If you struggle with starting your day and your alarm clock bears the brunt of your early-morning angst, then Instructables contributor Johan Moberg may have a solution for you with his App and Timer Controlled Automatic Blinds. He’s designed a 3D printed device that will help you wake up gradually with the morning sunlight rather than a blaring alarm clock. It’s reminiscent of another Instructables project we saw back in December to open the blinds, though this one is powered with Bluetooth.
Moberg’s device works with an app on your smartphone that you can set to open the blinds in your bedroom gradually, before the alarm goes off. In order to complete this project, you’ll need to have some basic knowledge of electronics–experience with Arduino would help, but those aspiring makers eager to learn shouldn’t shy away. You’ll also need to have some basic CAD skills or, again, a willingness to learn. Fortunately, Moberg has provided excellent, detailed instructions. Check out the blind control in action:
Before jumping in, be sure that you have the following: An Android phone with Bluetooth, a soldering iron, and a multimeter (an instrument for measuring voltage, current, and resistance with electronics). You will, of course, also need a 3D printer and about a day to print the parts, build the device, and install the app. Don’t despair if you don’t have a 3D printer. You can upload Moberg’s .stl files to a web-based service like Shapeways or find a 3D printer in your neighborhood via 3D Hubs using the button right on the Instructable.
Another thing you’ll need if you don’t already have them is window blinds. Moberg bought some very affordable ones from Ikea. Rather than using the mounting brackets provided with the blinds, however, you will be switching things up a bit. One bracket will hold the blinds in place and the other will hold the step motor, which rotates the curtain axle.
So how does this device work? Essentially, the step motor is connected to the component box with a cable. The component box, which houses the step motor drivers, the Bluetooth receiver, and an Arduino, can be installed either on the floor or secured to the wall.
When you start the app on your Android phone, you will calibrate the blinds (this is a one-time thing). This will signal the device to start rolling down the blinds. When they are fully extended–that is, covering the window completely–you press “stop calibration” and the app obeys. This means you will never have to stop the app manually again, which is probably all for the best as this will be happening every morning when you’re still mostly asleep.
The system Moberg has designed is nearly foolproof, too. There’s an alarm and, when you set it, the app will set the current time on the Arduino so it can keep track of the time without actually being connected to your phone–another plus for those of us who are less-than-lucid either at night when it’s time to set the alarm or in the morning when it’s time to wake up!
Short of having a front desk to give you a friendly wake-up call each morning–and maybe a servant to open the blinds–Moberg’s 3D printed, app-assisted device should be a welcome tech-age convenience. Also conveniently, he has provided a thorough shopping list with links to sources for materials and components you’ll need to complete this project. The only thing missing is your morning coffee!
Are you a morning person-or would this device help you pretend to be one? Let us know if you might want to take control over your wake ups (or at least your blinds) in the 3D Printed Timer Controlled Blinds forum thread over at 3DPB.com.
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Stay up-to-date on all the latest news from the 3D printing industry and recieve information and offers from thrid party vendors.
You May Also Like
Grand Opening: AddUp Solution Center Offers LPBF & DED Metal 3D Printing
Global metal additive manufacturing OEM AddUp Solutions was established as a joint venture by French companies Michelin and fives back in 2015. The company’s main technology is laser powder bed fusion (LPBF) technology, but...
Can 3D Printing Make You Antifragile? Surviving Current Economic Shocks
In this, series we’ve looked at what being antifragile means and whether or not 3D printing can make a business antifragile. However, can 3D printing be antifragile as a good...
3D Printing Webinar and Event Roundup: June 26, 2022
Events for this week have already started, like the ISTE Live conference for technology in education down in New Orleans. Stratasys continues its Experience Tour in Ohio, Divide by Zero...
Three Production Opportunities for 3D Printing
While the additive manufacturing process has been around for 30 years, its use for production applications has recently accelerated because of improvements that enable faster production, high-quality materials, and larger...