DIY Soda Machine

The Problem: Seltzer water from the store is delicious but expensive.  My wife drinks about 5-7 bottles a week, and at a dollar a bottle, this adds up.

The Solution:  Creating your own soda water, also known as. sparkling water or seltzer water, is as easy as combining pressurized carbon-dioxide and cold water.  We just need a few pieces of equipment, and acompressed CO2 cylinder.  Here's the setup I whipped up in about 5 minutes for my New Year's Eve Party featuring Artisinal Litchfield NH Soda Water, based on this article.

DIY Soda Setup

Equipment List

Adjustable Pressure Gauge - $51.45

Gas Line with Ball Lock - $10.58

Threaded Cap - $19.99

CO2 (beverage gas) from your local supplier - ~$100 for the cylinder, then $15 per fill-up.  One fill-up per year

IoT Temperature Sensor using the ESP8266

The Problem: In years past, I've used an incandescent bulb to help keep the two chickens in my backyard warm though the cold New Hampshire winters (the top's of their heads, their combs, get frostbit when it gets really cold).  Just enough light would filter out of the coop so that I could tell from the view from my kitchen that the light was on, keeping the chickens warm.  The downside is that the extra light throws off their bodies' natural rhythm, so this year I'm want to use a ceramic heater bulb, the kind you might use in a reptile terarium.  It gives off no light, so I don't have a good way to tell if the heater is functioning.  I need a way to measure the temperature of the coop.

 

Solution: Design and build a temperature sensor PCB for the inside and outside of the coop automatically send the results to my computer.

I chose the ESP8266 to be the main microcontroller for this project.  It's one of the hottest (and easiest) Internet of Things microcontroller on the market today.  Originally developed as an easy solution for adding WiFi to existing projects, its actually a powerful microcontroller itself, able to act as both a ethernet client or server for your next DIY electronics project.  Its supported as an Add-On board for your Arduino environment.

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