bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code

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Bunnings have a great water timer with two rotary switches that
controls a ball vlave that shuts off
water from your tap. $25   It has a single PIC that controls the
logic.  I wanted to dl the code from the pic and study it and reflash
my own code.
Anyway of   hacking into the code of this pic?


Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code



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They actually use a "PIC" do they? What is the number on the uC? And as far
as modifying the code goes it isn't going to be overly difficult to re-write
it from scratch anyway.

James



Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code


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I just got two Holman garden timers from Bunnings, only $30 and has a
ball vale too, powered from two AA's, and has a very nice LCD with
membrane control panel. Very flexible in the programs you can set, so
no need to modify the code. Even comes with a nice rubber boot to slip
over the front to protect it.
And amazingly it's made in Australia, excellent quality, I'm
impressed.

Dave.


Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code


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It's this one:
http://www.holmanindustries.com.au/products.asp?product=RSR%20Prog%20Tap%20Timer

The one with the rain sensor input was $60, the one without was $30.
Bargain.

Dave.


Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code



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http://www.holmanindustries.com.au/products.asp?product=RSR%20Prog%20Tap%20Timer
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I know the one the OP is talking about. I bought a couple about 5yrs ago for
$20 each so I guess they are probably less than that now. They aren't really
any good if you are under water restrictions though as the simple timer only
allows a singular time interval so doesn't work for "odds & evens" watering.
Bought them to water some newly laid turf. Two months later upto stage 4
restrictions and it of course the lawn died anyway (by which time we'd sold
the house thankfully) :)

For $30 for the ones you are talking about I wouldn't even bother pulling
the cover of the cheapies, not worth the stuffing around.

James



Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code




. . .

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I got a different "Gardenmate" timer from Bunnings about 9 months ago
- I think it was around $30.

It has a LCD display and can be set for every second, third, etc day
but also for certain days of the week.

I found that there were also Toro/Pope  timers on the market that are
physically slightly different to that Gardenmate one but are probably
using the same LCD and controller as the capabilities and way of
programming them appear to be identical. Just a week ago I saw that
Woollies had a similar one branded "The Green Gardener" for $20.

Andy Wood
snipped-for-privacy@trap.ozemail.com.au

Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code



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http://www.holmanindustries.com.au/products.asp?product=RSR%20Prog%20Tap%20Timer
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Looks good. I just bought a Galcon for about $90. One disadvantage: It comes
on  with a jerk and the water pressure stresses the joints (one of which
popped off as a result). Does this one "turn" on rather than "lurch" on?



Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code




. . .
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The ones I have seen use a rotating ball with a hole through the
centre for the valve, so they do not turn on and off suddenly like
most solenoid valves.

Also, the valve only uses power when turning on or off which makes
battery operation practical

Andy Wood
snipped-for-privacy@trap.ozemail.com.au

Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code


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Yep, on the Holman unit I measured just over 0.1A from the two AA's
while the ball was rotating (around 10 seconds or so as stated
before), and then the usual uA's of sleep current.

BTW, great to see an Aussie company making an excellent and cheap
consumer eletronic product in Australia.

Dave.


Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code


I too have to lcd version of the garden mate but when you open it it
just has a black blob custom lsi chip
and lcd controlling identical motor, limit switches setup as the $5
cheaper two rotary switch version gardenmate.
The two knob version has discrete components around a pic (number
rubbed off).  I thought I could make it solar powered, have a 415mhz
reciever and have it turn on/off remote control. Reason?? To gravity
drain a watertank on my property into irrigation tubing.  The reason
it needs the pic logic apart from the timing function is also for the
limit switches so it knows when to stop the motor spinning the ball at
the off position. Also fiddling with it (ie unsoldering the limit
switch wires) the unit knew there was a failure and didnt want to
activate.


Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code


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If the number is rubbed off, how do you know it's a PIC??

BTW, if they went to the trouble of rubbing the number off, then it's
almost certainly code protected too, so you can't read the code out.

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So ditch the electronics that came with it and add your own
controller.
Don't waste your time trying reverse engineer what's there.
You could custom design your own board to fit the existing mounts and
everything.

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Good to see the programmer was thinking then.

Dave.


Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code


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Hi Dave

Rushed off and bought the Holman timer at Bunnings. Great. My water pressure
is 740 kPa, which is within the unit's specs. I wonder if you find yours
leaking at the joints. Haven't tried it yet as it's 2.11 am!  BTW, I note
they make a point of slow turn off, but it's turn ON that causes grief here.
Obviously the same action, but the long grinding of gears sounds a bit
expensive on batteries.



Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code


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Like I posted before, it's only about 0.1A or so for 10 seconds or so
each time it switches.
That would give over 20 hours of continuous operation on Alkalines. If
it only switches for 20 seconds a day, that's still a few years worth
of battery life.

Mine is hooked up to the water tank pump, don't know the pressure off-
hand, but doesn't leak.

Dave.


Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code


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740kPa is a shirtload of pressure, but there's no reason a device designed
for mains pressure should have a problem. By comparison a tank pump probably
cuts out at about 350 kPa. I'm interested in the ball valve idea, as
conventional solenoids require a certain amount of water pressure to open
and close reliably, which is a problem if you're trying to use low-pressure
gravity feed.




Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code


I bought one too. Pressure nearly 8 bars. Was slight leak cured by using
PTFE tape. I too have that grinding of gears. *Sounds* more than 100mA!

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Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code


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That's exactly why I was curious to measure it!
My first thought was "those poor AA's"!

Dave.


Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code



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Yes. With two waterings a day (normal) that's two ons and two offs, makes 40
seconds. Your estimate of the life of a Duracell AA then?



Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code


keyboard and composed:

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This is the Duracell AA datasheet:
http://www.duracell.com/oem/Pdf/new/MN1500_US_CT.pdf

The life of an AA Duracell is 20 hours at 100mA, so your batteries
should last ...

 20 x 3600 / 40 = 1800 days

- Franc Zabkar
--
Please remove one 'i' from my address when replying by email.

Re: bunnings gardenmate water tap timer / modifying pic code


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Yes, the Holman has a ball valve that turns very slowly (maybe takes
10 seconds or so), and it's advertised as being anti-water hammer.

Dave.


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