Engineering Roundtable - RFID Garage Door "Open Sesame!"

Check out Joel's latest creation in this week's episode of "Engineering Roundtable."

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RFID (or radio-frequency identification) is one of those magical technologies that, no matter how many times I use it in a project, it still seems novel. In today's episode of "Engineering Roundtable," SparkFun Engineer/Product Vetter Joel dives into some of the nitty-gritty behind RFID and shows how to incorporate this nifty technology into a useful project. Check it out:

Vimeo version can be found here

As always, feel free to leave any questions or suggestions in the comments section below. We'd also love to hear about how you've incorporated RFID technology into projects you've made - leave them in the comments section as well. Cheers!

Comments 14 comments

  • The major parts for this cool project can be found in this wish list.

    Note that garage door opener control wires are low voltage, not line voltage, so the beefcake relay is overkill; but it will be very reliable and will work with all garage door opener models.

  • North Alabama PC / about 11 years ago / 3

    If you want a longer range but still keep the remote device small, try using the SparkFun Nike+iPod Serial to USB Adapter as shown in this project to lock/unlock a car. nike hacked to open cars from afar I would recommend adding a power button on the transmitter or may be a pressure switch under the seat so when you get off the bike it will transmit. They clam 50+ foot range.

  • Member #526922 / about 10 years ago / 1

    Is it possible to get a copy of the code that was used I dont understand how to get the information from the reader into the arduino

  • Member #508537 / about 11 years ago / 1

    I am also planning to have my glass door like this, can be open via app on my smartphone. How was that sounds?

  • This is a very cool project but I find myself criticizing your soldering. Not to sound like a jerk, but whiskey tango foxtrot? Here is just one of many great soldering tutorial on youtube.

    Not sure if they cover tinning wires, but you never apply the solder to the iron and use it to tin. If you do that, your burning away the flux from the solder core before it is effective. Instead, heat the wire, apply solder to the wire and tip to initiate heat transfer,then only apply solder to the wire. Stop the process before the solder reaches the wire insulation! If solder wicks, (enters the installation)your going to have a brittle joint.

    Again, nice project. Just a little helpful (I hope) criticism.


  • Kamiquasi / about 11 years ago * / 1

    Did.. did Nick just lose his #*(% and zapped the comments? Fourth!

    On-topic: *Receiver. Even more on-topic: That's pretty cool. Hopefully you can extend the range a little so you don't have to headbutt the door every time, though :)

    Also, if you could, there's a question in the comments regarding what the LA suffix in the marking means. The manufacturer's site has no particular information that I could find.

    ( Edit: This post read "... did Nathan just ..." in err - d'oh! )

    • Did.. did Nathan just lose his #*(% and zapped the comments? Fourth!

      For the record, so far today I have personally received three in-house bug reports and this comment about the thing where deleted comments still show up in the count of comments. I am suitably impressed with how much attention you are all paying.

      We'll fix it one of these days. Probably. In the meanwhile, feel free to imagine some really impressive internet drama happening behind the scenes.

      • Kamiquasi / about 11 years ago / 1

        In the meanwhile, feel free to imagine some really impressive internet drama happening behind the scenes.

        Who needs imagination when you've got the feeds? :D

    • l0gikG8 / about 11 years ago * / 2

      The manufacturer website is not helpful but it is entertaining. I want to know more about the supper range. The thought makes me hungry.

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