Mini Blinds - Opening and Closing Shutters


(Benjamin Bentler) #1

I wonder if there would be a way to control the shutters on the mini blinds to let more or less sunlight in.  I’d like to control it for my flowers while I’m gone and close it in the evening for privacy.  Any thoughts on how to do that?


(Kris Linquist) #2

The most expensive but easiest way to do this would likely be to get motorized blinds then get a ZWave blind controller motor:

http://store.homeseer.com/store/ESI-ABMHZ-Z-Wave-AC-ShadeBlind-Motor-Controller-P852.aspx?gclid=CMnYluam0LYCFYx_Qgod_WEAlA

 

 

The least expensive but most technical way to do this would be to get an Arduino, the SmartShield, and a servo that can twist the blinds.   Servos are cheap:

…and there are lots of Arduino sample sketches on how to control them.  Unfortunately I didn’t pick the Arduino shield for one of my initial ‘things’ (I’m kicking myself now) but I’m hoping that it’ll be easy to fire off the I/O commands via SmartThings.

 

Here’s a neat example of what you can do with an arduino and servo:

 


(Andrew Urman) #3

Have you looked at http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1063769962/shuttereaze-movement-made-eazy


(Benjamin Bentler) #4

Thanks Andrew!  I have looked into this already.  I am more interested in controlling my mini blinds that I already have.  Basically I don’t care so much about opening and closing, but more of allowing the tilt of the blinds that allows more or less light in.  I know my plants would appreciate it as would I.  Zwave is a very cool thing except it seems that outside of locks and a few sensors there are few mechanical devices that work straight out of the box.  Alot of the devices require the ability to tinker or program all of which I happen to be terrible at.  Guess that’s what my best friend is for!  :+)


(Andrew Urman) #5

I’ve seen some Z-Wave device capable of some cool stuff. ZigBee is still somewhat up and coming, but I expect some great stuff out of it. Regular mini-blinds are pretty hard because of the great force required.