X10 Mailbox Sensor

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  #1  
Old 06-05-05, 01:19 AM
nswint
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X10 Mailbox Sensor

I saw this on one of the X10 Idea Sites


Using a wireless doorbell from Home Depot, open the button unit. Solder a pair of wires onto each of the button contacts (so that if you touch the other ends of the wires together, it rings the doorbell). Mount the button unit around/under your mailbox (not inside it if it's metal - that will cut down the range). Stick a normally open magnetic reed switch to the door (or flap) of your mailbox so that opening the door/flap closes the switch. Connect the 2 wires you added from the button unit to the reed switch. Plug the chime unit in somewhere in your house. Now every time the mailbox opens, the chime unit will play.

You can also wire across the speaker outputs (or some other point that creates a voltage when the doorbell rings) and run that into your controller (Stargate, etc) so that your controller can know if the mailbox was opened and perform actions on that input.

List Of Components:
Wireless doorbell and normally open magnetic reed switch

Cost:
Wireless doorbell from Home Depot - $15,
Normally open reed switch from Radio Shack - $6.
=========================================================

I have connectors from speaker output to a powerflash module but it's not sending anything over the powerline. Any suggestions?
 
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  #2  
Old 06-07-05, 11:04 AM
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Basically, the original idea

was to use a radio signal to let you know the mail had arrived.

I'm not familair with the powerflash you described, can you post a link or a make/model #? Does it need line voltage to work?

You indicated speaker outputs, but I think what you need is an input.

Off-base here, but maybe change thing up a little....use an X-10 switch and a relay. Measure the voltage you get at the doorbell, and size the relay that way (my guesses would be 5 or 12 Volt DC coil voltage with 120V AC rating for the contacts). Connect the relay's coil to the doorbell. Then use the contacts across the x-10 switch. You'll probably need to use an electrical box and an extension cord for test purposes, as the x-10 switch will need line voltage to work. Set the address for the switch according to what you need to control. Carefully insulate all connections-shrink tubing, liquid electrical tape, etc.

The only problem I can think of is with the duration of the event. The mailbox won't be open that long, so you may need to latch or hold the output until manually reset. Maybe this can be done through the switch or device turned on?

Just trying to give you some ideas...I hope it helped a little!
 
  #3  
Old 06-08-05, 04:02 PM
nswint
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I think I've figured it out. I have a universal module instead of a powerflash.. thought I had the powerflash.

Anyhow I'm going against the project because I don't want my nephews bothering the doorbell plugin when they come over. I'm going to use X10 DS10A Door Windows/Sensor and get a W800RF to receive the rf signal to X10 from the sensor. I bought 10 of the sensors for $39. So I can have more projects for my garage door, washer, dryer, dishwasher, fridge, other security stuff that I can't say on here :-D and storage room.

I know that I will be spending a small fortune on batteries :-(
 
  #4  
Old 06-16-05, 08:34 PM
Brett_Griffin
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A cleaner longer lasting battery method is to use a GE Wireless door/window contact, and their 1 zone wireless receiver (universal). This will last 3-8 years on a watch battery. You can connect the GE Receiver to a powerflash module, input of a automation system etc...

Cost is between $70-$100 and very reliable, and simple.
 
  #5  
Old 06-28-05, 12:53 PM
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That's a pretty sweet idea!

Anyone know of any other cool things / ideas to use x10 stuff for?
 
  #6  
Old 08-04-05, 04:11 AM
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Thumbs up Operating Boat Hoist / Lift

Over the years I got tired explaining to passengers which valve to open or close and when to turn on the motor to operate my boat hoist after a day on the lake. I placed transceiver unit on the power line to motor and keep key fob in the boat. Now when I pull into slip at marina, valves preset when leaving, everyone stays seated, no rocking the boat, I hit the key fob and voila! up goes the boat. Don't tell new passenger about system, you should see their expressions when everything happens automtically.
 
  #7  
Old 08-25-05, 05:23 PM
RFdoitherself
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range and capacity

Originally Posted by Brett_Griffin
A cleaner longer lasting battery method is to use a GE Wireless door/window contact, and their 1 zone wireless receiver (universal). This will last 3-8 years on a watch battery. You can connect the GE Receiver to a powerflash module, input of a automation system etc...

Cost is between $70-$100 and very reliable, and simple.

what is the range and capacity of this receiver?
 
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