Author Topic: Looking for a solution for my specific blinds situation  (Read 4351 times)

Offline swazi

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 121
  • Karma: +0/-0
Looking for a solution for my specific blinds situation
« on: June 05, 2012, 02:37:25 pm »
I have a couple of bedrooms that gets hammered by the sun in the afternoon and would like to automate the blinds to retract to keep out the sun. Both rooms have 2 smaller windows each.
I am looking for cheap as these are the children's bedrooms and don't need anything fancy. Additionally the windows are small so it don't need to be heavy duty. And I just need open/close not % open.
I would like to go with something like the cellular (honeycomb) shades as they have some insulating properties but realize a pull cord will not work.

Please point me to a solution that can tie in with vera and does not break the bank. I have a bunch of inline linc's I can use if possible. I am not sure how cheap I can go but 4 windows will add up quickly so I'm looking for a cheap blind, cheap motor and simple automation tie in.

Offline jopke

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 7
  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Looking for a solution for my specific blinds situation
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2012, 09:15:14 pm »
RollerTrol offers fairly low-cost tubular motors. For the z-wave bridge, you might look at the Aeon Labs micro controller. It can be used for blinds but won't report position. It sounds like you are okay with that.

Offline swazi

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 121
  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Looking for a solution for my specific blinds situation
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2012, 01:12:11 pm »
So is rollertroll the cheapest solution out there?
I priced out my needs and it is still not cheap but does seem a good option other than I would prefer to go with cellular shades.

Additionally based on my calculations it seems that if you exceed a certain number of shades (about 6 is break even) it would be cheaper to get their rf usb kit rather than a zwave bridge for each blind

Offline shady

  • Beta Testers
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1328
  • Karma: +11/-0
  • This monkey knows his Window Coverings!
Re: Looking for a solution for my specific blinds situation
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2012, 01:43:40 am »
It is hard to say what is the cheapest option.  Even though Rollertrol has affordable motors, you're still left finding and buying fabric and figuring out what to do with the bottom bar (typically sealed in a 3-sided pocket).  So their motors would be better for converting existing manual roller shades to motorized.  If you think you want cellular shades you are probably best off buying motorized cellular shades with either standad, IR, or radio control and figuring out a way to control them in Vera.  For instance I have seen some that work with an appliance module for simple up/down, or if it comes with a remote you may be able to solder wires to the button contacts of the remote and use a RS232 relay board connected to Vera for control, or if you go IR you could use a USB-UIRT or SQ Blaster to control them. The cheapest motors are typically standard "dumb" motors and if it is possible to home run wires back to a relay board connected to Vera, that may be the cheapest solution.  By buying the cellular shades already motorized you'll have a warranty to fall back on.
Vera3 1.5.346, Schlage (3)DB (2)Lever, Kwikset (1)Lever, RCS TZ43 Thermo, (2) Vizia RZI06-1LX 600W Dimmers, (17) Monster (Leviton) Dimmers (6) Monster (Leviton) IWC Scene Controllers (1) Etherrain-8, (3) HSM 100's (1)GE 3-Way set

Offline swazi

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 121
  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Looking for a solution for my specific blinds situation
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2012, 03:47:08 pm »
Not sure I understand what you mean with "figure out what to do with the bottom bar". I have no experience with roller shades. Seems the rollertroll mini motors work with off the shelf blinds.
IR would be expensive in my setup, so I can only think of rf or z-wave modules as viable.
Every solution I look at just seems overly complex for something so simple

Offline shady

  • Beta Testers
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1328
  • Karma: +11/-0
  • This monkey knows his Window Coverings!
Re: Looking for a solution for my specific blinds situation
« Reply #5 on: June 18, 2012, 05:23:49 pm »
If you are retrofitting an existing manual (chain) or spring roller shade with a motor, the Rollertrol motors will work fine with a smaller sized shade.  And because you are starting with a finished shade it should come with the bottom bar (weight) and all you'd have to do is adhere the fabric to a new tube or fit the motor to the existing tube.  What I meant by my quoted excerpt is if you were trying to assemble a shade from component parts, fabric, tube, motor, then you have have more to figure out yourself.

Unfortunately for us DIY folks, motorized shades are still marketed as a luxury item, heck manual window coverings are a luxury item for some.  So professionally installed motorization can be a bit pricey, but you typically get a better finished product, installed correctly.  It also doesn't have to be overly complex as there have been many tinkerers that have cobbled together their own solution with motorized screwdrivers and drill motors too.  When people start looking into the inner workings, the complexity rises from all of the available options between many different motors (size, noise, AC, DC), many different motor controllers, different styles of window coverings (roman, roller, cellular, etc), different fabrics, different tubes and tube adapters, different bracket systems, or headrails for slatted blinds and cellular shades.  The concept is relatively simple though, I agree.

So that's why, if you are interested in cellar shades, I suggest it may make more sense to buy motorized cellular shades and find an economical way to get them controlled in Vera.  Tubular motors like Rollertrol's typically aren't used with cellular shades and there can be a lot of little parts involved with motorizing your own.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2012, 05:32:56 pm by shady »
Vera3 1.5.346, Schlage (3)DB (2)Lever, Kwikset (1)Lever, RCS TZ43 Thermo, (2) Vizia RZI06-1LX 600W Dimmers, (17) Monster (Leviton) Dimmers (6) Monster (Leviton) IWC Scene Controllers (1) Etherrain-8, (3) HSM 100's (1)GE 3-Way set

Offline swazi

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 121
  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Looking for a solution for my specific blinds situation
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2012, 02:21:10 pm »
Thanks for the detailed response. It's slowly sinking in. After more reading and googling I am wondering if cellular is the best option or if I should consider rolling blinds instead. Cellular have increased insulation benefits, but I am not sure how much over roller, and if the benefits are marginal, would rollers make more sense from a cost perspective/availability /ease

Offline davidbeck

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 2
  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Looking for a solution for my specific blinds situation
« Reply #7 on: February 17, 2017, 08:09:24 am »
Solar shades are the best solution for this kind of problem. It helps to block harmful UV rays from entering your room and detroying your furniture while also allowing some light through, Solar shades are also great if you want to keep your favorite view outside cause you can see through them. At Fifty Shades and blinds they are available at best price in the market.