iSpindle - DIY Electronic Hydrometer

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum:

DuncB

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2019
Messages
2,789
Reaction score
1,621
Location
Paremata New Zealand
The very early ispindel designs had the charging and programming USB connector toward the lid.
This design meant the aerial was under the wort / beer surface. Signal was not so good on these designs.
Most are now made using a PCB that all parts are connected to including the battery. No 3d printed sled for these and are much better.
You could also make a repeater using another WiFi router if you had one of those.
 

kdw2pd

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2013
Messages
169
Reaction score
33
Does anyone happen to have a single CherryPhilips or Jeffrey PCB I could buy off of them? I have all the parts to assemble another one except the PCB, and don't want to pay for 3 PCBs + shipping from OshPark.
 

ChrisThomas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Messages
209
Reaction score
46
Location
Bristol, UK
Anybody have any long term issues with the on/off switch on their iSpindel? I've just tried 2 of my iSpindels and neither turn on. When I check the battery volts, they're fine, but that voltage is not getting through the switch. If I short out the switch pins everything is fine

So fellow users, where do you get your switches from? What manufacturer do you use? I've had mine so long I can't remember where mine came from, but I suspect China!
So my third iSpindel switch had just died! All 3 were built at the same time a couple of years ago. Is anyone out there using a different switch? Where did you get your switches from?

I've already replaced the switches on 2 of my iSpindels but with switches from the same batch so I'm guessing I'm going to have the same problem down the road. I do have some reed switches which are change over, they have N/O and N/C contacts I think I'm going to try that out.

Unless anyone has any better ideas?
 

DuncB

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2019
Messages
2,789
Reaction score
1,621
Location
Paremata New Zealand
So my third iSpindel switch had just died! All 3 were built at the same time a couple of years ago. Is anyone out there using a different switch? Where did you get your switches from?

I've already replaced the switches on 2 of my iSpindels but with switches from the same batch so I'm guessing I'm going to have the same problem down the road. I do have some reed switches which are change over, they have N/O and N/C contacts I think I'm going to try that out.

Unless anyone has any better ideas?
I haven't had switch problems even when a couple of ispindels got damp inside. I'd try the reed switch and use a type that the magnet would turn it off during charging. Would get complicated if you also use a reed switch instead of shorting the pins to access the menu.
 

ChrisThomas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Messages
209
Reaction score
46
Location
Bristol, UK
I'm going to put one my change over reed switches across the faulty switch pins, leaving the switch in place. I'll report my findings...

I checked the source of the switches I have and they are from a reputable UK source. OK they still could be "cheap" switches so I'm still curious where others have sourced their switches and if anyone has had issues?
 

ChrisThomas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Messages
209
Reaction score
46
Location
Bristol, UK
Having a bit of a fight with the reed switch, seems to be very sensitive to positioning. Going to try and source a NC switch and see if that's less sensitive.
 

DuncB

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2019
Messages
2,789
Reaction score
1,621
Location
Paremata New Zealand
Having a bit of a fight with the reed switch, seems to be very sensitive to positioning. Going to try and source a NC switch and see if that's less sensitive.
My reed switch for the reset is aligned along length of petling. It is a always off type ? Open until magnet makes the circuit.
 

ChrisThomas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Messages
209
Reaction score
46
Location
Bristol, UK
@DuncB If I remember your reed switch is across the reset pins? I was looking to use the reed switch to replace the on/off switch completely. I might persevere with the change over positioning as I can't find a N/C reed switch yet.

I've got some other switch alternatives "winging" their way to me from China to see if I can sensibly replace the switch with affecting the characteristics too badly.
 

mper

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
May 24, 2020
Messages
166
Reaction score
41
@DuncB If I remember your reed switch is across the reset pins? I was looking to use the reed switch to replace the on/off switch completely. I might persevere with the change over positioning as I can't find a N/C reed switch yet.

I've got some other switch alternatives "winging" their way to me from China to see if I can sensibly replace the switch with affecting the characteristics too badly.
You can get a reed switch that is normally closed, then it will be open using a magnet = off.
 

ChrisThomas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Messages
209
Reaction score
46
Location
Bristol, UK
You can get a reed switch that is normally closed, then it will be open using a magnet = off.
Seems that most reed switches are normally open, I'm having trouble sourcing a normally closed version. As I said above for some reason the change over reed switches that I already have seem VERY critical on location to operate correctly?
 

DuncB

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2019
Messages
2,789
Reaction score
1,621
Location
Paremata New Zealand
Seems that most reed switches are normally open, I'm having trouble sourcing a normally closed version. As I said above for some reason the change over reed switches that I already have seem VERY critical on location to operate correctly?
I got my normally open from this company, they have normally closed ones as well.


We had quite a few notes about using a mercury tilt switch earlier in this thread.

One of the below bent at the correct angle would be on at a tilt and heading towards floating vertical. Inverting it would turn it off.

SPST Mercury Switch | Jaycar Electronics New Zealand plenty of them on aliexpress.

I really can't see that the mercury inside a glass switch inside a petling is any risk to the beer.
 

ChrisThomas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Messages
209
Reaction score
46
Location
Bristol, UK
I got my normally open from this company, they have normally closed ones as well.


We had quite a few notes about using a mercury tilt switch earlier in this thread.

One of the below bent at the correct angle would be on at a tilt and heading towards floating vertical. Inverting it would turn it off.

SPST Mercury Switch | Jaycar Electronics New Zealand plenty of them on aliexpress.

I really can't see that the mercury inside a glass switch inside a petling is any risk to the beer.
That change over reed switch is what I have already, but consistent switch off is currently eluding me, more testing required.

A mercury tilt switch is something I don't have in my components drawer so I might get one, got to be better than regularly replacing the switch...
 

kdw2pd

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2013
Messages
169
Reaction score
33
Has anyone had an issue where the ESP8266 won't turn on using the battery? It will charge the battery (red LED when charging, blue when complete, not doing the red light on but blue light blinking no battery thing), and will turn on when connected to USB (ESP LED blinks, the 'gravitymon' AP point pops up), but if I try to turn it on in battery mode (but not connected to USB), no dice. The soldering is fine, as far as I can tell.

I'm aware that I need to remove the diode on the ESP8266, will do that after I get it cooperating.
 

mper

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
May 24, 2020
Messages
166
Reaction score
41
Has anyone had an issue where the ESP8266 won't turn on using the battery? It will charge the battery (red LED when charging, blue when complete, not doing the red light on but blue light blinking no battery thing), and will turn on when connected to USB (ESP LED blinks, the 'gravitymon' AP point pops up), but if I try to turn it on in battery mode (but not connected to USB), no dice. The soldering is fine, as far as I can tell.

I'm aware that I need to remove the diode on the ESP8266, will do that after I get it cooperating.
Sounds like a faulty connection between the charge board and the esp. Check the voltage with a multimeter
 

wd16261

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 5, 2019
Messages
152
Reaction score
31
Location
Belgium
On my previous build ispindels I always removed the diode on the D1 mini but on the once that I've received recently it looks like the diode is no longer there. Could this be possible or is it on another location that I don't notice?

The left one (old version) has a small diode but on the right one (latest version) I can not find it:
20221207_091734.jpg

The top side:
20221207_091710.jpg
 

ChrisThomas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Messages
209
Reaction score
46
Location
Bristol, UK
I can't clearly see from the pictures but it looks like it could be by the reset switch? The component with the "stripe" along one end?

Don't know where the crystal (at least I think it's a crystal) has gone? Maybe the crystal is under the can of the ESP12F?
 

mper

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
May 24, 2020
Messages
166
Reaction score
41
On my previous build ispindels I always removed the diode on the D1 mini but on the once that I've received recently it looks like the diode is no longer there. Could this be possible or is it on another location that I don't notice?

The left one (old version) has a small diode but on the right one (latest version) I can not find it:
View attachment 807314
The top side:
View attachment 807315
You dont need to remove the diode just remember to remove the battery when connecting directly to the esp or you might overload/damage the battery

Im not sure if there is a diode on the newer boards….
 

wd16261

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 5, 2019
Messages
152
Reaction score
31
Location
Belgium
You dont need to remove the diode just remember to remove the battery when connecting directly to the esp or you might overload/damage the battery
Yes I knew that but I can be a bit scattered sometimes so I still prefer to avoid the worst anyway.
 

mper

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
May 24, 2020
Messages
166
Reaction score
41
Yes I knew that but I can be a bit scattered sometimes so I still prefer to avoid the worst anyway.
See if you can find the schematic from the board manufacturer, that way you should be able to see if they have the diode in place and follow the board traces to the correct component
 

DaveS

Active Member
Joined
Jun 21, 2019
Messages
37
Reaction score
3
Location
South Africa
As @ChrisThomas said it looks like the diode to be removed is now between the USB connector and the reset switch.
The crystal on the older D1 mini is needed by the CH340 UART to USB chip,newer versions of the CH340 do not require an external crystal,I am guessing that chip is being used in the newer version D1 mini
 
Top