The FilaWeigher – A Standalone WiFi Web Based Weight Sensor for 3D Printer Filament For Less Than $7

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I created this project so I can know exactly how much filament is left on a spool for my 3D printer, an Ender 5 I wrote about previously. However, it can very well be used to weigh anything else. I put a few settings that are specific to the filament, but they don't have to be used.

My Experience with My First 3D Printer: a Creality Ender 5 (With Mini Getting Started Guide)

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About 2 months ago, I decided to finally pull the trigger on purchasing a 3D printer. I settled on the Creality Ender 5. I felt that it struck the right balance between bed size, price, and the community behind it. Although the community isn’t extremely large on its own, I felt that it’s similar enough to the Ender 3 that I should be able to able to figure out any issues by using the same types of advice. I have found that to be accurate for the most part. In addition, it looks like the number of Ender 5 users have increased sharply around the time I bought it. I also liked how it had the 4  vertical rails, which I’m sure gives it a lot more stability. Read more...

Using a Kindle Fire as a Touch Screen Home Control Panel

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Recently, Amazon was selling the refurbished Fire 7 tablet for less than $40. The new one runs for juts $10 more. So I figured I would order it and see if it would be an option. After spending an hour with it, I felt confident that I can make it work. I’ve been running it for a couple weeks at the time of writing, and it’s been awesome.

Installing the Ring Pro Doorbell/Mini Review

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I wrote about the Nelly WiFi Doorbell a little over a year ago. At first, I was pretty happy with it. But after a while, it needed to be reset a couple time and it would need a reboot every couple of weeks. It was just a pain to look after it. It’s probably still one of the best options if you require local recording. In my case, I would love to have local recording, but not with this much hassle. I suspect that there’s a chance that the issues may have been the fact that the transformer was 10VA, and that it may have need a little more juice. But I couldn’t find any details as to what it required. I didn’t feel like experimenting with it, so I decided to go with the Ring Pro. Read more...

Initial Thoughts on the Ring Alarm

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I am currently paying around $27 a month for my monitored home security system. And that's just a system with 3 door sensors, 2 motion, and cellular/battery backup. It's just a dumb system with no connection to the Internet. I have to be at the one keypad to be able to arm it. When I learned Ring has a system that would only have a monthly fee of $10/mo or $100/yr, I decided to take a deep look into it. After a couple hours of reading, it seemed like a no-brainer.

Zigbee to MQTT gateway for less than $10

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It's been a few months since my post about Hubitat, and I have not been too happy with it. The MQTT bridge works, but sometimes things get out of sync. For example, if I turn the power on the Zigbee bulb off and then on again, I can't control the bulb through Home Assistant until I turn it on and off through Hubitat first. So I started my quest for an alternative. It costs almost nothing, so I decided to try out the CC2531 Zigbee stick.

Modify the Xiaomi Xiaofang Camera to Work With Home Assistant and Other Video Recording Software

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I was looking for a simple and cheap Wifi camera that would work with Home Assistant and doesn’t rely solely on cloud recording since that can get expensive very quickly. In my search, I came across the Xiaomi Xiaofang camera. Although this camera is ‘cloud only’ by default, @samtap on GitHub has created FangHacks, which is a set of scripts that can be installed on the Xiaofang to enable RTSP, along with a bunch of other features. It will also show you how to add this into Home Assistant. This post will go through the steps involved in installing these modifications. Read more...