ESP8266/ESP32 - how do you productionalize stuff?

Linwood

Active Member
Using Home Assistant - liking it a lot, it's just getting better and better as I go on (and as they release new stuff).  Also using Node-Red with it for automation.
 
Decided to dive into some of the wifi microcontroller stuff, and got a couple of ESP8266 devices (NodeMCU), temp, humidity and soil moisture sensors to see how hard that whole world was to work with, and used ESPHOME inside of HA.
 
It's trivial.  Incredibly simple, much easier than the first time I tried to do something electronic with a Raspberry Pi.  I have this little bitty chip thing which flashed right the first time, joined my wifi network, and that I can do over-the-air updates to easily, and it's sitting there sending wifi updates to Home Assistant.  It's like $20 worth of stuff (which is really like $6 worth if I waited to get it from China but I bought from Amazon with next day delivery).   Stuck it on a breadboard, have about 6 jumper cables and a USB Microconnector, about half a page of json to declare the sensors and calculations and such (no procedural code, that's all magic) and it just works.
 
Very cool stuff.
 
But... 
 
But... 
 
How do you turn this stuff into something to actually deploy?  As in with a case.  Almost everything I see is aimed at development, people experimenting, breadboard friendly devices.
 
There are a bazillion of these devices out there, and I do see quite a few set for solder connection, and I see some basses for modular setups (specifically grove boards, but generally for LOTS of devices). 
 
I see a few projects that provide 3D printer specs for doing a case for a project.  I don't have a 3D printer, and don't really need a new hobby.   :angry2:
 
Maybe I'm missing the right keyword on which to search.  "Shield", "base", "case" gave me too much junk and no good stuff.
 
Anyone here build real stuff with these?   How do you packge it?   Power it (notably battery, maybe solar, both)?   I can buy a big project box but a typical component isn't really suitable to rattle around in it, I need some kind of carrier or frame or carrier or something.
 
I don't mind re-buying all the stuff to get different form factors but am having trouble finding stuff suitable to production-alize (well, "home" quality productionalize). 
 
Anyone?
 
 
 

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pete_c

Guru
A couple of years ago (maybe 3-4) started a little Arduino endeavor collecting little trinkets and a breadboard to tinker with.  Lost interest after a bit of tinkering and went to tinkering with RPi projects....lightning sensor....NOAA satellite map downloads....
 
Then started to tinker with a variety of WiFi devices updated firmware with Sonoff and Espurna firmware....no breadboard building...just upgrading firmware and tapping in on GPIOs et al.  Well it is less time consuming and typically these devices are already in cases that you can utilize.
 
and you can personalize the functions easy enough these days...
 
Tinker toys that are currently implemented are talking MQTT (to Homeseer and HA)
 
1 - mini 1-Wire DS18B20 hubs for temperature sensing - using SonOff Basic's with multiple temperature sensors
2 - tiny RGB controller (modified MagicHome controller) with a manual digital pot used today for my under kitchen cabinet LED lighting
3 - combo GDO button, door sensor and temperature sensor using a SonOff basic.
 
These days it's easy to modify a WiFi device to your liking and have it do anything you want. 
 

TonyNo

Active Member
What I have done is created boards that those can be soldered to, or put them in standard, small project cases (with 3D-printed carriers ;) ).
 

BaduFamily

Active Member
Public Libraries are now starting to host 'maker spaces' - including 3d printers.
 
you may be able to find what you want on ThingVerse and just take ( or email ) the file to your local library.
 
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