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Thread: Need some repeater ideas for remote outdoor system

  1. #1
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    Need some repeater ideas for remote outdoor system

    I have installed a 60 amp breaker panel in my back yard and had planned to control a few circuits coming from this panel with the help of a PD-REP-WH repeater. Well, it turns out this device doesn't connect to the LAN so I have no way to get connectivity out to the panel which is mounted in a steel enclosure. :(

    Can anybody suggest ideas on how to link a few remote devices? I had intended to control the circuits using PICO remotes located in the house and possibly have some routines set up in the Lutron App. I do not have plans to use 3rd party software at this point. My system currently has 44 devices and should be fine within the 75 device limit.

    I was thinking of maybe installing the repeater in a PVC box and hanging it off the bottom of the enclosure using a large PVC conduit? That would possibly let the 430 MHz signal pass from the house out to the repeater and then repeated up the pipe into the steel cabinet like a periscope...

    If I installed a 2nd Bridge inside the steel cabinet I could plug it into the LAN but there's no way the PICO remotes would work from the house as the metal cabinet would block the signal.

    Running the 120/240 volt wiring from/back to the house and installing the Caseta devices within the range of the main bridge isn't feasible as I would end up having circuits several hundred feet long.

    Cheers, Steve

  2. #2
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    A 2nd bridge would create a 2nd system which would be independent of the first system. It doesn't sound like that is what you are looking for.

    The system communicates with the dimmers and switches. There is nothing in the breaker panel for it to control. If you are mounting the devices outdoors, use plastic, weatherproof covers and, if possible, plastic weatherproof boxes.

    If the repeater is open air, line-of-sight (i.e. no walls) you can get a much greater distance. 100-150' wouldn't surprise me.

    You can also use the plug-in dimmer as a repeater. Is is possible to get this device somewhere in between?
    Convergence Technologies Raleigh, North Carolina
    www.convergenceusa.com

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  4. #3
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    The plastic cover boxes seem like a reasonable solution, I was hoping to have everything in the 20" x 30" cabinet including all of the switches but that doesn't seem worth the effort at this point. These circuits all go down to the waterfront so I will need to wire each of the circuits off of GFCIs.

    I will likely have to install a repeater at the end of the house nearest the outdoor cabinet to ensure that it has reliable connectivity.

    So far, the best box cover I can find for this application is made by Intermatic. I like theirs because it is NOT an in-use cover. Intermatic WP7200G Low-Profile Extra-Duty Weatherproof Cover, Gray : Amazon.ca: Tools & Home Improvement

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  5. #4
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    Progress has been slow but I've installed about 2500 feet of #10, obtained the repeater which has been on back order, and came up with a plan so that I don't need to have any conduits going to the switches.
    I am going to install 4 PD-5ANS switches in a 12x12 PVC box inline with the home runs and use them to switch 20 amp RIB relays. 3 relays will be 120 and 1 will be 120/240. None of this will be regularly accessible so it will depend on the repeater and PICO switches. The 12x12 box I'm using is a compromise, I'd rather have a project box with a back panel.

    The outdoor PICO switches are mounted in two extra duty in-use boxes with the cord openings blocked with the bug barrier tape that they come with. These switches are going to be subject to some nasty wind and -25C weather so they will be living way beyond their design description. The good thing is that they are expendable as you always end up with too many of them when you wire a house. There will be another bank of 4 PICO switches on pedestals inside the house.

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  6. #5
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    I have some at the coast and they have been good for 10+ years. They get minimal exposure to extreme temps here in North Carolina.

    That setup looks great! I'd be cautious of that galvanized(?) back panel. RF signals and all.
    Convergence Technologies Raleigh, North Carolina
    www.convergenceusa.com

  7. #6
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    My intention was to use a PD-REP-WH repeater to operate a few of the circuits from the 60-amp breaker panel I installed in the backyard. Unfortunately, this gadget doesn't work with a local area network, so I can't extend the network to the panel inside the steel box.

  8. #7
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    Mission accomplished, I built my 20-amp switch relay combos and installed them inside of a 12x12 PVC box in-line with the circuits. If I could do it all over again I might have used a fiber box to house the electrical panel, relays, and switches together? The problem with them is that they don't age very nicely and can't be painted.
    The PICO remote has way more range than wifi due to the lower frequency, I can walk down to the lake and control the lights from there using a PICO.
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