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Author Topic: Weatherproof Arduino and components  (Read 2072 times)
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In some neighborhoods it will be very safe, I have tested this theory with other valuables. 
The Adafruit Ultimate GPS will work well in the woods.  Others will not.

I'm relying on the good nature of cachers to prevent the device from disappearing, but just in case, I have also written into the program a routine that, when it gets the satellite lock, verifies it's within the boundaries of the forest preserve where the cache lives; if it detects it's outside the bounds it will bring up a message "please return me to ..." and go comatose.

I went with the GPS from SparkFun; it's been pretty accurate and fast to lock on so far. I'm taking it on vacation next week in all its breadboard glory and verify that it will work in dense tree cover; if the results aren't great I'll look into the Adafruit one.
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In some neighborhoods it will be very safe, I have tested this theory with other valuables. 
The Adafruit Ultimate GPS will work well in the woods.  Others will not.

I'm relying on the good nature of cachers to prevent the device from disappearing, but just in case, I have also written into the program a routine that, when it gets the satellite lock, verifies it's within the boundaries of the forest preserve where the cache lives; if it detects it's outside the bounds it will bring up a message "please return me to ..." and go comatose.

How about a more nefarious message, such as "uploading GPS coordinates to offsite location", or "GPS tracking enabled", or "LoJack for Cache Activated"

Since you go out there anyway to check the logbook and cache, a hidden Trail Cam might be a good investment.
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I have built a GPS project that has constant outdoor exposure and I ran into a lot of problems despite having an airtight case.  What tends to happen is the moisture in the air from when you seal it condenses when you put it out in the cold. This condensation causes all kinds of problems and it will kill your system VERY quickly. I have done 2 things that work well to combat this. The first is to bake everything in the oven at about 120 degrees for a couple hours to bake the moisture out of everything. Then I seal up the case with just 2 small holes in it. I then blow nitrogen through the case and quickly seal up the holes. I buy the nitrogen cheaply from a local welding supply store. I am also spraying conformal coating over components which to helps prevent problems. I know this sounds like a lot of work and fairly extreme but I have a pile of failed units that show anything less is prone to problems when you leave it for an extended period exposed to the elements.
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Coud also put some dessicant packs in the enclosure to help with moisture.
Example:
http://www.uline.com/Grp_21/Desiccants
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