2014
Messages
2
Reaction score
1
Location
ohio
Wow this looks very exciting! I would like to try it too. Njtiger my question is do i need to learn 4 different programing languages (php,pyton,html and javascript)?
Because i am novice at programing. I have done a little bit with the arduino ide programing. Also do you think this project could be out of my skill level? Like how hard is the programing for this project?
 
OP
njtiger aquariums

njtiger aquariums

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 9, 2015
Messages
497
Reaction score
500
Location
NJ
Wow this looks very exciting! I would like to try it too. Njtiger my question is do i need to learn 4 different programing languages (php,pyton,html and javascript)?
Because i am novice at programing. I have done a little bit with the arduino ide programing. Also do you think this project could be out of my skill level? Like how hard is the programing for this project?
It all depends on you. I am sure you can do a project like this with different languages but I picked those four to use. Now those four are well document so finding help with issues is easier. I also find they are easy languages to learn on one's own. Without knowing your programming skills or understanding of programming I am unable to say if it too hard for you. My suggestion is if you want to try and see what you can do then start out with the basic (the pi and the web interface) and build from there.
 
OP
njtiger aquariums

njtiger aquariums

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 9, 2015
Messages
497
Reaction score
500
Location
NJ
So I been working on some more options on my system. I am not a big fan of the water parameter range UI so that most likely will be changing at some point; yes I just realize I have a type-o in the title.

Water Parameters:
To help determine if my levels are in the range I want I added these ranges. Now with a quick glance I will know if my numbers are off. I am thinking of having it so I can load 'templates' or create a custom one.
Screen Shot 2016-09-12 at 6.02.12 AM.png


When the numbers are in red it means they are in the critical range (either high or low) and yellow means they are just in the warning range (either low or high). I also thinking of adding a hover over so when you hover over a field it will let you know why its in the range and steps to take to fix it.

Screen Shot 2016-09-12 at 6.02.42 AM.png


Reports:
I made some changes to the report section. I now added alert history so I can pull up any alerts my system sends out.
Screen Shot 2016-09-12 at 6.04.37 AM.png

Screen Shot 2016-09-06 at 5.43.20 PM.png


I also added a date range picker for the temp report.
Screen Shot 2016-09-12 at 6.05.12 AM.png
 
OP
njtiger aquariums

njtiger aquariums

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 9, 2015
Messages
497
Reaction score
500
Location
NJ
What is your plan for dosing? I've been working on a wifi /web controlled doser for some time that's built off of a particle photon.
At this moment I don't have a plan for dosing. I have looked at the parts as well as dosers that might be able to link but I have not pulled the trigger on anything like that yet.

Thats cool your working on a wifi unit. How is that coming?
 

djbetterly

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Sep 2, 2012
Messages
890
Reaction score
287
Location
Nutley, NJ (AKA - The Nut)
It works incredibly well!! I'd be happy to adapt my MOSFET board to work with your project if you like.

The web control page should be done in the next week or so and I can give you a look at it. I designed it in a very simple matter. You get a pump calibration, then tell the program how much you want to dose and how many doses you want in either a 12 or 24 hour period and it does the calculations for you.

Let me know if you need any help, I've been working on this project for a long time.
 
OP
njtiger aquariums

njtiger aquariums

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 9, 2015
Messages
497
Reaction score
500
Location
NJ
It works incredibly well!! I'd be happy to adapt my MOSFET board to work with your project if you like.

The web control page should be done in the next week or so and I can give you a look at it. I designed it in a very simple matter. You get a pump calibration, then tell the program how much you want to dose and how many doses you want in either a 12 or 24 hour period and it does the calculations for you.

Let me know if you need any help, I've been working on this project for a long time.
Dude sounds like a good idea. I will keep that in mind when I'm ready to work on the doser section. Right now I am working on changing out my 4-channel relay to an 8-channel relay so I can add four more outlets. I then will add two heaters to the system and set rules so if my water goes below a temp it will kick on the second heater and if it goes above a temp it will kill power to the main heater (backup heater should be off already). This will as well send alerts to me when these actions happen.

I been working on my system for over a year. Slowly working on code and purchasing equipment/parts.
 

Karmann

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Aug 6, 2016
Messages
112
Reaction score
66
Looks great but not a DIY more like do it myself, obviously a lot of thought and hard work was invested in the project but DIYs are typically for documenting a project to teach others how to replicate the process. Just pointing out the difference.
 
World Wide Corals - Quality Aqua-cultured Coral

How are you accomplishing water flow in your reef tank?

  • Powerhead Type Pumps

    Votes: 407 66.8%
  • Closed Loop

    Votes: 21 3.4%
  • Return Pump

    Votes: 340 55.8%
  • Wavemaker

    Votes: 231 37.9%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 16 2.6%

Online statistics

Members online
2,244
Guests online
4,902
Total visitors
7,146
Build a Better Aquarium at Marine Depot
Top