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Variable Water Valve
This thread has 16 replies. Displaying posts 1 through 15.
Post 1 made on Wednesday July 19, 2017 at 11:19
Knowinnothin
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HI Guys,


Have a situation where I need a water valve that I can control not only open and closed but percentages of open/closed as well. The control system in place is control 4 and I would like to control it with that.

If anyone has done this or is aware of a valve that is capable of doing this your help would be greatly appreciated.


Thank You
Post 2 made on Wednesday July 19, 2017 at 12:11
lippavisual
Senior Member
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WaterCop or Flow Logic both offer controllable valves. However, I don't believe there is anything on the market that tells you percentages of open/close status.

Typically, these systems are just either full open or full closed and nothing in between.

Both can be integrated with contacts/relays.
Post 3 made on Wednesday July 19, 2017 at 12:18
Ernie Gilman
Yes, That Ernie!
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Let's say nobody answers with what you're really looking for. This is really not what you're looking for, but it will work.

Construct a three-output manifold with an electrically controlled valve on each section. Add a variable valve to sections two and three. Set variable valve two to half flow and set variable valve three to one quarter flow. The outputs of these valves are combined in another manifold, resulting in a single pipe output.

A set of macros work this way:
All off gives you no water flow
Only 3 on gives you one quarter flow
Only 2 on gives you half flow
Both 2 and 3 on gives you three quarters flow
1 on gives you full flow (1 could instead be another variable valve set to one quarter so that full flow is 1 and 2 and 3 on)

Primitive? Right. It's a two bit controller (with all on added), after all. And how many steps of percentage do you need? "Percentage" implies a hundred values, so 128 values or seven valves plus the full on. That seems excessive.

Instead of the adjustable valves, you could insert smaller diameter pipe sections to constrict flow to one quarter and one half, respectively, but this is even tweakier than the multivalve approach.

As for the number of bits, I expect to see arguments. A true two-bit controller would have four outputs: zero, one quarter, one half, and three quarters. Zero is a meaningful value in digital counting, but with water flow, binary 11 is only 3/4 of full flow. Omitting full on is ridiculous.

And, of course, adjust to taste. I think if you add one more bit you're starting to get excessive. Maybe not.
A good answer is easier with a clear question giving the make and model of everything.
"The biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place." -- G. “Bernie” Shaw
OP | Post 4 made on Wednesday July 19, 2017 at 12:26
Knowinnothin
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HI Guys,

Thanks for the responses, I don't expect a sensor in the solenoid to tell me the exact percentage of the valve position but I would think that there would be something that with a certain voltage applied the solenoid would activate the valve to a certain position.

I'm sure with all the automation in larger commercial environment's and especially industrial that these would be common place. If I could find something that would do 25,50,75, 100 percent im sure it would be enough.
Post 5 made on Wednesday July 19, 2017 at 12:40
ceied
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i used to own the company that made ultra valve. electronically controlled shower valve... it would do what you want. but i sold out 20 years ago and they have since closed up shop.

you can search for indiustrial flow water control devices... i know things like this exist for process control. sorry i cant be more help...

search for your local industrial pump rep and ask for insight.
Ed will be known as the Tiger Woods of the integration business, followed closely with the renaming of his company to "Hotties A/V". The tag line will be "We like big racks and tight holes"...
OP | Post 6 made on Wednesday July 19, 2017 at 12:51
Knowinnothin
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On July 19, 2017 at 12:40, ceied said...
i used to own the company that made ultra valve. electronically controlled shower valve... it would do what you want. but i sold out 20 years ago and they have since closed up shop.

you can search for indiustrial flow water control devices... i know things like this exist for process control. sorry i cant be more help...

search for your local industrial pump rep and ask for insight.

Awesome,

Thank You
Post 7 made on Wednesday July 19, 2017 at 13:10
3PedalMINI
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Not sure what you need to actuate...

But You could use a pool flow controller. Jandy has a valve actuator that you can program % of open and close. It would require the IAquaLink controller but that integrates seemlessly with control 4

By the time you factor your time, figuring out how to provide voltages and then build a driver in C4 using the jandy valve and iAquaLink would probably be cheaper.
The Bitterness of Poor Quality is Remembered Long after the Sweetness of Price is Forgotten! - Benjamin Franklin
OP | Post 8 made on Wednesday July 19, 2017 at 13:49
Knowinnothin
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On July 19, 2017 at 13:10, 3PedalMINI said...
Not sure what you need to actuate...

But You could use a pool flow controller. Jandy has a valve actuator that you can program % of open and close. It would require the IAquaLink controller but that integrates seemlessly with control 4

By the time you factor your time, figuring out how to provide voltages and then build a driver in C4 using the jandy valve and iAquaLink would probably be cheaper.

Need to control water flow of an outdoor fountain, this is perfect!!

Thank You
Post 9 made on Thursday July 20, 2017 at 03:10
Ernie Gilman
Yes, That Ernie!
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On July 19, 2017 at 12:26, Knowinnothin said...
HI Guys,

Thanks for the responses, I don't expect a sensor in the solenoid to tell me the exact percentage of the valve position but I would think that there would be something that with a certain voltage applied the solenoid would activate the valve to a certain position.

That is an analog approach: you vary a voltage level and get a proportionate response. It's very hard to use because you can't depend on exact voltage levels, so you can't depend on performance.

I'm sure with all the automation in larger commercial environment's and especially industrial that these would be common place. If I could find something that would do 25,50,75, 100 percent im sure it would be enough.

I described a strange but workable way to do this digitally, with the combinations of binary numbers resulting in those exact percentages of flow. I mean, I could see someone looking at that thing I described and saying, "WTF is that monstrosity?" But then saying, "damn, that'll work, won't it?"


I was going to make a comment about 10 bit versus 16 bit sprinkler control, but that seemed excessive. And maybe a 44.1 kHz switching rate.
A good answer is easier with a clear question giving the make and model of everything.
"The biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place." -- G. “Bernie” Shaw
Post 10 made on Thursday July 20, 2017 at 10:41
jnic002
Lurking Member
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I worked on building automation systems for a little bit and Bellimo incremental valve/actuators take a 0-10V or 2-10V signal to open up to that percentage. You could get one of those from a local HVAC/Commercial Controls distributor or call a commercial building automation company to see if you can buy one off of them.
Without testing this I'm not 100% sure it would work or not but the Control4 wireless 0-10V dimmer could potentially be used to open the valve the percentage you want using just the low voltage outputs. You can hide the dimmer in programming and could program an experience button to open the valve the percentage you want. In custom programming send that corresponding voltage to the actuator.
If you try this I'd love to know if it works.
OP | Post 11 made on Thursday July 20, 2017 at 16:47
Knowinnothin
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On July 19, 2017 at 12:18, Ernie Gilman said...
Let's say nobody answers with what you're really looking for. This is really not what you're looking for, but it will work.

Construct a three-output manifold with an electrically controlled valve on each section. Add a variable valve to sections two and three. Set variable valve two to half flow and set variable valve three to one quarter flow. The outputs of these valves are combined in another manifold, resulting in a single pipe output.

A set of macros work this way:
All off gives you no water flow
Only 3 on gives you one quarter flow
Only 2 on gives you half flow
Both 2 and 3 on gives you three quarters flow
1 on gives you full flow (1 could instead be another variable valve set to one quarter so that full flow is 1 and 2 and 3 on)

Primitive? Right. It's a two bit controller (with all on added), after all. And how many steps of percentage do you need? "Percentage" implies a hundred values, so 128 values or seven valves plus the full on. That seems excessive.

Instead of the adjustable valves, you could insert smaller diameter pipe sections to constrict flow to one quarter and one half, respectively, but this is even tweakier than the multivalve approach.

As for the number of bits, I expect to see arguments. A true two-bit controller would have four outputs: zero, one quarter, one half, and three quarters. Zero is a meaningful value in digital counting, but with water flow, binary 11 is only 3/4 of full flow. Omitting full on is ridiculous.

And, of course, adjust to taste. I think if you add one more bit you're starting to get excessive. Maybe not.

This would absolutely work ernie, I wouldn't necessarily call it primitive however this solution with a 4" pipe and valves would get bulky. His preference is variable flow though so I need to keep that in mind.

Thank You though.
OP | Post 12 made on Thursday July 20, 2017 at 16:57
Knowinnothin
Long Time Member
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97
On July 20, 2017 at 10:41, jnic002 said...
I worked on building automation systems for a little bit and Bellimo incremental valve/actuators take a 0-10V or 2-10V signal to open up to that percentage. You could get one of those from a local HVAC/Commercial Controls distributor or call a commercial building automation company to see if you can buy one off of them.
Without testing this I'm not 100% sure it would work or not but the Control4 wireless 0-10V dimmer could potentially be used to open the valve the percentage you want using just the low voltage outputs. You can hide the dimmer in programming and could program an experience button to open the valve the percentage you want. In custom programming send that corresponding voltage to the actuator.
If you try this I'd love to know if it works.

Im currently looking into your suggestion, 3PedalMini's solution is great as well so I'm gonna get quotes for both. either or would work and it'll just come down to price.
Post 13 made on Thursday October 29, 2020 at 03:01
airaeuro
Junior Member
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October 2020
1
I know the triple offset butterfly valve manufacturers in India, that will surely help to take control over water flow.
Thanks me later.
Post 14 made on Thursday October 29, 2020 at 07:53
highfigh
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September 2004
7,966
I haven't worked with PLCs, but it seems possible that a PLC that controls a stepper motor could be used to function something like this.

I searched for 'electronically controlled variable flow water valve' and saw a lot of links- might be worth a shot since you know the application better than I.
My mechanic told me, "I couldn't repair your brakes, so I made your horn louder."
Post 15 made on Thursday October 29, 2020 at 11:59
Ernie Gilman
Yes, That Ernie!
Joined:
Posts:
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29,915
Newbie post three years after the previous post.
A good answer is easier with a clear question giving the make and model of everything.
"The biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place." -- G. “Bernie” Shaw
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