Hi. I am looking to create a project for my workshop that automates dust collection from my wood working tools. I have a system that uses 4 inch tubing and blast gates to run multiple tools. Currently I use 5 gates. I want to use current sensing on the cords of my main tools to open the needed gate, close all other gates, and turn on the dust collector itself.
There is a product that does thus made by ivaccum. They cost $140 per gate plus another part to remote turn on the collector. I can't afford to spend 800 on this and I feel arduino can really lower this cost.
I read and watched a utube video by "I like to make stuff" where he used a key pad to control which gate opens and a small 90 degree servo motor to open the gates. He was using 2.5 inch gates instead of the 4 inch gates I will use. Does anyone know if a servo is powerful enough to move that much? I know they can be expanded to move 4 inches but I do not know about power.
My thought was a small stepper motor with gear drive and a linear gear attached to the gate. These are cheap enough and wouldn't be to hard to program how many steps to move the motor to open and close.
For current sensing I found this sensor from spark fun,
Non-Invasive Current Sensor - 30A SEN-11005
It clips over a power cord? That's how it looks. I don't want to cut open my power tool cords or make little extension breakout cords.
I feel this sensor which seems to be able to monitor amperage would easily be able to be coded to run the servo or stepper motor and a 120v relay to start the dust collector machine.
My main question is servo strength and exactly what that non invasive current sensor is capable of and if anyone knows of anyone who has already documented this project.
Thanks a bunch