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1381 solar engine problems

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  • monkey
    Hi people. I ve just attempted to breadboard my 1st 1381 solar engine as per the freform diagram on here:
    Message 1 of 11 , May 1, 2008
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      Hi people.
      I've just attempted to breadboard my 1st 1381 solar engine as per the
      freform diagram on here:

      http://www.beam-wiki.org/wiki/index.php?title=1381-based_Solar_Engines

      Problem is that it doesn't seem to be working - voltage seems to be
      getting round the circuit and the capacitor is charging, but the motor
      doesn't go...

      I'm using a 1381-J, so it should be fine.

      Now being a complete begginner on this kind of thing I was wondering
      if anyone could take the time to show me or draw a diagram of how i
      should breadboard it correctly or how to test out what i've done is
      correct?

      I've build a fled symet and it works fine, so maybe i'm just doing
      something dumb on this circuit.

      Any help would be much appreciated.

      Cheers,
      D.
    • James G Watt
      I m using this circuit. It does work. One querk I have found which may be a surprise is the 1381j (in my experience at least) doesn t trigger at 2.7 like some
      Message 2 of 11 , May 1, 2008
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        I'm using this circuit. It does work. One querk I have found which may
        be a surprise is the 1381j (in my experience at least) doesn't trigger
        at 2.7 like some people will suggest. It tends go trigger at the top end
        of its range (2.9) the one I'm playing with right now appears to go off
        at 3.1 !

        so stick a meter on your circuit and watch the voltage climb. If your
        voltage stops climbing before 3 volts you may not have a big enough
        solar panel on it (I'm using a bunch of batteries and a resistor to
        stand in for the solar cell right now).

        oh check the pinouts on your 2 transistors and the 1381 too. data sheet
        for the 1381 is here:

        http://www.solarbotics.com/assets/datasheets/mn1380.pdf

        Anyone got anything to say about my capacitor wirdness with the same
        circuit? I set one of them up runing for about 30 hours and it does
        appear to be getting better.. wish I'd thought to stopwatch it running
        at first though :p

        monkey wrote:
        > Hi people.
        > I've just attempted to breadboard my 1st 1381 solar engine as per the
        > freform diagram on here:
        >
        > http://www.beam-wiki.org/wiki/index.php?title=1381-based_Solar_Engines
        >
        > Problem is that it doesn't seem to be working - voltage seems to be
        > getting round the circuit and the capacitor is charging, but the motor
        > doesn't go...
        >
        > I'm using a 1381-J, so it should be fine.
        >
        > Now being a complete begginner on this kind of thing I was wondering
        > if anyone could take the time to show me or draw a diagram of how i
        > should breadboard it correctly or how to test out what i've done is
        > correct?
        >
        > I've build a fled symet and it works fine, so maybe i'm just doing
        > something dumb on this circuit.
        >
        > Any help would be much appreciated.
        >
        > Cheers,
        > D.
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > ------------------------------------
        >
        > Yahoo! Groups Links
        >
        >
        >
        >


        --

        \ oo
        \______|\mm
        / K-9 /\ \_\
        / ___ / \/_/
        |/___\|___|
        -----------
        www.clockworkrobot.com
      • monkey
        Seems to be the correct in the pins, i bought the bits from solarbotics, so they should be correct. I was getting well over 3 volts before my multimeter packed
        Message 3 of 11 , May 1, 2008
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          Seems to be the correct in the pins, i bought the bits from
          solarbotics, so they should be correct.
          I was getting well over 3 volts before my multimeter packed up this
          morning (seems to only now be showing a third of the voltage it should
          be... very odd - checked on a 9 volt battery).

          I'm a little bit concerned that my breadboarding skills are not up to
          much - i think this might be the problem.

          --- In beam@yahoogroups.com, James G Watt <kinetic-arts@...> wrote:
          >
          > I'm using this circuit. It does work. One querk I have found which may
          > be a surprise is the 1381j (in my experience at least) doesn't trigger
          > at 2.7 like some people will suggest. It tends go trigger at the top
          end
          > of its range (2.9) the one I'm playing with right now appears to go off
          > at 3.1 !
          >
          > so stick a meter on your circuit and watch the voltage climb. If your
          > voltage stops climbing before 3 volts you may not have a big enough
          > solar panel on it (I'm using a bunch of batteries and a resistor to
          > stand in for the solar cell right now).
          >
          > oh check the pinouts on your 2 transistors and the 1381 too. data sheet
          > for the 1381 is here:
          >
          > http://www.solarbotics.com/assets/datasheets/mn1380.pdf
          >
          > Anyone got anything to say about my capacitor wirdness with the same
          > circuit? I set one of them up runing for about 30 hours and it does
          > appear to be getting better.. wish I'd thought to stopwatch it running
          > at first though :p
          >
          > monkey wrote:
          > > Hi people.
          > > I've just attempted to breadboard my 1st 1381 solar engine as per the
          > > freform diagram on here:
          > >
          > > http://www.beam-wiki.org/wiki/index.php?title=1381-based_Solar_Engines
          > >
          > > Problem is that it doesn't seem to be working - voltage seems to be
          > > getting round the circuit and the capacitor is charging, but the motor
          > > doesn't go...
          > >
          > > I'm using a 1381-J, so it should be fine.
          > >
          > > Now being a complete begginner on this kind of thing I was wondering
          > > if anyone could take the time to show me or draw a diagram of how i
          > > should breadboard it correctly or how to test out what i've done is
          > > correct?
          > >
          > > I've build a fled symet and it works fine, so maybe i'm just doing
          > > something dumb on this circuit.
          > >
          > > Any help would be much appreciated.
          > >
          > > Cheers,
          > > D.
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > ------------------------------------
          > >
          > > Yahoo! Groups Links
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          >
          >
          > --
          >
          > \ oo
          > \______|\mm
          > / K-9 /\ \_\
          > / ___ / \/_/
          > |/___\|___|
          > -----------
          > www.clockworkrobot.com
          >
        • James G Watt
          ... It s kind of difficult to help with that... You got a digi camera? Take some photographs? maybe we can spot a mistake? -- oo ______| mm / K-9 /
          Message 4 of 11 , May 1, 2008
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            > I'm a little bit concerned that my breadboarding skills are not up to
            > much - i think this might be the problem.
            >
            It's kind of difficult to help with that... You got a digi camera? Take
            some photographs? maybe we can spot a mistake?

            --

            \ oo
            \______|\mm
            / K-9 /\ \_\
            / ___ / \/_/
            |/___\|___|
            -----------
            www.clockworkrobot.com
          • Arno
            It seems to me that this is a complicated version.If you get the 2433 solarcells from solarbotics the circuit is already on the back(just add components).This
            Message 5 of 11 , May 1, 2008
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              It seems to me that this is a complicated version.If you get the 2433
              solarcells from solarbotics the circuit is already on the back(just add
              components).This version uses these components:
              2n3904 transistor
              2200 uF power storage cap(or larger)
              1uF-47 uF discharge cap
              1n914 diode
              1381voltage detector

              So no 3906 transistor and resistor.......

              Very easy to make(even me,with no electronic experience,could make it..)

              regards,Arno

              James G Watt wrote:
              >
              > I'm using this circuit. It does work. One querk I have found which may
              > be a surprise is the 1381j (in my experience at least) doesn't trigger
              > at 2.7 like some people will suggest. It tends go trigger at the top end
              > of its range (2.9) the one I'm playing with right now appears to go off
              > at 3.1 !
              >
              > so stick a meter on your circuit and watch the voltage climb. If your
              > voltage stops climbing before 3 volts you may not have a big enough
              > solar panel on it (I'm using a bunch of batteries and a resistor to
              > stand in for the solar cell right now).
              >
              > oh check the pinouts on your 2 transistors and the 1381 too. data sheet
              > for the 1381 is here:
              >
              > http://www.solarbotics.com/assets/datasheets/mn1380.pdf
              > <http://www.solarbotics.com/assets/datasheets/mn1380.pdf>
              >
              > Anyone got anything to say about my capacitor wirdness with the same
              > circuit? I set one of them up runing for about 30 hours and it does
              > appear to be getting better.. wish I'd thought to stopwatch it running
              > at first though :p
              >
              > monkey wrote:
              > > Hi people.
              > > I've just attempted to breadboard my 1st 1381 solar engine as per the
              > > freform diagram on here:
              > >
              > >
              > http://www.beam-wiki.org/wiki/index.php?title=1381-based_Solar_Engines
              > <http://www.beam-wiki.org/wiki/index.php?title=1381-based_Solar_Engines>
              > >
              > > Problem is that it doesn't seem to be working - voltage seems to be
              > > getting round the circuit and the capacitor is charging, but the motor
              > > doesn't go...
              > >
              > > I'm using a 1381-J, so it should be fine.
              > >
              > > Now being a complete begginner on this kind of thing I was wondering
              > > if anyone could take the time to show me or draw a diagram of how i
              > > should breadboard it correctly or how to test out what i've done is
              > > correct?
              > >
              > > I've build a fled symet and it works fine, so maybe i'm just doing
              > > something dumb on this circuit.
              > >
              > > Any help would be much appreciated.
              > >
              > > Cheers,
              > > D.
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > ------------------------------------
              > >
              > > Yahoo! Groups Links
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > >
              >
              > --
              >
              > \ oo
              > \______|\mm
              > / K-9 /\ \_\
              > / ___ / \/_/
              > |/___\|___|
              > -----------
              > www.clockworkrobot.com
              >
              >
            • wrigter
              Hey James, the discrepancy between the rated trigger voltage and the actual trigger voltage is based on a common misunderstanding of the 1381 ratings. The
              Message 6 of 11 , May 4, 2008
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                Hey James,

                the discrepancy between the rated trigger voltage and the
                actual trigger voltage is based on a common misunderstanding
                of the 1381 ratings.

                The voltage at which a 1381 output pin goes high is equal to
                the 1381 rated voltage PLUS the hysteresis voltage which
                varies between 50mv-300mv. The 1381 rated voltage is
                actually the lower voltage threshold at which the 1381
                output pin voltage goes low!!!

                The reason is the original application for these 1381
                voltage superviors is to reset a CPU when the power supply
                level drops below a well defined lower voltage limit below
                which the CPU would stop working. The actual turn on voltage
                of a 1381 is not as well defined because it is less critical
                since that voltage is always above this lower supply voltage
                threshold for safe CPU operation.

                So according to the data sheets, the 1381J "trigger" voltage
                (at which the output switches high) can vary between 2.65V
                (2.6V+50mV) and 3.2V (2.9V+300mV).

                wilf

                ----- Original Message -----
                From: James G Watt <kinetic-arts@...>
                To: beam@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: Re: [beam] 1381 solar engine problems
                Date: Thu, 01 May 2008 13:01:07 +0100

                >I'm using this circuit. It does work. One querk I have
                >found which may be a surprise is the 1381j (in my
                >experience at least) doesn't trigger at 2.7 like some
                >people will suggest. It tends go trigger at the top end of
                >its range (2.9) the one I'm playing with right now appears
                >to go off at 3.1 !
                >
                >so stick a meter on your circuit and watch the voltage
                >climb. If your voltage stops climbing before 3 volts you
                >may not have a big enough solar panel on it (I'm using a
                >bunch of batteries and a resistor to stand in for the
                >solar cell right now).
                >
                >oh check the pinouts on your 2 transistors and the 1381
                >too. data sheet for the 1381 is here:
                >
                >http://www.solarbotics.com/assets/datasheets/mn1380.pdf
                >
                >Anyone got anything to say about my capacitor wirdness with
                >the same circuit? I set one of them up runing for about 30
                >hours and it does appear to be getting better.. wish I'd
                >thought to stopwatch it running at first though :p
                >
                >monkey wrote:
                >> Hi people.
                >> I've just attempted to breadboard my 1st 1381 solar
                >> engine as per the freform diagram on here:
                >>
                >>
                >http://www.beam-wiki.org/wiki/index.php?title=1381-based_Solar_Engines
                >>
                >> Problem is that it doesn't seem to be working - voltage
                >> seems to be getting round the circuit and the capacitor
                >> is charging, but the motor doesn't go...
                >>
                >> I'm using a 1381-J, so it should be fine.
                >>
                >> Now being a complete begginner on this kind of thing I
                >> was wondering if anyone could take the time to show me or
                >> draw a diagram of how i should breadboard it correctly or
                >> how to test out what i've done is correct?
                >>
                >> I've build a fled symet and it works fine, so maybe i'm
                >> just doing something dumb on this circuit.
                >>
                >> Any help would be much appreciated.
                >>
                >> Cheers,
                >> D.
                >>
                >>
                >>
                >>
                >>
                >>
                >> ------------------------------------
                >>
                >> Yahoo! Groups Links
                >>
                >>
                >>
                >>
                >
                >
                >--
                >
                > \ oo
                > \______|\mm
                > / K-9 /\ \_\
                > / ___ / \/_/
                > |/___\|___|
                > -----------
                > www.clockworkrobot.com
                >
              • James G Watt
                Thanks for clearing that up.. I d kind of worked out half of that.. I realised we were using the part sort of backwards but it s good to have it confirmed and
                Message 7 of 11 , May 5, 2008
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                  Thanks for clearing that up.. I'd kind of worked out half of that.. I
                  realised we were using the part sort of backwards but it's good to have
                  it confirmed and explained fully.

                  Any thoughts on my capacitor problems?

                  see: "1381 solar motor capacitor degrade through disuse?"

                  wrigter wrote:


                  > So according to the data sheets, the 1381J "trigger" voltage
                  > (at which the output switches high) can vary between 2.65V
                  > (2.6V+50mV) and 3.2V (2.9V+300mV).
                  >
                  > wilf


                  --

                  \ oo
                  \______|\mm
                  / K-9 /\ \_\
                  / ___ / \/_/
                  |/___\|___|
                  -----------
                  www.clockworkrobot.com
                • monkey
                  Think i finally got the 1381 engine to work. now what happens is that it spins once then sits there and the motor squeals. anyone else had that before? D.
                  Message 8 of 11 , May 11, 2008
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                    Think i finally got the 1381 engine to work.

                    now what happens is that it spins once then sits there and the motor
                    squeals.

                    anyone else had that before?

                    D.

                    --- In beam@yahoogroups.com, James G Watt <kinetic-arts@...> wrote:
                    >
                    >
                    > > I'm a little bit concerned that my breadboarding skills are not up to
                    > > much - i think this might be the problem.
                    > >
                    > It's kind of difficult to help with that... You got a digi camera? Take
                    > some photographs? maybe we can spot a mistake?
                    >

                    >
                  • James G Watt
                    ... Yes If I use a motor that requires a higher voltage to run than the circuit is delivering sometimes the motor will sit there making an angry noise but not
                    Message 9 of 11 , May 11, 2008
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                      monkey wrote:
                      > Think i finally got the 1381 engine to work.
                      >
                      > now what happens is that it spins once then sits there and the motor
                      > squeals.
                      >
                      > anyone else had that before?
                      >
                      Yes If I use a motor that requires a higher voltage to run than the
                      circuit is delivering sometimes the motor will sit there making an angry
                      noise but not turning. Presumably is squeels for a bit then shuts off
                      and cycles through again? I think if you use a higher value resistor
                      you'll get the circuit to shut off at a higher voltage so your motor
                      will spend less time complaining and more time spining but you may also
                      want to investigate using a more efficient lower voltage motor?

                      --

                      \ oo
                      \______|\mm
                      / K-9 /\ \_\
                      / ___ / \/_/
                      |/___\|___|
                      -----------
                      www.clockworkrobot.com
                    • monkey
                      ah-ha. I see. I tried it out today in the brighter sunshine (nice weather in ol blighty today!) and we are running great. I think the motor was causing the
                      Message 10 of 11 , May 11, 2008
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                        ah-ha. I see.
                        I tried it out today in the brighter sunshine (nice weather in ol'
                        blighty today!) and we are running great. I think the motor was
                        causing the circuit to be constantly on at the voltage i was getting
                        yesterday as it was just continually squealing. I'll try the higher
                        value resistor in a minute, i've just got to finish mowing the lawn...

                        many thanks

                        --- In beam@yahoogroups.com, James G Watt <kinetic-arts@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > monkey wrote:
                        > > Think i finally got the 1381 engine to work.
                        > >
                        > > now what happens is that it spins once then sits there and the motor
                        > > squeals.
                        > >
                        > > anyone else had that before?
                        > >
                        > Yes If I use a motor that requires a higher voltage to run than the
                        > circuit is delivering sometimes the motor will sit there making an
                        angry
                        > noise but not turning. Presumably is squeels for a bit then shuts off
                        > and cycles through again? I think if you use a higher value resistor
                        > you'll get the circuit to shut off at a higher voltage so your motor
                        > will spend less time complaining and more time spining but you may also
                        > want to investigate using a more efficient lower voltage motor?
                        >
                        > --
                        >
                        > \ oo
                        > \______|\mm
                        > / K-9 /\ \_\
                        > / ___ / \/_/
                        > |/___\|___|
                        > -----------
                        > www.clockworkrobot.com
                        >
                      • James G Watt
                        Mow the lawn at night man! We ve got such a short BEAM season here you got to take advantage of every secong! I ll try the higher ... -- oo
                        Message 11 of 11 , May 11, 2008
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                          Mow the lawn at night man!
                          We've got such a short BEAM season here you got to take advantage of
                          every secong!

                          I'll try the higher
                          > value resistor in a minute, i've just got to finish mowing the lawn...
                          >



                          --

                          \ oo
                          \______|\mm
                          / K-9 /\ \_\
                          / ___ / \/_/
                          |/___\|___|
                          -----------
                          www.clockworkrobot.com
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