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Help with sliding door automation

Discussion in 'Sensors and Actuators' started by Latz, Mar 6, 2020.

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  1. Latz


    Apr 11, 2015
    Hi all,

    Trying to wrap my head around something and could use your thoughts..

    I've got a sliding door that I want to automate, want it so I wave my hand in front of a sensor and the door opens, do it again on the other side and it closes.

    I've got a 230v, 130w motor. It's got inbuilt limit switches. So it should theoretically run in the open or close direction for as long as I set it to run. Reason I mention this is there won't be a need to put microswitches or timing into this control system.

    I've designed a pulley system for the motor to mount to and that bit should work fine. Trouble I'm having is figuring out how to make this work electronically; is there a controller or something? Guessing I'll need to fix something up.

    The motor has 4 wires; earth, neutral, live (motor clockwise) and live2 (motor anti-clockwise).

    Any suggestions?
  2. Latz


    Apr 11, 2015
    It's possible to install something in the loft so space isn't an issue. I was considering installing a garage door controller/roller shutter controller in the loft to control the motor but I'm still stuck with the configuration of the proximity sensor (is that the right type?) for the wave of the hand door opening.

    The garage door controller will accept a remote button but it requires one for open and a separate one for close. I don't quite know how to do that without something that switches states!

    This would be far simpler to do if I had separate switching for open and close lol
  3. Latz


    Apr 11, 2015
    Sorry.. me again. Found this:

    I'm guessing this would work but think I'd need a relay on the end that offers 2 states:

    1. When this light controller is waved ON, relay opens the garage door controller.

    2.When this light controller is waved OFF, relay closes the garage door controller.

    The only other way I can see to add this logic state switching is to use an Arduino or something. Right, that's all my ideas. Anyone else got some suggestions?
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2020
  4. Bluejets


    Oct 5, 2014
    Might work ok but rather expensive and you will have to add a relay on the output to your motor.

    Reason being motors draw 4 to 6 times full load at startup which will more than likely fry your new sensor.

    Most simply use a wireless relay with a remote for maybe AUS$15 to $20.

    Another consideration apart from that is, you do not mention any torque adjustment allowance.

    Most gates need it as a safety factor in case someone gets caught as the gate is closing or opening.

    These type of safety features when building your own can make a $400 Ebay unit with these features built in, look rather inviting.
  5. Latz


    Apr 11, 2015
    Regarding the safety aspect, the garage door controller can accept a sensor to monitor this. For example, a photo sensor or beam that when interrupted will stop operation.

    I'm thinking to use the light controller to activate the garage door controller via a relay.

    Trouble is, how do I get a relay setup to do the 2 states (wave to open, wave to close).

    Hope I'm making sense (?)
  6. Bluejets


    Oct 5, 2014
    Rather confusing when a sliding door turns into a commercially made rolla-door but anyhow.......

    Garage doors usually come with a "manual button" that can be installed say, at the other end of the garage.
    This switch is a momentary contact switch.

    So, push the button when the door is closed and it will open.
    Push the open door and it will close.

    Somewhere on the main box you will find a set of 2 terminals where a remote button can be hard wired.
    Connect a n/o momentary close relay ( such as can be selected with the unit I quoted above) across these 2 terminals and you are done.

    Doesn't appear the pir switch you link to has the momentary switching facility so it would not be suitable.

    The other problem with a pir sensor is it activates on movement.
    i.e. not only a waving hand but also any one passing.
    So you may end up with a door operating every time whether you intend it or not.

    Whereas a switch action such as I suggested in a wireless remote is an intentional action.
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2020
  7. Martaine2005


    May 12, 2015
    How big is this sliding door?
    How heavy is it?
    Is noise an issue?

    For safety, you could look into photoelectric sensors/infrared beam like they have on elevator doors.
    Your pulley system could be made from off the shelf parts from a model shop. Example, 60 size RC helicopter tail drives.
    A toothed, strong yet flexible drive belt complete with mating pulleys. Very quiet and reliable too. Best of all, it would take no more than an inch of space at the top or bottom of the door.

    The sensors you should be looking at are Gesture sensors, Proximity sensors, Photoelectric sensors and motion sensors.

    An Arduino, some relays or relay modules, may be some mosfets or mosfet modules (modules = shields), some Arduino code and you should have everything required.

  8. Latz


    Apr 11, 2015
    Thanks for the replies guys. I'm moving along with the project gradually in the midst of all the other work on doing to the room!

    I have got the pulleys and belt now, got some frame switches to prevent the door from continuing to push past the stop.. that sort of thing
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