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Topic: Rotating door automation (Read 5 times) previous topic - next topic


I'm hoping I can get some advice about if its possible to use Arduino to solve a problem.

I have a hen house with a door that opens by rotating 180 degrees, operated by a T shaped handle. pictues

Is it feasible to use a servo like this to rotate and counter rotate the door? If so what would I need to construct it?

An arduino unit - which one would be suitable?
A shield?
Something to power the servo
A breadboard and connectors
Geewiz box to house it all

Supplying mains power shouldn't be a problem but if I opted for batteries would that cause more problems or are there battery modules. Assuming open and closing once per day what sort of battery life could I expect?

Opening and closing will be based on either a set time or  on input from a light sensor.

I've read through some of the topics but I can't find if something like this has been done before.

How much programming are we talking about to make this all work?

I know that's a lot of questions but from looking at previous posts it's easier to give accurate information if you provide as much details as possible.

At its most basic all I want is a timer to power a servo to go one way in the morning and the reverse in the evening...


> Is it feasible to use a servo to rotate and counter rotate the door?

If the servo has the torque needed to turn the knob.

> If so what would I need to construct it?

A bracket on which you can mount the servo and some way to connect the servo bellcrank to the knob.  Possibly a dome to protect the servo from rain.

> An arduino unit - which one would be suitable?

Any.  The UNO is the most common.

> A shield?

No need. The servo has a built-in motor controller.

> Something to power the servo

A 7V 1A power supply should serve both the servo (7V) and the Arduino (via Vin).

Note: For time-based operations you should probably get a Real-Time Clock (RTC) chip.  The Arduino UNO is not great for long-term timekeeping.
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That's for the reply. For mounting the servo itself I was thinking of inverting it and having the rotational centre directly above that of the door to keep things straight forward. The servo I linked to was a 13kg load one, does that sound reasonable? The resistance to move the door would be less than it takes to turn a doorknob I'd say so hopefully 13kg will be enough.

Please excuse the proably stupid question but I've not seen the term vin mentioned, what is that?

Would I need to split power off some way to the servo or would it just be a matter of plugging the power into the arduino board and taking it through  to the servo?

I'll add a RTC clock to the shopping list. I've seen various starter kits that include connectors and cables and various other bits and bobs. If there was one that came with a servo that'd be handy - at least I'd know I had everything I need.


vin mentioned, what is that?

VIN, Voltage IN. The voltage applied to the DC barrel jack. Usually between 7 and 12 volts.

Normally you would split the power to the servo and the Arduino, servos like about 6v which unfortunately is not enough to drive the Arduino so that may mean two power supplies.

If you have power then two plug packs, for batteries maybe a 7v2 battery directly to the Arduino and regulated down for the servo.

EDIT: That servo can operate up to 7v2, so it looks like you can use a battery or single plug pack for both.

Rob Gray aka the GRAYnomad www.robgray.com


That's for the reply.

I mean, "thanks". Damn you autocorrect.

So shopping list would be:
13kg 7.2v Servo
A 7v 2amp PSU - split into 2
rev3 UNO kit
RTC Shield

Do I need anything else?

What's your views on this as a project? Am I missing an easier, better way to do this?

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