Re: Want to build your own alarm gizmo?
- From: Jim <alarminex@xxxxxxx>
- Date: Sat, 17 Apr 2010 13:35:42 -0700 (PDT)
On Apr 17, 10:46�am, tourman <robercampb...@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
On Apr 17, 10:06�am, "Bill" <billnomailnosp...@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
I've been involved with electronics related work for many many years. From
way back in the "relay control panel" days...
When electronic chips and microprocessors first came out, all the equipment
needed to program and build your own circuit boards cost thousands of
dollars. I wanted to play around with this, but could never afford it....
All that has changed! A company called Parallax now makes a product called
"What is a Microcontroller? Basic Stamp kit". And this is sold at Radio
Shack or on the parallax.com web site store (in the Basic Stamp / BASIC
Stamp Programming Kits area) for $70.
And that is all you need! It comes with a serial cable to connect to your PC
and the programming software editor. And you can program it from your PC.
Note: If you have a laptop without a serial port, there are problems with
USB to serial adapters which do not work (like the kind which sell for $40
in office supply stores). But on the parallax.com store they sell one which
works in the Accessories > Cables/Converters area for $15.
Anyway I've been having fun playing around with this. Making LED's flash and
so forth. But then I noticed all the sensors and communication add/on
devices you can get to add to this circuit board. This would be in the
Sensors and Accessories / Communications areas.
They even have RFID readers and Bluetooth add on boards! (Thought you guys
would be interested in that stuff...)
The Basic Stamp microcontroller is very easy to program, but this is a very
simple microcontroller. It can only do one thing at a time. So you can't be
making a sound on a speaker and at the same time check to see if someone is
pressing a button. Or if you do, you need to get the timing just right.
They do make other microcontrollers which are faster or have multiple
processors in the same chip (Propeller), however those would be more complex
to program. The Propeller chip can include "assembly language programming"
which is very advanced programming - not for beginners! If you are new to
programming, I would start with the Basic Stamp What is a Microcontroller?
Then I would not use this stuff to "reinvent the wheel". If there is a
security product out there which suits your needs, it would probably be
tested and designed to prevent false alarms and so forth. The wireless
products would probably be better designed with low battery alerts and so
forth. So best to use those products if they are available.
But I know every now and then in the security business you get a customer
who says "Can you do this?" or "Can you do that?", then no product available
for that... Now maybe you can build your own!
RHC: Sir, not to burst your bubble; however, I very much doubt that
any serious alarm professional would consider such a thing for use on
any system connected to the authorities (and this IS a newsgroup
comprised of alarm professionals by and large...).
In the DIY market, I suspect you might have an application, since no
real harm (or good) is done when the alarm goes off. Speaking
personally, I have yet to find a security application that is not
covered by at least one manufacturers products (and usually many
No matter how well it may work, I doubt there would be a need to
resort to such a "cluge", since any custom arrangement must also be
serviced after the fact.
Anyway, best of luck-
Not often but occasionally, a project comes up that there is just no
product on the market that will do the job or at least will do the job
just the way you want it to work.
A few years ago, I had a customer who's under construction house was
being vandalized by kids. Very expensive windows broken, other
destruction and missing material. He had put up lights but they just
broke them and did their thing. He asked me if I could put one of the
talking sirens at the site but I told him that it would only work a
few times and once they saw that the police were not showing up ... it
would be business as normal. ( there was only electrical power at the
site, no telephone line) He didn't want to go for the radio alarm
because he was too far away and by the time the police arrived they'd
be long gone through the extensive woods all around the house. I told
him I would try to think of something and came up with a barking dog
system activated by 5 out door motion detectors.
I fabricated the alarm out of 2 or 3 ( I forget) Visonic recordable
voice modules. I recorded various multiple barking dog sound clips
from the internet. Even got one with a dragging chain accross the
floor! It sounded like a number of dogs, not just one. I set the
modules up to be tripped via delay timers and stepping relays because
I didn't want the recording to start with the same barking sound each
time it was tripped and I didn't want it to sequence and end with the
same barking sound each time it ended. I charged him about $ 1700.00,
much less than the amount of time I put into it (about two weeks of
evening time) , but it worked great and I loved getting back into
circuit design that I hadn't done for decades.
No more vandalizing. When it came time to do the siding on the house,
the siding crew knocked down, buried or destroyed the motion
detectors. Obviously the system stopped working. Within a week the
kids set fire to the house. Fortunately it didn't burn down but caused
lots of damage. From that point forward he had an all night guard
service on site.
If it were my house I think my next project would have been "the big
bundle of 2 x 4s falling from the ceiling, alarm" or maybe even "the
Shotgun alarm" ;-)
- Prev by Date: Re: Forget it
- Next by Date: Re: Off Topic - But Heinous
- Previous by thread: Re: Want to build your own alarm gizmo?
- Next by thread: Re: Want to build your own alarm gizmo?