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Author Topic: redtop03s plywood tank  (Read 34914 times)

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Offline WmTasker

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #90 on: June 16, 2013, 11:42:48 PM »
So I am looking on ebay for an inexpensive feeder, but how can you tell if you can control one with arduino?  Also, what are the modification needed to make to them?

Thanks
Billy
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Offline redtop03

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #91 on: June 17, 2013, 01:02:36 AM »
So I am looking on ebay for an inexpensive feeder, but how can you tell if you can control one with arduino?  Also, what are the modification needed to make to them?

Thanks
Billy

mine is the Top Fin brand,it's just basic,no bells or whistles but it has a DC motor in it that runs off of 3v or 2xAA batteries...

I got a feeder from Wal Mart that had a clock motor in it,the drum was connected to the hour movement of the clock motor and turned continuously making 1 full revolution ever 12 hours,thereby feeding the tank 2 times a day,but it was not compatible with any controller and it went back to Wal Mart :)  so,not all of them will work....

the best as I can recommend is to get one like what I have and know it will work or best to get the Eheim like Jamie used....look on the specs of which ever feeder you're considering,if it says powered by 1xAA battery,it will likely not work....look for the powered by 2xAA for the best possible chance of it being compatible...

but with connecting the Top Fin feeder,I tapped into the 3.3v on the Arduino to feed it power in place of the batteries,it has a manual feed button on the feeder,with 2 wires,1 wire that connect between the micro switch and motor positive voltage,the other wires connect to the positive of the power supply,if you press the feed button,it powers the motor enough to pass the micro switch and will continue to run until it comes back around and the cam releases the micro switch,at that time power is cut again until the next press of the button.....

I disassembled the feeder and got out the old trusty volt meter and tested wires with it powered with the batteries until I figured out how it worked and went from there with it :)

I tapped into the wire between the micro switch and motor and connected a wire between that and the feeder control pin on the Arduino..the Arduino feeds that wire power long enough to get the feeder motor started (just like if you press the manual feed button on the feeder) and it will run until the micro switch is released again,while the feeder motor is running,it is getting the power from the Arduino 3.3v feed wire until the micro switch is released again....

only 3 wires to hook up like I did mine but it works flawlessly,the Jarduino is the magical part of it,the feeder is just a motor with a cam activated stop position switch....I hope you can figure it out from my explanation,if not,let me know,I don't care to disassemble it again and photograph the wire connections for you,but it will only be viable if you get this exact model...it's easier to wire up than it is to explain it LOL I should of taken pics when I was working on it but didn't think about it at the time,I actually wired in RCA cords so I could quick disconnect it from the controller if needed,but it is still just 3 wires needed,I just have an extra ground wire with my hook up...

this feeder has a 2 position slide switch also,it is supposed to feed 1 time or 2 times a day,depending on the setting of that switch,with it's built in timer and I did nothing to prevent that function from working,I just set it to 1 feeding a day,but I have yet to see that function work LOL

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Offline redtop03

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« Last Edit: June 17, 2013, 01:24:46 AM by redtop03 »
Willie McDaries

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Offline WmTasker

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #93 on: June 17, 2013, 02:50:54 AM »
Thanks redtop03 for taking the time to put all of that together.  I have to try and figure out if I can fit one in to my style of canopy on my aquarium.

http://www.jbjlighting.com/prod-28g-nano-cf.html
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Offline redtop03

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #94 on: June 17, 2013, 01:52:17 PM »
Thanks redtop03 for taking the time to put all of that together.  I have to try and figure out if I can fit one in to my style of canopy on my aquarium.

http://www.jbjlighting.com/prod-28g-nano-cf.html

that presents a whole new challenge,this thing is fairly large and I doubt it would fit under your canopy,I think the Eheim is a little more compact because of the square shape but I doubt it would fit either,unless you are willing to do some major alterations to your canopy,it's gonna be tough finding one that will fit....

some of those that I seen while looking for those links did appear to be smaller but it's hard to tell from pics online...I'll keep an eye out for something though,if I see anything I think might work,I'll let you know
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Offline WmTasker

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #95 on: June 17, 2013, 05:09:44 PM »
How air tight are the containers when they are not dispensing food?  My other concern is the food soaking up moisture due to the high humidity inside the enclosure.  The canopy is always dripping with condensation when I first lift the lid. 
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Offline redtop03

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #96 on: June 17, 2013, 10:00:26 PM »
How air tight are the containers when they are not dispensing food?  My other concern is the food soaking up moisture due to the high humidity inside the enclosure.  The canopy is always dripping with condensation when I first lift the lid.

mine has just flap that gravity keeps closed,I assume that it would allow moisture in if it were enclosed in the canopy,and that was a complaint in the some of the reviews with my feeder too...

I think you would have to do something like Jamie did by using the funnel and having the feeder mounted above to minimize moisture,that allows air to circulate around the feeder and help keep it dry....I'll know more about moisture effects after I've have mine a while but so far so good with it....
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Offline redtop03

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #97 on: June 17, 2013, 10:02:06 PM »
How air tight are the containers when they are not dispensing food?  My other concern is the food soaking up moisture due to the high humidity inside the enclosure.  The canopy is always dripping with condensation when I first lift the lid.

mine has just flap that gravity keeps closed,I assume that it would allow moisture in if it were enclosed in the canopy,and that was a complaint in the some of the reviews with my feeder too...

I think you would have to do something like Jamie did by using the funnel and having the feeder mounted above to minimize moisture,that allows air to circulate around the feeder and help keep it dry....I'll know more about moisture effects after I've have mine a while but so far so good with it....
Willie McDaries

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Offline redtop03

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #98 on: March 12, 2014, 04:41:53 PM »
some of you may already know that we recently bought a new home and in the process of moving my livestock, I lost almost everything I had in the 360g tank.....

since I don't have room for the 360 yet, I set up a 90g at the new home to try to keep as much as I could from the 360, it proved to be too stressful for all my nice coral and all but 2 fish, a 6 line wrasse and a PJ cardinal, my RBTAs survived too as did my ricordea and a few zoas and GSP...

loosing almost all my livestock was really depressing and I all but gave up on reefing, I let the 90g go with no water changes or any kind of husbandry at all, needless to say, algae has taken over and thetank looks like crap......but the reefing bug is back :) I recently purchased 5 new fish, a yellow tang, a unicorn tang, lawnmower blenny and a pair of nemos :) and I'm trying to get the tank into shape again...

I even pulled out my Jarduino build I was working on for the 360g and cut it down to fit the 90g....here's some pics of the wiring mess and I'm building a canopy to fit all this into and hopefully make the 90g looks some better :)








Willie McDaries

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Offline redtop03

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #99 on: March 12, 2014, 04:44:50 PM »
here's what I have so far for a canopy, I'm trying to decide whether to go tall or low profile with it....it needs a lot of work still but it's a start :)











once I'm satisfied with the wood frame I'll cover it with oak plywood, oak trim, and build some doors, I'm gonna try to decide where I want the touch screen and then I'll rout out a place for it to have easy access and hopefully look cool too...

I just hung the heatsink with cables for now, I want it mounted solid and have a splash shield and I have the 90 degree optics that will go on some of the LEDs so I'll be able to hang 'em up higher and still have plenty of room to work in the tank when needed...

it's still a work in progress but I'm liking it better than the old ugly shelf I had hanging there before LOL
« Last Edit: March 12, 2014, 04:47:56 PM by redtop03 »
Willie McDaries

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Offline redtop03

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #100 on: March 12, 2014, 04:51:09 PM »
I don't have my relay board hooked back up so I can control the heating and cooling of the tank but everything else about the Jarduino is working flawlessly :)
Willie McDaries

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Offline redtop03

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #101 on: March 12, 2014, 05:15:39 PM »
I redid the top section so that I would have room to rout out the center for the touch screen, it is very crude work but the screen itself is centered and level, I'll hide the crude work with oak plywood and hopefully one of Ian's trim plates later :)









and you can see the algae I'm fighting now in the last 3 pics...believe it or not, this is a lot better than it was LOL
Willie McDaries

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Offline bigguy

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #102 on: March 12, 2014, 05:18:46 PM »
Nice one i am going threw the hair alga as well thought tank had cycled a nem killed it self in power head and boom hair algae all over :( just starting to go slowly :)
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Offline TheDOdblG

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #103 on: March 12, 2014, 08:00:32 PM »
Thanks for taking the time to share.  I know how busy you must be right now with the move and all.  Things are looking on the up and up for you, but that really sucks that you lost a lot of your livestock during the move.  I feel your pain, I haven't shared yet what happened during my move back in January, but I too lost a lot of life.  Not sure what the weather is like in the UK or where you live (still in KY?), but this winter here has got to be the coldest on record.  I'm talking ice age stuff man. I was dreading moving my tank, and in fact it was the last thing I decided to do.  I was kinda waiting for the weather to warm up a bit, but it was in the negative temperatures for over a month straight with no letup in sight, and I had to get everything out, so I really had no choice.  When I say negative temps, I'm talking Fahrenheit negatives, and it just so happened to be -12⁰F when I "decided" to make the tank move (windchill was something god awful).  For those on the Celsius scale, that's roughly -24.5⁰C! I ended up losing all but one of my fish, an urchin, and most of my shrimp.  Curiously, all of my Coral made it.  My theory about the lone surviving fish surviving is that it is a Yellow Watchman Goby, and is paired with a pistol shrimp.  The fact that those two had each other to live for is what kept them going.  Love conquers all, no?

I'm still rather ticked off about losing everything, and I'm sure you know how pressed I am for time these days, I still haven't done much of anything with my tank since I moved.  No water changes, algae growing out of control, and all my coral and rocks are just tossed in the tank.  I even have several things in cups and bowls just sitting at the bottom of the tank, but the corals all seem to be doing great (I think once I get around to aquascaping my tank, I'll take in a bunch of my coral that really is growing out of control and trade them in for some more livestock at my LFS).  Also, over the past several weeks I've never seen more copepods, amphipods, and other little critters running around.  They've taken over now that there's no fish to prey on them.  It's a pod paradise!

Offline bigguy

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Re: redtop03s plywood tank
« Reply #104 on: March 12, 2014, 08:03:40 PM »
glad i do not have to move :) sorry about your loss as well dude man that's cold :) how the new house coming on ;)
Bigguy
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http://ukreefs.com/index.php?topic=975.msg8156#msg8156
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Enjoy Your Stay Here.

50cm Cube Tank Thread
http://ukreefs.com/index.php?topic=1005.0