Scottish Weather Network Forum

General Information => Members Introductions => : sandy May 27, 2009, 12:40:34 PM



: another newbie
: sandy May 27, 2009, 12:40:34 PM
Hi from sandy
I am thinking of getting a weather station ( at the end of the summer ). The Weathershop suggested Davis pro2 or Oregon wmr200, however another suggestion is Lacrosse ws2350 which maybe more suitable as i dont want to spend a fortune. I do get a lot of wind in my position as i overlook Loch Ewe and am under the impression that the more times the wind is updated the more acurate it is ( but theres that price thing again ! ), i am also under the impression that wired may be quicker than wi fi.
I would like to get a webcam ( but not just now ) as i have 2 views of the loch.
Any comment appreciated.
                sandy

                 


: Re: another newbie
: skyewright May 27, 2009, 01:52:57 PM
I am thinking of getting a weather station ( at the end of the summer ). The Weathershop suggested Davis pro2 or Oregon wmr200, however another suggestion is Lacrosse ws2350 which maybe more suitable as i dont want to spend a fortune. I do get a lot of wind in my position as i overlook Loch Ewe and am under the impression that the more times the wind is updated the more acurate it is ( but theres that price thing again ! ), i am also under the impression that wired may be quicker than wi fi.
Welcome aboard Sandy.  ;D
You seem to have gained a decent overview of the situation.

For most things wired gives quicker update than wireless, but for the Davis (i.e. the most expensive option) you get 3 second wind updates even with the wireless version (so I understand - I don't own one).

Another (wired) possibility is the somewhat more 'DIY' / lego approach of 1-wire/AAG, or (just for windspeed and directions)  Inspeed Windworks. If you are interested in exploring those ideas just say and I'll dig out some URLs.

FWIW, I have an Oregon WMR200 (and the earlier WMR928) and am in the process of building a DIY hybrid 1-wire/Inspeed system (currently on hold waiting for suitable weather & time to lay the cable and raise the mast...)


: Re: another newbie
: sandy May 27, 2009, 02:30:34 PM
Thanks for the info Skyewright.
I am new to all this, the nearest i get to the weather is watching it on tv, but i get such strong winds hitting the end of the house i thought it would be nice to know what was going on. I have the house as a holiday home and now have a website to go with it and thought a weather page would be of interest. I have seen a Davis pro fixed to the end of a building and it wasnt as big as i thought it would be. I go away over the summer for work and was going to go to the Weathershop in the south of England to see what things look like.Could you say the size of hole i would  have to drill in my newish window for the wire from the station. I think it would be fair to say that i am not a computer/software person, i just turn it on and hope it works !.
 sandy


: Re: another newbie
: Budgie May 27, 2009, 04:31:42 PM
Hi Sandy,
Glad you could join us.

The WS2350 uses cable similar to standard telephone cable so any holes only need to be as large as the connection on the end of a telephone cable.
In wireless mode these will update your wind data once every 30 seconds but wired the update is every 8 seconds. If 30 seconds is all you need/want then wireless will be fine. It also has the advantage of a build-in data logger which stores the data if your PC is switched off at any time, this then downloads all the missing data to the PC once you start it again so you don;t loose any records.

Another station I didn't mention in the email is the Watson W-8681 (http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Watson-W-8681-Wireless-Weather-Station_W0QQitemZ110390423969QQcmdZViewItem) that are cheaper then the WS2350 and are wireless. I've not used this station so I don't know what the results are like but it seems to have a good following on other Weather forums. This will also work with Cumulus and Weather Display software so maybe worth a look.

The 1-Wire option that David mentioned is quite good and allows you to build a weather station as & when funds allow. You only need one cable to enter the house as the sensors are "daisy chained" together and it's run totally from the PC, so there's no display console to locate. The UK supplier for 1-Wire is Audon (http://www.audon.co.uk/1-wire_weather.html) but the anemometer is only just cheaper than the WS2350 and I can't say I like the new version with the flashing LED lights. The performance of this unit is very good though, I had one for a while and was getting 2 second updates from it and it was very reliable, until a lightning strike took it out.

I think the best thing to do is set yourself a price limit and look at what information you want from the unit. The webcam can be catered for using software on the PC so that's not really an issue but for the station I go for the best you can afford as there's nothing worse than getting the weather bug a couple of months down the line and wishing you had got the next station up the line.  ;)

Martin.   


: Re: another newbie
: skyewright May 27, 2009, 10:17:50 PM
...but i get such strong winds hitting the end of the house i thought it would be nice to know what was going on.
Sound very like why I started - except we get it right on the front.

I think it would be fair to say that i am not a computer/software person, i just turn it on and hope it works !
Weather sensors can take quite a hammering here, especially on coastal locations with the extra complication of salt.

My WMR928 had almost every sensor bar the rain gauge replaced under warranty during the first year (the anemometer was replaced twice). I've had the WMR200 a bit longer but it is still "all original".

If you can run to it, the Davis has a really good reputation, both for quality of data and equipment, with good service backup if/when things go wrong.

I'm a software developer and I like tinkering with things so 1-wire suits me. Horses for courses...


: Re: another newbie
: sandy May 27, 2009, 10:49:00 PM
Thanks for all the advice.I would hope to have a fair idea of what i may get by the end of the month as i have to use the phoneline in the farm office when i am away from july on, its so much easier with Broadband ! If this good weather lasts i'll be fiddleing with peat and painting things outside.
            sandy


: Re: another newbie
: sandy May 28, 2009, 07:54:59 PM
Well if i wanted to know what has happened to the weather i suppose i am in the right place !. I am interested in Local History and have been waiting for 3 clear bright days after a short dry spell ( so i can cross rivers ect ) then i can follow a Drove Road,but it doesnt seem to be happening.
I have pasted an email reply i got from a retailer below. I thought it may be of interest.

                                                       -----------------------
The update time for the wind on the WS2350 is 31 seconds and for the WMR200 it is 14 secs.

With the cable connection on the WS23500 this is brought down to 8 sec but the battery life is halved to 6 months for 1 year
                                                         
The WMR 200 is completely wireless.

The batteries in the WMR200 last considerably longer as most of the time it is powered by its solar panel.

The difference in quality is noticeable between the two is noticable and in our opinion the WMR 200 is more suited to extreme weather although for the very extremes of Scotland and the isles we would recommend a Davis system.
                                                          ----------------

At present i am leaning towards the Lacrosse WS2350 and using the wired side of it ( for the wind and update side of it ) although i may have to feed the cable behind the plasterboard in my flat.
Martin mentioned "Weather Display" in an email and i have come across "Weather Display32" are these the same thing or are they different programs.
Although it may not have any relevence at present i have a page on Flickr and could take some photos of the gable end i would mount the weather station on just to see what you say as there are trees nearby, i could past a link to the page in the forum ( if that is allowed ).
             heres looking for summer
                       sandy


: Re: another newbie
: munrobaggins May 28, 2009, 10:11:34 PM
Hi Sandy and welcome to the forum....

I must admit to having had a Davis setup from the very start; having asked on various forums about buying wx stn kit.   However, once I had spent my fortune on a Davis wireless VP2 plus (UV and solar) and the required data logger (includes the fairly rudimentary WeatherLink programme), I began to think of cheaper ways of gathering the main data more cheaply and as a backup/standby system.  To accomplish this I bought a WS2300 and added an Inspeed Vortex anemometer (these are wired) for windspeed.  The overall cost for this combination at the time was IRO of 160 but required WeatherDisplay ($70) for the combination to run flawlessly.  I would say that the Vortex is the icing on the cake as this updates every 1 sec and gives almost identical results to the Davis.  The other wx data parameters tend to change far more slowly so slow updates are comparatively insignificant.   For comparison purposes, you can see the data of the 2 systems on my older website.. http://www.elginweather.co.uk/ under the 2 buttons labeled "Weatherdisplay" and "StandBy Wx/PC".  Obviously, it will depend on how far the pennies stretch, but a full Davis setup can easily cost far, far more than cheaper alternatives and still end up with very similar data record accuracy.


: Re: another newbie
: Budgie May 28, 2009, 11:09:08 PM
With the cable connection on the WS23500 this is brought down to 8 sec but the battery life is halved to 6 months for 1 year
This correct if you only run the station on batteries, but it's not an issue if you're running it using the power supply that come with the station as the console will power the sensors and you can remove the batteries completely if you want too. Although they are handy as a backup for power failures. ;)
                                                         
Martin mentioned "Weather Display" in an email and i have come across "Weather Display32" are these the same thing or are they different programs.
They are the same program but Weather Display32 is the free version that is supplied with some stations and has some parts disabled, like the website uploads. It is meant as an introduction to the full program for those new to the hobby.


Although it may not have any relevence at present i have a page on Flickr and could take some photos of the gable end i would mount the weather station on just to see what you say as there are trees nearby, i could past a link to the page in the forum ( if that is allowed ).
You can post links on here, if you have the URL of the actual photos then you can include the photos in the thread. Just add the URL between the image tags like this:
:
[img]http://www.flicker.com/yourimagename.jpg[/img]

Martin.


: Re: another newbie
: Tugmistress May 31, 2009, 10:00:53 AM
Welcome Sandy :)
i run the Lacrosse WS2350 after the Lacrosse WS2300
the wired option is definately better than wireless, the base unit is run by the mains supply, i need to change the batteries outside once a year. It's a cheap and pretty reliable station as i live on a headland and get constant salt winds over the year unless like today there's hardly a breath lol.
i do preventative maintenance on the windy thing in summer - spray it all over with silicone based oil and so far i have found doing this the thing will last at least 18 months before any drastic action is needed :) my current one is coming up to this time scale now (was new last march i think) so i have a new windy thing sat on the kitchen table ready lol
you'll have a lot of fun doing your own weather station - be warned - it gets addictive!


: Re: another newbie
: sandy June 03, 2009, 10:22:13 PM
Sorry to take so long to get back to you, i was away on my walk for 3 days and went to Inverness ( by car ) yesterday.
Thanks for the info munrobaggins, i will check out the website, i think at present i would get Lacrosse ws2350 but if i needed to replace it i could well get the anemometer you mentioned, however i would like to keep things simple as present.
Also thanks tugmistress for your comments, the more the better. I had a look at your site the photos show off the harbour well. I'll have to see if i can get some silicone spray.

I took some photos of the gable end of my flat where i was thinking of mounting the weather station, it would be higher if it was attatched to the main chimney but there is an overhang in the concrete on the chimney,and there wouldalso be wind swirling around the chimney pots,i thought it would be easier to attatch it to the top of the white gable end.
Hopefully you should see the photos and a short discription on this link in the photostream   
         http://www.flickr.com/photos/34384289@N06/
 sandy


: Re: another newbie
: Budgie June 03, 2009, 11:43:38 PM
You really need to put the temp/humidity sensors on a north facing wall, if convenient, as they need to be out of direct sunlight. Left in the sun then they can read anything upto 10C higher than the actual temperature. With the trees where they are, how about putting the anemometer on the chimney, maybe on the far one if it doesn't have a used open fire, on TV aeral bracket & pole?

This is what I've done with mine:
(http://www.hebrides-photos.com/weather/VP2_Wind.jpg)


: Re: another newbie
: sandy June 04, 2009, 08:28:43 AM
Not that it makes a difference i am sure,the far chimney is 21yrds away from my flat and the nearest chimney is 7yrds, not that i dont want to put it on the far chimney but it would be far more noticable as thats the end of the house that folk use to get to the front door.
I have put another photo on Flickr taken showing the other end of the house and the far chimney.
The chimney nearest to my flat is used by the solid fuel rayburn and i have a woodburning stove in the flat,the farest off chimneys are open but the fires are not normally lit ( dont want the punters setting fire to the chimney or burning bits of the carpet ). I hope any connectors that are outside are waterproof !.
 Any comment gratefully recieved.
            sandy

ps When CB started i had a silver rod on the chimney and i went through a few of them, they normally broke at the base due to the wind, i also never managed to stop water comming down the coax no matter what i did.


: Re: another newbie
: Budgie June 04, 2009, 05:33:00 PM
If the chimneys are all working then forget that idea, you don't want melted plastic as an anemometer as the aerodynamics are all wrong.  ;D
These are very light so if you can get the anemometer on a pole that's above the trees and the pitch of the roof then you should be fine. The mast I have mine on is made of alloy tube and came from the Weather Shop. It's stood up to 89 knot gusts in January so I figure it should be OK.  ;)

All the connections for the WS2350 are on the Temp/Hum sensor pack and, although not waterproof, are hidden under a cover. You just need to check them every so often to make sure there's no corrosion on the connections.


: Re: another newbie
: sandy June 04, 2009, 09:27:38 PM
Thanks for the comments.
Although the chimneys at the far end of the house ( furthest away from the trees ) are not blocked off i would not normally light them although of the chimneys nearest my flat one of them would be going all the time i am here. I didnt realise the trees and perhaps the dormer window on the flat, and even the small part of the gable end would have enough of an effect to confuse the weather station.Perhaps the chimneys at the far end of the house would be better as it would be further away from some of the swirling winds and in " cleaner air ". I havent lit the fires at the far end of the house for over 5 years, if i was intent on lighting them quiet a bit i could always move the weather station i suppose.
 On the Lacrosse  is the main part with the rain sensors and the anemometer seperate, in that the anemometer could be at the top of a pole and the rest down beside the chimneys ( sheltered ) , i know the Davis is like that.

           sandy


: Re: another newbie
: skyewright June 04, 2009, 10:11:22 PM
On the Lacrosse  is the main part with the rain sensors and the anemometer seperate, in that the anemometer could be at the top of a pole and the rest down beside the chimneys ( sheltered ) ,
I can't comment on how the Lacrosse components can be arranged but in general terms it's a good idea to have the rain gauge pretty close to the ground (but not so close as to catch splashes) in an open area. Mine are at ~2' over grass.
The higher up they are the more subject they are to under reading because of wind effects.


: Re: another newbie
: munrobaggins June 04, 2009, 10:45:47 PM
On the Lacrosse  is the main part with the rain sensors and the anemometer seperate, in that the anemometer could be at the top of a pole and the rest down beside the chimneys ( sheltered ) , i know the Davis is like that.
I can only speak for the WS2310 and am presuming that the 2350 is similar....The outside hunidity/temperature sensor contains the Tx (I use the wireless mode to the Console, but it could be wired) and this is connected by separate cables to the anemometer and rain guage (these cables are about 10m/30ft long and can be extended further I believe)....thus it is possible to place the individual sensors in reasonable locations....My anemometer (vane and fan) happens to be at the top of a sawn off Cupressus tree, the Temp/hygro at the foot (not too sheltered but on the north side within a home made plant-tray Stevenson Screen) and finally the rain guage is on a short post on the lawn....note though, that for this setup my Vortex windspeed unit is actually up on the same mast as the Davis anemometer but is of the wired type...

I hope this helps.


: Re: another newbie
: sandy June 08, 2009, 01:54:59 PM
Thank you for the help and advice above.
I may have another problem, but maybe not.
I have had the website for the house made up by a chap a few miles away, and mentioned to him that i was thinking of getting a weather station and would have a link to website, his reply was   -  I don't think that I could help you with the weather station linked to  the website - sounds like a nightmare! -.
I dont have any settings/ passwords ect for the website
I am intending to get Weather Display.
I was going to get a 2nd hand pc and leave it working all the time when i am away, its only aim in life being to service the weather station.
My web hosting is by claranet.
Would anyone like to comment, ( change my web designer hopefully isnt one of them, but it may have to be considered )

sandy


: Re: another newbie
: Budgie June 08, 2009, 04:19:10 PM
The simplest inclusion of the weather data from WD only needs one extra page on you website, or you can upload the dials & graphs to an existing page.
There is no requirement for a redesign on the site and it's quite easy to setup, but you will need the server login details for you site as WD uses an automatic FTP upload programme to upload the weather data and this needs to be able to "talk" to the server.
If the chap who made your site has used a template for the site then all we need is a copy of the basic page and one of us can input the required coding for you.  ;)


: Re: another newbie
: sandy June 08, 2009, 05:20:53 PM
Thanks for that, it seems as if things can progress ok.
Apart from buying the weather station, Weather Display, and fitting the thing to the side of the house i cant think of any other hicups that i may come across.
I'll have a look to see what the prices are and still intend to goto the Weather Shop to see the thing before i buy it, i may buy it there or else where, but it would be nice to see one before i buy it.
Apart from trying to measure how much cable i may need to get to my flat i hope that is everything thought of.
             yours
               sandy


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