loading
Picture of Weather station mounted on tilting tower
The wireless weather station is shown mounted on the tilting tower. This picture shows the wireless transmitter case with the solar cell, and the mounting method that I used.  The large black, inverted cone-like shape, is the rain collector. Other sensors are inside the white colored disks (shield) at the lower end of the system. You can see the antenna on the right hand side of the case.  Note the clear plastic panel mounted behind the weather station - the panel is there to protect the station from snow that could be thrown by the city snowblowers. The video below shows more detail and also shows the weather station in operation. To see how the weather tower was installed you can check out my videos on:  http://www.youtube.com/user/nlinventor?feature=mhee
 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Check out the video to see more details and to view the station in operation

Step 2: Spread out all components to help organize assembly

Picture of Spread out all components to help organize assembly
Once everything is spread out and  accounted for I installed the batteries in the transmitter and the receiver (console).  That allowed me to check the operation of the sensors as I prepared them for installation outside.

Step 3: Pressure treated mounting block made to mount the anemometer assembly on the pipe

Picture of Pressure treated mounting block made to mount the anemometer assembly on the pipe
My tower (wooden tilting tower) was designed to hold an aluminum pipe mounted in a hole drilled down from the top into the 4x4 wooden tower.  The pipe is 1 inch in diameter so I made up this pressure treated plywood block to enable me to sandwich the pipe between  the anemometer mounting bracket and the block.  I made a V groove in the block to keep it aligned vertically on the pipe.

Step 4: Assembling the anemometer

Picture of Assembling the anemometer
IMG_1278.JPG
Assemble the anemometer with great care, especially when mounting the anemometer cups.  The cups will be spinning around many years and it would be no fun having to recover and remount the cups after a stormy winters day.

Step 5: Connecting the anemometer cable to the transmitter aka sensor interface module

Picture of Connecting the anemometer cable to the transmitter aka sensor interface module
IMG_1300.JPG
Remove the foam insert at the bottom of the module and feed the RJ plug up through the hole and plug it into the anemometer jack.  Don't forget to replace the foam plug as it keeps bugs and weather out of the module box.

Step 6: After installing the transmitter I gave the anemometer a speed and direction test

Picture of After installing the transmitter I gave the anemometer a speed and direction test
Remember this is a wireless weather station so as long as the batteries are functioning in the transmitter and in the receiver you should have them talking to each other without having to go through too much hassle.  It's great to be able to confirm everything is working properly before mounting on the tower!

Step 7: Get the rain gauge ready by cutting the plastic tie that keeps it stable during shipping

Picture of Get the rain gauge ready by cutting the plastic tie that keeps it stable during shipping
IMG_1312.JPG
The rain gauge tipping bucket mechanism is a fairly delicate mechanical assembly so treat it accordingly.  After releasing the tipping bucket you need to decide if you want to work with US or metric measurements.  I decided to go with metric and this required the installation of a  "metric adapter" - this is simply a cylindrical shaped fitting that changes the weight of the tipping system to make the required conversion to metric. 

Step 8: Testing the rain sensor by tipping the bucket back and forth to represent rain collection

Picture of Testing the  rain sensor by tipping the bucket back and forth to represent rain collection
Once assembled test the rain gauge by observing the reading on the console.  At this time double check that every sensor is giving a reading on the console and if ok you are ready to go outside and do the installation on the tower.

Step 9: Lowering the tilting tower to install the weather station

Picture of Lowering the tilting tower to install the weather station
When I installed the weather station I needed help to lower the tower but since then I have installed counter weights at the bottom of the tower so that now lowering and raising the tower is a one-man job.

Step 10: Bolting the anemometer assembly on the aluminum pipe

Picture of Bolting the anemometer assembly on the aluminum pipe
The aluminum pipe that extended about 10 feet above the 4x4 tower post,  I later decided to shorten the pipe to about 30 inches as I was getting too much sway in the pipe in high winds.

Step 11: Bolting the station on the plywood base that I already installed on the 4X4

Picture of Bolting the station on the plywood base that I already installed on the 4X4
Two galvanized hex bolts/nuts secure the station to the tower. (I had already installed the plywood mounting base and the polycarbonate sheet on the 4x4 tower section).  Good idea to include lock washers here. The extra length of anemometer cable is spooled and secured to the tower.  The manufacturer recommends leaving the anemometer cable as is - that is, don't cut it to make it look neat - you will probably run into unreliable connections if this is done. Note: the mounting of the station is adjustable to suit your particular requirements.  The manufacturer supplies hardware to mount the station on a pipe.  I modified the mounting method to suit my tower design. Once the station proper was bolted on I twisted the rain collector cone in place. Use staples and/or cable ties to secure the cable spool and the cable to the tower. 

Step 12: Time to raise the tower

Picture of Time to raise the tower
IMG_1325.JPG
After securing the cables and checking everything out we raised the tower to vertical and locked it in place.

Step 13: Back view of weather station after mounting on the tower

Picture of Back view of weather station after mounting on the tower
Everything is a go - time to check out the weather!   
AlvinK5 months ago

Photo 1, Step 12 indicates the proximity of a paved road. After some experience in the military, I have an critique. If, perhaps, (depending of mass of traffic) this is a frequently traveled, you are likely to get some, not so accurate readings. This would be mostly from passing 18-wheelers, gravel, concrete and other large heavy vehicles. Inaccurate readings would be in the form of gusts. I love everything else and will likely follow your basic design for my upcoming project. Thank You.

nlinventor (author)  AlvinK5 months ago

My setup is far from perfect in other respects too. For example the anemometer is not high enough (I believe the proper height is 30 feet above ground). The traffic on the road though is very light and shouldn't be a problem. I live within sight of our main airport and for the most part the readings between my system and the official system are always mostly in agreement - the wind speed though is generally showing lower on my system.

AlvinK nlinventor5 months ago
I appreciate your comments. 30 feet is usually sufficient, but depends on surrounding structures. When I was in Nam, we preferable to have wind instrumentation 10 feet above tree level, unless we were in a wide clearing, which didn't happen often in the jungle. Our instruments were camo. We often ran the mast right up thru the trees so they would blend in more efficiently.
I'm on a strict budget, so, I was looking for alternatives to spend cash for the professional equipment. Yours really appears to me. I'd like to know more of the ballast weights you mentioned.
nlinventor (author)  AlvinK5 months ago

Here's two of my videos that will help show the setup I used for the tower and ballast weights. The weights have a plastic casing and the plastic is not UV protected (starting to break down) so I will eventually replace the plastic weights with cast iron ones (always available used :))

3366carlos1 year ago

very nice, i like your tilt down pole design.