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Author Topic: Ninja Pan Speed Upgrade  (Read 10617 times)

enauman

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Ninja Pan Speed Upgrade
« on: January 29, 2011, 02:46:33 AM »

The Ninja pan speed is pathetically slow.  Too slow to be used for security purposes.  It can't even track a person walking by on the sidewalk.  By the time you pan to a location, the intruder has already picked your lock and is making a steak dinner in your kitchen.  I asked X10 if they were planning on upgrading the device.  I even offered to write the code for free.  Didn't even get the courtesy of a response.  So, I researched the stepper motors they used and found out that they are capable of a much faster scan rate. I redesigned the control circuitry using a PIC microcontroller and some better stepper drive circuitry.  I laid out a PCB that is a form fit for the old one so no mechanical mods are necessary.  I wrote the code using PICBasic that has all the functionality (programmed stops, sweep, center, etc) of the original device.  The scan rate is programmable   On the fastest scan rate, it takes only a few seconds to pan the whole range instead of a few minutes.  The board replaces the old one.  The design uses the original RF receiver board, motors, optical sensors, and drive train without modification.  The modification consists of assembling the PCB, connect the motor wiring, RF board and the pan optical sensor to the new board and reassemble the Ninja.  If there is enough interest in the community out there, I can offer a kit consisting of a bare PCB, preprogrammed microcontroller, schematic, wiring diagram, instructions, and the source code for $99.  I know that's more than the Ninja itself, but bear in mind that I'm just one engineer.  I don't have the quantity purchasing and manufacturing power that a company like X10 has.  But it still beats the cost of a "real" panning camera mount.  So if you want to speed up your Ninja and you know how to read a schematic and use a soldering iron...  email me at enauman@roadrunner.com.  If I get enough interest,  I'll put together a kit.
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Brian H

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Re: Ninja Pan Speed Upgrade
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2011, 06:30:14 AM »

Do you have any projected life tests for the known problem plastic drive gears at the higher speeds?
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enauman

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Re: Ninja Pan Speed Upgrade
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2011, 11:23:40 AM »

No.  Mine has been operating for 2 years, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with no signs of abnormal wear.  When it does finally give out, I will just buy a new one and swap out the electronics.  They are so cheap that even one year of use would be satisfactory for me.
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IPS

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Re: Ninja Pan Speed Upgrade
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2011, 05:13:36 PM »

Hi enauman

I have three nijas that need new gears. Do you know where I ca get them?

Thanks.
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enauman

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Re: Ninja Pan Speed Upgrade
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2011, 02:58:15 PM »

No. Sorry.  Ninja's are so cheap.  I would just buy a new one...

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