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Old 10-17-2015, 08:14 PM   #1
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Lowes Iris Boat Alarm

Well, I have just got done getting a lowes Iris Alarm system installed on the boat, and am pretty happy with it.

Here's what we're sensing:

Bilge Water in two places
Shore power, including actual power used total and in real time
Inverter function
Smoke, Co in three places
Temperature in several places
Intruder (motion)

I also have a permanently installed heater for the engine room. I have the unit programmed to turn on the engine room heater when the temp drops to 35 and turn it off at 45. I can also turn it on or off manually.

The next step (maybe tonight) is to get it tied into my battery SOC meter so I can keep track of battery state.

I am also thinking of installing a sensor on the bilge pumps to notify me when they run.
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Old 10-17-2015, 09:05 PM   #2
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Sounds like a great way to keep an 'eye' on the boat while you're away from it. Is all this networked wirelessly through your wifi? I am really in the dark ages compared to your onboard technology.
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Old 10-17-2015, 10:28 PM   #3
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Sounds like a great way to keep an 'eye' on the boat while you're away from it. Is all this networked wirelessly through your wifi? I am really in the dark ages compared to your onboard technology.
Yes, the Iris uses the boats network which is cellular and satellite based.

The sensors are wireless back to the hub.

I tried it out on my home for the summer before risking it on the boat.

Unlike you guys in the warmer latitudes, and yes I am jealous, I'm putting the boat to bed tomorrow and won't be back to de-winterize her until march.
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Old 10-18-2015, 10:39 AM   #4
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I also have a permanently installed heater for the engine room.
What system is that? How is it powered, is there a backup power supply, etc.? Thanks.
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Old 10-18-2015, 11:11 AM   #5
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What system is that? How is it powered, is there a backup power supply, etc.? Thanks.
The heater is a home model electric heater designed to be permanently installed. It is wired for 750 watts.

It just runs off of shore or generator power.

Even though my boat is fully winterized I keep it warm in the winter, it cuts down on moisture, and eliminates mold from forming.
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Old 10-18-2015, 11:16 AM   #6
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Lowes Iris Boat Alarm

I looked at that Iris system but I don't have a network set up on my boat so it wouldn't work.

I do have wireless at the slip from the marina, but haven't found a system that will work with a network that's not mine. All I wanted was an alarm if the power went out at the dock.

I also thought about a camera that that would connect to the marina wireless network but not sure there is such a thing.
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Old 10-18-2015, 11:33 AM   #7
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I looked at that Iris system but I don't have a network set up on my boat so it wouldn't work.

I do have wireless at the slip from the marina, but haven't found a system that will work with a network that's not mine. All I wanted was an alarm if the power went out at the dock.

I also thought about a camera that that would connect to the marina wireless network but not sure there is such a thing.
Just buy a router that uses wifi as the internet source.

Prices vary but in the $100 range I bet something is available.

We use a Cradlepoint MBR1200B and have a cellular modem that is on our shared cell service data plan.

Once you have a network on your boat the world of inexpensive electronics opens up. Cameras, alarms, apple TV, etc...
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Old 10-18-2015, 11:36 AM   #8
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These people make a nice device to monitor pump or other AC device, run status.
They clamp around the hot leg at the starter or the pecker head.

They come fixed or adjustable trip current and output a closed contact or an actual Analog current value.

I have installed thousands of them.

http://www.veris.com/Category/Curren...d-spcTrip.aspx
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Old 10-18-2015, 11:47 AM   #9
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These people make a nice device to monitor pump or other AC device, run status.
They clamp around the hot leg at the starter or the pecker head.

They come fixed or adjustable trip current and output a closed contact or an actual Analog current value.

I have installed thousands of them.

Fixed Trip - Veris Industries
Yes, those could be very handy indeed.
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Old 10-18-2015, 12:28 PM   #10
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Just buy a router that uses wifi as the internet source.



Prices vary but in the $100 range I bet something is available.



We use a Cradlepoint MBR1200B and have a cellular modem that is on our shared cell service data plan.



Once you have a network on your boat the world of inexpensive electronics opens up. Cameras, alarms, apple TV, etc...

Yeah. Guess I need to get over my phobia and do that.
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Old 10-18-2015, 12:52 PM   #11
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Just added a battery charger alarm. This is tied to my Xantrex link pro SOC meter.

If the battery voltage dips below 12.5 volts I get a text and email.

Safety alarms like fire and bilge water result in a phone call as well.
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Old 10-18-2015, 12:57 PM   #12
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Yeah. Guess I need to get over my phobia and do that.
People are reluctant to add a network to their boat. It's often not the expense I think, because we all drop huge sums of money on our hobby. I think it's technology challenges, and little preceived gain.

What we are missing in hot having a dedicated boat netowrk that is always on are the inexpensive consumer gadgets that can be added, that are network based.

Last night I watched a movie on netflix while aboard. Tonight I will sleep well knowing that everything is good on my boat.
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Old 10-18-2015, 02:29 PM   #13
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An onboard Network driven by WIFI and Cellular sources is one of the best investments you'll make.
I've had mine for 2 years now. Now that Kevin did the "bleeding" I'm going to install Iris as well.
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Old 10-18-2015, 03:55 PM   #14
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An onboard Network driven by WIFI and Cellular sources is one of the best investments you'll make.
I've had mine for 2 years now. Now that Kevin did the "bleeding" I'm going to install Iris as well.
The whole thing was much easier than one would think.

Thats the cool thing about the advances in technology, the stuff is a piece of cake to install!
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Old 10-18-2015, 05:02 PM   #15
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I've looked at the info on the Lowes site and there is absolutely no technical detail. I was looking for something like a block diagram showing how the various pieces connect. Do all the sensors connect via WI-FI to the Hub? How is the Hub connected to the internet? Network cable, WI-FI?

I'm confused,

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Old 10-18-2015, 07:32 PM   #16
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I've looked at the info on the Lowes site and there is absolutely no technical detail. I was looking for something like a block diagram showing how the various pieces connect. Do all the sensors connect via WI-FI to the Hub? How is the Hub connected to the internet? Network cable, WI-FI?

I'm confused,

Bob
The hub connects via a wired Ethernet port to your network.

The sensors connect wirelessly directly to the hub. The exact protocols are Zwave and Zigbee, depending on the sensor, but that part is transparent to the user.
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Old 10-18-2015, 09:45 PM   #17
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I have been in the controls business for 28 years and have seen all sorts of communications protocols come and go. Hardwired and wireless. I hate to be a nervous nelly or rain on your parade, BUT if you are depending on determining if your boat is sinking, a hundred miles away based on a wireless digital input broadcast to you via a cell network I recommend you triple your insurance.

How about this? A hard wired high water sensor and a sump pump run status, I already provided a link and a really loud ass bell that you already told your mates and the marina, "If this goes off, call me, and check my boat." <$200 in hardware easyily.
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Old 10-18-2015, 10:22 PM   #18
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I have been in the controls business for 28 years and have seen all sorts of communications protocols come and go. Hardwired and wireless. I hate to be a nervous nelly or rain on your parade, BUT if you are depending on determining if your boat is sinking, a hundred miles away based on a wireless digital input broadcast to you via a cell network I recommend you triple your insurance.

How about this? A hard wired high water sensor and a sump pump run status, I already provided a link and a really loud ass bell that you already told your mates and the marina, "If this goes off, call me, and check my boat." <$200 in hardware easyily.
Well, Big Jim, I have been in the SCADA business, like you for give or take a lifetime, and I am a old man now.

I do also have a hardwired high bilge water alarm with siren on the boat. But long before things reach critical mass and the high water alarm goes ooff other things probably happened. Possibly the shore power got disconnected. Possibly a battery charger died.

Thats the beauty of an alarm system. Letting you knoow there is a problem before the oh my god siren goes off.

As far as reliability, I can tell you that in my world we rely on remote communications for such things as controlling remote electric utility breakers, and operating pipeline valves, and yes we are starting to use the cellular system.


The trick to reliable communications of mission critical systems is to know when the system is not working, IE when a sensor is down, or when a node has a loss of communications. The cool thing about the Iris, and the thing that sold me on it is that very function. Unlike one way alarm systems the Iris provides positive feedback if a sensor malfunctions or goes offline.

Jyst a FYI I'll be running this system in parallel with my existing system, Sensaphone Web600 based alarm system for the winter. The Sensaphone is pretty much the industry standard iin micro industrial alarm systems, but unlike the Iris it provides no positive feedback that it's still up and operational.
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Old 10-18-2015, 10:37 PM   #19
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Supervisory and control and data acquisition, man I love that stuff. I did high rise controls, fire, security, access and later CCTV on IP.

Nothing against your data bus, been there done that, I have friends on another board that are Mercedes techs that bemoan the fact that the entire car is now on a data bus... Head lights do not turn on unless the bus is up.

In the 80's I did a high rise hospital FA system. Data bus was available, the owner elected to go for a dual circuit, one feed goes this way, one feed goes that way to the same smoke head, in conduit, with FLLP wire. Dual redundancy forget what NFPA now calls it.

My point is, do what is comfortable, my suggested solution would be a cheap parallel redundant solution.
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Old 10-19-2015, 12:00 AM   #20
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I have a home Z-Wave network with about 60 devices. It's rock solid year after year. Have to replace batteries in some devices periodically but that's about it.


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