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Author Topic: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.  (Read 19209 times)

Brian H

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Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« on: June 05, 2010, 09:02:06 AM »

I found a few web pages where the Ninja Mounts where modified and thought some here maybe interested.
The site also has a few other Automation Mods.
http://www.gardnerswebsite.com/ninjamods/index.html

http://www.trainelectronics.com/WebCam/PanTiltMod/
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Puck

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2010, 01:03:24 PM »

Thanks for sharing your findings Brian. Those links will be helpful to some.
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Brian H

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2010, 03:21:28 PM »

Glad it may assist some fellow users.

I found the internal photos a help even if I was not going to do any mods on one.
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pomonabill221

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2011, 04:43:28 PM »

I had another light bulb moment!  -:)
  First: The RF range for the pan and tilt functions (NOT the camera signal), is real short.  :-[
so I took the P/T apart and tried to see if the receiver could be tweaked for better performance... no luck.  B:( B:(
  SOOO.... (and here is my LBM (light bulb moment)).... -:)
  I have a few of the NEWER TM751 (the plug in transceivers) with the HiMark receiver chip, that seems to have great range.
  It only requires 5 volts to operate.  There are three solder points on the board... Gnd, +5, and D (digital data out).  :'
There is a fourth solder point for the antenna... soory.
  This is the same receiver that is used in the CM15A (and probably CM19) and seem to have great range with the antenna mods found around here, even with the 9.25 or 18.5" antenna.  ::)
  Sooo.... why not swap out the Ninja's receiver board with the one that is in the TM751!  True, you no longer have a functioning TM751, but you CAN use it as a "any house code" / Unit code 1 appliance module, so it isn't really completely useless!!!!  :o
  It also has a regulated 5 volt ps, so you could use it as a plug in transceiver for a wireless motion detector transmitter (making it a wired motion sensor).  ;D
  Just find the "data output" from the xxxeye's processor and input that data to the now removed "data input" (where the TM751's receiver's data output used to go), find the +5 and gnd, and wire that to the battery + and gnd on the motion detector.
  The MSxxx's processor has a nominal operating voltage of 5 volts... X10 is running it at reduced voltage of approx. 3 volts, so it will work just fine!  :D
  Then take the HiMark rcvr. and carefully solder the white (+5), black (gnd), and yellow (data out) to the ninja, and carefully mount it where the old rcvr. board used to be. SEE NOTE!!
  The board is the same width but a little shorter than the old board, so hot melt glue will work wonders!
  The antenna can be routed under the controller board and out the bottom where the power cable comes out, and under the strain relief (it will be pinched a little, but no harm done).
  You COULD wrap the antenna around the innards like X10 did with the old antenna, but your range may decrease a little because the antenna is not extended.
  NOTE:  BE VERY CAREFUL  NOT TO CHANGE/MOVE/SMASH/DISTORT THE COIL ON THE BACK OF THE BOARD.  THIS IS PART OF THE LOCAL OSCILLATOR AND IS THE TUNING FOR THE RF OSCILLATOR.  The goop around the coil is just wax, so it is soft.  Don't use hot melt as the glue may have an effect on the tuning of the coil.
  Don't ask me how I found this out....  it CAN be retuned, but you will need a scope and good soldering skills to solder a test point on pin 10 of the chip to monitor the RF limiter's output for tuning, and VERY small adjustments to the coil to bring it back.  I was able to tweak the coil a little better, but I have some familiarity with RF and oscillators.
  I can post some pics if anyone wishes.
  I have more than trippled the control distance for these with this mod, and you can find TM751's in 4 pack on Ebay for around 4-5$ each.  ::)
  You also get the antenna as a bonus for other mods!  :D
  It's a win win mod!!!    :)% :)%
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Brian H

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2011, 06:18:33 PM »

Great mod.  >!
Helpful from me.

One minor point. The TM751 is controlled by an RF signal only. So it will not act like a appliance module for power line signals.

I don't think you could even buy a preassembled 315MHz module and retune it for 310MHz as cheaply as sacrificing a TM751.
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pomonabill221

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2011, 01:55:37 AM »

Yes I thought of that AFTER I posted... sorry the TM751 will NOT receive PLC commands.  It ONLY transceives them and responds to RF for the relay... oops  :'
  Well at least you can use the +5/gnd/data input for a motion detector.
  Just BEWARE THAT THE POWER SUPPLY IS 120 VAC LINE REFERENCED, AND IS A BIG SHOCK HAZARD!!!!
  Maybe I should NOT have mentioned this because I would feel BAD is someone did the mod and got a shock!  Even worse, got injured adjusting the motion detector!
  PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE... consider this hazard when working on ANY X10 module!!!  Appliance/lamp/pushbutton controllers are ALL line referenced and pose a GREAT shock hazard!!!!
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Brian H

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2011, 08:33:27 AM »

Thank you for pointing out the possible hazards.

We have had others do mods and not believe me when I told them their external push button or siren interface is floating AC Line on your wiring.
 :'

X10 is not alone in using AC Power Line derived power supplies.
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pomonabill221

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2011, 03:44:58 PM »

Yes that is true!
  Many many household products that appear to be low voltage, have cheap power supplies derived directly off the line input, using a capacitor/resistor/zener as their "power supply".
  This is a very cheap way to derive low DC voltage without the "expense" / weight / size of a transformer, BUT IS DANGEROUS FOR THE DIYer.
  My warning for ANYONE tempted to dig inside their X10 toy is to BE AWARE OF THE POWER SUPPLY AND HOW IT IS DERIVED.  EVEN IF THERE IS A TRANSFORMER, X10 DOES HAVE TO COUPLE BACK (OR FROM) THE LINE.
  If you have an isolation transformer (a 1:1 110v transformer) USE IT WHEN TRYING TO DEBUG YOUR MODULE.
  Just remember that the X10 carrier will probably NOT go through the transformer as it tends to be a low pass filter.
  IF you need to control the module, use a power strip and plug your controller into the strip on the SAME side of the transformer.
  I have even used two 110 to 24 volt transformers wired back to back (110 to 24 - 24 to 110) for low power testing, JUST to isolate the line.
  The test equipment is then plugged into the INPUT side of your isolation "network" (transformer(s)).
  The scope's ground then will NOT create a short when connected to the module under test, and the scope will not "float"... always a good idea not to float your test equipment, IF POSSIBLE!  :'
  Otherwise, your test equipment's ground/return/chassis WILL BE AT LINE POTENTIAL!!! and touching the case can give you a shock! Or if the case touches something that IS grounded, could wipe out your expensive scope/dvm/signal generator/etc., and you will NOT be happy!!! B:(
  All this is pretty much taken for granted on most of these forums, but there SHOULD be notes about isolation for the new guys (probably already is), but I wanted to post here because of the mods that I presented in this thread.  It cannot be stressed enough about grounding / isolation for testing / the hazards present when cracking open ANY electrical device.
PLEASE BE CAREFUL!!!!
« Last Edit: May 06, 2011, 04:34:31 PM by pomonabill221 »
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Brian H

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #8 on: May 06, 2011, 06:05:51 PM »

Ooh we think alike.  ;D
I also have a back to back set of 24 volt transformers for a isolated test stand.
I also have a Triad real isolation transformer but lightly loaded the output is on the high side of tolerance for X10 devices.
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pomonabill221

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #9 on: May 06, 2011, 06:48:48 PM »

Well you know what they say about like minds????   :' (I dunno myself though )
I am using a 500VA 1:1 triad iso transformer also.  My voltage is fine though.  I wonder why yours is high?  I wouldn't think that loading would matter (as long as it isn't OVER loaded).  hhmmm....
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Brian H

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2011, 06:51:09 PM »

I believe it is only 50VA and I would guess not very heavy windings.
If I add a 25 watt bulb to it and the X10 module it is usually fine.
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pomonabill221

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2011, 07:15:42 PM »

Even a 50VA would be MORE than adequate for X10 stuff!!!  I just happened to have the biggin.  I do have a smaller one but this big one has a receptacle mounted in the cover so is convenient... that's all.
  It still seems strange to me that yours needs a load to bring the voltage down... hhmmm?  How much higher is the output versus input with no load?
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pomonabill221

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #12 on: May 07, 2011, 12:47:43 AM »

I took some pics while modifying my third Ninja with the receiver from a TM751.
  I did try wiring in a MS16a to the TM751 and it worked like a dream.
  Just remember the 120vac is NOT isolated from the MS16a's power supply (it is line referenced).
  The only thing is that the house code for the motion detector and the house code for the TM751 MUST be the same, or the TM751 will NOT transmit!
  IF the motion detector's unit code is 1, the relay will operate as well.
  IF the motion detector's unit code is anything else, the relay will NOT operate, but the code WILL be sent on the power line making the motion detector a WIRED detector.
  Again, REMEMBER THAT THE POWER SUPPLY FOR THE MOTION DETECTOR IS RIDING ON 120 VAC, AND IS A SHOCK HAZARD.
  I just removed the battery contacts when I wired the +5 and gnd from the TM751 to the motion detector, so when everything is assembled, you can't get to the hazardous voltages.
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pomonabill221

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #13 on: May 07, 2011, 12:48:28 AM »

here are another pics.
  the first one shows the old board removed from the mounting.
  The second pic compares the sizes of the two boards.  Note that the new board is a little shorter.
  It should be mounted with the chip down so that the osc coil is not squished.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2011, 12:59:51 AM by pomonabill221 »
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pomonabill221

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Re: Ninja Pan and Tilt Mods.
« Reply #14 on: May 07, 2011, 12:52:17 AM »

and another.
note the osc coil under the wax...
I had to trim part of the plastic for the new receiver's chip to fit... not really necessary because I hot melt glued the board anyway, but lets the board fit flush in the opening.
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