Parts list to build all systems to power my lights


#1

Hello all, I found the youtube clip #25 and I fell in love with this concept and would like to know all the parts I will need to build the 3 rack mounts in the cabinet. to control power an Australian home, also like to set up for controlling 12 volt lights

I will be going back and watching all the videos on youtube and will sign up to be a patron as i will be get a lot more involved once i know parts needed, and what i have to focus on studying on first.

Thanks all chat soon

Edit: 1/6/2018
Sorry all I can not reply i shared superhouse links that i thought would of been white listed and the robot has blocked me from making replies, until that lock is lifted i can not reply sorry @Aspork42 i would of replied by now but i will have to wait till a admin clears me

Edit: 12/6/2018 still can not reply… lucky I got locked out by robot before I had finished paying to be a patron .


#2

Hi @sprinteroz - welcome to the group!

Going from memory - here’s what you’re looking at:

You can find most the stuff on Jon’s website https://www.freetronics.com.au/.
His light switch system has had a few different iterations - I believe he started with an EtherTen which is essentially an Arduino Uno plus an Ethernet shield combined into one board. It also allows for power-over-ethernet.

Each light switch reports over MQTT back to a server (RaspberryPi) all the button pushes.

The RaspberryPi runs the rules engine (OpenHAB) and sends messages over to (IIRC) another Ether10 with stacked shields to run the mains-rated relays.

His new system is based on one centralized EtherMega (Arduino Mega + Ethernet shield in one) in each cabinet. This is the one he rack-mounted in his newer video. Then all the light switches changed over to be just physical extensions of the IO on the EtherMega - there are no longer any “smarts” out at the light switches. The Mega has this shield which then runs over to these IO breakout modules.

He used these POE injectors in the system.

You can find a lot of the products directly on the SuperHouse store (click “Products” at the top) - here are some of the light switches with the PCB breakout for the RJ45 connectors. He never posted the wall plates since they are different country to country. Just pick up some blank plates and drill holes according to the PCBs.

I don’t know if he linked in the mains-rated relays anywhere; and I don’t remember if he ever mentioned the control voltage to said relays. Most industrial stuff is 24 VDC for control voltage to switch a 110/220 relay, so getting that running through an Arduino type board would take some careful consideration (or extra relays to step up the voltage). Running mains voltage through an Arduino (relay) even more so.

That all being said - tell us about yourself! What are your experiences with this type of stuff? What is your background?

Warning - disclaimer ahead
Keep in mind, of course, that working with MAINS VOLTAGE CAN KILL YOU and could easily cause a catastrophic house fire. You’ll note foremost in a lot of Jon’s projects that he talks about building to codes & standards, providing lots of documentation, and so on - and that is all very important and one of the reasons that we love seeing what he has done.

Another thing to consider is that Jon literally gutted and rewired his /entire/ house to do a ‘home run’ for every light in the house. The mains cabling for the lights run back to one of two control cabinets where the relay bank is located. To turn the light on and off in a bedroom, the overhead light mains voltage line runs over to the control cabinet off in another part of the house to get switched. The same would apply if you’re using 12V lighting.


#3

Hay Aspork42, thanks for the rundown on Jon’s system. I’m just about ready to start building my lighting relay boxes and I was going to have to sit down and sift through superhouse to glean all of the mysteries of Jon’s configuration. You just saved me quite a bit of time. I understand all of the general concepts but need to get into the specifics to adapt to my gear. I still have a ways to go to get everything sorted out and simplified.

Also, I bought several Orange pi ones. This is a raspberry pi clone with built in wired 10/100 networking. They also have a 40 pin header for GPIO, 512 ram, 1.2ghz quad arm, HDMI and USB ports and including shipping they were only $13 US each from aliexpress. I would like to use these instead of the arduinos to control the relay boxes. A lot cheaper than an arduino with an ethernet shield. I need several relay panels, maybe 3 or 4 and would like to keep the price down as much as possible. I still have some thinking to do on that modification and how it relates to Node Red, MQTT etc. Any ideas are much appreciated. I might start a new thread on the subject.

I did come up with a much better way of mounting the buttons for the lighting. My circuit board will have an RJ45 jack with (5) 4 pin connectors mounted on the board. These are like the white 4 pin connectors on a nema 17 stepper motor. I got a bunch cheap on aliexpress along with the corresponding plugin female connectors. They were a double ended stepper extension that I can cut in two to make 2 pigtails. I’m going to solder each pigtail onto each LED push button that way I can mount the switches anywhere I want and add or remove them without having to remove all of the buttons from the faceplate because of the circuit board soldered to the back of all of the buttons (on Jon’s system). Now I need to design and make a pile of the circuit boards for my lighting. I was going to use some small proto boards but the RJ45 jacks have 2 rows of pins and they are offset in between the proto holes. Guess I’ll just have to wait for the boards to arrive , once I order them. I might make my own because my brother just got a laser engraver and I could use it to mask the boards for etching. I would also have to mount a small drill motor on my 3D printer to drill the holes. Sounds like fun.

The great thing about the circuit boards is if I want to change out a switch for a different color LED or one just goes bad, all I have to do is disconnect the pigtail connector and plug in a new switch. Also soldering up a pile of switches with 4 lead pigtails is a lot easier doing 30 or so all the same way without having to worry about the plates and hole spacing. I could easily add another switch to an existing plate. Also I think I can get 5 switches on a board 2 wires for the 12v LED power leaving 1 ground and 5 individual switches for a total of 8 wires. Since cat 5 is so cheap I plan on running a spare wire to each light switch anyway just for future upgrades like maybe a touch screen or such.

Anyway, thanks for the heads up.