Solder antenna wire on 3326-L Iris motion sensor for mailbox

Signal is not making it through my metal mailbox. I want to solder a 130mm antenna wire to the board and route it outside the mailbox through a tiny hole.

Just wondering if anyone else has done this. I'm not sure exactly where the antenna needs to be soldered. There's a little thing on the back of the board labeled "ANT1" which I'm assuming is the antenna. It's a surface mount component with two ends (looks like 2 terminals on one side, and one terminal on the other).

Not that this helps much, but yes, that is the Antenna :slight_smile:

20020114

https://news.thomasnet.com/fullstory/surface-mount-antennas-promote-design-flexibility-20020114

I had same issue and ended up putting mine below mailbox and then put a small magnet on the door. This also prevents mail person from hitting it putting boxes inside too.

I will admit signal was still weak and I ended up buying an Xbee for a stronger and all has been good since.

4 Likes

@ritchierich Thanks for sharing this image. Definitely inspires me to try this with on of the ten Iris v2 motion sensors I bought on eBay recently! Distance will definitely be a challenge for me though, as I have a relatively long driveway...:thinking: I do have an Xbee collecting dust though, so maybe I could get it to work...

1 Like

No worries. I had to come up with something because our USPS person retired recently and mail started coming anywhere between 4 PM and 8 PM and that was frustrating not knowing when mail finally arrived. I even have my hub sending SMS alerts to several neighbors via my custom Twilio driver when mail arrives so they too know when it was delivered :sunglasses:

When I first installed it, my contact sensor would connect but then eventually drop off. I then put an Iris outlet by the front window to see if that would help and it somewhat did but I didn't like the look of that outlet in my dining room. Then I started reading about Xbee and decided to go that route because my temp/humidity sensor in my safe was also struggling to stay connected. The Xbee with a high gain antenna has been the best investment as everything now stays connected.

3 Likes

@ritchierich What is your Xbee setup? Interested in pursuing this option.

Long thread, but this is what I followed:

These are the specific items I ordered:

I had an old SMA high-gain antenna from an old router that I used.

antenna 123mm will resonate much better

@ritchierich, I installed an Iris v2 contact sensor in the exact same spot as you showed in your picture. I used a flat super strong magnet from an old hard drive on the door as you showed. And, I mounted my Xbee with antenna in my garage window, as that is the closest to the mailbox I could get, and my wife won’t object to the appearance too much. Initially, it would not work at all without the Xbee.

It’s working great so far in my limited testing. We now receive Pushover notifications and Alexa announces “Mail Time!” via TTS.

Thanks for the inspiration!

3 Likes

Ordered my Xbee parts tonight. Looking for to mail notifications, and the other benefits Xbee should bring.

2 Likes

I went AOL old school with “You got Mail!” :joy:

I’m going to try to get this to play... my kids watched Blues Clues all the time when they were little. My wife would get a kick out of this.

2 Likes

I had a similar issue, but just replacing the mailbox with one made of plastic did the trick...

Not an option in my neighborhood as we have standardized mailboxes, maintained by the HOA.

Ahh, one of the beauties of the HOA! :smiley:

I used a contact switch with external reed switch. It’s been very reliable. More info here.

2 Likes

I did the same - z-wave plus door/window contact switch and a reed switch hooked into the internal terminals of the contact switch. I put the contact switch in a plastic weather proof hobby box on the post of the mailbox. It is abut 150 feet from the nearest relay and it doesn't skip a beat.

2 Likes

Nice, I think I'll do that too. I'm currently using an enormous Monoprice Motion Sensor inside the mailbox. No signal issues, but sometimes it doesn't trigger because it's just too slow. I'll probably go with one of the z-wave contact switches for the better battery life.

1 Like

I went with:


and

and

My signal is super (over 100 feet away a separate residence blocking line of sight on a metal mailbox) strong and hasn't missed a notification since I joined (almost 2 months ago), the signal is so fast that after opening up the notification I can still watch the mailman drive away.