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Thread: Modify manual Valve to Electric

  1. #1
    Supporting Member garage nut's Avatar
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    garage nut's Tools

    Modify manual Valve to Electric

    Only wanted to post once it was operational, but perhaps there is some easier way so let me bore you.

    In a Flood and Drain system (hydroponics) they use a "Bell Siphon" to drain the grow beds. This is unfortunately a manual process that can only be slowed down by reducing the amount of water you put into your grow They also seems to be a bit temperamental based on YouTube clips. So i want to have a 50mm electrically operated valve that will drain the bed. A Solenoid valve of this size is just too expensive for an experiment.

    Here is my idea..a normal ball valve (very cheep) attach an arm with a slot in it. Run a nut with some pins on the side in this slot via a piece of threaded rod been turned by an old 12v battery gun and with the help of a Arduino micro controller you have an electrically operated valve. the treaded rod will be supported at the end and where the drill is attached.

    Modify manual Valve to Electric-electric-valve-1.jpg

    Fully closed. Imagine the flat bar with the slot in it attached to the flat bar bolted to the valve.

    Modify manual Valve to Electric-valve-half-open.jpg

    As the drill turns the nut will push the bar forward and the valve will start to close.

    Modify manual Valve to Electric-valve-closed.jpg

    Fully closed it will be in this position. Just need to add some limit switches so the drill knows when to stop.

    Now I can run the pump only when the valve is closed and by adding a sensor in the grow bed I can open the valve when the water reaches that point. The whole process can be slowed down at night because the Arduino has a clock and knows when it is night.

    Back to the valve...any improvements or blatant oversights??
    Last edited by garage nut; 11-04-2018 at 06:41 AM.

  2. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to garage nut For This Useful Post:

    billster (11-04-2018), Frank S (11-05-2018), PJs (11-06-2018), Seedtick (11-05-2018)

  3. #2
    Supporting Member garage nut's Avatar
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    garage nut's Tools
    Nut turned up.

    Modify manual Valve to Electric-slide-nut.jpg

    The square piece of metal will be welded to the flat bar on the valve and the flat bar with the slots bolted to it to allow for disassembly.

    Modify manual Valve to Electric-slide-nut-open.jpg

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    mwmkravchenko (11-05-2018)

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    billster's Tools
    Cheap + elbow grease = great stuff.

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    wizard69's Tools
    Many a process valve is similarly energized by a motor. The only real difference is that these valves use a gear train or in some cases a pneumatic actuator.

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    Supporting Member garage nut's Avatar
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    garage nut's Tools
    Do you think this will not work?

    I was looking for an old worm wheel set up to keep the angular farce constant, but could not fins anything lying around at work or anything I could strip it out of.

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    Supporting Member Frank S's Avatar
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    Frank S's Tools
    Quote Originally Posted by garage nut View Post
    Do you think this will not work?

    I was looking for an old worm wheel set up to keep the angular farce constant, but could not fins anything lying around at work or anything I could strip it out of.
    of course it will work. as for long life dependability that will be based entirely on how frequent the activation is required plus lubrication and maintenance
    if it must actuate several times a minute then it could last for hours or days if it only has to actuate once in a while then who knows it could last for years.
    I can see no reason not to try it you evidently put some time and thought into the design.
    good job
    Never try to tell me it can't be done
    When I have to paint I use http://kbs.justoldtrucks.com/

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    Just thinking ,wiper motor actuator have previously used to open ball valve,nicely geared??

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    Supporting Member Frank S's Avatar
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    Frank S's Tools
    Quote Originally Posted by trigger View Post
    Just thinking ,wiper motor actuator have previously used to open ball valve,nicely geared??
    now there is an idea could easily be run off a battery kept charged by a solar panel.
    Never try to tell me it can't be done
    When I have to paint I use http://kbs.justoldtrucks.com/

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    garage nut, as someone has suggested, use a windshield wiper mechanism, or I'd add, automotive window regulator. The motor is already wired for forward and reverse, rest of regulator assembly aleady performs back and forth motion. Very cheap. When you scrap one vehicle you get four of them.
    Last edited by volodar; 11-06-2018 at 08:33 AM.

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  15. #10
    Supporting Member Frank S's Avatar
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    Frank S's Tools
    The only thing about window regulators is they are not all easily converted for use since many have a plastic or a cable for the actuation finding one with an arm would be best
    Never try to tell me it can't be done
    When I have to paint I use http://kbs.justoldtrucks.com/

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