Saturday, 11 December 2010

LineWatch - It Works !!

I've been struggling with the LineWatch.
It works fine in terms of the local alarm on board the boat, but I've been having problems getting it to text me when I'm not on the boat.

Firstly, the LineWatch was pulsing the SMS unit and triggering a text every five seconds.
Apart from my mobile vibrating like crazy, it quickly used the credit on the PAYG SIM in the unit.

So, I modified the circuit. Partial success, it would just send one text, but the system stayed locked on in the alarm condition.

Finally, today, I sorted it.

It now sends just one text. If the alarm condition persists (i.e. boat stays adrift and at distance from the sender), it will repeat the text about 45-60 minutes later.

I've now got all the various independent systems that I've designed and built, working together.

There are basically two modes:

Marina mode:

I receive a text on my mobile if:

- There is more than 5mm water in the engine bilge (also generates a local alarm on the boat)
- Somebody trips the shore breaker, so that my battery charger and anti-frost heaters go off

I can then choose whether I want to drive to the boat to check it out or just give one of the marina staff a call.

Towpath mode:

I receive a text on my mobile if:

- There is more than 5mm water in the engine bilge
- The boat drifts more than 5m from the sender unit (e.g. pins forced out by passing boats or boat set adrift by vandals, etc)

These events also activate different tone alarms onboard to wake occupants up.

The text message wording enables you to identify the different causes, so if you're sitting in the pub and can't see the boat, you will know what problem is being reported.

I don't think we are going to drift very far with this ice at present though !!!

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