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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 01-30-2010, 10:22 PM   #1
KuyasKitchen
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Default Wireless Web-Serving Temperature Probe

Some of you might recall last year about this time I was talking about making a wireless probe for my smoker. Well, I finally did it. The temp probe I've used for a long time to monitor the meats finally died. No choice.

I wanted something to make my life easier. I'm usually fairly busy. And, admittedly, I'm a serious geek (proud of it, too). So, had to involve computers.

I bought an Arduino microcontroller, a type K thermocouple food-grade temperature probe with stainless-sheated leads, a WiFi shield for the Adruino, and a chip to let the microcontroller get info from the thermocouple in a meaningful fashion.

And, I had to write a little software for it because nothing out there existed (or at least, was available).

Cost? About $155. Microcontroller $35. Probe $50. WiFi shield $55. Interface chip $15. My soldering skills came free.

What does it do? It serves up a little web page that tells me the current probe temperature. I love it. From any computer in the house (including my cell phone's web browser), I can check the temperature.

What's next? Multiple probe support (including smoker ambient temperature). Text message (SMS) alerts when target temperature nears or ambient smoker temperature drops too low. Temperature graphs and long-term storage.

Here it is:

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Unread 01-30-2010, 10:26 PM   #2
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Pretty cool. You had me until you said soldering. I definitely like the concept though. Convert your microcontroller to a tini board, add a one-wire controller for the serial bus, and you've got a Stoker:) Seriously, I know the joy to be had from doing the tech stuff yourself, but know what's out there.

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Unread 01-30-2010, 10:26 PM   #3
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Nice job. Now you have to post the code and the instructions for inputting it. :)
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Unread 01-30-2010, 10:28 PM   #4
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Did you ever think about a cold beer and sitting by the fire. Feeding fuel every now an then and BS'n with buds about Q. Nice post but just a thought.
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Unread 01-30-2010, 10:38 PM   #5
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put up some plans for the rest of us nerds.
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Unread 01-30-2010, 10:55 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmprantz View Post
Pretty cool. You had me until you said soldering.
Only the thermocouple interface board (the little one) required any soldering. And, you can buy them now pre-built.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dmprantz View Post
I definitely like the concept though. Convert your microcontroller to a tini board, add a one-wire controller for the serial bus, and you've got a Stoker:) Seriously, I know the joy to be had from doing the tech stuff yourself, but know what's out there.
Yeah, I wanted to be able to make this do exactly what I wanted. So, that meant I had to make it myself.

I need to add a little protection for it. It's a little naked at the moment.
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Unread 01-30-2010, 10:59 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meat Burner View Post
Did you ever think about a cold beer and sitting by the fire. Feeding fuel every now an then and BS'n with buds about Q. Nice post but just a thought.
Um, no. I don't like beer. Would prefer to sip a good single-malt.

I don't have a stick burner.

And, sadly, people around here don't like to talk about Q. Just eat it. So, I'm alone while cooking. Around here "BBQ" is "grilling meat in a hibachi while fanning the coals to make it really hot".

I come here to this great site to talk about Q. Without you guys, I'd be lost.
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Unread 01-30-2010, 11:17 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KuyasKitchen View Post
Um, no. I don't like beer. Would prefer to sip a good single-malt.
Malt is beer.

Dude PM me. Long time no chat.

This device you are making looks great, neighbor!
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Unread 01-30-2010, 11:22 PM   #9
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Plans ... Hardware

The microcontroller is a Arduino Duemilanove. You can get it at http://www.makershed.com/ProductDeta...ductCode=MKSP4 or any number of other sources. I happen to like Make Magazine.

The WiFi shield is the WiShield from AsyncLabs. This is a plug-and-play WiFi interface for the Arduino. Does almost everything for you easily. You can get it from http://asynclabs.com/store?page=shop...&category_id=6

The interface chip (and board) is from MakerBot Industries. It's their Thermocouple Sensor Kit 1.0. This requires a little soldering. Very, very easy. Currently $16. http://store.makerbot.com/electronic...-v1-0-kit.html


The probe is more complex to order. I ordered it from Omega.com. I use their probe configurator. it's a Flash interface. Takes a little time to load. Go here: http://www.omega.com/config/probeconfig_TC.html
  1. First, select a K-type thermocouple. Press Continue.
  2. For Style, select Transition Joint. Then Rugged Junction. Press Continue.
  3. For Sheath Material, select Super Omegaclad XL. Press Continue.
  4. For Length, select 6". Press Continue. (I'm tempted to see if they'll sell me a 4" probe)
  5. For Diameter, select 0.062 (1/16)". Press continue.
  6. For Junction, select Ungrounded. This has a slower response time (around 5 seconds) but gives better protection against noise. Press Continue.
  7. For Wire Length, select Custom. I chose 60" on my first probe, but picked 120" for my second. Yes, I want a 10-foot lead so I can put my electronics just about anywhere.
  8. For Overbraid option, select Stainless Steel.
  9. For Termination, select Stripped Leads.
  10. Press Get Price.
  11. This gave me part number TJ120-CAXL-116U-6-SB. $51.75.
  12. Press Buy Now and go through checkout.
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Unread 01-30-2010, 11:24 PM   #10
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That's cool, like the others said, share some plans, I'd love to do this!
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Unread 01-30-2010, 11:26 PM   #11
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HAHA oops I gues that's what happens when you start a post and grab a drink part way through
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Unread 01-30-2010, 11:58 PM   #12
KuyasKitchen
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Quote:
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HAHA oops I gues that's what happens when you start a post and grab a drink part way through
Haha, true. I've done that many times.

Still, you quote Yoda in your sig. So, all is forgiven!
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Unread 01-31-2010, 12:49 AM   #13
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Well I have had those for several years now. It took me almost 20 years to perfect them but mine will also add fuel and adjust the air flow if need be and will even alert me if something is out of its control, at least when I have programed it correctly, dang things have a mind of there own sometimes. It took me forever to figure out how to configure but once I got the hang of it it was fairly easy with just a few glitches from time to time, its an ongoing project but I enjoy it. This has proven very costly but very effective its called a wife and kids, LOL.
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Unread 01-31-2010, 01:15 AM   #14
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hahahaha ... I'm only six years into Project Offspring. He's got a ways to go.
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Unread 01-31-2010, 01:27 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KuyasKitchen View Post
hahahaha ... I'm only six years into Project Offspring. He's got a ways to go.

Its never to early to start programming er I mean parenting.
Dave
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