Author Topic: Arduino conrolled Cheese Cave  (Read 1775 times)

Offline zztop

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Arduino conrolled Cheese Cave
« on: September 20, 2013, 08:55:55 AM »
Greetings all,

I'm currently wrapping up the coding on my arduino controlled cheese cave.   Right now I'll be controlling the fridge, a humidifier and a small ceramic heater used in lizard tanks.  The program will work as follows:

- if the temperature is too warm or the humidity is too high turn on the fridge.

- if the humidity is too low and the fridge is off turn on the humidifier.

- if the temperature is too cold and the fridge is off turn on the heater.


I have the following configurable settings:

1 - Temperature - Ideal temperature of the temperature of the cave

2 - Humidity
- Ideal humidity of the cave

3 - Tempareture Range - Upper and lower range of the temperature.  So set this to 5 and if your ideal temp is 54 then the upper will be 59 and the lower will be 49

4 - Humidity Range
-  Upper and lower range of the humidity.  Works like temperature range

5 - Heat Temperature over shoot
- When to turn off the heat lamp to meet your ideal temperature

6 - Cold  Temperature Over shoot - When to turn off your fridge to meet your ideal temperature

7 - Probe Temperature Calibration -  fine tune probe readings.  If you know your probe is off by 2 degrees then you can correct for that

8 - Probe Humidity Calibration - fine tune probe readings.  If you know your probe is off by 2% then you can correct for that

9 - Max time the fridge can be on -  Fail safe to make sure the fridge doesn't continue running for extended periods of time.  Stop after 15 minutes

10 - Time between fridge cycles - This will prevent the fridge from cycling on and off too often.



I currently don't have any experience with a cheese cave so I was hoping people could provide some feed back on what I've laid out. As well as recommendations on the starting configuration settings. I know some of the settings will not apply to everyone  like the fridge overshoot and the probe calibration but I'd still like to hear your thoughts.

Regards,

Offline Anonymous

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Re: Arduino conrolled Cheese Cave
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2013, 06:54:45 PM »
Good luck with your new cave! sounds like a cool DIY project.

Personally though, I'd stay away from a heater. Even if it's just a lizard tank heater.

Offline hoeklijn

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Re: Arduino conrolled Cheese Cave
« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2013, 11:26:42 AM »
What kind of Arduino are you using? How do you control it, by an external computer of by LCD and buttons?
And what kind of humidifier do you use?
I'm making a temperature control for my cheese vat with a Arduino Uno with output to and control from a laptop using Delphi XE3 (Pascal)...
- Herman -

Offline zztop

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Re: Arduino conrolled Cheese Cave
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2013, 10:55:25 PM »
Hey hoeklijn,

Right now I'm using  and arduino uno but that may change to a larger arduino boards or to one of the cheaper wireless ones getting of the ground on kick starter. 

At this point there are no buttons or LCD. The setup consists of a central webserver that is used to graph the temperature and humidity.  Configuration is also pushed down from this server.  I have a raspberry pi connected to the serial port of the arduino.  The pi is what does all the communication with the webserver. This may change and I might just bite the bullet and pay the extra cost for the WiFi shield. I intend to put an LCD in but no buttons as this is out side my programming and electronics skill set.  Buttons become even more of an issue because I plan to control several cheese caves and meat curing caves from 1 arduino.

I'm using a small black and decker ultrasonic humidifier at this point
I considered making a pid with my arduino but decided against you it.  I ordered an auber pid because of the auto tune and fuzzy logic functions. These are outside my skill set as well.  Also I've read configuring the probe can be problematic.

Regards

Offline cowboycheese

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Re: Arduino conrolled Cheese Cave
« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2013, 07:22:56 PM »
Herman

How is the arduino temp control going for your vat?

Offline hoeklijn

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Re: Arduino conrolled Cheese Cave
« Reply #5 on: November 04, 2013, 12:49:23 AM »
Didn't find much time to test yet, but it is ready for testing...
- Herman -

Offline cowboycheese

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Re: Arduino conrolled Cheese Cave
« Reply #6 on: December 14, 2013, 02:49:20 PM »
ZZ

How is the cheese cave control coming along? Anything you can share so far?

Ditto on ditching the heating element. Think about wireless control and the ability to remote monitor the stats.

Offline zztop

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Re: Arduino conrolled Cheese Cave
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2014, 08:49:53 PM »
Got most of the code done on the arduino.  I was going to use the Raspberry pi to grab the data from the arduino serial and posted it to Open Energy Monitor at home and Cosm online. I decided that I'm going to remove the pi from the equation and just use the ethernet shield and eventually wifi to log.  That being said I've passed it on to a programmer friend to finish.  Outstanding items include:

- post to Cosm and Open Energy Monitor
- configure a database and a configuration webpage to change the various configuration variables
- save configuration variables to eeprom when there is a change

If  he gets it done then I'm hoping to expand the code for running multiple cheese caves and meat curing chambers from a arduino clone called digix which has a tone of io pins and built in wifi.

If he drags his feet then I'm going to just buy a cap air 2 controller.  I've been dragging my feet for way too long and would actually like to start making cheese once my 9 month old sleeps more then 3 hours straight....I figure in the next 3 months.

That being said there is a really nice arduino project coming together at http://meatgeek.co.uk/ . He hasn't really indicated if and how he is going log the data

Regards,

Offline Golani51

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Re: Arduino conrolled Cheese Cave
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2014, 05:33:10 AM »
I would consider including a small fan. It is important to ensure some movement of air, particularly if using a heat source or humidifier. I am setting up a large fridge as a cave with a USB laptop cooler on the bottom. It will have a deflector on it to cause airflow to be directed around it whenever the humidifier is activated. I will also have a low power heat source that will also turn on the fan when running. If cheeses are in containers then no biggie but I am doing 5+kg wheels of parmesan etc. All low voltage gear for safety.

Offline zztop

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Re: Arduino conrolled Cheese Cave
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2014, 06:43:17 AM »
ya one of the modification I am making is intake and exhaust fans to help with humidity.  I told my friend to add configuration for a 4th pin to control the fans

Offline Tiarella

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Re: Arduino conrolled Cheese Cave
« Reply #10 on: January 18, 2014, 07:21:31 AM »
Hmmm, check out forum member John's Cave Cube he makes and sells at his website.  Www.perfect-cheese.com
 You can add humidity with it if you have it sitting in a dish of water, just use the fan if your humidity is good, or put a desiccant pillow of food grade desiccant (he sells those too I think) on top of the cave cube if you need to lower humidity.  I think he also has a controller that co trolls both heating and cooling but I don't understand the technical stuff so you'd have to read about it yourself.  Seems like it would do what you're trying to do for someone with programming capabilities.  Don't know the level of control detail but you could read the description and understand.  I'm in awe of you guys who can program this stuff!!!   :-\