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Viking
15-06-11, 21:42
I've been looking at the TC10 for a while and thought they were a good idea. But overly expensive when you factor in that all you get is the actual unit. Then for another tenner you can buy a box to house it in, albeit with a hole cut in the side. Nowt else, just a box and the unit for 49 delivered. So to get one working you need cable, trailing sockets, wiring connectors, a plug, cable glands, etc. which all adds to the cost. Too much for me.

So, I bought one from Hong Kong. Cost 13.50 delivered.



Before we start on the mechanics of the build and suchlike, a quick word about the unit in question. There's a few different types on the market, and they all look pretty similar. In practice though they're rather different.

First up, the sensor. They come in different lengths, usually 1 or 2mtrs. So you want to be looking for a 2mtr probe for a start. Then they come with either a metal sensor or a plastic sensor on the end. The metal one may not be salt water safe so go for the plastic sensor.

Finally, some are labelled as heating and cooling while only actually controlling one function. So the heating is done by turning the heater on, and cooling is achieved by turning the heating off. Not what you need if you want to turn a chiller or a fan on. So make sure the one you buy matches the wiring diagram listed on here. If it has different or less terminal configuration, it's probably not going to be the one you need.

Shop carefully, as the cheaper ones are often not the better ones.





And this is what it looks like (soup can is so you can see how small it is).



http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/1.jpg

And a quick shot of the internals just for good measure.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/internal.jpg

This differs from the TC10 in that the TC10 has internal switching of 240v to the heat and cool terminals, whereas the STC1000 just has switching relays so 240v has to be provided to each relay with a link wire. Here's a wiring diagram. Earth wire omitted for clarity and because heaters don't use them.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/wiring-1.gif

I wired a connector block to the unit, as per the diagram.

Next we need a box to house it in. Not paying Forttex prices, so off to the web and Ebay gave me a Gewiss GW44206 enclosure box (150 x 110 x 70), ten 20mm cable glands, and ten 16mm cable glands.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/2.jpg

And this is the size of the box with the unit and connection block sitting inside it.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/3.jpg

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/5.jpg

And out with my tool of the day. Not had chance to use this before but I knew it'd come in handy when I bought it.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/6.jpg

This is the size of the unit.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/7.jpg

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/8.jpg

And marked the correct size hole on the end of the box. then chop it out with the Dremel tool..

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/9.jpg

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/10.jpg

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/11.jpg

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/12.jpg

We'll also need some mains cable. I used 5 core.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/20.jpg

Then we need a hole for the cable gland. So out with the cordless drill and a hole cutter.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/13.jpg

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/15.jpg

And also a fuse holder.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/33.jpg

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/35.jpg

Testing the hole to make sure it's the correct size.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/34.jpg

Then solder a couple of wire tails to the fuse holder terminals.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/36.jpg

And fit it through the hole, putting the lock nut on as well.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/37.jpg

Then fit a 20mm cable gland and put the lock nut on the inside, then feed the sensor wire through it, and then the mains 5 core cable.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/38.jpg

Then fit the clips to the side of the STC1000 to lock it into the enclosure.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/17.jpg

Now on to wiring in the rest of the units equipment. At this point you could devise your own way of doing things. You could be a rough arse and cut the plug off a heater and wire it in, or you could add a couple of trailing sockets (one for heating and one for cooling) and use a couple more cable glands, anything you want really. But this is what I did. Here's the cable...

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/20.jpg

And through the same gland and wired into the connector block, following the wiring on the diagram. Also I later put a cable tie round the wires to help stop them pulling through.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/39.jpg

The other end of the cable needs 240v L, N, and E. and then there are 2 switched wires, one for heating and one for cooling. I decided to use a 6 socket extension lead.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/24.jpg

Drilled a hole in the end and fitted a 16mm cable gland.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/25.jpg

Then to separate the sockets into three banks of two. So the Dremel was used to cut the live bar at relevant places.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/26-1.jpg

And the wires from the STC1000 were soldered onto the sections left. The earth went to the earth bar, neutral to the neutral bar, and the live along to the right hand bank (which are still mains live). The other two switched lives were soldered to the second and third banks respectively.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/28-1.jpg

Then reassemble the whole thing, and it looks like this.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/29.jpg

Plugged in and tested, and the sockets labeled so that you know what does what.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/32.jpg

This gives two sockets for plugging in standard (unbutchered) heaters, two sockets to plug in fans if necessary, and two sockets which remain available for other use.

So the whole unit is fused at 13amps in the plug. The STC1000 has its own fuse at 3amps, each socket provides 13amps protected current and allows the heater/cooler plugged in to run it's own fuse rating.

Total cost of this project...


STC1000 - 13.50
Cable glands and enclosure box - 14.00
Extension lead - 6.99
Fuse holder and fuse - 50p
Connectors & wire etc. - Pennies


Total - Less than 35.00


Finished unit in position and working.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/42.jpg

If anyone wondered why I'd put the STC1000 in the box upside down, then here's the answer. The box is screwed to the underside of the tank cabinet (with very short screws!!!) and then the lid is screwed back on. Fuse holder is on the side of the box, easily accessible.

Note & Disclaimer!

There's been some discussion as to the seperate fuse fitted, and is it really necessary. I made a post later in the thread about this, explaining the reason for having it fitted. I've pasted the contents of that post here so it's more prominent.

The STC unit runs at a very small current. As such a 13a fuse while being suitable for the total load on the extension will be too heavy for the unit itself. All the other units (heater, fans, etc.) will all be individually fused in their own plugs which connect to the extension, and will no doubt be running at 3a in their own plug top.

While you're quite at liberty to run the build without a seperate fuse for the unit, it would be poor practice to post up a build as a guide and allow the general public to follow it without pointing out the reason for the fuse.

All domestic appliances are required to be protected with a suitable load fuse, and it's only reasonable to expect the same from this. If you wish to omit the fuse when building your own, then you should be aware that the unit you're using is not in compliance with the individual fused requirement, and you're doing so at your own risk. For the sake of a quid and a couple of minutes work, it would seem like a silly, pointless, and perhaps dangerous shortcut.

Also I should point out that people cutting the plugs off heaters and wiring them directly to the unit or a terminal block are in effect removing the individual fuse protection from their heaters. While I (and no doubt the forums owners) are unable to prevent people from doing so, again you should be aware that this is a silly, pointless, and perhaps dangerous shortcut.

After all, when you buy a new TV for example, how many people cut the plug off and wire it directly to the mains?

midnight_drive
16-06-11, 19:37
Excellent post, might pick up one of those cheap controllers for my river reef 48 and this information will no doubt come in useful.

:thanks:

Viking
17-06-11, 18:27
Edited first post to include update. Seperate fuse added to the STC1000 unit.

alexmoody
17-06-11, 19:34
looks brilliant well done viking

partyof5
19-06-11, 10:43
Nice write up! Any chance of pm'ing me the address for where you got the temp controller?

marineproject
20-06-11, 21:52
Fancy building me one?

MattsRR94
20-06-11, 22:02
Nice write up, should be in the good ideas index, or stickied somewhere.

OctoReef
20-06-11, 22:28
fancy building me one aswell?

Viking
20-06-11, 22:47
Someone asked the question on another forum. Here's my reply.

"To be honest I half toyed with the idea of selling these, not so much for profit, more as a service maybe. But then you have to consider the fact that people buying would expect a years warranty, and if one just happened to stick on heat and boiled the tank, then they'd be looking for compensation as well. It's a world of pain I don't want to get into.

I guess the best way to do it would be to build a kit comprising the box, extension lead, cable, fuse etc. and just point people to the actual unit to buy. Then it'd be a simple matter of them just fitting the unit into the box, and connecting a few wires. With nothing to actually break, then there'd be no issues."

zacuis
20-06-11, 22:57
Wow I wish i had your DIY skills. Frankly m8 you should start selling these I think fortrex would have some stiff competition. I've just bought a tc-10 not long ago. I wish you'd done this sooner.

planetse
05-07-11, 18:33
Like what you did with it; kept mine simpler and used a single socket for cooling and a double for heating.

Maplins do good project boxes for around 5.
Not all STC-1000 are wired up the same by the way, my heating and cooling are the other way round to your diagram.

mattjames1980
05-08-11, 20:38
My stc-1000 arrived today! Going to make this shortly! Ta buddy!

skinner
06-08-11, 11:02
great write up mate,
i still got confused on the wiring side of things and found this site which helped me out.
hopefully it will help out others too
http://urowiki.filecore.net/index.php/Thermostat

bikedoctorr
08-08-11, 00:03
just a little obsavation but those relays are only 10amp jobbies. now i would never run any electrical item at its high end of ratting for a long period so always half it just to be safe. so id say these are only good to switch a 5amp electrical item for any long period of time with out it getting too hot. now with two sockets on each thats down to 2.5 amps per item. a fan might be ok but im sure chillers and stuff can be quite power hungery so be carefull if you load these up with a chiller they prob over load the rely and burn its contacts out. this normally would result in the contacts welding them selfs together making them stick on. bad news if its a chiller or heater sticking on. i might be wrong here but a 300watt heater at 240v is about 1.25 amps so the heater side should be plenty. but chillers can run into killo watts so become more hungry on ampage. as i said little pc fans etc are not so hungry either. the way to work it out is volts x amps = watts or watts/volts= amps so 300 watt heater / 240volts is 1.25 amps. as a max for a very short space of time those relays should be good for 240vx10amp= 2500watts or 2.5kw but id say for seconds not mins. id say there safer to say they will handle 240v x 5amps = 1200watts or 1.2kw for long periods of being switched on.

i must say i have limited knowledge on electricals but this is how i was explained it recently when i was doing a led build. if anyone can correct me then feel free as were all learning in this life all the time.

nice bulid though been thinking of a stc10 my self so might go this cheaper option.

maciek
11-08-11, 23:26
I'm missing something... Does the sensor goes straight into the tank? Is it safe ?

Viking
12-08-11, 18:55
Yes the sensor goes in the tank, that's how it knows what temperature the water is. And yes it's safe.

terence_kelsall
16-08-11, 16:49
thxz viking

Sandy Bottoms
25-08-11, 15:10
Great thread, I feel inspired to have a go myself.

Rdav
25-08-11, 15:41
great, I just sent off for one of those yesterday..

ste187
25-09-11, 12:10
great build viking , got a couple of questions maybe you could answer . love what you have done trouble is i have not got access to a soldering iron and am wondering if the following would be ok . regards fuse could i use small crimps ? and the way i thought i could get round soldering iron issue is to wire a mains lead in along with a single socket extension lead for the fan and heater . ie each lead direct to unit direct .

Water Keeper
25-09-11, 17:05
Great writeup Viking, did exactly the same as you but have no need for a chiller or fans so kept it simple and wired the heater straight in to the stc1000. Works a treat and gives me peace of mind after reading about a heater sticking on and not being noticed until everything was cooked.

Viking
02-10-11, 10:57
great build viking , got a couple of questions maybe you could answer . love what you have done trouble is i have not got access to a soldering iron and am wondering if the following would be ok . regards fuse could i use small crimps ? and the way i thought i could get round soldering iron issue is to wire a mains lead in along with a single socket extension lead for the fan and heater . ie each lead direct to unit direct .

Sorry, been absent for a while.

Small crimps on the fuseholder would be fine. And wiring a lead and an extension would also be fine, although you'd need two extensions, one for the heater and one for the fan.

ste187
02-10-11, 11:54
thx viking , already got wired up now and fan came yesterday so all gotta do now is figure how to set the temp etc and i am away.

Viking
02-10-11, 12:58
It's fairly straightforward to set up, once you remember to press a certain button after making each change to lock the new settings in.

slowlyslowly
05-10-11, 00:22
Hi. Fair play on great work and a great thread. Can I just ask two quick questions. Can it be used for heating only, no cooling? How accurate is it in reality, I know it says +or - 1 degree celsius but is it better or worse than this? Thanks again for the great thread

Viking
06-10-11, 18:02
Yes it can be used for heating only. It'll still monitor and activate the cooling function, but as you won't have a chiller or fan connected then it won't make any difference.

Accuracy is +/- 0.1C. I have mine set to 26 +/- 0.3, so my temperature fluctuates between 25.7 and 26.3. I've set up about half a dozen of these and they all read the same temperature within about 0.1C. So very accurate I'd say.

ste187
06-10-11, 23:12
bloody thing and my lack of electrical knowledge gonna put some pics up tomorrow and see if any one can get me on track .

slowlyslowly
07-10-11, 02:24
Yes it can be used for heating only. It'll still monitor and activate the cooling function, but as you won't have a chiller or fan connected then it won't make any difference.

Accuracy is +/- 0.1C. I have mine set to 26 +/- 0.3, so my temperature fluctuates between 25.7 and 26.3. I've set up about half a dozen of these and they all read the same temperature within about 0.1C. So very accurate I'd say.

Thanks for reply, sounds really good.
Great thread. Fairplay to you.

ste187
08-10-11, 15:32
heres a pic of what i have , i just dont know how to wire it . if any one could help it would be great . i have drawn the stc inputs and shown mains in and the two extension leads for heating and cooling , all are three core . i am not sure how to bridge the leads to get power to them .
http://www.ultimatereef.net/uploader/2011Q4/sensor 001.jpg

Viking
08-10-11, 17:22
Mains live connects to the STC1000, and also loops out of that connection and goes into one of the heater terminals, then also loops out and goes into one of the cooler terminals. This means you then have 3 mains live connections into the STC1000.

Heater live goes to the other terminal where you just connected the mains live loop.

Cooler live goes to the other terminal where you just connected the second mains live loop.

All the earth wires connect together. There is no earth connection into the STC1000.

All the neutrals connect together, and also connect to the neutral terminal on the STC1000.

If you're stuck with this after the detailed wiring diagrams on this post, and also after the modified wiring diagrams I sent you via PM, then maybe you ought to get someone qualified to do this for you.

ste187
09-10-11, 22:24
confused.com wired up stc , turned on , fan came on got down to set temp and fan stayed on . the fan is a cheaper version of a azoo fan if this helps .

slowlyslowly
09-10-11, 22:47
Mains live connects to the STC1000, and also loops out of that connection and goes into one of the heater terminals, then also loops out and goes into one of the cooler terminals. This means you then have 3 mains live connections into the STC1000.

Heater live goes to the other terminal where you just connected the mains live loop.

Cooler live goes to the other terminal where you just connected the second mains live loop.

All the earth wires connect together. There is no earth connection into the STC1000.

All the neutrals connect together, and also connect to the neutral terminal on the STC1000.

If you're stuck with this after the detailed wiring diagrams on this post, and also after the modified wiring diagrams I sent you via PM, then maybe you ought to get someone qualified to do this for you.


If you do not plan to have a fan or chiller do you still loop the live into this terminal in the STC or do you leave the loop out. Also is it necessary to have the fuse included?

Also any chance you could pm me the modified wiring diagram too.

Just ordered one of these so hoping to get bits and bobs together ready to wire when it arrives. Again great thread.

slowlyslowly
09-10-11, 22:58
confused.com wired up stc , turned on , fan came on got down to set temp and fan stayed on . the fan is a cheaper version of a azoo fan if this helps .

No expert by any means as I have just ordered one of these myself, but I would reckon it sounds more like a setting problem than a wiring one. Make sure all the settings are correct first. Failing that make sure the chiller/fan is looped to the heater terminal and then looped from there to the mains terminal of the unit. But as I said just getting my head around it at the moment too.

ste187
09-10-11, 23:04
i have mains looped from mains live to mains heater and mains cool and all neutrals all going to mains neutral , setting wise its set as f1 26.0 , f2 0.3 , f3 1 , f4 0.0 tested earlier and came down to 25.5 and fan was still going .

slowlyslowly
09-10-11, 23:21
i have mains looped from mains live to mains heater and mains cool and all neutrals all going to mains neutral , setting wise its set as f1 26.0 , f2 0.3 , f3 1 , f4 0.0 tested earlier and came down to 25.5 and fan was still going .

Well that all looks like the way it should be. Afraid you'll have to wait for someone who knows what they are talking about. Few things I would look at if it was me after (asking on here of course). If you plug in a light bulb instead of chiller is that staying on. Just to eliminate any problems with chiller. When temp is dropping to 25.7 are the heater/s coming on. Was the chiller connected up at any stage and not on?

Again disclaimer here I havent even got my unit, but while no one else is replying I'll throw in my thought as if shoe was on other foot I would like any bit of advice, two head better than one and all that

Ps would be great to see some pics of your wirng too.

ste187
09-10-11, 23:32
just tried lights in fan plug with temp at 26 and they came on so guess something wrong some where . i will tale some pics tomorrow for you

ste187
10-10-11, 17:52
ya hoo i now have my stc working perfect . wanna say a big thx to viking for starting this thread and making me aware of these cheap units , also for the help and patience shown via pm's . also wanna say thx to slowly slowly for a perfect pic thats shown me how exactly to wire my unit (reckon if you put that pic up here slowlyslowly it would quite a few people ) ............nice 1 viking and slowlyslowly have a virtual drink on me.

slowlyslowly
10-10-11, 17:57
ya hoo i now have my stc working perfect . wanna say a big thx to viking for starting this thread and making me aware of these cheap units , also for the help and patience shown via pm's . also wanna say thx to slowly slowly for a perfect pic thats shown me how exactly to wire my unit (reckon if you put that pic up here slowlyslowly it would quite a few people ) ............nice 1 viking and slowlyslowly have a virtual drink on me.


No probs except can't take credit for the picture and advice via pm as that came from someone else on here. I'll ask him to post the info he pm'd me as it is very good and would add to vikings thread. Glad you got it working

ste187
10-10-11, 18:05
its all happy days here slowlyslowly . tank has had in last month a auto top up system put in and now a temp controller . next i am gonna sump my tank either by overflow box or drilling tank . i started my tank very basic with the idea of it maturing and advancing slowly . i still have plenty of room for new corals and one more fish which i am happy to leave till the tank itself is exactly how i want it "patient man rides slow donkey":);)

webby7580
14-10-11, 21:57
Just an air of caution to anybody buying a temperature controller from ebay, I bought a similar one made by a company called 'Willhi', looks the same, same size etc. (Model WH7016C) this was 16.
Unfortunately it comes with no instructions and on looking for these online I came across an article that pointed out that there are actually two types of these devices, essentially an 'and' or 'or' type.
The one that I have is an 'or', which means that although you can preset both upper and lower temperature parameters, there is only one set of contacts on the back to switch a device (heater ORchiller/fan) when either limit is reached.
Should have bought an AND which has another switched pair of contacts on the back.
I've now got the STC one on order.

Nullbyte
14-10-11, 22:59
Wish I spotted this before ordering a TC-10, it just arrived today. The unit cost more than your entire build.

Will be off to B&Q tomorrow to buy bits and wire it all up. Thanks for all the ideas.

slowlyslowly
18-10-11, 13:35
Yeah its arrived today. First impressions are that for the money paid its a real solid build. By no means flimsy and cheap. If it works near as good as it looks I'll be a very satisfied customer.

slowlyslowly
18-10-11, 13:43
And at $27.33 and free delivery. Not much more than a filter sock :-)

lenny
18-10-11, 22:01
just one question mate . where did you get the plug bar . really nice build and looks pro. len

Viking
18-10-11, 22:15
Lidl had the extension leads in a few months ago. Any one will do really, but you'll need one with screws in the back to separate the two halves. Some are glued together so no use.

bbewekim
19-10-11, 09:11
Got one of these prebuilt by a reefer who has closed down... AMAZING! cant believe i did not have one before. My temperature used to fluctuate all over the place using the heater's thermostat, with this it has been bang on night and day!

ibraheem
19-10-11, 13:40
Ordered my STC-1000 a few days ago. I'll be building this in to my custom made cabinet. Thinking of 2 outlets for Heat and another 2 for Cool.

slowlyslowly
19-10-11, 15:25
Ordered my STC-1000 a few days ago. I'll be building this in to my custom made cabinet. Thinking of 2 outlets for Heat and another 2 for Cool.

Thinking of cutting into cabinet too. Two for heating, one for cooling for me, I think

lenny
19-10-11, 19:40
hi viking just to say thanks for sharing your idea with us all. i built one of these today and all is working fine. just waiting for a project box to put it into now and its finnished. many thanks

Cheesy
19-10-11, 22:30
Hi Viking

Thanks from me too, just ordered mine from fleabay last night, very sweet build! :worship:

slowlyslowly
21-10-11, 00:17
Got mine all wired up except for the cooling part. Not too worried about that for the moment. I'll see how it goes without it. Only snag was that I think it was overreading by .7C. I have another LCD type thermometer and that underreads by about .5C. Of course that is based on the glass thermometer that I'm hoping is correct. Anyone else find that theres was out a little bit. I'll add some pictures of my wiring when I can get them off phone and onto site. Thanks very much to Viking for the brilliant thread and plantse for a few pm's which also helped greatly.

lenny
21-10-11, 00:27
f4 is for adjusting temperature difference. are you sure that it is the controller that is wrong or the glass one? . unless really good one these can be way out. i have now got two of these on the go and both read almost the same. 25.1 and 25.0 so can not be too far off.. hth len

slowlyslowly
21-10-11, 00:54
Picture 1 is the wires the way I had them into controller.
http://www.ultimatereef.net/forums/../uploader/2011Q4/STC%201.jpg
Picture 2 is the wires the way I have them out of connector and into controller.
http://www.ultimatereef.net/forums/../uploader/2011Q4/STC2.jpg
Picture 3 is the connector block joined up. If I was to do it again I would reccomend leaving a little bit more of a gap to help get the wires in easier but I wanted it quiet compact.

http://www.ultimatereef.net/forums/../uploader/2011Q4/stc3.jpg
Picture 4 is the mains power connected up and the earth into a single connector(possible for a fuse later)

http://www.ultimatereef.net/forums/../uploader/2011Q4/stc4.jpg
Picture 5 shows the Mains and the double extension that I connector to the heating terminals of the controller so as to allow for two heaters(redundancy incase I heater stopped working). I have left the cooling out until I need it but basically it'll be another double extension wired same as the heating wiring.
http://www.ultimatereef.net/forums/../uploader/2011Q4/stc5.jpg
A close up of pic 5 basically. You can see that there is a common neutral, i.e the blues all go to the one connector.
http://www.ultimatereef.net/forums/../uploader/2011Q4/stc6.jpg

OK, don't know if that is of any benefit to anyone but hopefully it may help a little.

slowlyslowly
21-10-11, 00:57
f4 is for adjusting temperature difference. are you sure that it is the controller that is wrong or the glass one? . unless really good one these can be way out. i have now got two of these on the go and both read almost the same. 25.1 and 25.0 so can not be too far off.. hth len

Would you think that the controller is right and the glass thermometer off so. I have it at 25C so even if it is correct that means it should hold 25.7C with a .3 tolerance therefore up to 26C. If thats the case I'd be happy enough. In mean time I'll get a more accurate thermometer to calabrate correctly.

Thanks Lenny

Viking
21-10-11, 18:57
I compared all of mine (about half a dozen) against each other, and they were all within 0.1 of each other. I'd be inclined to think the glass one is out, not the controller. In any case, stability of temperature is far more important then accuracy.

slowlyslowly
21-10-11, 20:21
I compared all of mine (about half a dozen) against each other, and they were all within 0.1 of each other. I'd be inclined to think the glass one is out, not the controller. In any case, stability of temperature is far more important then accuracy.

Yeah good call. I have it calibrated down .7 and set at 25 which it has held with .1 so even if the controller is correct(which it prob is) then I'm actually holding between 25.6 and 25.8 which is still fine. It really does hold temp well. So far looks like no need for fan/chiller but coming into summer that may well change. Thanks Viking

bbewekim
22-10-11, 15:46
Put the heating on yesterday and noticed the temperature creep, plugged in my fan to see if itl work (can't use it on my current setup) and it was on immediately until the temp cooled. Very good peice of kit for the price :D

twin sisters
22-10-11, 16:48
Bikedoctor

If I could just add a little bit to your fine comment (post #14)

The formulas you have posted are for DC calculations, for AC (mains) it is a bit different.

To calculate the power of something AC you also need to include the power factor. This is the relationship between the phase of the current, and the phase of the voltage, and depends greatly on the type of device you are driving. Unless it is on the label or something, it is not usually something most of us know.

However for our (aquarist) needs, it would not be unreasonable to use a typical value of 0.6. So the calculation would be Amps * Volts * 0.6.

With regards to your comment about the relay contacts rating, your point about not running near the maximum is very valid, it is not really good practice to run anything near it's maximum, but in relay situations, it is often more important what happens at switch on.

Although two different items could have the same continous rating when on, they could have very different start up currents, and this is where the problems can occur with relays.

If the start up current is high, then this can cause large arcing between the contacts, and this can lead to the contacts welding together. An absolute disaster when it comes to heaters.

To be honest, these temperature controllers as used in this article (and I have been using something very similar for years) do not have very large contacts, that said, I am using it to switch 600w of heater.

If in doubt, or you just want to increase the safety margin, then it is quite feasible and realistic to use the controller contacts to switch a bigger heavier duty relay.

Hope this helps to add to the picture a bit.

HullTiger86
22-10-11, 23:42
Thinking of getting one of these, but most of them online seem to come with a metal sensor which is no good in saltwater.

Could people link the ones they got off ebay, which came with the plastic sensor please.

Would prefer one from UK saves waiting 2 weeks :)

Viking
23-10-11, 08:00
This is the one I bought. Link. (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Mini-Aquarium-Digital-Temperature-Controller-Thermostat-/260862451189?pt=UK_Pet_Supplies_Fish&hash=item3cbc9d1df5)

2mtr sensor cable, plastic sensor, heat and cool functions, and arrived fairly quickly. I doubt you'll find a UK seller of these for anywhere near the price.

HullTiger86
23-10-11, 13:35
Thanks alot viking.

I have ordered 1 andwill have fun setting it up when it comes.

bikedoctorr
24-10-11, 23:42
Bikedoctor

If I could just add a little bit to your fine comment (post #14)

The formulas you have posted are for DC calculations, for AC (mains) it is a bit different.

To calculate the power of something AC you also need to include the power factor. This is the relationship between the phase of the current, and the phase of the voltage, and depends greatly on the type of device you are driving. Unless it is on the label or something, it is not usually something most of us know.

However for our (aquarist) needs, it would not be unreasonable to use a typical value of 0.6. So the calculation would be Amps * Volts * 0.6.

With regards to your comment about the relay contacts rating, your point about not running near the maximum is very valid, it is not really good practice to run anything near it's maximum, but in relay situations, it is often more important what happens at switch on.

Although two different items could have the same continous rating when on, they could have very different start up currents, and this is where the problems can occur with relays.

If the start up current is high, then this can cause large arcing between the contacts, and this can lead to the contacts welding together. An absolute disaster when it comes to heaters.

To be honest, these temperature controllers as used in this article (and I have been using something very similar for years) do not have very large contacts, that said, I am using it to switch 600w of heater.

If in doubt, or you just want to increase the safety margin, then it is quite feasible and realistic to use the controller contacts to switch a bigger heavier duty relay.

Hope this helps to add to the picture a bit.

thanks mate, the way everyone didnt comment on my post i began to think if id posted it at all. :laugh: thanks for the sum corrections. yes you spotted my electrical knowledge is bassed on dc know how :applause::laugh::laugh: youd thin it was funny if you knew i disconnect shops ac supply for a living wouldnt you.........well i have an engineer to do that but even so i should know a bit more than i do about ac.

overall i think these are a good item and a good diy build i just wanted to voice a concern before someone went out and started to fit big 1kw chillers to them and wondered why the relay welded shut and froze there tank solid (unless those big chillers have a soft start like you suggested). in dc i think you can cure relay spark by fitting a capictor and a small resistor on the load side but im not sure for ac. maybe you could enlighten us.:) for what their intended use is like heaters and fans i think they gonna be fine.

ibraheem
26-10-11, 10:52
So has anyone ever experienced relays welding shut with say a 600w heater load?

twin sisters
26-10-11, 11:50
ibraheem

As I mentioned in my post, I am switching 600w of heater with this style of controller without any problems. However, I should mention that the one I am using is somewhat better quality, and more expensive. One of the reasons these devices are cheap is because they use cheap components, so you need to be careful. As bikedoctorr mentioned, if you are using it to switch chillers, then you are more at risk of a problem, as they take quite alot of power at startup as they have a motor, but again it does also depend on the size of the chiller.


bikedocterr

You are right, you can put suppression across the contacts to eliminate/reduce arcing.

For DC, often just a capacitor will do (make sure the voltage rating is well above the item you are switching) but you can iclude a resitor as well. Any capacitance of a few microfarads (1 - 100) will help, but again it depends on what you are switching.

With AC it is a bit different, and this is where you need the resitor and capacitor (snubber). However, it is not quite as simple as that.

Rather than give values which could be potentially dangerous, I have posted a link to a document on the subject which may or may not help. There is a useful table on page 2.

www.okaya.com/images/noise/1200.pdf

You can purchase ready made snubber modules.

ibraheem
26-10-11, 12:23
ibraheem

As I mentioned in my post, I am switching 600w of heater with this style of controller without any problems. However, I should mention that the one I am using is somewhat better quality, and more expensive. One of the reasons these devices are cheap is because they use cheap components, so you need to be careful. As bikedoctorr mentioned, if you are using it to switch chillers, then you are more at risk of a problem, as they take quite alot of power at startup as they have a motor, but again it does also depend on the size of the chiller.


bikedocterr

You are right, you can put suppression across the contacts to eliminate/reduce arcing.

For DC, often just a capacitor will do (make sure the voltage rating is well above the item you are switching) but you can iclude a resitor as well. Any capacitance of a few microfarads (1 - 100) will help, but again it depends on what you are switching.

With AC it is a bit different, and this is where you need the resitor and capacitor (snubber). However, it is not quite as simple as that.

Rather than give values which could be potentially dangerous, I have posted a link to a document on the subject which may or may not help. There is a useful table on page 2.

www.okaya.com/images/noise/1200.pdf (http://www.okaya.com/images/noise/1200.pdf)

You can purchase ready made snubber modules.

Wouldn't it be easier, for AC, just to turn a relay on and off, and attach the devices to the relay's switched circuit?

twin sisters
26-10-11, 14:42
ibraheem

I'm not entirely sure if I have understood your comment correctly, so if my answer doesn't make sense, forgive me, and perhaps you could rephrase your question.

The problem we are working with here is what you refer to as the "relay's switched circuit" or contacts.

It is possible, particularly with small relays, that the arcing that occurs when the relay switches (sparks between the contacts) can cause the contacts to weld together and so remain in the permantly on state. (absolute disaster for heaters)

The amount of arcing depends on what type of device is being switched and how much power is being switched. Resistive loads like heaters are probably least troublesome, but that is not to say they cannot cause a problem.

There are 4 ways to handle this with varying degrees of risk.

1. Rely on the relay in the controller being upto the job, which for small/medium wattage heaters it probably is. (but see my comment at the end about selecting heaters)

2. Use the small relay device in the controller to switch a larger external relay. The larger the contacts, the less susceptible they become to welding together, but not completely immune.

3. Add a snubber circuit across the contacts of the relay.

4. A combination of 2 & 3.

Back in the real world, if it is a small relay with a small/medium power heater, then option 1 is probably fine, or if you want a bit more security, or high power heaters, then option 2.

Option 3 is realy only if your switching powerful stuff like coolers. Also, it has the disadvantage that you need to select the right snubber option for the equipment you are switching.

One other thing, the more often it switches, the more chance there is of welding.

If I were using one of these 5 quid controllers for my heating, I would use it to switch a larger relay, and use that to switch the heaters.

Also, as a bit of belts and braces, I always use heaters that have a thermostat in, and set this a degree or so above the required temperature, so there is a bit of backup safety.

ibraheem
26-10-11, 15:08
ibraheem

I'm not entirely sure if I have understood your comment correctly, so if my answer doesn't make sense, forgive me, and perhaps you could rephrase your question.

The problem we are working with here is what you refer to as the "relay's switched circuit" or contacts.

It is possible, particularly with small relays, that the arcing that occurs when the relay switches (sparks between the contacts) can cause the contacts to weld together and so remain in the permantly on state. (absolute disaster for heaters)

The amount of arcing depends on what type of device is being switched and how much power is being switched. Resistive loads like heaters are probably least troublesome, but that is not to say they cannot cause a problem.

There are 4 ways to handle this with varying degrees of risk.

1. Rely on the relay in the controller being upto the job, which for small/medium wattage heaters it probably is. (but see my comment at the end about selecting heaters)

2. Use the small relay device in the controller to switch a larger external relay. The larger the contacts, the less susceptible they become to welding together, but not completely immune.

3. Add a snubber circuit across the contacts of the relay.

4. A combination of 2 & 3.

Back in the real world, if it is a small relay with a small/medium power heater, then option 1 is probably fine, or if you want a bit more security, or high power heaters, then option 2.

Option 3 is realy only if your switching powerful stuff like coolers. Also, it has the disadvantage that you need to select the right snubber option for the equipment you are switching.

One other thing, the more often it switches, the more chance there is of welding.

If I were using one of these 5 quid controllers for my heating, I would use it to switch a larger relay, and use that to switch the heaters.

Also, as a bit of belts and braces, I always use heaters that have a thermostat in, and set this a degree or so above the required temperature, so there is a bit of backup safety.

Thanks for that, I meant what you are referring to in point 2. I was specifically thinking of using one of the DPDT octal type relays, where the relay supports a higher current anyway, and also the pins are housed in a plastic base with the pins insulated somewhat from eachother by the plastic.

twin sisters
26-10-11, 15:53
I was specifically thinking of using one of the DPDT octal type relays, where the relay supports a higher current anyway, and also the pins are housed in a plastic base with the pins insulated somewhat from eachother by the plastic.

I can't argue with that solution, and if you wish to maximise the relays switching capacity, (maximum contact area at the time of switching), then connect the two poles of the relay in parralell and use both of them to switch the live supply to the heater, with the neutral connected directly to the heater.

That should be pretty bomb proof.

Katch
01-11-11, 10:43
Just over 15 with current exchange rate - plastic sensor.

kduspiderman
17-11-11, 13:28
Just an air of caution to anybody buying a temperature controller from ebay, I bought a similar one made by a company called 'Willhi', looks the same, same size etc. (Model WH7016C) this was 16.
Unfortunately it comes with no instructions and on looking for these online I came across an article that pointed out that there are actually two types of these devices, essentially an 'and' or 'or' type.
The one that I have is an 'or', which means that although you can preset both upper and lower temperature parameters, there is only one set of contacts on the back to switch a device (heater ORchiller/fan) when either limit is reached.
Should have bought an AND which has another switched pair of contacts on the back.
I've now got the STC one on order.


Webby7580, can you learn me how i can do this Willhi WH7016C works? I am not able to connect the wires in it. Thanks

cio74
18-11-11, 18:06
Thanks for that, I meant what you are referring to in point 2. I was specifically thinking of using one of the DPDT octal type relays, where the relay supports a higher current anyway, and also the pins are housed in a plastic base with the pins insulated somewhat from eachother by the plastic.

Switching AC at high amps it's easier than DC due self-extinguishing nature of the AC current which zeroes twice per AC cycle (100 times per second if 50 Hz AC mains) while it's constat on a DC source. Unless you switch inductive loads and keep the current at half of the relay's AC rated current you should be fine.

When using a 'snubber' circuit if the capacitor or the resistor fail the result can be a closed circuit regardless of the relay state which can have severe consequences.

As with anything, buying quality components can save you lots of meney in long run. DPDT are not necessary for switching AC mains, you can use DPST NO relays but they are less common. Anyway DP* relays (double pole) are recommended since isolates both AC wires.

When switching heaters I also recommend to set them to the maximum temperature you can run your aquarium for a short time; if you intend to keep water at 27.5 C then there is no reason to have it set at 35, you can set the heater at 29 and let the controller do the fine switching. If relay fails then water won't go past 29 degrees. I agree that both the controller and the internal thermostat of the heater can fail at the same time but is very unlikey.

I am building myself an aquarium controller as a hobby project and I had to deal with that. I am continously measuring AC current for each socket using a CT and a microntroller and after the relays break a circuit the current measured should be zero, if not then an alarm is triggered signaling a blocked contact of the relay. This never happened so far.

HullTiger86
10-12-11, 23:48
Thanks for this i used this 2 do my temp controller and seems 2 b working fine :thumbsup:

http://www.ultimatereef.net/uploader/2011Q4/P1000564_2.JPG

bikedoctorr
11-12-11, 23:52
is that the picture angle or do you own one of those down hill saws like i have. ie evrything you cut goes downhill. the controller looks wonky in the box but it might be the camera angle :)

Goonerman1
12-12-11, 15:31
I've just ordered one of these

Just found this.....very helpful http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EymLY6BZPRo

Can I just add.... you need to make sure you wire the sensor wires in the right was round. I had all sorts of temperature reading problems until I switched the wires around. Working 100% now

SLIM
06-02-12, 12:46
Thanks for posting this viking. I have just got one . Are these reliable long term?

Grimson
04-03-12, 22:11
Before I go and wire my STC-1000 up I just want to check that this is correct.

Going to be using it only for my two heaters.

http://www.ultimatereef.net/uploader/2012Q1/STC-1000.jpg

Anything wrong there?

MrCookie
04-03-12, 22:51
Nope same as mine :)

Grimson
05-03-12, 09:17
Nope same as mine :)

Thanks!

marula
28-03-12, 02:08
Hey guys,going to be ordering myself one of these units and have one gang running my heating and another my cooling,my question is what do you do with the earths?can they all be connected to a empty terminal in the connecting block?:confused:

bikedoctorr
28-03-12, 21:12
cant see why not. so longs your earths on your items are connected to your mains earth they will work. just make sure it is a unused terminal your using for the earth. not much fish tank stuff has earths tbh

marula
29-03-12, 00:40
I want to use a clip on desk fan for cooling,would it require a earth to work?

bikedoctorr
29-03-12, 21:52
open the plug as see. if its got metal parts then most probable it will have. most household items do have a earth.

Franksee
30-03-12, 12:45
Mine is all done thanks to this wonderful thread!!! well chuffed works a dream, I only need one socket each for cooling and heating and managed to squeeze it into a smaller box from maplin.
http://www.ultimatereef.net/uploader/2012Q1/P1020458 (Copy)_1.jpg

Franksee
30-03-12, 12:48
Not wanting to hijack this brilliant thread but, For cooling i bought this, i have tried it out seems ok need to test it for really when it gets warmer.

http://www.ultimatereef.net/uploader/2012Q1/P1020506 (Copy)_1.jpg

marula
30-04-12, 03:01
Many thanks to everyone on this thread,I bit the bullet and had a go myself,tested it for a few days first and works a treat!:thumbsup:

John

cjs120l
04-05-12, 19:19
i could be stupid but as i also want to do this i should ask
heaters have temp stats in them so how do you stop it doing its own thing instead of the stat
and also how are you utalising the fans to cool it?

cjs120l
07-05-12, 16:15
bump

Grimson
07-05-12, 16:37
Set the heaters to a few deg above the STC so they come on when the STC wants them but there is safety if the STC fails and stays on the built in stats will still switch off only a few deg hotter.

Who.Me?
07-05-12, 20:07
Just wanted to add my thanks for this thread too.

I used the UroWiki link and it was a doddle to wire up.

cjs120l
07-05-12, 20:29
thanks. but how are you all using fans to cool?

Viking
17-05-12, 12:31
thanks. but how are you all using fans to cool?

Fans plug into the cooler socket on the plug bar. When the unit senses the water is too warm it turns the fans on, and the fans blow across the surface of the water. This cools the tank down nicely.

cjs120l
17-05-12, 21:42
thankyou XD

lenny
22-05-12, 23:22
Fans plug into the cooler socket on the plug bar. When the unit senses the water is too warm it turns the fans on, and the fans blow across the surface of the water. This cools the tank down nicely.

hi viking sorry to be a pain but as you know i have built one of these and use it for my heater and cooling fans. now i do not know if it is how i have it set up or what but i am getting this happen all the time now i have the fans plugged in and the heater. once it gets up to 24.5 c (where i have the temp set on the st1000 it then switches on the fans . this then cools the tank and switches the heater back on so either the fans or heater are on. is this because i have it set up wrong. len

Viking
23-05-12, 07:53
So you have a set temperature of 24.5C, and what temperature have you set your heater and cooler functions to come on?

Mine are set at 26 and heater set at 25.7 - cooler set at 26.3. So on mine the temperature can rise and fall by itself between the two set temperatures with no input from either. Once it hits 25.7 the heater drives it up to 26 and then shuts off. The cooler doesn't come on til 26.3 so there shouldn't be any interference between the two.

lenny
23-05-12, 22:57
So you have a set temperature of 24.5C, and what temperature have you set your heater and cooler functions to come on?

Mine are set at 26 and heater set at 25.7 - cooler set at 26.3. So on mine the temperature can rise and fall by itself between the two set temperatures with no input from either. Once it hits 25.7 the heater drives it up to 26 and then shuts off. The cooler doesn't come on til 26.3 so there shouldn't be any interference between the two.

this is what i was asking . how do i set them . i have f1 to f4 in the menu but not sure how to set them up. i have the temperature set to 24.5 and thats all . it keep the heater coming on and off so temp sits around 24.5 to 25 c but as soon as it reaches the point where the heater goes off then the cooler light comes on thus turning on the fans. so i must have it set wrong. can you show me how you have each f number set please. len.

Viking
24-05-12, 07:26
Instructions available here to download. Link. (http://www.mashmaster.com/UserFiles/2321-Files/file/brewmate.pdf)

lenny
28-05-12, 23:32
Instructions available here to download. Link. (http://www.mashmaster.com/UserFiles/2321-Files/file/brewmate.pdf)

cheers all working fine now ..len

cjs120l
30-05-12, 22:00
got my project box and stc-1000 in the post

alsnano
07-06-12, 12:33
wher did you get the project box please?

Viking
07-06-12, 21:59
This is the one I use.

Link. (http://www.palmer-riley.co.uk//gw44206---ip56-junction-box-smooth-walls-150-x-110-x-70-412-p.asp)

Spirit
16-06-12, 16:16
What delay time setting are people using for when attaching a chiller on the F function ?

Viking
16-06-12, 18:41
The delay is relevant to the type and make of chiller you're running. There'll be manufacturers specifications for how long the delay should be before restart and your STC1000 settings should be in line with this. I use fans so there's no need for delay function.

shelley and ian
16-06-12, 18:48
HI there

Excellent build, good post......

Ian

Spirit
17-06-12, 20:26
The delay is relevant to the type and make of chiller you're running. There'll be manufacturers specifications for how long the delay should be before restart and your STC1000 settings should be in line with this. I use fans so there's no need for delay function.

Ok Brilliant, cheers for that.

I'll post a piccy of mine when i've done :thanks:

ciderbottler
22-07-12, 20:53
I have been copying your instructions as this looks a great way to set up a STC1000. Only problem I am having is opening up the extension lead - broke 2 so far! Any tips on this please. :confused:

Viking
23-07-12, 10:49
Be more careful...:p

Seriously though, how have you broken them? Trying to split them open? A lot depends on what sort of extension you buy. Some just screw apart, others have plastic clips which hold it together after the screws, and others are glued together. Can't really tell you how they come apart without physically looking at one.

Another way would be to use 2 extensions and a mains lead all separate, then the extensions just wire up to the terminal block in the box.

ciderbottler
24-07-12, 19:29
Think I was dealing with the glued ones and by trying to pull them apart have broken the plastic! Seems so simple now you have pointed out the different types - screwed version ordered so will be up and running this weekend. Cheers.:)

alsnano
26-07-12, 11:58
need to get mine wired up but having trouble getting hold of some 5 core mains cable, can anyone suggest a good place to get some :thanks:

ciderbottler
26-07-12, 17:52
I had trouble finding that locally as well and in the end I got my 5 core off of eBay but it cost 5 however it was 3 meters worth so not to bad. Item number 150839792417

RandomGypsy
26-07-12, 22:55
I had trouble finding that locally as well and in the end I got my 5 core off of eBay but it cost 5 however it was 3 meters worth so not to bad. Item number 150839792417


http://www.tlc-direct.co.uk/Main_Index/Cable_Index/Flex_White_3/index.html

;)

Rocky23
26-07-12, 23:26
these look great will be looking into this more :)

RandomGypsy
18-08-12, 00:11
Thanks for the great build and instructions.... couldn't have been easier!

http://www.ultimatereef.net/forums/../uploader/2012Q3/IMG_1923.jpg

Iforrow
21-08-12, 12:36
If I wanted to get a surface fans - similar to like a PC tower fan.

what is the best ones to get - I am on a budget so nothing to expensive

Great thread by the way - just sat and read it all :)

promazine
21-08-12, 13:01
Just ebay pc case fan - there are thousands to choose from. In general, the more you pay the more efficient and silent they are.

RandomGypsy
21-08-12, 15:16
You can get 2 efficient and silent fans for about 20.

I need to upgrade the fans on mine cause I just used cheap ones (1.50 each) in an emergency to get the temp down in the last few hot days.

gtfcniles
25-08-12, 20:14
Nice work great DIY.

matt_collo
29-08-12, 23:51
this looks great, i might try to pinch your idea here.

piratepete
04-09-12, 12:57
think i may have the wrong heating controler,the one i have is 12v does this matter

Viking
04-09-12, 13:40
In response to your pm, I've copied my reply to you here.

Not sure mate. It'll need a 12v power supply to run the controller and then a 240v power supply to switch the heaters and coolers sockets etc, so will be more complicated to set up. Also, I don't know if the switching relays will be enough to run 240v current as they might be 12v rated as well. Have you a link to the actual one you've bought?

In any event, by the time you've bought a power supply and got everything connected up and managed to make it work, it'd be a lot easier to just get hold of a 240v controller. But be aware there anre some cheap ones which look the same but only do either heating or cooling, not both. Also some come with a metal sensor (not recommended) and some only come with a 1mtr probe wire length. Tricky getting the correct ones, sometimes.

piratepete
12-09-12, 22:19
got my stc1000 all fitted in but you dont get very good instructions with it,how do you set the temperature on it or is it already set at 25 as cant figer it out

piratepete
12-09-12, 23:28
think ive done it got F1 set at 25 and F2 ar 0.3,does that sound right

Marshd1
17-09-12, 09:55
For info wickes sell a multiplug that has no cables in it at all. The only issue is that it is not deep and so you have to cut the gromit down a bit

razer
22-09-12, 23:27
I just got mine up n running with 5 fans well pleased , but the fuse holder I bought does not take a standard 3amp fuse!! It needs to be shorter , all the DIY stores don't sell them does anyone have a idea where I can get a shorter 3 amp fuse . Thanks

piratepete
22-09-12, 23:40
I just got mine up n running with 5 fans well pleased , but the fuse holder I bought does not take a standard 3amp fuse!! It needs to be shorter , all the DIY stores don't sell them does anyone have a idea where I can get a shorter 3 amp fuse . Thanks
could try halfords if its like the glass see through ones

razer
22-09-12, 23:44
could try halfords if its like the glass see through ones

Cheers Pete , that's a idea I have a look tomoz if I get time :thumbsup:

ibraheem
23-09-12, 10:39
Maplin will stock them. Ask for 20mm fuses.

razer
23-09-12, 11:02
Maplin will stock them. Ask for 20mm fuses.

Thanks !! I didn't think of them , a 20mm it is then :thumbsup:

Viking
23-09-12, 11:55
I got free fuses with the fuse holders from an Ebay supplier.

razer
23-09-12, 14:58
I got free fuses with the fuse holders from an Ebay supplier.

Lol I didn't , thanks for the build thread it works great , I had a bit of a problem soldering the wires to the brass contacters in the extension socket , but hopefully it's sorted and the solder will hold . :thumbsup::thanks:

razer
23-09-12, 19:46
Great bit of kit!! It's holding my temp at 26.1 . Just shows how inaccurate the heater stats are .

DAWS01
25-09-12, 10:18
I just got mine up n running with 5 fans well pleased , but the fuse holder I bought does not take a standard 3amp fuse!! It needs to be shorter , all the DIY stores don't sell them does anyone have a idea where I can get a shorter 3 amp fuse . Thanks

I received a box of 100 3amp fuses when I ordered mine so happy to post you a couple if you cant locate any locally, PM your address and ill post to you if needs be mate.

razer
27-09-12, 06:10
I received a box of 100 3amp fuses when I ordered mine so happy to post you a couple if you cant locate any locally, PM your address and ill post to you if needs be mate.



Cheers but sourced some now ,:thumbsup::thumbsup::thanks:

razer
27-09-12, 06:15
OMG I just come home from work to find my fans on and the temp dropped to 24.7 :eek: only trouble is the indicator light on the stc1000 was on for the heater and the heater was on . The cooling indicator was off . Yesterday we did have a power cut for 10 mins would this of caused it IE did it need resetting or have I got a duff unit . I switch it off and on again and the fans went off ? Can anyone shed some light on wtf went wrong :annoyed:. Thanks

DAWS01
27-09-12, 15:00
OMG I just come home from work to find my fans on and the temp dropped to 24.7 :eek: only trouble is the indicator light on the stc1000 was on for the heater and the heater was on . The cooling indicator was off . Yesterday we did have a power cut for 10 mins would this of caused it IE did it need resetting or have I got a duff unit . I switch it off and on again and the fans went off ? Can anyone shed some light on wtf went wrong :annoyed:. Thanks


I asked this very question recently and was told that it does not reset if the power is cut.

razer
27-09-12, 16:14
I asked this very question recently and was told that it does not reset if the power is cut.

Sorry are you saying it needs to be reset !!! or it doesn't :thanks:. Tbh I think the unit has to be faulty as I Said the heater was on so was the heater light :) but the cool light was off but the fans where on :(. Even now the temp as just got up to 26 c exactly I have it set for 26.4 so I see what happens then :thanks:

DAWS01
27-09-12, 22:11
Sorry are you saying it needs to be reset !!! or it doesn't :thanks:. Tbh I think the unit has to be faulty as I Said the heater was on so was the heater light :) but the cool light was off but the fans where on :(. Even now the temp as just got up to 26 c exactly I have it set for 26.4 so I see what happens then :thanks:

Sorry mate should have read your comment better, I wrongly assumed you were referring to the unit resetting automatically to default settings if power is cut (it doesn't). Now I've read your comment fully you are asking if the unit needs resetting so please ignore my comment as irrelevant.

stegoodall
29-09-12, 22:44
am i missing something or can the heater just be wired straight to the unit? i've just ordered one, i only use one heater so could i just cut the plug off and wire the live and neutral straight to the green blocks? I don't have a fan but if i got a 240v one could i do the same with that? cheers

razer
29-09-12, 22:48
No it's a switched live , so you need to run a live to it ? It's not live & neutral

stegoodall
29-09-12, 22:52
ah yeah, just realised i was looking at the wrong side of the diagram on the unit! thinking the internal switching mechanism was the heater. Doh!

straycat
04-11-12, 20:54
Nice and simples

Parts on order
Thanks for the inspiration

Gav31882
15-11-12, 14:43
so can somebody tell me how the water actually heats up then ?? lol

SaltyDan
15-11-12, 18:01
Miss post. Sorry.

Caesium
15-11-12, 18:02
so can somebody tell me how the water actually heats up then ?? lol

You plug a heater in :)

This is just a controller, it tells a heater (and fan) when to turn on and off. Plug in something like the AquaMedic titanium heater and you're away.

Stevie_D
15-11-12, 21:34
Is anyone else struggling to get a 4 or 6 way extension lead which can be unscrewed? Ive been to halfords/B&Q/Wickes/Wilko/B&M/Lidl and all of them either have a 1 way screw (that cant be undone without breaking) or have what looks like metal plugs. The only one ive seen is the DIY extension plugs that doesnt come with any wiring and they are expensive.

jonny-g
15-11-12, 21:45
thats pretty cool man i like it, may end up steeling this and altering slightly maybe direct connectors in the back of the box and getting rid of the extension lead??(i already have alot of sockets in my cab!

what sensor and heaters are you using if you dont mind me asking???
i only have the cheap all in ones heating mine at the moment (not very accurate and they struggle to keep a steady temp) soid' have to buy everything

jonny-g
15-11-12, 22:05
Is anyone else struggling to get a 4 or 6 way extension lead which can be unscrewed? Ive been to halfords/B&Q/Wickes/Wilko/B&M/Lidl and all of them either have a 1 way screw (that cant be undone without breaking) or have what looks like metal plugs. The only one ive seen is the DIY extension plugs that doesnt come with any wiring and they are expensive.

i assume that will be down to all the new electrical safety laws to stop the breed of "ddiyers" from electrocuting them selves the same reason all electrical gear comes with moulded plugs now days.

im sure if you had the skill you could quite easily drill out the rivets from the riveted style to gain access but you would have to be very careful not to damage the casing or any of the internals. then just find an alternative but most importantly SAFE way of putting it back together

racundra
28-12-12, 11:11
So.... I just got a controller and started wiring it up, only to find that the terminal screw on pin 7 just spins and doesn't tighten. Can anyone think of a way round this other than returning the item (to the bay, so good luck there...)? I wondered about soldering a jumper wire directly into the terminal...

Cheers

Noel

jonny-g
28-12-12, 12:19
De-solder the terminal from the board, go to maplins grab a new one for pence and solder it back on. It will be alot quicker and cheaper than sending it back but remember anything you mod will void any warrenty so if the unit dies next month theres nothing you can do.

Ordered mine last month and theres still no sodding sign of it!!!!

racundra
28-12-12, 16:32
Sorted!! Took about 10 mins in the end (managed to get the cooling cable to stay put after all, no soldering!) and now have a temp controller running a heater in a bucket, just to see...

steve porter
05-01-13, 14:40
just been looking to buy one of these,but the only ones i can find on auction sites have a metal probe,has anybody used one of these in a marine tank
thanks

ibraheem
05-01-13, 15:10
I've got one though I havn't used it yet I think they are steel.

Paul rose
06-01-13, 19:47
Hi. Like your stc1000 set up. I'm looking at purchasing one myself but
Can you advise if the temperature sensor is waterproof please.
May put it into the tank or maybe sump

Jimbo1980
07-01-13, 15:37
I've rescently just got one of these and one word.


Perfect.

http://i1195.photobucket.com/albums/aa396/Muckypup1980/34153F18-E3C0-4CC2-862C-AF3AA8C5FD7F-3563-0000053D0A601833.jpg

As you can see its spot on and has kept my tank temp at 26C +\- 0.5 of a degree although I've set it up like that. Although I've wired in the cooling part too I'm not currently using it yet :).

But I do love it and it's nice to now see my tanks temp so much more stable and where it exactly should be.

http://i1195.photobucket.com/albums/aa396/Muckypup1980/816456A4-2D41-4B5C-B74C-E698682AFC2C-3563-0000053A721A05E1.jpg

And I'm no means an avionic chap but it's pretty easy to wire up. I'm using two extensions with two sockets on each and the hole thing is powered by one plug :). Love it

Paul rose
07-01-13, 19:40
Is your temp probe in the salt water and working fine
?

Jimbo1980
08-01-13, 13:50
It is yes. It's in my main tank. And has been verified with a pinpoint temperature probe as well and they are smack in +\- 0.1 of a degree.

2shay
22-02-13, 22:59
great thread just ordering my stc cheers viking and all the others for there input also

Jimbo1980
22-02-13, 23:56
2shay you will love it !

biggee291
25-02-13, 10:17
Just had a wee read through this thread.....great read, and definately something to consider for the future.

genepowell
22-03-13, 14:26
Very helpfull thanks

Steve.J
28-03-13, 19:25
Great read, found it easy to follow :thanks:

piratepete
08-04-13, 10:37
think my stc-1000 has packed up got up this morning and temp said 22.5 and heaters were on but tank temp was just over 28.5

Jimbo1980
08-04-13, 10:50
Oh well they are only 7 pounds delivered

Saltire
08-04-13, 11:16
Oh well they are only 7 pounds delivered

Where from?

ian108
08-04-13, 18:08
Just installed one of these on my tank and got to say one of the best investments I have made in ages, temp was all over the place before hand due to the crappy thermostats on the heaters, tank is now bang on stable at 26c all day and night :thumbsup:

piratepete
08-04-13, 18:17
anyone know where i can get a new sensor

robster84
08-04-13, 18:41
anyone know where i can get a new sensor

http://www.simplyaquaria.co.uk/index.aspx?pageid=1097265&prodid=7286229&gs=2

piratepete
10-04-13, 12:50
got a new sensor from ebay for 12 which aint much cheaper than the whole unit but the quality is loads better,all fitted now and working fine

Jimbo1980
10-04-13, 13:40
A new sensor for 12 pounds.

You can get a complete unit and sensor for less posted ! Crazy people lol

charlie2005
10-04-13, 16:29
A new sensor for 12 pounds.

You can get a complete unit and sensor for less posted ! Crazy people lol

Spill the beans then!!!!!!!!!!

Jimbo1980
10-04-13, 16:44
Sorry they are 12 pounds posted for a full unit from hongkong via the flea bay

charlie2005
10-04-13, 22:59
Sorry they are 12 pounds posted for a full unit from hongkong via the flea bay

Link?

piratepete
10-04-13, 23:55
A new sensor for 12 pounds.

You can get a complete unit and sensor for less posted ! Crazy people lol

number 1 loads better quality
number 2 got in in a day not 3 weeks,couldnt wait that long
number 3 are you 100% sure the ones you say have the correct sensor,i got my first one from H/K for 12 and when it arrived had a metal sensor so had to buy another which was 15 with postage

Jimbo1980
11-04-13, 11:51
Mine came with the plastic sensor. If buying and unsure just ask the seller simplze

ian108
11-04-13, 13:42
Got mine from eBay uk seller 17.99 delivered next day, just Search the bay :D

boshank23
15-04-13, 19:45
Just ordered my kit :) great build thread!

boshank23
24-04-13, 13:11
Gees it's taking forever for the bits to dribble through the post! Only waiting for the controller now though.

-Neil-
01-05-13, 02:32
Would this fuse holder be ok to use?


Look at this on eBay:

5x20mm Panel Mount Fuse Holder Case BLX-3 !!!FAST DELIVERY!!!

http://bit.ly/16kLDef

boshank23
01-05-13, 14:30
Job done, thanks for the great instructions! It works a treat

http://i1306.photobucket.com/albums/s569/griffo1605/null_zps0f4177d3.jpg

Excuse the stickers, it's for my sons tank and he thought it would look cool

-Neil-
01-05-13, 15:16
Job done, thanks for the great instructions! It works a treat


Excuse the stickers, it's for my sons tank and he thought it would look cool

Where did you get the fuse holder from?

Viking
02-05-13, 18:26
Would this fuse holder be ok to use?


Look at this on eBay:

5x20mm Panel Mount Fuse Holder Case BLX-3 !!!FAST DELIVERY!!!

http://bit.ly/16kLDef

Yep, that'd do it.

-Neil-
02-05-13, 20:15
Yep, that'd do it.

Does it matter that most fuse holders say 10a? Or does it not matter as its a 3amp fuse in there?

Ukemaxxer
02-05-13, 22:53
Does it matter that most fuse holders say 10a? Or does it not matter as its a 3amp fuse in there?

Rating written on the holder will be for its own internal connections. It will be fine with a 3A fuse in it.

Richard

-Neil-
07-05-13, 21:54
I've found a 4 gang lead with screws, where do I cut if I want two heat, then one cool and one always on at the other end?



http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c369/Broody69/d14197cf-ef8e-427c-bc61-96ce10bbc54d_zps0a805d84.jpg (http://s31.photobucket.com/user/Broody69/media/d14197cf-ef8e-427c-bc61-96ce10bbc54d_zps0a805d84.jpg.html)



Thanks

abucksdiver
08-05-13, 16:04
http://www.ultimatereef.net/uploader/2013Q2/Image1.jpg

The green squares are where you'd cut... (I've just done this on a 6-way myself... the most difficult part was finding a screwed unit, most seem to be riveted these days...)

The Blue "C" is for cooling, the Red "h"s for heating, and the black "M" for mains...

PS> Not sure what the Black compontent is in the middle... my extension block ddn't have one! I'd guess some kind of surge protector, as it seems to bridge the live and neutral... probably should remove it, or move it down so that it bridges the connections on the left of the picture?

HTH

Andrew

gazc31
23-05-13, 22:01
I would just like to thank Viking for the help and advise given via this thread and pm ,

thank you gareth

Viking
23-05-13, 22:11
No problem. ;)

boshank23
24-05-13, 01:27
I've found a 4 gang lead with screws, where do I cut if I want two heat, then one cool and one always on at the other end?



http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c369/Broody69/d14197cf-ef8e-427c-bc61-96ce10bbc54d_zps0a805d84.jpg (http://s31.photobucket.com/user/Broody69/media/d14197cf-ef8e-427c-bc61-96ce10bbc54d_zps0a805d84.jpg.html)



Thanks

Where did you find that? I've been looking for ages to find a proper one

-Neil-
24-05-13, 15:30
This is probably 10 years old, found it randomly in a cupboard with odds n sods of wires.
I looked in asda and you can get screwed ones in 6 gang I think.

nowak
01-06-13, 07:50
is extra fuse necessary in this build ? there is one 13 amp in plug right ?

Caesium
01-06-13, 10:10
I didn't bother with the extra fuse. As you say, there's one in the plug, though you could reduce it from 13A down to 3, assuming no more than 700W or so of heaters.

Viking
01-06-13, 13:18
The STC unit runs at a very small current. As such a 13a fuse while being suitable for the total load on the extension will be too heavy for the unit itself. All the other units (heater, fans, etc.) will all be individually fused in their own plugs which connect to the extension, and will no doubt be running at 3a in their own plug top.

While you're quite at liberty to run the build without a seperate fuse for the unit, it would be poor practice to post up a build as a guide and allow the general public to follow it without pointing out the reason for the fuse.

All domestic appliances are required to be protected with a suitable load fuse, and it's only reasonable to expect the same from this. If you wish to omit the fuse when building your own, then you should be aware that the unit you're using is not in compliance with the individual fused requirement, and you're doing so at your own risk. For the sake of a quid and a couple of minutes work, it would seem like a silly, pointless, and perhaps dangerous shortcut.

Also I should point out that people cutting the plugs off heaters and wiring them directly to the unit or a terminal block are in effect removing the individual fuse protection from their heaters. While I (and no doubt the forums owners) are unable to prevent people from doing so, again you should be aware that this is a silly, pointless, and perhaps dangerous shortcut.

After all, when you buy a new TV for example, how many people cut the plug off and wire it directly to the mains?

Caesium
01-06-13, 15:08
After all, when you buy a new TV for example, how many people cut the plug off and wire it directly to the mains?

What? I don't really see the relevance, my STC1000 isn't wired directly into the mains, it goes into a plug, with a fuse in it.

Accept your point that the guide is just showing good practise by including the fuse though.

Viking
01-06-13, 15:16
What? I don't really see the relevance, my STC1000 isn't wired directly into the mains, it goes into a plug, with a fuse in it.

Accept your point that the guide is just showing good practise by including the fuse though.

Read what I wrote. The part you quoted is in direct context to people who cut the plugs off their heaters and wire them into the unit unfused. ;)

Sloth
02-06-13, 11:29
Read what I wrote. The part you quoted is in direct context to people who cut the plugs off their heaters and wire them into the unit unfused. ;)

I've done this - albeit with C14/15 connectors (kettle style/computer plugs/sockets). However, my standard 13amp plug on supplying the STC1000 is fused at 3 amps. The fuse protects the cable in case of dead short/overload, and the thinnest cable in my setup is that of the heater - hence the 3 amp fuse in the supply.

3 amps gives me 720ish watts to play with, a pair of 300w heaters for instance. As for cooling, fans use very little power. If I wanted to control a chiller, I'd likely have bigger problems with the high initial current needed by compressors. But as I've mentioned in my thread anyway, I'd control it via a contactor anyway, rather than risk killing the cheap relays in the STC :)

http://www.ultimatereef.net/forums/showthread.php?t=604523

Viking
02-06-13, 12:12
And that's fine if you wish to do that. In my case however, I have 2 sockets on the plug bar which are standard mains voltage, and not controlled by the STC. In my case, these are protected by the 13a fuse in the plug top, just as a standard extension would be.

For the purpose of this build, all appliances connected are covered by their own individual fuse.

bodge
11-06-13, 15:03
Being a bit of a dunce with the sizes of the box / product and getting myself confused. :confused:

Would this be suitable?
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/ABS-Black-Plastic-Electronics-Project-Box-Enclosure-Hobby-Case-With-Screws-/261168658631?pt=UK_BOI_Electrical_Components_Suppl ies_ET&var=&hash=item3ccedd78c7

cityblue1980
11-06-13, 15:27
The 100 x 75 x 40 size should fit but may not have much room at the back for the wires with it being 71mm long (75x71x34) would go for the 150 just to make sure

arix36
23-06-13, 10:34
followed this to the letter worked first time :-) thank you so much for posting this such a brilant idea . once again thank you:thumbsup:

Red chris
25-06-13, 23:10
What a fantastic Idea:applause:, built this in no time works a treat.
Thanks again :thumbsup:

perkint
13-07-13, 16:32
Recommended this thread to a few people and will be following it myself when my STC1000 turns up from HK. Just thought I'd post to bump it back to the top for any who may be looking for it, and also to say thanks to Viking for writing the guide :)

Tim

A M Y
13-07-13, 20:28
Does anyone know what amp terminal blocks are used here (they have ratings dont they)

Viking
13-07-13, 21:23
Does anyone know what amp terminal blocks are used here (they have ratings dont they)

The ones I used are 10amp terminal blocks.

A M Y
13-07-13, 22:08
Thank you, amazing thread, and will help many more people to come..

matt_collo
13-07-13, 23:29
Is there any instructions about for setting the temp controller on the interface?

CAYO
13-07-13, 23:55
Is there any instructions about for setting the temp controller on the interface?

here you go :)

http://www.tradeger.co.za/pdf/stc1000_operating_manual.pdf

matt_collo
14-07-13, 13:00
Legend, thank you.

Randy4
03-08-13, 10:43
Hi Viking, awesome build by the way...Stupid question... i have bought one of the black fuse holders you have used. I'm not sure how they work. I know mine doesn't at the moment so I presumed I needed a fuse for it. Bought some standard 10A plug fuses but they don't seem to fit? I know my circuit works fine without the fuse as I've bypassed it to see. Any ideas.
I have soldered like yourself too

perkint
03-08-13, 18:04
Some of the panel mount fuse holders require smaller fuses such as used to be used in cars. I actually picked some up from halfords this morning for exactly the same purpose!

By the way, it really wants to be a 3amp. If you're gonna put a 10amp in (IMO) you may as well just stuff the 10amp in the plug socket and not bother with a fuse holder in the STC box! Unless you are intending to run a total of over 2KW thru the extension!!!

Tim

perkint
11-08-13, 17:00
Mine's up and running :) followed the plan more or less exactly. About the only difference is I put the temp probe onto a jack plug as well :)

Thanks for posting the design!

Tim

Tippet
09-09-13, 12:47
Hi Viking, great review and guide. I bought the heater only for my QT tank as its in the garage and it doesnt get hot. I also bought the STC1000 and will follow the guide for that setup for my DT,

However for the Heater only version could you help me adapting your wiring diagram to that?

Here is a photo of the inputs on my temp controller

http://www.ultimatereef.net/uploader/2013Q3/IMG_4868.jpg

Im going to use a single plug only

http://www.ultimatereef.net/uploader/2013Q3/IMG_4869.jpg

http://www.ultimatereef.net/uploader/2013Q3/IMG_4870.jpg

Im just not sure which wires will go to the respective places as this version doesn't have all the inputs like the STC1000

many thanks in advance

Viking
09-09-13, 15:15
To be honest I can't see that picture clearly enough to see what the terminals are. Can you get a larger one and clearer please.

Tippet
09-09-13, 16:50
Sorry,here we go...

http://www.ultimatereef.net/uploader/2013Q3/IMG_4874.jpg


http://www.ultimatereef.net/uploader/2013Q3/IMG_4873.jpg

Viking
09-09-13, 18:22
That's better.

Terminal 1 is permanent live.

Terminal 2 is switched live to your heater.

Terminal 3 is live to the STC unit to power the display and suchlike.

Terminal 4 is neutral.

Terminals 5 and 6 are the temperature sensor.

Lock SW is factory settings for calibration etc. so nothing to do there.

Tippet
09-09-13, 18:28
Thanks Viking.

Terminal 2 and 3 should be bridged?

I'm trying to adapted your original drawing to fit this unit but only using a single plug. I was going to wire the heater staring to terminal 1 and 2 but then read your comment that it is better to keep the fused plug on the heater.

Thanks again

Viking
09-09-13, 19:01
Terminals 1 and 3 should be permanent live. However, terminal 3 should really be on it's own fuse like the wiring diagram at the start of the thread.

Tippet
09-09-13, 20:08
Thanks again. Sort of makes sense but i think i find an electrician and give him the cables to connect as id hate to get it wrong.

Cheers for your responses

Viking
09-09-13, 21:04
Here's a quick wiring diagram.

http://www.viking-heating.co.uk/stc1000/wiring-4.gif

Tippet
10-09-13, 07:20
Many Many Thanks!

windowlicker
10-09-13, 17:55
I am just about to wire one of these in a similar fashion but noticed that the extension socket has the live and neutral opposite to the plug so i looked at the pics on here and noticed that they are also reverse to the plug is that normal?

dwolfuk
10-09-13, 18:18
live and neutral aren't the opposite to the plug in the picture. I think you're getting a bit confused as you work on the front of the socket where as you work on the back of a plug ;)

windowlicker
10-09-13, 18:36
Well i though i was confused however if you look at the pic on the first page your looking at the extension from the front and the live wires are connected to the bottom right however if you look at a plug when its plugged in the live wires are on the left?

windowlicker
10-09-13, 18:49
Sorry your dead right i was looking at the cardboard thing on the plug that tells you how its wired and it shows you the right way but as its on the wrong side of the plug i got confused:o Blonde moment i think i should go to bed lol

Tippet
15-09-13, 08:17
I made my stc1000 and all went together well. My build is under my AR300 page.

Question on the Temp. How to get my temp to stay at 26? Its currently staying at25.9? Do i increase the desired temp to a higher value?

Viking
15-09-13, 09:02
If you're getting a static temperature at 25.9c with no heating and no cooling, then that's okay. No need to worry about 0.1c. The heater will come on as and when it needs to.

However, if you're sitting at 25.9c and the heater is on but failing to lift it to 26c then it sounds like your heater isn't man enough or isn't working.

Tippet
15-09-13, 09:42
Cheers Viking. The heater were on and the tank was 27 ! Once I installed the stc it turned the heaters off and switch cooling on.

Was just wondering why it sits at 25.9 and although its only .1 of a oC I'm particular and wanted 26 :)

It is running fine and I have two heater in my AR300

monkey_man
15-09-13, 11:00
Cheers Viking. The heater were on and the tank was 27 ! Once I installed the stc it turned the heaters off and switch cooling on.

Was just wondering why it sits at 25.9 and although its only .1 of a oC I'm particular and wanted 26 :)

It is running fine and I have two heater in my AR300

The smallest range it detects is 0.3oc so will need to drop to 25.7 before it tries to make it 26!

perkint
15-09-13, 11:35
Sounds as tho the equipment in your tank is putting out enough heat, without the heater, to maintain 25.9

Check it at night. It might be that, after the lights are off it cools enough to kick in the heater and then gets up to 26. But as said, 25.9 is fine for the tank, even if not fine for OCD (it'd probably bug me, too!) :winky:

Tim

dwolfuk
15-09-13, 11:40
have you considered setting the temp to 26.1 and see if it stays at 26. as said there's a little "give" in the temperature else the heater would be coming on and off constantly which isn't ideal.

set the temp to 26.3 and then tape over the decimal point/place so it says 26 all the time :P

Saltire
16-09-13, 09:37
have you considered setting the temp to 26.1 and see if it stays at 26. as said there's a little "give" in the temperature else the heater would be coming on and off constantly which isn't ideal.

set the temp to 26.3 and then tape over the decimal point/place so it says 26 all the time :P

Not sure if this has been mentioned before but given that the STC1000 has a tolorance of +- 1 degree, worrying about 0.1 degrees is pointless. 25.9 could actually be anywhere between 24.9 and 26.9.

Tippet
16-09-13, 10:27
thanks , i set the temp to 26.4 and it has held overnight between 26 and 26.1 so that will be perfect....:)

Viking
16-09-13, 18:43
Not sure if this has been mentioned before but given that the STC1000 has a tolorance of +- 1 degree, worrying about 0.1 degrees is pointless. 25.9 could actually be anywhere between 24.9 and 26.9.

STC1000 has a reading scale in 0.1c increments, and can be set to a desired temperature anywhere to 0.1c accuracy. After that it can be set to activate heaters or coolers at 0.3c either side of that setting.

Sholland269
17-09-13, 09:08
Just wanted to add my thanks to Viking, I've not wired up anything since electronics at school 15+ years ago and I was able to get this done. Tested over the weekend and has been running live on the tank since last night.

Glad I did it as the other small electronic thermometer by comparison is way off

K19RKS
21-09-13, 21:05
I'm currently copying this exact design! Hopefully ill have the skills when it comes to the wiring :-/

Sally C
28-11-13, 08:04
i will definitely be doing this method, thanks for the write up and the clear and concise instructions

pny
28-11-13, 21:41
Just finished my own STC-1000 build... :)

http://www.ultimatereef.net/uploader/2013Q4/pny_ps10996b900.jpg

perkint
28-11-13, 23:17
Dual? Just being paranoid, or two tanks?

Tim

ibraheem
29-11-13, 01:13
Paranoid != Failsafe :P

pny
29-11-13, 06:54
Dual? Just being paranoid, or two tanks?
I wanted to control two sets since I have two sets of heaters. One for the tank and one for the sump section where I mix my saltwater during water changes. I wanted a controller for the mixing station heater also, since that section is connected to the tank when I do not perform water changes. The controller and the built in temperature control in the heater gives me redundancy for both heaters in case of the heater being stuck on... Since I have have two controllers I also have redundency for a heater being stuck in off mode... (Except during my waterchanges).

Penny1987
29-11-13, 08:33
Great thread well helpful. Thanks

perkint
29-11-13, 13:09
@PNY makes sense :)

Not that I was trying to suggest paranoia in such circumstances is a bad thing :)

Tim

mikewfish
03-01-14, 02:22
Really helpfull thanks.

Jacobz
03-02-14, 15:50
Would you not be willing to sell even if a disclaimer was signed? :)

Viking
03-02-14, 20:22
No, because a disclaimer only gives protection in certain peoples eyes. In the real world where law courts and greedy solicitors abound and are willing to take on any claim where there's a chance of winning 50p, even though I have a signed disclaimer, there's a world of pain trying to prove both innocence and also disprove blame. Even if I did manage to win my case I'd have spent far more defending myself against the vultures than I ever could hope to make from selling these.

Besides, it's not a hard build, and if you do it yourself then you'll feel really good about it, and I don't want to deny people that feeling.

Jacobz
03-02-14, 21:06
Nope your right! I was being a lazy so and so. Just ordered all my bits except for the chop block and wiring cables. What ampage chop block would you recommend? 3amp? Also thanks for the brilliant step by step.

Viking
03-02-14, 22:33
3amp would be okay I guess, but I use 5amp simply because that's what I use.

malc-c
08-02-14, 01:11
No, because a disclaimer only gives protection in certain peoples eyes. In the real world where law courts and greedy solicitors abound and are willing to take on any claim where there's a chance of winning 50p, even though I have a signed disclaimer, there's a world of pain trying to prove both innocence and also disprove blame. Even if I did manage to win my case I'd have spent far more defending myself against the vultures than I ever could hope to make from selling these.

Besides, it's not a hard build, and if you do it yourself then you'll feel really good about it, and I don't want to deny people that feeling.

Just want to interject here... and whilst slightly off topic, hopefully will clarify the problems when it comes to selling or having someone make something like this for someone else.

I think that most of us are confident enough when it comes to developing electrical projects for our own tanks or use in our own homes. However when it comes to providing that item for a 3rd party all manor of laws come into the equation, especially if switching mains voltage. A disclaimer does not prevent the insurance company taking the person to court if in the event of a fire it is proved that an electrical item made by fellow UR member was the cause. It might be slightly different in the case similar to this where all you are doing in essence is taking a commercially (and thus tested and approved with a CE mark) product and placing it in a plastic box, but then that person is responsible for making the connections from the rear of the units to whatever plug / sockets has been fitted to the plastic box for connection to the heater etc. Again, although a grey area, it may mean that the person doing this needs to be a qualified electrician under the part p 17th edition regulations.

If you are going a step further and designing a controller from scratch, it's a totally different ball game, especially if the unit switches mains voltages. I know from experience. A few years back I designed and built a 4 channel thermostat for the heaters in my reptile enclosures. The build thread on the reptile forum was followed by several interested parties and I was asked if I could make a small batch to sell to these members. Not wanting to be sued in the event of it burning someone's house down I investigated the legal route, which meant having the device tested to be able to apply the CE mark in order to sell it to the public. The device needed 4 types of tests, each one costing between 4000 and 7000 pounds. Not having 30K around, and given the market is quite a niche market, it would be doubtful if it would be practically worth it.

It was then suggested that this only applies to a business and not an individual, but on further legal advice from trading standards, it seems that the definition of a hobbyist selling a few items as part of the hobby in order to fund the costs of that project, and someone selling for profit is a file line, and in essence if a profit is made then it could be deemed as a business. It would all decide on which side of the bed the judge got out of that morning ! - the trading standards lady then gave an example case and on that basis I chose not to proceed and thus the only one in use today is the one that has kept my snakes warm and cozy for the past five years !

IMO Viking is correct in not taking the risk, and as he stated this project isn't hard to do, especially as the connections are well documented. If anyone does follow the tread, and things go wrong, Viking can not be held responsible as he is documenting his own project for his personal use. Anyone wishing to replicate it does so at their own risk.

Viking
08-02-14, 13:49
Cheers mate. :cool:

Jacobz
09-02-14, 20:59
Tbh I'm glad I did it myself, I'm well chuffed. Thanks Viking for the excellent walk through.

perkint
09-02-14, 23:42
Tbh I'm glad I did it myself, I'm well chuffed. Thanks Viking for the excellent walk through.
Does feel better to have done it yourself, doesn't it :)

To be honest, with things like this, I don't feel it's worth doing to sell. Ignoring the legal implications (which are pretty scary) I would feel harsh charging somebody enough to make it worth my time to do it. But maybe that's just me :o

Tim

Gene
12-02-14, 21:46
Need help on this I'm looking to a double socket or 2 singles but not sure how to wire them up I have done all the other wiring just need help on this.