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Old 08-18-2013, 01:26 PM   #1
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Too Much Free Time

Well I was looking for a project and I created a doozey! My 1977 Palomino didn’t have any water sensing abilities at all and even though it only has a Fresh and Gray tank I wanted to know when I was running out of Fresh and when the Gray was getting full because both tanks are pretty small (about 12 Gal.). Then things got out of control. After all, I didn’t have a Time Of Day Clock, or Temperatures and for goodness sake there wasn’t even a Humidity Sensor: Inconceivable! It seemed if I could make all this stuff then a Battery Voltage Monitor shouldn’t be much of an addition. If it could read the Battery Voltage then a LOW Battery Warning only made sense - things you would conclude just walking down the street. And BTW if I could read the Temp and Humidity Inside then doesn’t if follow that knowing that data for outside would satisfy the Old Man Weather Syndrome anyone over 55 is afflicted with?
If only I could rig up a display inside that would inform me of these “Can’t Do Without” data. But wait: It’s a PUP and sometimes it’s closed up for traveling. Often I don’t load water until I arrive at my destination and fill up there. But how to know when it’s full when I’m by myself? Well, if a Display can be installed inside then what’s keeping me from adding one outside just for this vital function?!
Like I said I wanted a project, so buying something like this isn’t much of a challenge. I had never made anything with a PIC microcontroller and hadn’t in my entire career written any software in Basic, but it just so happens that a company in Serbia sells a development system to do just that, so soon DHL showed up with a package from a really nice lady named Dracona (who BTW followed up with an E-Mail asking if my stuff arrived – very nice). Some research on the Internet provided all the parts, temp sensors, Zener Diodes, and such that I needed to jump in with both feet.
After several months of really interesting learning and some frustration, I have it finished and installed in the PUP! I’m sure in 1977 when the Yearling was manufactured, Palomino had no intention of anything like this, but here it is now.
I have some pictures here: https://skydrive.live.com/?cid=ae67f...057%215095&v=3
And if anyone is at all interested in the design, a ZIP file and a Blog is here http://www.libstock.com/projects/view/693/rv-monitor-system-two-displays-battery-voltage-fresh-water-level-outside-temp-inside-temp-with-cycleing-mode you can find a schematic and listings for the software. I don’t expect a lot of traffic because to most folks this stuff is gibberish. But someone may find it curious.
Thanks for looking
Dick
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Old 08-22-2013, 07:06 AM   #2
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I know what I'm reading tonight... LOL
You are amazing.
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Old 08-24-2013, 11:22 AM   #3
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Ok, so what is the company that sells the development kit? I'm trying to understand what you needed to do this from scratch.
This would be a great kit to sell to others! I personally am interested in a simple water level indicator system, but I like the idea of all of the different info you have available.
Baron
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Old 08-25-2013, 12:38 AM   #4
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Ok, so what is the company that sells the development kit? I'm trying to understand what you needed to do this from scratch.
This would be a great kit to sell to others! I personally am interested in a simple water level indicator system, but I like the idea of all of the different info you have available.
Baron
Here is a link to the kit I bought.
EasyPIC v7 - PIC Development Board with In-Circuit Debugger

And here is the compiler
mikroBasic PRO for PIC - Basic compiler for Microchip PIC MCUs

But you really don't need the compiler if all your going to do is burn chips with my code. Find it here, the .HEX file is the one to use for burning.
LibStock - RV Monitor System Two Displays, Battery Voltage, Fresh Water Level, Outside Temp, Inside Temp, With Cycleing Mode

And the spreadsheet here is a parts list with supplier links.

https://skydrive.live.com/?cid=ae67f...2766057%215093

Let me know when you start burning chips and I'll send you a updated .HEX file if I've found any bugs since the install.

A simple low cost water level kit is here http://www.electronics123.com/kits-a...R-3-LEVEL.html

Dick
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Old 08-25-2013, 12:52 AM   #5
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Totally cool.
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Old 08-25-2013, 04:41 PM   #6
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BTW Baron: If all you want is to get the hex file in the processor you don't really need the Development Kit or the compiler. You can download the .Hex file to MicroChip when you buy the processors and they will burn it before delivery. PIC16F767 - microchipDIRECT Look for PIC16F767-I/SP and you will see the link to upload the code. They do it for small quantities for less than a buck.

Dick
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Old 08-26-2013, 06:23 PM   #7
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What the heck got you looking for the development kit? I have to laugh. This is a serious project.
Curiosity is gonna get the better of me on this one!
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Old 08-27-2013, 10:54 AM   #8
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This is pretty much what I did for a living when I worked. I wanted a project that challenged my mind. We had just finished the re-model over the last winter. I had never done any work with a PIC Microcontroller or Basic so this seemed like a natural. I wasn't looking for a trip down memory lane. My Dr. said use it or lose it and this was my solution. It did turn out to be a learning experience, mostly the software since the hardware has become a lot easier since I retired.

The company in Serbia came up a lot in the research I did on the PIC Processors. By comparison they offered a lot for the money and there was a choice of three compilers, Basic, Pascal, and "C". So my hunch was right, they have a quality product with very good customer support. I had a Power Surge that caused my system to stop programming chips and the customer service department worked with me via E-Mails until it was isolated and repaired. You wouldn't believe how small those IC's are getting. I had to buy a new soldering iron to replace the problem IC.

Anyway, too bad we can't burn some sticks and talk about stuff in general. Your story and the move to Korea must be fascinating.

Dick
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Old 08-27-2013, 11:12 AM   #9
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Awesome!!

I need one that has a "WAI" - Wife Attitude Indicator.

The range would be from T to TPO (Tolerant - Totally Pissed Off)

I could press a button and understand exactly where I stood!

Mal
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Old 08-27-2013, 11:39 AM   #10
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Awesome!!

I need one that has a "WAI" - Wife Attitude Indicator.

The range would be from T to TPO (Tolerant - Totally Pissed Off)

I could press a button and understand exactly where I stood!

Mal
I tried to develop one of those but it so far has taken three Wives and it's still not quite right. Although the insurance money has really helped offset the costs.

Dick
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Old 08-28-2013, 07:07 AM   #11
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I tried to develop one of those but it so far has taken three Wives and it's still not quite right. Although the insurance money has really helped offset the costs.

Dick
I'm not touching this one with a ten-foot pole!
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