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291 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  Reply # 486941 28-Jun-2011 15:19
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Sorry to hear that. Good luck.




kind regards Andrew TD

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Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 487223 29-Jun-2011 04:58
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Sorry to hear about your situation.

You are well on the way to solving the problem, but as you have discovered read range is the issue.

Robert at Priority1 is very helpful, and also sells the RF Chips.
The purchased one of those units and they work very well, inc reading the 125KHz key tags.

I have been asked about doing an article for The Shed magazine for this and a few other Arduino projects.

I looked at using the Transcat flap, since it was adaptable to use their magnetic collar locking.
They use a small solenoid to unlatch it and its ver effective.

One of the features of the transcat flap is that its unobtrusive, so adding a porch like the portapet one is not high on the list.

I rang a local vet and he supplied the Tag at a nominal charge, so ask around.

For anyone considering getting into Arduino, I would suggest you talk/email Hadley at Nicegear.
You can buy a Seeeduino V2.2 for $39.
Jaycar are also selling a compatible and the bare shields (they plug into the processor and allow connections or other parts/functions)

The software is free, and the forum has a bunch of VERY helpful contributors.


Good luck, you won't regret your purchase.


Mark

 
 
 
 




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BitSignal

  Reply # 487237 29-Jun-2011 08:16
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I've got my Uno from Hadley at Nice Gear as well. He even checked with me before shipping to make sure I had all the stuff I would need for this project.




"Roads? Where we're going, we don't need roads." - Doc Emmet Brown

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  Reply # 487248 29-Jun-2011 08:49
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Somewhat off-topic sorry.
Has anyone used the Arduino chinese-made clones on ebay? Seems they can be had for about half the price of locally sourced units.

I have some interest in getting into Arduino but at minimal investment in case it sits there gathering dust after a few days playing. On the other hand, I don't want to suffer frustrations because of flaws or incompatibilities. I understand that, like with most anyhthing, you probably get what you pay for.





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  Reply # 487727 30-Jun-2011 10:35
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mcb1: Sorry to hear about your situation.

You are well on the way to solving the problem, but as you have discovered read range is the issue.

Robert at Priority1 is very helpful, and also sells the RF Chips.
The purchased one of those units and they work very well, inc reading the 125KHz key tags.

I have been asked about doing an article for The Shed magazine for this and a few other Arduino projects.

I looked at using the Transcat flap, since it was adaptable to use their magnetic collar locking.
They use a small solenoid to unlatch it and its ver effective.

One of the features of the transcat flap is that its unobtrusive, so adding a porch like the portapet one is not high on the list.

I rang a local vet and he supplied the Tag at a nominal charge, so ask around.

For anyone considering getting into Arduino, I would suggest you talk/email Hadley at Nicegear.
You can buy a Seeeduino V2.2 for $39.
Jaycar are also selling a compatible and the bare shields (they plug into the processor and allow connections or other parts/functions)

The software is free, and the forum has a bunch of VERY helpful contributors.


Good luck, you won't regret your purchase.


Mark

You are working on this, then?  The doors we have currently are the Transcat ones (without magnets).  We've started getting the visitor back, so I may be interested in your progress.  I don't really have time to do any development of the idea at the moment, sadly.

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Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 488026 30-Jun-2011 19:31
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Bazzer
Yes i'm working on it, although I told the editor I wasn't going to give him a deadline.

The electronics bit is easy, its the antenna design that is holding it up.

If you are desperate than Robert advises that he has a bigger antenna, that will work.
http://www.priority1design.com.au/shopfront/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1&products_id=28
The reader he has will read them and interface to an Arduino isn't difficult.

For our project keeping it unobtrusive was a priority (until proven otherwise).

You can retro fit the electronic lock to the Transcat flaps, thats one reason we chose that one.
Currently it comes with the magnets, but hopefully if this project pans out, they may offer the lock without electronics, or the whole thing.

Keep an eye here for updates. I'll dump the code when I solved the antenna bit.
http://www.markbeckett.co.cc/ArduinoProjects.htm

Sorry I don't have a immediate solution for you.
Mark

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  Reply # 488221 1-Jul-2011 12:12
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It's not super urgent, just something I'm interested in. The main problem I have is the clearance on the door. It's not a problem now (vanilla Transcat) but could be if I added the locking mechanism. It's certainly a problem with the retail RFID flaps I've seen.

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Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 488240 1-Jul-2011 12:56
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Bazzer
I'm starting to get pissed at this forum, its the second time I've lost my entry when the login timeout activated after hitting post. #$%^%.
*****************************************

You said
" The main problem I have is the clearance on the door. It's not a problem now (vanilla Transcat) but could be if I added the locking mechanism. It's certainly a problem with the retail RFID flaps I've seen. "

So can I assume you have a sliding door.?
One of the things the Portapet one skips over is power. They use a power pack, and a battery as backup. It will run on the 9v battery but the polling stops being continuous (no mention of what rate is drops to).

The transcat electronic lock sticks out 35mm on the outside and 25mm on the inside.
I was hoping to make the reader no greater than that on the outside.

Its been mentioned that keeping the cats in until daytime would be a feature. The transcat lock uses a single solenoid, and while you can use the manual locks, It's not obvious how to make a dual function lock using a single solenoid.

Changing the lock mechanism might mean the cat needs to rub the door to get out.

It's something I'll need to talk with transcat about. It may be that some redesign of the lock mechanism is required, if its a feature that needs to be included.

Would those dimensions work in your situation?

Mark

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  Reply # 489005 4-Jul-2011 08:02
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mcb1: Bazzer
I'm starting to get pissed at this forum, its the second time I've lost my entry when the login timeout activated after hitting post. #$%^%.
*****************************************

You said
" The main problem I have is the clearance on the door. It's not a problem now (vanilla Transcat) but could be if I added the locking mechanism. It's certainly a problem with the retail RFID flaps I've seen. "

So can I assume you have a sliding door.?
One of the things the Portapet one skips over is power. They use a power pack, and a battery as backup. It will run on the 9v battery but the polling stops being continuous (no mention of what rate is drops to).

The transcat electronic lock sticks out 35mm on the outside and 25mm on the inside.
I was hoping to make the reader no greater than that on the outside.

Its been mentioned that keeping the cats in until daytime would be a feature. The transcat lock uses a single solenoid, and while you can use the manual locks, It's not obvious how to make a dual function lock using a single solenoid.

Changing the lock mechanism might mean the cat needs to rub the door to get out.

It's something I'll need to talk with transcat about. It may be that some redesign of the lock mechanism is required, if its a feature that needs to be included.

Would those dimensions work in your situation?

Mark

You'll learn to copy your post before submitting, just in case! ;)

I'll have to have a look at home.  The door slides on the inside, so I'm not too fussed about outside clearance.  I think 25mm might be OK, we'll see.

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  Reply # 491415 9-Jul-2011 14:14
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We used to have a problem with cats in our neighbor hood.

There was especially a known cat from up the road who would come in our cat door, eat our cats food, spray everywhere and beat up out cat.

Our solution, we had an old possum trap, removed the bait hook, set up a proximity beam sensor, hooked up to a central locking solenoid, we placed some suitable cat goodies in the trap at the far end, cat goes in, triggers the beam sensor and the door closes and latches.

We had the trap set up inside the house, after the offending cat was caught we invited the the owner over, showed them the cat and gave them a couple of options, 1) Clean up the cat spray mess, 2) Pay a reasonable cleanup fee to us  or 3) walk away, they chose option 1. We haven't seen much of the cat, it's still around but the owner must keep in inside at night.

We have also had a lot of problems with Ferrel and stray cats, I guess the problem really is people who get a cat and don't get them de-sexed, and the area is a bit over run with them, but we have had a lot of success with trapping them and re-locating them.

I think word has spread amongst the cats, not to visit our place as they don't come back.

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Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 491482 9-Jul-2011 19:20
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Nice solution.
I especially like the options given to the owner.

A simple possum/cat trap can be made from a box with a drop door.
The door is held up with a pin, that attaches to a piece of fishing line.
At the far end put a hinged piece on the floor, with the food/bait.

Any animal that enters the trap will go to the food and in doing so puts weight on pulling out the pin.
Bit of trial and error for the pin friction, and make it long so the wind doesn't shake it out.

Ours has a mesh at the end, so its not a dark hole, and you can see what you've caught.
I used plywood and used some left over furniture oil to help it last outdoors.

So far the cat has stayed out, but hedgehogs and the odd possum have ventured in.


Mark

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  Reply # 491531 9-Jul-2011 22:35
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gregmcc: we have had a lot of success with trapping them and re-locating them.

I think word has spread amongst the cats, not to visit our place as they don't come back.


I wonder what 're-locate' is a euphemism for. Best not to ask ;) There are a couple of cats I would like to re-locate, so annoying to come home and find our cat has pooed inside because it couldn't get past the other cat.

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