IoT Industrial Scale

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Contributors: jenfoxbot
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Introduction

scale jump test

What does a baby elephant weigh?* How much impact force does a jump have?? How can you tell if a rain barrel is full without looking inside??? Answer all these questions and more by building your very own Internet of Things (“IoT”) industrial scale using the SparkFun OpenScale board!

This project is intended for folks with a lil' bit of background using Arduino or other microcontrollers. But, whether this is your first or 137th project, check out the links in the Suggested Reading section below (and throughout the tutorial) or leave a comment if you have any questions!

Read time: ~ 15 min.

Build time: Approx. 2 - 3 hours

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*To weigh a baby elephant, you might need to be a zookeeper or otherwise have an elephant friend.. but you could always weigh Fido and/or kitty!

For all you visual learners, check out a video of the project below:

Required Materials

To follow along and build your own scale, all the parts used have been listed for your convenience.

Electronics

To make the system wireless:

All these parts can be found in the wish list below.

Scale and Casing

  • Terminal blocks (5)
  • Three (3) M3 screws per load cell (total of 12)
  • One (1) project case (to protect the electronics)
  • One (1) base board, and one (1) top board (for the scale platform)
    • My base board was ~ 16" x 16" and my top board was ~ 12" x 14".
    • Both boards should be sturdy and not flex or dent.
  • Wood slats to frame the sides of the top board to hold it in place.
  • Four (4) feet for base

Suggested Reading

Before getting started with this project, you may want to read up on some of the components and tools used throughout.

Serial Terminal Basics

This tutorial will show you how to communicate with your serial devices using a variety of terminal emulator applications.

OpenScale Applications and Hookup Guide

OpenScale allows you to have a permanent scale for industrial and biological applications. Learn how to use the OpenScale board to read and configure load cells.

Getting Started with Load Cells

A tutorial defining what a load cell is and how to use one.

Photon Development Guide

A guide to the online and offline Particle IDE's to help aid you in your Photon development.

As usual, don’t forget to read the Datasheet for the Load Cells and any other components you with to use in your project.