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A dust bin level sensor

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Forum topic by KevinHousen posted 03-25-2018 03:40 PM 1087 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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KevinHousen

2 posts in 239 days


03-25-2018 03:40 PM

Topic tags/keywords: dust collector level sensor bin ultrasonic

I’ve just finished building a level-sensor for the bin in my DIY dust collector. Since I’ve got many good ideas from various postings here, I thought I’d share my design in case anyone is interested. In a nutshell:

1. Its based on an ultrasonic sensor connected to an Arduino.
2. It consists of two parts – the sensor itself and an indicator to let you know when the bin is nearly full and full.
3. The cost for you to build the sensor is around $40-$50, or less if you already have parts on hand.
4. The indicator I used (3 LED light strips, green=OK, yellow=nearly full, red=full) and the associated parts ran about $60. But you can use a wide variety of indicators (lights, audio, release of a fresh donut smell into your shop) that could could cost more or less.
5. I’m not selling these things. Just providing information.

Of course, YMMV, and you may have found less expensive solutions that work for your system. I put a detailed description together as a pdf file, but I can’t seem to post it here. So I put it on my google drive, which you can access here:

The Arduino source code is here:

Hopefully, someone will get some use out of it.
Kevin


6 replies so far

View Plasmon360's profile

Plasmon360

21 posts in 275 days


#1 posted 03-26-2018 05:24 AM

Interesting. Nice write-up too. This product seems to be using infrared sensor instead of ultrasound sensor. Probably gives better reliable data..

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

5143 posts in 2669 days


#2 posted 03-26-2018 10:47 AM

Nicely done, I bought one of the Oneida sensors a few years or so back when they had some kind of deal for $50. But at their current price yours looks to be a much more affordable option. I’ve been without a shop for 2 years (just now got it re established) so haven’t given the Oneida a good workout yet. If it flunks out I’ll build one of yours.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

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Carl10

109 posts in 632 days


#3 posted 03-26-2018 01:26 PM

Ben Rivel over at SawMill Creek has a thread about building the Oneida $148 sensor for <$50. It is based on the QS18VP6D sensor available on eBay for $28.00. Worth checking out if you are inclined to make your own.

Hope this helps,

Carl

Kevin: Thanks for the code, I like the flexibility the Arduino provides and will probably build your version down the road. Well done.

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

3602 posts in 2164 days


#4 posted 03-26-2018 01:53 PM

This is a nice setup and design but beyond my capability.

The one mentioned th a Ben Rivel built is something I could probably do.

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

5141 posts in 3419 days


#5 posted 03-27-2018 06:33 PM

I would use the “sight glass” approach to a dust bin. I would take a piece of lexan about 1” wide x about 12” long and 1/4” thick and frame it with hardwood or metal ; cut a slot in the dust bin and secure the sight glass in the opening. Easy to do on a flat surface, but a bit harder on a curved surface. Making it dust tight goes without saying.

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KevinHousen

2 posts in 239 days


#6 posted 03-27-2018 06:47 PM



I would use the “sight glass” approach to a dust bin. I would take a piece of lexan about 1” wide x about 12” long and 1/4” thick and frame it with hardwood or metal ; cut a slot in the dust bin and secure the sight glass in the opening. Easy to do on a flat surface, but a bit harder on a curved surface. Making it dust tight goes without saying.

- MrRon

Yeah, thats a straightforward approach. The surface of my aluminum trash bin is not only curved, but also has wrinkles in it. I suppose one could seal all the edges up with some foam stripping. But, one nice thing about having a system like the ultrasonic one described above, or light-beam break, or rotating paddle etc, is that you can turn on a bin-full indicator that you can easily see from across the shop, which is nice when planing and the bin fills fast.

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