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Messages - John Rucker (

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CoopBoss support / Send eMail for support on your CoopBoss
« on: March 06, 2019, 04:45:03 am »
As of 3/6/2019 this forum is no longer accepting new members.  If you have a support question please send it to

As of 3/6/2019 this forum is no longer accepting new members.  If you need support for your Furl-Kit please send an eMail to

I will send you an eMail with the address.  Let me know if you don't get it today.


If I recall correctly you had this problem back in February.  I think you got it to settle down by deleting the virtual CoopBoss device type, removing the SmartApps or automation routines you created to control the coop door.   I think you even deleted the device driver and reinstalled everything and that fixed it.  If you look back over our conversations it looks very similar to what is going on now.  On July 10th your post said you re-enabled the virtual CoopBoss & scheduled task after it worked fine manually for a few months.

I haven't had anyone else with this problem so I don't think anything is going on with SmartThings.  I know my wife has hers set to auto close at light level 1.  In the morning she manually opens the door by pushing the button in the app.  This works like clockwork, has for close to 3 years now.

If you want to send it back to me I can test it on the bench.  If it passes all the test on the bench I will put it out in the field and test it outside.  If I can't get it to fail right away it may take a couple weeks to find the problem.  I will also be happy to give you a refund if you want to return it. 

Sorry your having problems.

When you say it works in automatic mode this is what I think you are telling me: 
It works fine if you use the default device type driver only (no virtual device type, no custom smart apps).  By fine I mean you can open and close the door by pushing the button in the app, you can put it on auto open and close in the app.  It will auto close and open when the light level reaches the proper thresholds. It runs like this just fine and stays connected.

You only have problems when you try to use it with the virtual device type or a custom smart app?  That is when it gets disconnected. 

Is all this correct?  Just trying to get a clear picture.

Humm. So I understand.  It works fine and stays connected if your not using it with the virtual coopboss & custom task?  When it looses connection you have to rejoin it to the SmartThings network, right?

If you would like to send it back to me I will be happy to put it on the bench and see if I can find anything.  Let me know and I will send you an eMail with the address to send it to.

CoopBoss Information / Re: CoopBoss Horizontal 2-Door Installation
« on: May 16, 2017, 08:40:34 am »
One question for you:  does the C.B. retain object detection settings with the power off? 

Yes it sure does.  The normal door close current is stored on the EEPROM as well as several other setting including the Aux 1 and Aux 2 last state.  So if you loose power the settings will still be there on reboot!

CoopBoss Information / Re: CoopBoss Horizontal 2-Door Installation
« on: May 16, 2017, 06:39:19 am »
Fantastic job!  Very clean and professional looking install! 
One thing to keep in mind is the CoopBoss stores the "normal" door close current for only one of your doors.  When you switch to the other actuator it may have a different "normal" door close current but the CoopBoss will be using the previous door's "normal" current setting.  If the two current profiles vary by too much the object detection may not work correctly.  I think you will be okay here since it looks like both of your doors are identical and you have identical actuators.  However, I would like to see you test both door's with the CoopBoss' object detection circuit to make sure they are both operating with similar current profiles.  Once you get one of the doors dialed in and the normal current set (by pushing the button on the circuit board: see step 4 on page 14 of CoopBoss product manual), test the object detection circuit with a plastic bottle.  Then flip your switch over to the other door and test it with a plastic bottle.  If they both work as expected I think you will be good.  Another thing to keep an eye on is the door close current.  It is reported to SmartThings every time the door closes.  You can see the door close voltage and door close current in the SmartApp under the "Recently" tab.  If you do see a big jump in current between the two doors then let me know.  There are couple things we can kick around.  One would be to load a new "normal" current when you switch the door over and I should be able to write a smart-app to do that for you. 

I really like your setup!  I think that is a great way to manage your chickens and let your new grass grow!  If you are interested, you could fully automate this with the use of the Aux 2 output of your CoopBoss and a custom smart-app.  In the latest version of the CoopBoss product manual I published a wiring diagram showing you how to hook up a relay to the Aux 1 and Aux 2 ports (see page 21).  If you wired up a relay to replace your manual switch you could click on the Aux 2 button at the bottom of your SmartApp to control it.  I would be happy to write a smart app for you that would allow you to switch between doors and load a new "normal" current profile for each door.  I think others would like to do this!!

Thanks for sharing!!

Ahh, okay good to know your using the auto close.  Thanks.

As for the shielded cable yes you should only ground one end of the cable.  Tie the shield wire to the ground terminal on the Aux port and you should be good to go.  It is labeled but let me know if you can't find it I will upload a picture. 

I wonder if the physical button out on your coop is picking up noise from somewhere?  I think you have the old non shielded (just two white wires) cable running to your button.  About a year and half ago I switched to a shielded cable for the manual button to make it more resistant to RF interference.  Did your wife maybe turn on a light or a motor out by the coop around the same time the door opened?  If so I bet that is what's going on.  If your CoopBoss' manual button wires are sitting on top of coop's AC power wires you may want to move them so there is space between them.  I would be happy to send you 6' or so of shielded cable to replace your two wire non shielded cable if you think this is the problem.

Did I understand you correctly that your not using the auto close feature of the coopboss?  Just curious why?

That is strange for it to close in the middle of the day.  Please let me know if that keeps happening we may want to tear into the logs next time.   I wonder if some old rule or automation you had setup may have fired when the update occurred??

Thanks very much for the update! 

I'll Re-add it here in the next few days when I get a chance & try the default light sensor route.
Checking in.  Any news?

Just so I understand the situation correctly. According to your logs SmartThings hasn't heard from it for 6 days?  You can see that it is still on the network with good signal strength from your xBee usb stick running the XCTU program.  You can still open and close the door in the SmartThings app with the manual open close button but the status is not updated it just stays at unknown. Or when you say manual button your talking about the physical button out on the coop and that still controls the door, not the manual button on the SmartApp?

By looking at your log it looks like the power was cycled on Feb 15 at 1:28 in the afternoon and that is when the door went to unknown.  I know you rebooted the CoopBoss have you tried rebooting the SmartThings Hub?  If you have batteries take them out and unplug it for a few minutes then plug it back in. 

If rebooting the hub doesn't fix it looks like your going to have to remove it from the network and add it back as before.  What a huge pain! I don't know why you have to do this!!  I have two coopboss running on our network and never have had to do that. 
As far as I know your the only one that has turned off the built in automation of the CoopBoss and uses SmartThings automation instead.  This should be fine I don't see a problem with it but I wonder if somehow that may be causing the issue.  Would it be possible to disable all the SmartThings automation and turn on auto close and auto open feature of the CoopBoss?  You can turn off the auto open if you want to manually open it in the morning.  I noticed you had your door closing at midnight.  When you switch over to the CoopBoss automation it will close the door based on your close door light level.  We have ours set to 1 and at that level the chickens make it in 99.9% of the time.  Once or twice a year one will get left out usually because she is fighting with another hen.  You will want to keep an eye on that for a few days just to make sure everyone gets in at night. 

When the CoopBoss is running correctly is everything getting reported correctly?  Do you see the light level and temperature form both temperature probes in the SmartApp? Just want to make sure the temperature probes and light sensor are still hooked up.  When you get it reconnected to the network can you send me your log again.  I want to make sure everything is being reported correctly. 

CoopBoss support / Re: Coop door doesn't auto close while testing
« on: February 15, 2017, 10:07:31 am »
Rod was our first customer to purchase a CoopBoss from our new store at  At the first of the year (January 2017) I moved our store to the Etsy store as they have fantastic management tools and really foster a close buyer seller relationship.  Rod had to stomach all the moving pains and there have been several. I was worried it was going give a bad impression.  I'm so happy he stuck with us and this is all working out!  I think our new store is going to work out very well!! 

    How do you write a review on Etsy:
    • Go to “Your Account” → “Purchases & Reviews.” Scroll down to find the order that you would like to review.
    • Select a star rating for the first item you would like to review. ...
    • Write a review for the item. ...
    • Click “Post Your Review.” ...
    • Repeat for each item.

CoopBoss support / Re: Coop door doesn't auto close while testing
« on: February 15, 2017, 09:32:24 am »
I told John this but I did want to share this with others - the build quality of the materials as well as the thought that's gone into the little features like the timers John referred to is top notch!  No one is paying me to say this but this product is engineered to commercial grade quality.  I should know as I work with engineers in that design and build communications equipment for remote outside applications.  This product is worth what John is asking, and I recommend it for those that want a long term solution for their chicken coop.

Rod, thank you for saying this!  There have been hundreds of hours put into this project and comments like this and others I have received make it worth every second!!

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