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Author Topic: Integration of vehicle into my HA...  (Read 5769 times)

frank

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Integration of vehicle into my HA...
« on: March 07, 2006, 11:05:54 PM »

Hi all,
    This is my first thread here at the new "digs" and I think I've got a real doozie! I've done some searching and haven't been able to find anything in this forum relative to my intended "project":
    Besides a "roll-over" driveway sensor, is there any way that I can rig-up a motion detector or other sensor to sense when I've backed-up (in my driveway) to within 1 foot of my garage door, and have some kind of "alert" signal me to stop before I plow thru it?
    The "bumper sensors" that are offered as an accessory for my new truck are awfully expensive and the back-up camera is similarly overpriced to the point where I can't justify it's purchase (probably not until I knock the garage door out of it's tracks!)  ::)
    I'm simply asking if any of you "hard-core" innovators that regularly visit the forum have any ideas that I could try, using existing HW/SW by either modding it, or by using a clever combination to do what a high-priced toy can do. It would be ULTRA-COOL  8) to be able to hook-up one of the wide-angle cams to the NAV system display! Hide it in the license plate frame, er sum'pin...
    I don't wanna go "low tech" and build a short "speed bump" at the top of the drive, either, guys!  ;) ... so I'll get THAT suggestion outta-da-way right here and now.  ;D
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Tuicemen

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Re: Integration of vehicle into my HA...
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2006, 03:50:08 PM »

The cam Idea isn't that hard to pull off since it uses 12volts! Could be mounted inside pointed out the rear window, use a wired unit and run the wires under the headliner! I've read of people mounting them in cars with vcrs and a vcr commander and motion sensor so that would be a new twist! ;) :o
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frank

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Re: Integration of vehicle into my HA...
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2006, 08:44:29 PM »

The cam Idea isn't that hard to pull off since it uses 12volts! Could be mounted inside pointed out the rear window, use a wired unit and run the wires under the headliner! I've read of people mounting them in cars with vcrs and a vcr commander and motion sensor so that would be a new twist! ;) :o

I suppose I could even use the rear accessory outlet to make it a temporary installation if you think that the camera's electronics would tolerate the "ups and downs" of a vehicle's voltage. (or is it made steady somehow?) hmmmm.....? But the vehicle is a truck and has a bed. That's the thing that is new to me. I'm getting better at judging the distance, but when there's snow/ice in my driveway that slopes up at about 18 degrees, it can be unnerving backing-in. It's a short driveway, too, so I hafta sorta "gun it" then get off the gas real quick to get the vehicle in off the road far enough for comfort.

If I did use the cam, tho... I'd hafta figger-out a way to splice it into the NAV screen. Any ideas?
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phorce1

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Re: Integration of vehicle into my HA...
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2006, 06:08:33 PM »

Well, since this is an "Automating your HOUSE" forum  ;).

Get an X-10 motion sensor of most any variety and put a "blinder" on it so it can only "see" a very narrow range directly in front of its face. (Cardboard with a narrow slit -- may have to experiment with size).

Mount that on the garage door moulding and have it operate a red light bulb installed in a socket rocket mounted where it is easily visible.

Get a friend to drive your new truck  :o and play with the sensor adjustment so it comes on about 3 - 6 inches before the place you actually want to be stopped (nobody's reflexes are good enough to react instantly when "gunning it up the hill"  :P).
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frank

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Re: Integration of vehicle into my HA...
« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2006, 01:58:48 AM »

Well, since this is an "Automating your HOUSE" forum  ;).

Get an X-10 motion sensor of most any variety and put a "blinder" on it so it can only "see" a very narrow range directly in front of its face. (Cardboard with a narrow slit -- may have to experiment with size).

Mount that on the garage door moulding and have it operate a red light bulb installed in a socket rocket mounted where it is easily visible.

Get a friend to drive your new truck  :o and play with the sensor adjustment so it comes on about 3 - 6 inches before the place you actually want to be stopped (nobody's reflexes are good enough to react instantly when "gunning it up the hill"  :P).

Excellent Idea phorce1 ! Maybe I can use it in a different situation, though.

Normally I would trust X10 RF... but I think I'm gonna hafta pass on this application of it.  ;)

Indoors, when the transceiver is close by, I normally don't see much of a delay between when I pass by a sensor and the time a light actually comes on. I haven't found the X10 sensors to be as reliable outdoors in that regard. I'd definately trust MY reflexes more than those of my HA system. So, I guess a combination of things would be best to make it "failsafe".
I've even thought of going "low-tech" if I can't find a low cost techie way to do it. Ya'know... the old "superball on a string - thing". I have an awning above a window, above my garage door that I could hang a length of good, strong fishin' line (or sum'pin else that might not stretch as much), and put a bouncy superball on the end of it. When I see a "flag" (fixed to the line) jerk, or hear the thump of the ball on my tailgate, I'll know I'm where I wanna be. heh-heh!  ;D  I used to use this method in my garage with my car, so I know it's VERY dependable. But outside, with the wind blowin', it may have its limitations. Or a playful neighborhood feline might just decide to have a go at it!  :D
Thanks fer the idea, though. I know the "slit" thing will come in handy sometime!
 :)
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phorce1

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Re: Integration of vehicle into my HA...
« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2006, 02:34:20 AM »

OK, so drop the X-10 aspect of the idea. Go buy a $10 motion sensing floodlight from Wally World and do the same thing with the "blinder". No delay between motion and the floods lightng up.
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roger1818

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Re: Integration of vehicle into my HA...
« Reply #6 on: April 04, 2006, 11:36:52 AM »

Smarthome sells a bunch of Parking Accessories.  Most of them are quite inexpensive.
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steven r

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Re: Integration of vehicle into my HA...
« Reply #7 on: April 07, 2006, 10:10:18 AM »

I'm not sure if they still have it but I picked up one from Circuit City a few years ago. [Checked on 4/9/06. They still carry it. It's $19.99] It wall mounts and is settable for 2, 3 or 4 feet. It starts flashing as you get close and then turns steady red at your selected distance. Battery life is excellent and it will flash yellow after you stop when the battery is low. It just takes a few minutes to install.

I followed the SmartHome link in the previous message and the $25 laser one looks really nice. Mounting and adjusting it looks like you might have to stand on your car, however.


Now I have similar need. I need a tape / ribbon switch to signal as I drive over it. I want it for my garage to trigger welcome and exit macros. [See my listing under "drive over switch" in the wish list.]

Any ideas?
« Last Edit: April 09, 2006, 09:29:37 PM by steven r »
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