z-wave motorized drapery track arriving today

Discussion in 'Home Automation' started by bp2008, Jun 2, 2014.

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  1. bp2008

    bp2008 Staff Member

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    Ever since I installed z-wave dimmers I have wanted a z-wave motor for the curtain over my sliding glass back door. I did some research, and found that there is a remarkable lack of polished consumer products in the USA for controlling curtains via z-wave. Mostly you have to DIY it with parts from China it seems, or get one that doesn't support z-wave. Recently I finally found links in a forum somewhere to a place in the USA building custom z-wave drapery tracks. http://www.zwavemotors.com/

    They don't have an online ordering system and they don't publish a price chart. Normally either of these would be completely adequate reasons for me to look elsewhere, but in this case I didn't have much choice so I shot them an email. We exchanged emails for a while, including pics of my sliding glass door and a discussion of installation requirements and the appropriate track length. I called them for a final discussion and ended up ordering a 90.5 inch track (FYI apparently 96 inches is the limit for UPS shipments or something, and I guess shipping cost goes up after?). It cost I think $385 plus UPS ground shipping from Florida for a total of $430 USD shipped. An equivalent DIY solution is probably less than $300, but since I already have enough hobbies without adding motorized drapery tracks to the list, it is worth it to me to pay a little extra and get a more-or-less finished product without any hassle. If I understood correctly, the power cord is just a pigtail and I'm not sure yet if that means it has a standard plug on it or if it is just wires like on a Dahua PTZ camera. Either way I have a heavy duty extension cord ready that will do the job nicely.

    I'll post pictures and perhaps a video in the next day or two.

    ----------------------------------------------------------
    Update: It arrived and I just finished installing it.



    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    It did require me to cut the end off my extension cord and wire nut the appropriate wires together. The motor has a green, white, and black wire, which I connected to the Ground, neutral, and hot wires on the extension cord.

    I set my Vera controller to listen for new basic z-wave devices, then power cycled the motor and shortly after it was done calibrating it appeared on the Vera. Effortless!

    The curtain can be sent to a % position down the track in 10% increments, or fully opened or closed with one click. If you're standing next to it, you can give the curtain a tug to the left or right to start the motor.

    These guys make the tracks in just about any length and window configuration. Check them out if you are interested in this sort of thing!

    So far I am very happy with the purchase!
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2014
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  2. Mike

    Mike Staff Member

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    Thanks for sharing, @bp2008. This is something that I am interested in and was surprised, like you, at the lack of consumer products for this particular situation. I have to say though, I am more shocked about the lack of z-wave doorbell's out there.
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2016
  3. bp2008

    bp2008 Staff Member

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    I could not even find a decent z-wave button either. I wanted to find something to control the curtain with when standing next to the curtain, like a wall-mountable battery powered button. But the zwavemotors people don't have a solution for that yet besides tugging on the curtain to make it start and stop. I am looking forward to seeing how well that works, but I actually set up an alternative control method already. I wall-mounted an old android phone there next to the door using a "Dockem" kit and installed an app called "Imperihome" on it along with another app to keep the screen from turning off. So that basically turned an old android phone into an always-on, fully customizable wall mounted touchscreen control station for my z-wave devices, all for less than $20 not including the cost of the old phone.
     
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  4. digger11

    digger11 Pulling my weight

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    You could always do what this eBay seller is doing. It appears that he is taking a Schlage RS100HC door sensor and mounting a momentary contact button to its cover and wiring it into the sensor's wired contacts.

    If you don't want something quite so hokey, you can always take an RS100HC sensor and mount it somewhere convenient, and run wires from it's wired contacts to a regular doorbell button.

    These sensors are pretty nifty. I've used one to make an outdoor PIR sensor talk z-wave.

    DoorSensor.jpg
     
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  5. bp2008

    bp2008 Staff Member

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    Cool. Battery powered and everything!

    The drapery track arrived and it works perfectly. Pics and video above in the first post.
     
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  6. Mike

    Mike Staff Member

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    Looks great, glad it worked out for you. Looking forward to seeing how it holds up :D
     
  7. icerabbit

    icerabbit Getting the hang of it

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    Must not show this to the spouse!
    Must not show this to the spouse!
    ;)

    Great job.

    I've got a couple things I'd like to automate, on insteon, and we've seen automated drapes/shades from one brand or another on TV; but with too many things to do, practicality of implementing ... everything needs power and/or internet, where no power or internet is present (generally speaking) ... just think about surveillance cams! ;) The more stuff you have, the more stuff breaks. My issue of the week is the pool pump not running, there seems to be a voltage drop on the line, so time do dig up the buried wire ...
     
  8. networkcameracritic

    networkcameracritic Getting the hang of it

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  9. nayr

    nayr Known around here

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    awesome; I need something like this for my office.. Ive got a mirror tint on the windows it that lets me look out in the day and keeps glare down inside but at night it does nothing for privacy at night and I never remember to close the blinds.. My office window is about a foot above ground level outside so every bit of kit and everything is visible.
     
  10. bp2008

    bp2008 Staff Member

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    The motorized drapery system is still working brilliantly, 10 months later! Never had a problem with it!
     
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  11. johngalt

    johngalt Getting the hang of it

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    Nice! Thanks for sharing. I installed a projector in my living room recently and it has a 12v trigger for motorized screens. I could probably use it to shut the curtains!
     
  12. bp2008

    bp2008 Staff Member

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    Yeah, one way or another I bet you could!
     
  13. code2

    code2 Getting the hang of it

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    Can we be any lazier LOL

    Hmmm 500 just for the ability to open your patio shades seems a bit absurd to me. How much energy and time does it take just to walk over and open them

    Your house your money i just don't see any purpose to this in the end just flat out laziness not to get up and open or close them yourself.

    Would be a cool feature in a theater room tho
     
  14. Abbell

    Abbell Getting the hang of it

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    Here is one of many examples of the value though. It is 65F at night and the temp gets to 85F during the day. At a set time the drapes open to let the sun in and when the internal temp hits 72F they close keeping the sun out while you are away.
     
  15. nayr

    nayr Known around here

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    security and privacy, durring the day its hard to look through windows and see if anyone is on the other side.. but at night, it reverses.. its brighter inside so all you see is reflections looking out.

    just sunrise/sunset timers to open/close.. if you paid good money for a nice view this would be ideal.

    I wanted something like this in my office, I have security mirror film on and its a southern window.. so in the day time nobody can see in my office and I can see out clearly, but at night.. you can see inside and id love for it to close off.. my office window is groundlevel in the back yard, so you can walk by it and see my desk/monitors and everything very clearly looking down.

    I also use evaporative cooling on my house, no AC.. so my office window is partially open now in the summer to allow airflow through.. so curtains need to be open, but at night its not needed and I close them only to find them half blown out the window and my office is staggering hot when I wake up.

    Curtains suck, automating them is good.. just needs to be cheaper.
     
  16. code2

    code2 Getting the hang of it

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    Thats why I have heat and a/c set to a certain temp and let it do its thing with no interaction from me unless I need to make a change to it thru my cell phone.
    I have the tint on the windows just like nayr to help without any issues. Again if its a privacy thing hey your choice i would just get up and close the blinds in less time then it takes for your automated one to close them. Plus i don't care who sees inside my house nothing of value is visible and well if you have that much time to watch me inside shitting or banging the old lady hey so be it no different then what you can see on TV. Oh wait you may see me cleaning guns again big deal not worth much when 95 percent of them don't have a firing pin in them and are secured else where and only used when needed.
     
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  17. nayr

    nayr Known around here

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    yeah its a hard cost to justify, I cant.. especially since my black face dahua can see my office window and will turn and look at it if anyone opens it.. i just need a motion sensor outside the window to trigger it and then nobody will sneak up on me watching porn typing in passwords.

    My living room would be awesome for one but the sofa is up against most of the window and putting the blinds on tracks and giving them clearance to move freely would just not work.. the geek in me wants to tho, because they are a pita to open/close.. but for this kinda money id want roller shutters installed outside.. those provide security all on there own.