Bird timer switch

It is time to release a big research that i have finish a year ago. It is a a timer switch ,that simulates the dawn and when it’s getting dark. It used for time simulation in a room with birds, that there is not sun, so the only way to simulate the dawn and the day light is to use bulbs.

So, let ‘s begin from the dawn,  a switch timer give a pulse at in the input of the controller at around 07:00 , a halogen lamp,start lighting from 0% to 100%  in a period of 25 minutes . For example at 07:25 lamp is 100%.Halogen lamp will get of now, but twenty seconds before the halogen lamp get off , a fluorescent lamp start lighting at 100% , so halogen is off. Fluorescent will be on for all day light until it ‘s getting dark. When it start to getting dark ,this pulse at the input of atmega is gnd. So, fluorescent lamp will get of, but 25 seconds before fluorescent lamp get of, halogen lamp will light 100%.Αt 18:00 atmega start count again and in a period of 25 minutes ,halogen lamp from 100% will go to 0% exactly at 18:25. Now , for the night, i mean, from 18:25 until 07:00, a small night dark lamp will get on and with a dimmer we will adjust the intension. This night maybe simulate the moon , i don’t know exactly ,but bibliography says it is important for better produce procreation of birds. Some indicated leds ,are on the frond of the panel to show us the operation of the circuit.That is the use of the circuit.There are two mainly versions, the first 1v & 2v . I didn’t use zero cross detection with optocoupler .because there was too much blinking, thing very bad for birds ,so  i based on the life time  helpful 555 timer. But as Stephan Schulz said based on his circuit, that use zero cross without the transformer ,he had very good results,no flickering at all.Here are comments .

Diagram and operation of whole circuit , will be uploaded on v.2.There is much more work there .

Let ‘s begin and i will explain as i can.

Everything start form 0, it was not so easy to combine four different circuit ,because at the version 2v, i had the idea to place a battery so that keep the program when 230 was off. I try to do this with ds1307 but i have many problems like that every 6 month , time goes one hour frond and after 6 month one hour before and many more, so i use a battery 18650.

Let ‘s begin with breadboard. Of course everything start from breadboard and experiments


IMG_1519 (Custom)

IMG_1523 (Custom) (2)









When everything examined and works ,  transfered all to a pcb. Double layer used  because i need a pcb as small as possible.

IMG_1564 (Custom)IMG_1565 (Custom)








IMG_1568 (Custom)

IMG_1532 (Custom) (Custom)








IMG_1570 (Custom)IMG_1571 (Custom)








IMG_1572 (Custom)IMG_1577 (Custom)










Next , it was time for timer switch. I had a mechanical timer switch, that when it was triggered ,230 v was on the output. I didn’t need that, i need when triggered ,just only a relay to operate. So , i convert it


IMG_1552 (Custom)


Everything placed on a box, pcb , timer switch and some leds that indicate the conditions

IMG_1541 (Custom)IMG_1579 (Custom)







IMG_1553 (Custom)


That is the circuit. There will be a second one ,version 2, it will be with a backup battery and some modification. I will explain the operation of every stage of electronics , but the operation and the idea is  is the same.

Next video show what happens with a light meter ,what exactly  happens when halogen lamp goes of.




This video you can see the operation of the circuit but at high speed. Everything happen in 20seconds!  Dim up halogen lamp,light on fluorescent, dim of halogen.  All those are repeated 3 times.




And one more video around 40 minutes that you can see the whole operation of the circuit.




Here there is another one version , exactly the same ,but one layer and with printed information on the upper layer . I print mirror all the iformation on a glossy paper with a laser black-white printer , and with a laminate i stuck the paper on the pcb and passing through the lamina tor ,the paper stuck on the pcb ,i did it around 15 times.

IMG_1533 (Custom) (Custom)

IMG_1540 (Custom)IMG_1534 (Custom) (Custom)







IMG_1544 (Custom)IMG_1545 (Custom)








IMG_1546 (Custom)


Leave a Reply