Need some help with an interesting project

My only concern with sensing the current lightbulb is if the bulb burnt out. It could drop a load of wet corn.

Thanks for the temp sensor idea. I’ll look at that as well.

Actually, I don’t know why I’m fixated on the light, it’s irrelevant. You can power literally any device in the world from that live line and use that as a signal.

Most straightforward I can think of is connect a 3.3V power supply to the line and connect the DC output to the input of a sonoff or nodeMCU or whatever device GPIO, it will directly detect voltage high and low and know whether there is power or not on that circuit. You can report this information to home assistant as a state or use it directly in a rule on the device to control something.

The more I think about this thread, the more it concerns me that you are trying to automate an industrial, major scale plant with software and hardware primarily designed for home automation. Personally I find HA pretty reliable, but then again it doesn’t cost me anything but a stubbed toe if my hallway light doesn’t go on when I stumble to the bathroom at 3.00 am.

Something my livelihood depended on, I might look at something more industrial strength.

Just my 2 cents worth.

I can understand the concern, that’s why I’m trying to put in some safety measures and do some incremental phases.

Our step 1 is just to drop the dryer. We will test that for awhile and see how it works. If we accidentally drop 2k bushel of wet corn it won’t cause an issue when mixed in among 400k bushel of corn. I’m also planning on sending an SMS for each step. If we get an alert that something happened when it shouldn’t have it will be easy to shut it down. It takes 10 minutes to drop the dryer. If we get an SMS that the dryer dropped and we catch it 2 minutes later we can shut the dryer and advert it any ussues. We also have an IP camera on the dryer controls at all times. We can always log in from anywhere and see the state of the dryer and the temp.

As it is now, if we see the light for the dryer is turned off we will manually drop the dryer. So, the automation won’t do anything that we wouldn’t have done ourselves.

My ideal scenario is to be able to measure the dryer temp. I can then use the temp as a condition plus send an SMS that says “the dryer turned off at 129 degrees”. “Dryer has dropped at 10:13pm.” Etc. That will give us plenty of opportunity to see if something isn’t right. I might also build some automations to send SMS with faults like “dryer shut off at 114 degrees. Dryer did NOT drop.”

LOL the other thing I have been meaning to say is that I love the quaint American units of measurement!

Yes sounds like you are moving forward incrementally, which is a good way to proceed IMHO.

Home assistant can do all sorts of notifications, not just SMS. Telegram seems a popular system, as does pushbullet.

A great project.

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On the notification end, I have come across this recently:

Seems like you can send actions as response to a notification - at least as long as you’re in the same network, but I guess it would work over a VPN as well.

Thanks, chairstacker! That would be a good way to notify what’s going on.

I’ve made some progress on this today. I successfully got the Sonoff 4ch Pro wired into the winch correctly to drop the winch. However, I have not found out how to wire another channel to raise the winch. Below is a diagram of the winch button. Wired R1-NO into #5 and R1-COM into #4 dropped the winch. In fairness, I did not get very much time to try any additional wiring combinations, so I’m sure I’ll get it.

This is the switch, if anyone is an electrical engineer and can give me some help. :slight_smile: It says HY12-9-3 on the switch.

The winch has a separate wire that comes out of the winch box (not the yellow controller) that plugs into the wall. So, I don’t think I’m actually dealing with live wires here. I forgot to test it. (Of course, I’m unplugging the winch at all times that I’m playing with wiring.)

I’ve followed the advice of Dr ZZs and Vicious to flash the Sonoff. I have not gotten HA to recognize it yet. But still trying.

Googling finds the wiring details for that switch in your second pic:

Dunno if that helps?

It’s a 3 position switch. The left side and the right side can be thought of as separate switches. The middle connection connects to either the top or the bottom depending on which way the switch is pressed.

Pins 5, 1 and 2 are all looped together to the red wire, which presumably is the live wire. So pin 5, 1 and 2 are all the same connection. You have wired pins 4 and 2 (2 indirectly via the wiring loop to pin5 as they are the same) to the sonoff.

The brown wire (pin3) is connected to the red (via 1 and 5) whenever the switch is on in either direction. So basically the left side has been converted into a normal switch, just on and off.

From what I can see, you have wired your sonoff to pin 4 and 5, which could be changed to pin 2 and 5 and still function exactly the same and to reverse it I would wire pin 6 and 4 to the other sonoff relay.
But I can’t quite see where the black wire behind on the right side goes. Does it come in from the top and connect to pin6?

Oh and it is definitely LIVE. And the switch is rated up to 20Amps, the sonoff only 10Amps. Check how much current the winch is rated for.

Here is simple way of swtich:

When switch up, 1&3 shorted AND 2&4 shorted.
When switch down, 3&5 AND 4&6 shorted.

But there is more to it with your switch due to the loops and the white cylinder at the bottom that I’m not sure what that is.

do you have a schematic of the winch wiring? Or maybe a model number if you don’t?

It’s hard to see how it works if we are just guessing what the wiring is supposed to be doing.

I tried wiring pin 6 & 4 and it didn’t work. I’m wondering if I need to connect 3 or 4 wires for it to reverse? The white thing is a capacitator. Model CBB60.

The only wiring schematic I’ve been at to find is the same one that nickrout posted above. I don’t know enough about wiring to know what any of that means. I do know that the switch is only connecting 4 wires at any one time. And, as RichEO pointed out, 1, 2, & 5 are looped together in the wires. When the switch is in one position it connects 3, 4, 5, & 6. In the other position, it connects 1, 2, 3, & 4. I’m fairly sure that 3&4 are always connected.

The winch is 15Amp and I have it on a 15Amp circuit currently. I think it can draw 15Amps when under heavy load, but I will never have it under a heavy enough load to see anything over 10Amps.

I got the winch at harbor freight, but I can’t find it on their website. This one on Amazon is basically the same one.

From my memory of my BE (Electrical and Electronic)(only ever half finished) the capacitor is needed during start up of the motor.

Why not simply wire the 4CH exactly the same?

Also there is a guy who hooked up a Harbour freight hoist to a 4CH here

I’ve considered wiring the Sonoff the same, but it would require 4 channels and switching 2 channels at once. I’d prefer to find a way to do it with just 2 channels so the buttons on the sonoff can be used to run the winch manually.

I’ll add a post to the forum you linked to and see if I can get a response.

When the switch is up pins 1,2,3,4 and 5 are all connected together.

When the switch is down, 4 and 6 on the right are connected and 1,2,3 and 5 are connected.

You probably need all 4 channels to make it work. But you can still program the buttons to activate multiple relays simultaneously with ESPeasy, which btw is the forum letscontrolit linked to above.

Startup current draw is likely to be quite high, a meter might help. If you are going over 10A, or there is a danger of doing so, you could add external heavy duty relays.

The guy on that forum said he needed three channels.

I didn’t know that about espeasy, but it is good to know.

LOL this fairly scathing reviewer of the Amazon product seems to have the electrical schematics.

I left the guy on Amazon a reply, hopefully I hear something.

I found out the winch is rated at 11.4 amps. I don’t think I’ll ever tax the motor enough to see that kind of load, but it would be safer to use high rated relays. I’ve never played with 110V relays. Do you have any recommendations for what to use? Would something like this work?

Harvest starts in two weeks, so I’m going to at least get something built that will drop the dyer (unspool the winch) which I’ve already figured out how to do. I may need to wait until the spring to figure the rest out.