How do I convert prototype to a product I can sell

Hi

currently, I deployed a pilot project using some SDI-12 sensors and some NodeMCU&ESP32, and some relays to control actuators using esp-now&RS485 protocols.

I never use Arduino-Nodemcu and build a commercial circuit to be power efficient and more reliable .. etc
I'm looking for commercial components but I don't know what or how to build a commercial system that achieves the same use case I'm looking for.

please let me know if you need more clarification

You have got a collction of hardware. Tell what it us supposed to do, except consuming power.

The description of your problem (which is not at all clear in itself) seems to have nothing to do with your Title.

What exactly do you want help with?

...R

Railroader:
You have got a collction of hardware. Tell what it us supposed to do, except consuming power.

What I want to do in a commercial way :
1- I have NodeMcu connected to SDI-12 sensors that collect readings from (SDI-12) sensors that use this library: GitHub - EnviroDIY/Arduino-SDI-12: An Arduino library for SDI-12 communication with a wide variety of environmental sensors. This library provides a general software solution, without requiring any additional hardware. and send it to (ESP-32 Gateway) via ESP-NOW
2- the ESP-32 Gateway sends the readings via HTTP requests to IoT Gateway.
3- I have Arduino Mega connected to the IoT Gateway via MAX485 which control 20 Relays that control 20 different valves (IoT Gateway ---send command-->Arduino Mega ---relay open/close--->send back the pin status to IoT gtw .
what I'm asking what is the best way to replace these arduinos/nodemcu/esp32 to make a proper enclosure and to be a product that I can sell.

Robin2:
The description of your problem (which is not at all clear in itself) seems to have nothing to do with your Title.

What exactly do you want help with?

...R

i hope my last comment made it sort of clear

KareemWaheed:
i hope my last comment made it sort of clear

I think this is the relevant part
what is the best way to replace these arduinos/nodemcu/esp32 to make a proper enclosure and to be a product that I can sell.

You don't say what the project does or how many copies you envisage selling.

Also, it seems to me a more appropriate Title for your Thread would be "How do I convert prototype to a product I can sell" If you modify your Original Post you can change the Title.

I can't think of any reason why ESP-NOW should not be used in a commercial product.

...R

Robin2:
I think this is the relevant part
what is the best way to replace these arduinos/nodemcu/esp32 to make a proper enclosure and to be a product that I can sell.

Yup :smiley:

Also, it seems to me a more appropriate Title for your Thread would be "How do I convert prototype to a product I can sell" If you modify your Original Post you can change the Title.

I changed the title thanks for the tip

You don't say what the project does or how many copies you envisage selling.

the project is for smart irrigation and monitoring, I can't tell how many copies because I didn't start marketing. but what I'm looking for is the first baby steps in this area.

I can't think of any reason why ESP-NOW should not be used in a commercial product.

of course, I don't mind using it, but instead of NodeMCU I'm using i guess there is an efficient way to create a customized board or something

Dont forget all the safety\regulatory stuff about getting certifications for stuff you sell, which can be particullarly onerous for products employing radio transmitters. You need to consider all the implications of this at the product design stage.

KareemWaheed:
of course, I don't mind using it, but instead of NodeMCU I'm using i guess there is an efficient way to create a customized board or something

A NodeMCU is a complex device. Making a DIY version will not be simple and could well require expensive professional assistance. The effort would probably only be justified if the proposed production quantity was large - maybe thousands.

IMHO it makes no sense to make plans for production without having production quantities in mind. There is a huge difference between the way you would approach production of (say) 100 per year compared to 10,000 per year.

Another essential factor is the market price of the finished product. Many products that are relatively simple for someone who knows how are quite impossible for the majority who do not know how to make them. If such a product is useful it should be easy to sell it at a price that far exceeds the cost of the parts so that economising on the cost of parts is not really necessary.

If the proposed production quantity is low I think I would focus my efforts on items that would make coupling the prototype parts convenient and reliable. For example a PCB that has a socket for the NodeMCU and screw terminals for connecting the relays (or whatever you are using).

...R

Select an enclosure you think is suitable .
Make sure it is UV protected plastic or better yet metal. ...need external antenna.

Deisgn a circuit board that will fit inside.

Make sure your circuit boad does what you need.

That's about it.

A nodemcu is a simple modue.
Comprised of a power regulator and an ESP32 module.
Very easy to DIY on a board if you know the basics.

I am not sure wyou would use two micros. The ESP32 can handle it all.

I would suggest getting a power module that plugs into a proto board
Get a VROOM 32 that fits your needs. Ideally with external antenna

Relays are power hogs. Create a silicon replacement

Add any shift registers or level shifters you need.

Wire hot glue gum and tape.
Get it to work.

Figure what wastes the most power. Address that and repeat.

Once yor project is working on the power you want start to shrink and combine.

Don't be afraid to use cheap module at this point.

Get it working
Shrink and combine.

Robin2:
A NodeMCU is a complex device. Making a DIY version will not be simple and could well require expensive professional assistance. The effort would probably only be justified if the proposed production quantity was large - maybe thousands.

IMHO it makes no sense to make plans for production without having production quantities in mind. There is a huge difference between the way you would approach production of (say) 100 per year compared to 10,000 per year.

Another essential factor is the market price of the finished product. Many products that are relatively simple for someone who knows how are quite impossible for the majority who do not know how to make them. If such a product is useful it should be easy to sell it at a price that far exceeds the cost of the parts so that economising on the cost of parts is not really necessary.

If the proposed production quantity is low I think I would focus my efforts on items that would make coupling the prototype parts convenient and reliable. For example a PCB that has a socket for the NodeMCU and screw terminals for connecting the relays (or whatever you are using).

...R

Yes you're right about the production quantity and I guess as it is upon request system so the quantity won't exceed 10 systems with about 100 small nodes 10x10 (may vary) and 1 brain (Gateway for each System).
Well while that could be okay in NodeMCUs and ESP-32,
I'm using Arduino Mega to control the relays, and I think I could use minimum components and cheaper to achieve the same thing

the Mega is connected to a gateway via MAX485 and receives commands via RS485 to control the 20 Relays that connected to it that what I'm struggling now into.

srnet:
Dont forget all the safety\regulatory stuff about getting certifications for stuff you sell, which can be particullarly onerous for products employing radio transmitters. You need to consider all the implications of this at the product design stage.

of course, the electricity and safety part is a whole new investigation for me I'm taking into consideration, and looking into it also

dave-in-nj:
Select an enclosure you think is suitable .
Make sure it is UV protected plastic or better yet metal. ...need external antenna.

Deisgn a circuit board that will fit inside.

Make sure your circuit boad does what you need.

That's about it.

i made something like this but with the R&D components I was talking about inside the enclosure, but inside it I think it is kinda amateur so I'm asking here how to make it into professional components to be reliable and efficient

KareemWaheed:
I'm using Arduino Mega to control the relays, and I think I could use minimum components and cheaper to achieve the same thing.

Think carefully about the total amount of money you could save over a 2 year period and set that against the time and effort needed to figure out the cheaper alternative.

If the project profitability hinges on saving half the price of a cheap Mega then it seems to me that it just would not make a worthwhile business.

Another thing to keep in mind is that much of the value to a customer is the quality and speed of after-sales-service. That's how companies like Siemens can consistently sell PLCs at many multiples of the price of an Arduino. Are you equipped to provide excellent after-sales-service and have you factored in the cost to you of providing it?

...R

Major edits to post 9

Microsoft facebook Twitter offer. ZERO support

The opposite of support is ease of use.

The fundamental question is: Are you going to assemble and test it yourself or are you going to hire a company that specializes in building and testing such products?
Paul

Other fundamental questions
Do you have to get electrical certification?
Wireless certification?
Energy use certification?

dave-in-nj:
Microsoft facebook Twitter offer. ZERO support

$zero price also.

...R

Have you sold any? I don't recommend going into mass production without at least one sale.