Arduino – Simple weather station

I recently picked up a clone Arduino Uno from China via ebay along with some sensors and other bits and pieces to learn a bit about Arduino – First project a simple weather station.

For wiring instructions and arduino Libraries I used Adafruit, DHT22 here and 16×2 LCD here.

Then cobbling together some code from here which I made a few changes to:

  • Changed Fahrenheit to Celsius
  • Added a degree’s Celsius character
  • Changed the LCD and DHT22 Pins
  • Changed the error code to “looking”
  • Added a five second delay as the humidity reading was flickering on the display
  • Added the F as described in the comments – see bottom of post

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Server Build

I wanted a server for a while to take care of streaming music, streaming films, backup documents, photo storage, print server and anything else I need. I avoided the cheaper generally low powered NAS’s (I have a raspberry Pi that could do that) and decided to essentially build another pc to perform these tasks. It would be more powerful and offer more functionality. It will however cost more to run and take up more space. But I was happy with that.

Kit List

  • AMD APU A6-6400K (second hand)
  • MSI motherboard A88XM-E35 – FM2 socket
  • 4GB Generic RAM – now upgraded to corsair 1600mhz 4GB
  • 500gb Hitachi HDD – now upgraded to 120GB PNY Optima SSD
  • Silverstone SST-PS08W (with USB 3.0) case
  • 1tb data hard drive (see post here)
  • OS – Ubuntu 14.04.1LTS
  • BeQuiet 350w 80+ power supply
  • Pioneer BDC-207DBK Bluray drive
  • Arctic Cooling Alpine 64 rev.2 CPU cooler
  • Arctic mx2 thermal paste
  • Isopropanol alcohol (for cpu cleaning)

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Second Bed Build

Following on from the last bed build (see part 1, part 2), I made a second one. This time a full UK double size rather than a UK small double. As it was a full double I again added the centre 2×4″ and also a centre leg for extra strength.Frame made in the same way as before, 4×1″ for the legs, 2×4″ for the frame and 1×4″ for the slats. Prior to assembly, I cut everything to size, sanded it and varnished with water based polyurethane (dries much faster than oil based).

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Wooden speaker brackets from 2×4″ and 2×3″

I wanted to make some speaker brackets for the new (old) mission speakers I acquired for the workshop and having some scrap 2×4″, 2×3″ and MDF, I made up these.

I was inspired by this design from instructables LINK. I choose to amend the design by choosing to use lots of wood glue(!) and mitred some of the edges for aesthetics.

I cut the pieces to size, sanded and fixed with wood screws and lots of wood glue. These will easily support the speakers and I think look good. By cutting the 2×3″ this way it will ensure that there is plenty of room to fix the brackets to the wall either side of the brace. I used two fixings at the top and one fixing at the bottom. This seems to be holding them very securely.

Parts cut

Job done.

Workmate table top

Workmate table top

I wanted to build a worktop to be clamped into a workmate or folding workbench to provide a larger working area and as I had some spare 18mm MDF, 2×2″ and 2×3″ CLS I used them. MDF can and does warp so I framed the edges with the 2×3″ which I glued and clamped and then drove a few screws to hold in place. This will provide extra strength and also provide a surface to clamp against.

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Building a bookcase

Building  a bookcase from pine as a present, here is the finished result:

After looking online for a while I found these plans which looked easy to build and would disassemble for moving.

So after settling on the plans I gathered up the following:

  • 1×9″ PSE Pine x4@ 1.8m
  • 1×4″ PSE Pine x6 @ 900mm
  • M8 300mm Threaded rod
  • M8 Lock Nuts
  • M8 Penny Washers
  • Polyurethane Varnish (oil based)

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Making Ladder Wall Storage Hooks

After buying a new ladder, I needed some brackets to get it off the floor and out of harms way, so I made up some brackets from 2×3″ and chipboard  that I happened to have lying around.

Here they are complete, very simple design fixed with lots of wood glue and 42mm drywall screws. They are secured to the wall with 3 3″x10 screws each.  They have and will hopefully continue to prove capable of supporting the 20kg ladder. To finish I wiped them over with a quick coat of danish oil. Job done.

 

Finish for workbench top and frame

All that’s needed now is to run over the bench frame with a random orbital sander 180 grit to remove the pencil marks and to improve the finish. I will then wipe over the frame with Danish Oil to protect it – two coats with six hours between coats.

Finishing the Workbench MDF worktop

The MDF top and shelf was varnished with polyurethane oil based varnish thinned by 50% white spirit for the first coat, left to dry overnight and then 25% white spirit  75% varnish for the second coat. It was laid on thickly and let soak well into the board. The varnish is thinned to really get it to soak into the board, rather than a top film of varnish that may chip away. Then a final neat coat of varnish was applied. I wiped the surface with 240 grit sandpaper between coats to key the surface.

[picture of varnish and white spirit]

This will soak in well and provide a durable and resistant finish for the bench top. Alternatively Boiled Linseed Oil or Danish Oil could be wiped over and again let soak in well or a piece of hardboard could also be used as a sacrificial top and replaced as required.

 

Building an Ubuntu PC

I wanted to build my own pc and run linux that I have used on an HTPC for some time. This will be a cheap way into PC building and hopefully provide a good general use machine.

Kit List

  1. Case – NZXT source 210
  2. CPU – Intel Pentium Dual Core 2.8ghz
  3. Motherboard – with HDMI and DVI- Gigabyte B75
  4. RAM – 8GB Corsair 1600mhz (will run slower due to CPU)
  5. SSD – OCZ Agility 4 128GB
  6. HDD – WD Green 1tb from old external drive  (not yet fitted)
  7. USB Stick – for installing Ubuntu
  8. PSU – 80%+ – Antec High Current Gamer 400w – to be replaced by Bequiet 430w
  9. Speakers – Logitech x120
  10. Keyboard and mouse – have already
  11. Monitor – Dell 21” – have already
  12. 3.5” to 2.5” drive convertor – For SSD installing in a standard drive bay
  13. Optical Drive – Not needed this is 2012
  14. SATA cables

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