4 years ago I purchased an automatic chicken pop door for my coop. It is 12 volts and the door opens at dawn and shuts at dusk by means of a photosensor. It is a home built device that works quite well. It stopped working recently. Of course, I took it apart to diagnose the problem and made a sketch where all the wires went (they are all either red or white) and promptly lost the sketch. I need help in correctly wiring the linear actuator to the relay. Can someone tell me how to wire this? Sorry for the primitive sketch. The linear actuator is from a hospital bed and stops when it is fully extended or fully retracted. When the polarity is reversed the actuator travels in the opposite direction. The microswitch is at the bottom of the door to stop travel when an obstruction is hit and signals that the next direction of travel is in the opposite direction. The relay is an Omron LY2N-J DPDT on a PTF08A base. The wiring shown I KNOW to be correct. I just do not know where to attach the switch (possibly 1 and 4) or the actuator.

enter image description here

It is important to me - I know I look like a rube - I'm not electronically oriented but can handle the wiring.

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ So, hi! You should probably elaborate on what the whole purpose of the (re)wiring is? I can't infer from the drawing. \$\endgroup\$ – Marcus Müller Sep 28 '17 at 16:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ Hi Marcus - I am not rewiring it. I unwired it to check the individual components and can't remember where the actuator and the microswitch get wired to the relay base to make it work. \$\endgroup\$ – Gus Wolf Sep 28 '17 at 16:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ 1) What is the photo cell? 2) what does the switch do exactly.... does the door fully open or just bounce up and down on the chicken's neck? \$\endgroup\$ – Trevor_G Sep 28 '17 at 17:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ I purchased the door from someone else. I have contacted them and they do not have a schematic or wiring diagram. I just need help in where to attach the actuator and the micro switch. \$\endgroup\$ – Gus Wolf Sep 28 '17 at 17:04
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ not labeling the wires and not checking out the contact resistance of the switches and relays is where you screwed up. \$\endgroup\$ – Tony Stewart Sunnyskyguy EE75 Sep 28 '17 at 18:32

The following should work for you. You may have to switch the motor wires around to find the right polarity though.

If there is an obstruction the relay will flip back and cause the thing to reverse till the switch clears then it will re-engage and should continue to try to close. Relay may buzz a bit though if the obstruction remains, significantly reducing the life of the relay. But I can't see any better solution with the minimal parts you have indicated.


simulate this circuit – Schematic created using CircuitLab

This may be a better solution.


simulate this circuit

Here the switch opening stops the motor going down and it will stay there till either the obstruction is removed or it gets light and the door opens.

UPDATE: According to your video it's probably the second circuit.. minus the diode. Video does not show what happens when it gets light when obstructed, but I am guessing it just stays stuck. So adding a diode actually makes it better :)

| improve this answer | |
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I agree but something is missing in the description of the question. Is it always powered during daylight in the up position. Is a chicken considered an obstruction. Otherwise it is a Chicken Poop Cop Door. \$\endgroup\$ – Tony Stewart Sunnyskyguy EE75 Sep 28 '17 at 17:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ @TonyStewart.EEsince'75 ya the motor has it's own internal switches at the travel ends. SO yes it's powered at the terminals continuously. \$\endgroup\$ – Trevor_G Sep 28 '17 at 17:55
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ so it has its own set reset relay \$\endgroup\$ – Tony Stewart Sunnyskyguy EE75 Sep 28 '17 at 18:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ @TonyStewart.EEsince'75 Yup that's how I understand it, or more likely two limit switches and diodes. \$\endgroup\$ – Trevor_G Sep 28 '17 at 18:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ When the light is applied to the photo sensor the door travels up. When light is removed from the photo sensor (ie. Dark) the door travels down. Ideally I should not need to add any components - although you all are the experts and can probably make it better! I appreciate all your help! \$\endgroup\$ – Gus Wolf Sep 28 '17 at 19:34

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.