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Discussion Starter #1
Hello, I want to introduce myself to the forum and start this thread offering information and advice on remote grain monitoring systems.

I work for Flaman Sales in Saskatchewan and have been their product expert on grain monitoring for a little over a year. Previous to that I was independantly installing grain monitoring systems across the province.
I have been trained by OPI and primarily deal with the StorMax and Integris Pro/Basic lines, but do have experience with other manufacturers systems as well.
I'm not a salesman (although I can and will connect you with pricing if you request it) and I would like to use this forum to openly discuss all the various grain monitoring systems and hopefully answer and questions or concerns you have.

I'd also love to hear comments from any of you currently using any monitoring system of any brand to find out what works and what doesn't.
 

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Hi Curt. Last summer I got 2 bins with 3 temp and 1 moisture cable each. I dont like the handheld storemax that well and was told by this year opi would have online monitoring. I love the bin sense demo I saw where you simply surf to a site and look at your bins but they dont have moisture cables. My bins are just out of reach of a normal house hold router but buying a cell phone plan just for that seems a bit crazy.

Fill us in on what you know.
Thanks
 

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Hi Curt. Last summer I got 2 bins with 3 temp and 1 moisture cable each. I dont like the handheld storemax that well and was told by this year opi would have online monitoring. I love the bin sense demo I saw where you simply surf to a site and look at your bins but they dont have moisture cables. My bins are just out of reach of a normal house hold router but buying a cell phone plan just for that seems a bit crazy.

Fill us in on what you know.
Thanks
a house hold router has a weak signal. a Ubiquity nanostation (one at each end) will give you a 1-5km range depending on the model you buy. Thats what I use on my farm to get wireless all over it. and cheap, costed me $160. Just an idea, to look into, many wireless solutions out there as long as you have 110 power at your bins to tie into your fine!

We got the opi wireless bin sensors in our bins now, not fully set up yet, but its supposed to update regularly, and notify us when we need to turn the fan on, and off depending on weather conditions and grain temperature/moisture. Looks like a very nice system
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hi Curt. Last summer I got 2 bins with 3 temp and 1 moisture cable each. I dont like the handheld storemax that well and was told by this year opi would have online monitoring. I love the bin sense demo I saw where you simply surf to a site and look at your bins but they dont have moisture cables. My bins are just out of reach of a normal house hold router but buying a cell phone plan just for that seems a bit crazy.

Fill us in on what you know.
Thanks
Unfortunately the online OPI system you're talking about isn't available yet. I expect we'll hear some news on the new system sometime this spring.

You could get a similar result with OPI Integris, which wirelessly transmits your cable information to your PC. It can be set to text/email alerts based on rules you set (high temps, temperature rise, moisture, bin levels, etc) and if the PC is on the internet you can connect remotely to it from another pc, tablet, or phone (although the small screen space on a phone makes it less than ideal.)

I understand that MiFarm currently does wireless temp and moisture monitoring, but I've never seen a site with it installed. I believe they use their own cables and don't read the OPI sensors though.

How are you liking your moisture cables? Do you find the data they're giving you useful?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
a house hold router has a weak signal. a Ubiquity nanostation (one at each end) will give you a 1-5km range depending on the model you buy. Thats what I use on my farm to get wireless all over it. and cheap, costed me $160. Just an idea, to look into, many wireless solutions out there as long as you have 110 power at your bins to tie into your fine!
That's a great way to get wireless across the farm and to another router. We often use them to pass internet on to second yards or sites. Tie that in with some high range outdoor routers and you can blanket your entire yard with wifi.

We got the opi wireless bin sensors in our bins now, not fully set up yet, but its supposed to update regularly, and notify us when we need to turn the fan on, and off depending on weather conditions and grain temperature/moisture. Looks like a very nice system
Sounds like you've got Integris Pro going in. It's a pretty robust system, I think you'll be surprised how quickly you come to rely on it.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
For this past fall, how well or how much moisture could be added to canola?
That's a pretty tough question to answer, since it would require knowing what you've got for fans, bin sizes, and your local daily weather data.

I'm going to say better than most years since we had that late temperature jump, but still not earth shattering changes in MC. The reality is, we have a pretty short post harvest season in Saskatchewan before it gets too cold to change the grain, and oil seeds are harder to rehydrate in any case. With a fan control system you'll see stabilisation of the moisture level throughout the bin (no dry layer on the bottom) and you should see some movement towards optimal MC value from fall to winter, but real grain conditioning will require longer storage times.
What you will definitely see is less fan runtime to cool/dry your grain since the system will only run the fans when it will actually help, and that can translate into some pretty decent power savings.
 

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I set up 10 new bins with MiFarm system this fall,some with their cables and some already had Opi in them,just an adapter plug to changeover. They had some issues at the start but have been good about updating things. I'll be getting together with them soon to get my end my end up to date (mostly me). Pretty nice to be able to check bins from anywhere.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I set up 10 new bins with MiFarm system this fall,some with their cables and some already had Opi in them,just an adapter plug to changeover. They had some issues at the start but have been good about updating things. I'll be getting together with them soon to get my end my end up to date (mostly me). Pretty nice to be able to check bins from anywhere.
Now that's interesting! I didn't know they had an adapter for OPI cables.

One more option for a farm that already has cables in the bin.
 

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OPI cables are easy to interface with... Can't say I'm very impressed with the entire OPI system... it's very simple, but it works.


MiFarm are a scam group.

What they did was steal BinTelligence tech from 2005 when I started with it, and race to commercialize it first.

Their hardware, the platform, the way it's setup. It's identical to my original whitepaper.

Then, they went to Ag. Canada and got a $750,000 grant to "market their invention". Ahem Cough Cough.


Makes my blood boil... but BinTelligence has evolved way beyond what they grabbed back then... so it'll be interesting once it hits the market this summer.


Curt, would you like to clarify? You're a salesman, but you're not selling... you're just... "promoting" a commercial product you happen to make money selling? :p
 

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I was looking into getting my farm set up with opi-one remote monitoring this summer, but after dealing with the imcompetence at flammans this summer you will never see them at my farm again.

That being said I think I did talk you Kurt Nordin and he seemed to know his stuff, its too bad some of the other people their aren't as smart.
 

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What a timely thread. I'm building my own temperature cable reader that will tie into wifi or use a cheap 3g radio modem and a Raspberry Pi. So I have a question. Reading the cables is easy. I can do it with a cheap, off-the-shelf DS9490R usb 1wire adapter. What surprised me was that my cables seem to have all DS18B20 sensors on the bus. I was expecting DS28EA00s or something similar with allow you to discover the order of the sensors. I can't seem to identify any particular ordering on the cable by id number of the sensor. So how does the monitor identify the order of the sensors? Or are they really the sensors with sequence detect and I'm just seeing them incorrectly as DS18B20s? If I had a broken cable lying around I'd just cut it open.
 

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I did look at getting some remote monitoring from Intra Grain for the bin sense system and I was blown away by the cost. Unless I was mis-understanding what the opi-one integris system was going to cost to implement the Intra grain system without cabling was nearly twice the price.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
OPI cables are easy to interface with... Can't say I'm very impressed with the entire OPI system... it's very simple, but it works.
I kind of go back and forth on the OPI system. The cables themselves are very simple, but they work reliably. Their interfaces tend to be overly complex IMO, and that's usually where any user dissatisfaction comes from.

MiFarm are a scam group.

What they did was steal BinTelligence tech from 2005 when I started with it, and race to commercialize it first.

Their hardware, the platform, the way it's setup. It's identical to my original whitepaper.

Then, they went to Ag. Canada and got a $750,000 grant to "market their invention". Ahem Cough Cough.


Makes my blood boil... but BinTelligence has evolved way beyond what they grabbed back then... so it'll be interesting once it hits the market this summer.
That's unfortunate. As I said, I still haven't seen a MiFarm system in person.
So what's BinTelligence?

Curt, would you like to clarify? You're a salesman, but you're not selling... you're just... "promoting" a commercial product you happen to make money selling? :p
Actually, I don't sell anything. Obviously, Flaman does, but my only involvement is on the information and support side of things.
I'd really like to hear what people are using, what is and isn't working for them, and if I can answer some questions along the way I will. I end up talking to farmers about this stuff at the direction of salesmen and I've found a lot of the time the customer just doesn't know what's available or possible.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I was looking into getting my farm set up with opi-one remote monitoring this summer, but after dealing with the imcompetence at flammans this summer you will never see them at my farm again.
I'm sorry to hear that. If you haven't already tried talking to someone in management to resolve any issues you had, I can put you in contact with the right person.
I did look at getting some remote monitoring from Intra Grain for the bin sense system and I was blown away by the cost. Unless I was mis-understanding what the opi-one integris system was going to cost to implement the Intra grain system without cabling was nearly twice the price.
Based on my experience that would be an unusual case. I would expect the pricing to be closer than that.
 

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torriem, that sounds like a fun project!

If you don't get your issue resolved, send me a PM
 

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What a timely thread. I'm building my own temperature cable reader that will tie into wifi or use a cheap 3g radio modem and a Raspberry Pi. So I have a question. Reading the cables is easy. I can do it with a cheap, off-the-shelf DS9490R usb 1wire adapter. What surprised me was that my cables seem to have all DS18B20 sensors on the bus. I was expecting DS28EA00s or something similar with allow you to discover the order of the sensors. I can't seem to identify any particular ordering on the cable by id number of the sensor. So how does the monitor identify the order of the sensors? Or are they really the sensors with sequence detect and I'm just seeing them incorrectly as DS18B20s? If I had a broken cable lying around I'd just cut it open.

Also looked into that as well Torriem, after of course we got the intregris system, but I did manage to check out the components, and doesn't look overly complicated, infact some of the components came from digi even. and Andruino based system would work great, and something I have began to look closely at!
 

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Bintelligence is a all in one moisture temperature bin level system that runs off the Web. ..



arduino... powered of course ;)


I started building it in 2005 with consultations to see what guys wanted... to where we are now putting it into production.


Far less than opi systems...


The costs of these systems is insane considering the sensor is worth 2 bucks...
 

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Bintelligence is a all in one moisture temperature bin level system that runs off the Web. ..



arduino... powered of course ;)


I started building it in 2005 with consultations to see what guys wanted... to where we are now putting it into production.


Far less than opi systems...


The costs of these systems is insane considering the sensor is worth 2 bucks...
I agree its absolutely insanely cheap to build compared to other systems! So you will have a system for sale in the summer or something Christian? What will you be using to connect it to a network? wifi, ethernet with a Power over ethernet connection like a nanostation, or some sort of SIM capable add on like SparqEE?
 
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