G'day fellow workshoppers,
Finally got around to designing, building and installing the new auto door for our girls. I was quiet shocked at the price of purchasing a pre-built opener, but I've put together a price list and can understand why these items are expensive. Anyhoo, I will attempt a how-to on this project.
Here are the parts required for the build that I put together. Motor, photocell, double pole double throw relay, timer, transformer, micro/limit switches and an enclosure to put it all in. (The black transformer may be used as an alternative).
I had to make a shaft for the motor so as to lift and lower the door. I decided to use a bolt with a hole drilled in the end to suit the shaft. A couple of very large washers and nuts and a smaller bolt tapped to lock onto the shaft as a key.
Time to put it all together. Wiring is via the diagram attached below. I also decided to install some LED marker lights I had as surplus to come on just prior to dusk and turn off after a couple of hours (photo upside down for some reason). I did a test run at this stage to ensure it worked.
The following is after installing on the coop. The little pulleys allow the door to open/close without binding.
The rope is just plain 'gunline' and is not prone to rotting. I will probably replace this with something more permanent in the future.
Last but not least is the placement of the micro/limit switches which shuts down the motor when either in the raised or lowered position. In this case I used a long bolt and positioned the switches to allow activation.
Here is the wiring diagram. It may look a bit intimidating but it is foolproof.
If anyone wants a PDF version, just let me know. Also if you have any questions, please don't hesitate.
Nearly forgot the price list.
24v DC motor with 48RPM reduction gearbox - $10.80 (ebay)
Photocell - $3.26 (ebay)
Relay - $4.70 (wholesaler)
Timer - Free but can purchase for under $20.00
Transformer - Free but approx $20-30 on ebay
2 x Limit switches - $12.00 (wholesaler)
Enclosure - $32.00 (wholesaler) but can get much cheaper without clear lid.
Cable, connectors and misc stuff - Approx $5-6
Labour not considered (approx 4 hours to put together, test and install).
Considering a pre-made purchased unit costs upwards of $250.00 - $400.00, I think I made the right decision making it myself.
Thanks for that. We like to get away when we can and I don't like the idea of the coop being left open overnight. This way the girls are secure and we also have quite a large feeder and waterer that is fed off the bore.
The only 1 bit of advice I will give you is have a dedicated area for your girls as they will get into everything and poo absolutely everywhere you don't want them to.
Really hope you get some as the entertainment alone is really cool.
I love it, I want one myself. Probably not big enough though.
This is a very nice setup. Complicated yet simple. Complicated only due to the amount of wires. Yet simple in the use of only one relay and one timer. I've seen so many that really just over complicated it with 2 or 3 relays and two timer. Not to mention the cost. How is it doing?
Here is my version based on liner actuators. With and without photocell and flashing LEDs (night time door down indicator and red eyes predator deterant)
I see you've made a blank post. Please let me know if you need a hand with anything to get the most from the site.
Let me also extend a very warm welcome to Workshop. It's great to have you join the community. I'm looking forward to you sharing your projects and plans.