Instructions for DIY a timer automatic pet feeding machine
Have you ever thought about DIY your timer automatic pet feeding machine? This topic I think is suitable for those who raise dogs, cats, fishes, etc. in general, all pets from small to large. I have 3 puppies and 1 cat. I go to work all day until evening, so during the day the family members forgot to feed them so they went hungry until evening. Found guilty, then I started to try 2 sets of automatic feeding machines. Previously, I had taken a quick look around to see what products are available in the market and find out more about the existing features of products. Its price is really expensive which is about more than 2 million, not less, as an idiot, so before thinking about buying anything, I often consider that I can make my own. That’s okay, so I decided to do it by myself.
You can reead best slow feed dog bowl
Part 1: Information of the machine
My machine makes use of water pipes to make food bowls. If you want to rebuild, you can choose 90 mm, 60 mm, and 30 mm tubes to suit the animal you are raising, and If you want to have more or less food, you can adjust the length of the water pipe. The design I drew is available for the 3 pipe sizes above, you can download on the website. There are several types of transparent water pipes on the market, you can choose to use them to see how much food is still inside the tube, but the price of transparent pipes is quite expensive.
The apparatus is controlled by an app installed on Android phones. Each device after loading the firmware needs to be configured a bit and needs to be within the wifi coverage at home, there is an intermediary public server to receive and send signals from the app to the automatic feeding machine. I do not need to always turn on the phone, the feeding timer is created and stored on the server so turning off the app, or the disconnected phone does not affect the automatic feeding timer.
Features of each apparatus:
♥ Control by app on Android phones (iOs will be available later)
♥ Control from anywhere via the Internet (not limited to your home)
♥ Adjust the amount of food spilled out
♥ Proactively press to feed
♥ Set a timer, and choose the items for the week to feed
♥ Change timezone to suit the geographical position
♥ Connect to control many more machines
Part 2: Hardware preparation
1 m x 90/60/30 mm water hose depending on demand
2 x round stainless steel holders, tubes & screws
Wooden boards 30 x 80 cm
1 x 45 degree hose connector
2 / Seed release mechanism – Propeller
2. Seed release mechanism – Bird mouth
– 6 x 3mm rubber foam (I use soft rubber so that it does not get stuck, this place is cut after mica is stuck after running the motor feed cannot rotate) – DuckBlade60.DXF phi 60 or DuckBlade90.DXF phi 90
– 1 x 5mm mica (DuckFan5mm.DXF)
– 1 x 5mm mica (DuckFanMotorShaft5mm.DXF)
– 1 x 3mm mica (DuckFanMotorShaftHolder3mm.DXF)
– 1 x 6mm hexagon head extension shaft
– Non-2mm steel rebar for structural reinforcement
Assemble the propeller and glue it back with 502 or M3 glue as possible. Wait for the glue to dry, then put the propeller in the tube, remember to drill a hole to pierce the extension shaft of the engine. Use the hexagon lock to fasten the screw on the opposite end to finish this part.
3. Electric dock
Part 3: Control circuit, electronic components
1 / Operational principles:
The motor that rotates the propeller releases food is controlled by a relay circuit, the amount of food is more or less depending on the rotation time of the motor, currently I fixed the rotation time from 1 – 8 seconds. The relay circuit I am using follows the theoretical drawing below. Because the current of the control pins of NodeMCU is 3.3v, I use the 3.3v relay instead of the common 5v type on the market.
2. Electronic components
1 x Board connected components (feeder.brd download here)
1 x DC 12v motor with gearbox
1 x Motor shaft length connector
1 x NodeMCU
1 x 3v3 relay
1 x 1k resistor
1 x 10k resistor
1 x 2N3904
1 x 1N4007
1 x button
1 x DC power PCB mount
1 x 2 pole screw terminal block
1 x 9V Adapter
After welding the components and assembling them into the box, you have completed the hardware stage.
Part 4: Driver (firmware) & app
1 / Software & firmware control:
You need to download the following software to your computer:
2 / Install the firmware:
Every time you copy the firmware to the NodeMCU board, you must always clean the memory first with ESP8266Flasher. Note that you need to check which COM port NodeMCU is received by opening the view in Device Manager.
Well done!!! Hope that our instructions are helpful and you can succeed in DIY your timer automatic pet feeding machine. It is sure that this is not an easy job to do this complicated machine, but the harder it is, the happier you feel when the work is done, right?