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Old October 12th, 2017, 10:26 AM   #1
Aggregateman
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CHEAP remote “push button” solution?

Hey everyone! Let me start by explaining what I want to do here, I’ve got a small PLC system and am looking for a cheap way to rig up a compact remote system to trigger a couple non-essential input controls, kind of a “well that would be nice to have but we don’t want to spend tons of money” deal. I’ve got several points where I would put remote receivers and be controlled by the same remote, I only need 2 maybe 3 buttons, and it doesn’t need to be more than 100ft of range from each point(although more range would be a plus), currently I’m thinking of these “universal keyless entry install kits” off of amazon (see link below) but I’m wondering if anyone here has any other suggestions as to a good relatively inexpensive solution?
Preferably operating and switching 12vDC

Thanks!

FICBOX Universal Car Door Lock Vehicle Keyless Entry System Auto Remote Central Kit with Control Box https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01HB5M5R2..._4133zbR61ZHBW
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Old October 12th, 2017, 10:30 AM   #2
harryting
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That should work. I used something similar to retrofit an old garage door opener once.
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Old October 12th, 2017, 10:36 AM   #3
dmroeder
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What PLC are you working with?

For fun not too long ago, I bought a couple of amazon dash buttons and got them to write to a tag in a CompactLogix PLC. The basic idea is there is a python script running on a PC (or Raspberry Pi), listen for the button press, when we see it's MAC ID, write to a PLC tag. I'm sure the same thing could be done with a PLC that supports Modbus too since there are modbus libraries out there. Just a thought.
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Old October 12th, 2017, 10:38 AM   #4
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Compactlogix with remote I/O scattered around, that dash button sounds interesting, what kind of range did you have?
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Old October 12th, 2017, 10:40 AM   #5
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I haven't tested the range, the farthest I'd guess that I was away from my router was 60 feet. It's not to say that farther wouldn't have worked, I just didn't try it. I'll see if I can try it today. I still have it around here somewhere.
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Old October 12th, 2017, 10:59 AM   #6
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Does the dash button automatically order toilet paper when you hit the stop button?
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Old October 12th, 2017, 11:08 AM   #7
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For my home control PLC's I bought a couple of these - they all operate on the same frequency, so one transmitter can talk to both receivers that are not within the same range. At $4.00 per set they were cheap enough to play with. They are RF so it will work through walls and from outside.

I wired the 4 outputs to a SLC TTL input card, but the receiver gives PNP outputs and the AB TTL input is sourcing, so all 4 are on all the time, one (or more - it can send multiple signals at once) goes low when the button is pressed.

I programmed it to select 1 of 4 modes, then the next press(es) perform 4 functions in the mode selected. After 12 seconds of no input I go out of the selected mode for selecting another mode. When a mode is selected I turn on a night light in the window of the room, that goes out when the mode drops.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/DC-5v-4CH-Ch...QAAOSwoBtW1~3o
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Old October 12th, 2017, 12:28 PM   #8
RClem
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I've used these, good range, no batteries.
https://www.schneider-electric.com/e...-harmony-xb5r/
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Old October 12th, 2017, 12:47 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RClem View Post
I've used these, good range, no batteries.
https://www.schneider-electric.com/e...-harmony-xb5r/
I'm intrigued....

The transmitter is described as ...

Energy efficient
due to non-current
consuming
transmitter

.... sounds like a bit of magic !!
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Old October 12th, 2017, 06:09 PM   #10
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I've tried those out too, they're brilliant. The buttons generate their own power using the piezoelectric effect (I believe) - basically - they capture the kinetic energy of you pressing the button and use it to transmit their signal.

We put my boss in a car and sent him down the road to see how far he could drive before they lost connection. He was out of sight before it stopped working.
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Old October 12th, 2017, 06:37 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ASF View Post
I've tried those out too, they're brilliant. The buttons generate their own power using the piezoelectric effect (I believe) - basically - they capture the kinetic energy of you pressing the button and use it to transmit their signal.

We put my boss in a car and sent him down the road to see how far he could drive before they lost connection. He was out of sight before it stopped working.
WOW, that’s impressive, I’m going to have to see about getting some of those, but those have to cost a pretty penny. Guess I’ll call our Schneider supplier in the morning!

Aside from that I still need the keyfob style solution so we can keep them on our key rings, carrying around a push button wouldn’t be quite as practical... haha!
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Old October 12th, 2017, 06:53 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aggregateman View Post
WOW, that’s impressive, I’m going to have to see about getting some of those, but those have to cost a pretty penny. Guess I’ll call our Schneider supplier in the morning!

Aside from that I still need the keyfob style solution so we can keep them on our key rings, carrying around a push button wouldn’t be quite as practical... haha!
They do have a little bit smaller units.

https://www.schneider-electric.com/e...007%29%29#tabs

I have had good luck with the standard buttons and receiver. I did have to use the relay antenna as the received was mounted in a metal enclosure and range wasn't great.
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Old October 13th, 2017, 03:03 AM   #13
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Regarding the schneider buttons. If you mount them in an enclosure you loose a lot of range. So as mentioned above better to get a relay antenna. Also it is just better to buy the programmable receiver from the get go. If you lose the button with the normal receiver you have to buy the set again as they are paired with each other and no way to pair a new button. But I love the fact that no batteries are needed.
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Old October 13th, 2017, 06:56 AM   #14
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Does anyone know about the security of these pushbuttons?

Like, can they be scanned and mimicked by someone within 100m of the receiver, or does it have some sort of security protocol?
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Old October 13th, 2017, 09:52 AM   #15
RClem
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Per the catalog page:

http://download.schneider-electric.c...0Rev.%2002.pdf

The Harmony wireless, batteryless push button product range enables remote
control of a relay (receiver) by means of a push button (transmitter). The control is by
radio transmission, where the transmitter is fitted with a ‘‘dynamo’’ type generator
that converts mechanical energy – produced when the push button is pressed – to
electrical energy. A radio-encoded message with a unique ID code is sent as a single
pulse to one or more receivers located several dozen metres away (see figure A). A
single receiver can also be actuated by up to 32 different transmitters (see figure B).
Depending on the application, a relay-antenna can be used to “transmit around” an
obstacle that impedes transmission, or to increase the range (see figures A and B).
The possible distance (1) between a transmitter and a receiver is approximately:
- 100 m/328 ft where there are no obstacles,
- 25 m/82 ft if the receiver is installed in a metal housing or in a closed
metal enclosure,
- 300 m/984 ft if a relay-antenna is located between the transmitter and the receiver
(receiver installed in a metal housing or in a closed metal enclosure).

Last edited by RClem; October 13th, 2017 at 09:53 AM. Reason: insert link
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