Drapery motor and Z-Wave motor controller

Does anyone know if the ESI ABMHZ - Z-Wave Enabled Window Treatment Motor Control - AC

  1. Is compatible with the Somfy Glydea 60e RTS Drapery Motor
  2. Can be stopped in a partially open / closed position?

JOD.

My understanding is that the ESI pieces only work with what are referred to as “dumb” motors that use limit switches but I believe there will be a Glydea Z-Wave option in the future.

Exactly. That’s why we’re all waiting (and saving up for!) the Somfy stuff to finally materialize.

There is a “special” Glydea motor I can get from France that is a “dumb” 4-Wire motor (most likely operable by an ABMHZ). I’m not sure if it will be compatible with the calibration sequence of that controller though. The calibration allows for “dimming” to a certain percentage of openness. Somfy certainly doesn’t have any answers. I just sold some of these to be connected to Crestron motor controller (typical relay based controller). To be sure you could use one of the many other AC 4-Wire drapery motor/tracks available, in the mean time.

Somfy says they will have the Z-Wave card to add to Glydea, but waiting for that may be a while. They don’t even have the RS485 card available yet. They seem focused on the Tahoma system and the RTS to Z-Wave bridge right now.

Edit: info on motor— Please also note that Glydea 60WT # 1001537 has no US certification. The cable used has the European color code and should be kept to 20m or less in length.

I had no idea users were waiting for drapery control as all the references here have been blinds or shutters…

Thanks for the responses. Now I have to give the Mrs another excuse why this project is on hold. We’ve had a few vendors out to give quotes but it seems they don’t know what they are doing, and frankly, when I started to put together a materials list for myself I don’t know either and am more confused now than before.

Somfy has an ILT Z-Wave interface but it looks as though it only controls tubular motors.

I dont need it to be Glydea or even Somfy but it was the quietest and smoothest we demo 'd, some of them we just had to laugh at as they were SO noisy.

@Shady, I may take you up on those French motors but let me ask this, what are users waiting for, the controller, motor or both?

Are there any other manufacturers you would recommend that if needed, I could put up now and retrofit or add to later?

JOD.

If you’re willing to put it up now and add Z-Wave later, then Glydea is a nice solution (having quiet operation, optional manual release in case of power failure, etc). BTX offers some tracks and motors, some are quiet. Depending on the drapery size you might consider Glystro (replaced by Glydea but still found around in knock-off form) as it is DC and you could use a DBMZ to control it. Techniku had a Z-Wave drapery motor (add-on), and I believe they were bought by Wayne Dalton or SALT or whatever they are calling themselves.

It seems like most people are waiting for the Z-Wave to RTS option as a lot of people already have RTS shades or have been sold them by dealers that don’t know what Z-Wave is. We have 7 different AC/DC Z-Wave shade controllers to choose from and the motors to go with them, but to get it integrated into one unit for either drapery or rollers seems to be what we are waiting for. It is difficult in the WC industry to find people who are really in-the-know, I being one of 7 (kidding, sort of). I’d be happy to help you, even if just to answer questions, feel free to PM me.

edit: this was my 666th post, scary?..nope

If you're willing to put it up now and add Z-Wave later, then Glydea is a nice solution (having quiet operation, optional manual release in case of power failure, etc).
Quiet operation is paramount and If the wife pressures me to get this done then I want to have a plan in place to be able to retro fit it without replacing. I'm going to look into these vendors products you mentioned and see what works.
Depending on the drapery size you might consider Glystro.
This is where my problems started, as the vendors wanted to know the weight of the drapery material to quote the track, we needed to know the limitations of the track to drive the material selection. Anyway, I did find a supplier locally that has a stock of the discontinued Glystro "stuff" but not sure what and how much of it. I'll double check.
I'd be happy to help you, even if just to answer questions, feel free to PM me.
Thank you, this project seems as big as Vera itself so help would be appreciated.
edit: this was my 666th post, scary?...nope
The devil is in the details!! ;)

JOD.

@JOD, I don’t think you can afford the memory footprint to install a motor controller… Add another Zwave device and it really will be curtains for your Vera :slight_smile:

Groan… and accurate, in the same message… 8)

Ouch, bubble bursters!!

Maybe the Mios Marketplace should start offering carbon memory credits to help offset the footprint.

JOD.

[quote=“shady, post:6, topic:167781”]If you’re willing to put it up now and add Z-Wave later, then Glydea is a nice solution (having quiet operation, optional manual release in case of power failure, etc). BTX offers some tracks and motors, some are quiet. Depending on the drapery size you might consider Glystro (replaced by Glydea but still found around in knock-off form) as it is DC and you could use a DBMZ to control it. Techniku had a Z-Wave drapery motor (add-on), and I believe they were bought by Wayne Dalton or SALT or whatever they are calling themselves.

It seems like most people are waiting for the Z-Wave to RTS option as a lot of people already have RTS shades or have been sold them by dealers that don’t know what Z-Wave is. We have 7 different AC/DC Z-Wave shade controllers to choose from and the motors to go with them, but to get it integrated into one unit for either drapery or rollers seems to be what we are waiting for. It is difficult in the WC industry to find people who are really in-the-know, I being one of 7 (kidding, sort of). I’d be happy to help you, even if just to answer questions, feel free to PM me.

edit: this was my 666th post, scary?..nope[/quote]

shady, or anyone in this thread, ABMHZ/DBMZ is too pricey for me right now. i just need to control the sheer curtains (not the drapery) as per attached photo; they are split-draw. i want to control this while away from home from my iphone as part of vera2 zwave network. i remember couple of months ago that you said i have to get a new motorized track. can you please be kind enough to give me some more advice before i go to a somfy dealer. thanks

If you want a Somfy product then there is only one choice currently, the Somfy Glystro motorized drapery track. Sometime early next year you should be seeing a Z-Wave card for it to add to the motor to enable Z-Wave control. If you don’t want to wait for the Z-Wave module for Glystro, you can order the motor RTS (Radio Technology Somfy) and then get a Somfy URTSII connected to Vera with a USB to Serial Cable. Vera sends a serial command to the URTSII and then the URTSII sends and RTS command to move the RTS curtain motor. With RTS, no feedback or confirmation of movement will be sent back to Vera, though that may be the same thing with the Z-Wave module for Glystro is doing as I think it just triggers the dry contact on the motor (so RTS may give you a similar level of control and it is available now).

If you want something else, you could try getting something off of eBay:
http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_trksid=p5197.m570.l1313&_nkw=motorized+curtains&_sacat=See-All-Categories

Most of the tracks I see on eBay seem to be Makita-style knock-offs from China. They come with an IR remote and a wired controller and it should be possible to take the wired controller apart and wire it to a set of relays or modified Z-Wave appliance modules and trigger the curtains open/close with Z-Wave (you’d still have the IR remote too, so you could use Vera to send and IR command with something like a USB-UIRT or SQ Blaster from Square Connect). These eBay options will not be as nearly quiet as the Somfy Glystro, though they will be cheaper.

[quote=“shady, post:12, topic:167781”]If you want a Somfy product then there is only one choice currently, the Somfy Glystro motorized drapery track. Sometime early next year you should be seeing a Z-Wave card for it to add to the motor to enable Z-Wave control. If you don’t want to wait for the Z-Wave module for Glystro, you can order the motor RTS (Radio Technology Somfy) and then get a Somfy URTSII connected to Vera with a USB to Serial Cable. Vera sends a serial command to the URTSII and then the URTSII sends and RTS command to move the RTS curtain motor. With RTS, no feedback or confirmation of movement will be sent back to Vera, though that may be the same thing with the Z-Wave module for Glystro is doing as I think it just triggers the dry contact on the motor (so RTS may give you a similar level of control and it is available now).

If you want something else, you could try getting something off of eBay:
http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_trksid=p5197.m570.l1313&_nkw=motorized+curtains&_sacat=See-All-Categories

Most of the tracks I see on eBay seem to be Makita-style knock-offs from China. They come with an IR remote and a wired controller and it should be possible to take the wired controller apart and wire it to a set of relays or modified Z-Wave appliance modules and trigger the curtains open/close with Z-Wave (you’d still have the IR remote too, so you could use Vera to send and IR command with something like a USB-UIRT or SQ Blaster from Square Connect). These eBay options will not be as nearly quiet as the Somfy Glystro, though they will be cheaper.[/quote]

hi Shady, in addition to the RTS and URTSII, can i still get a remote and/or a wall controller to operate the drapery. the wife is not familiar with zwave devices and will be very unhappy if she cannot close/open the curtains.

@waltzer11

If you are using RTS and an URTSII, then you can easily add extra handheld RTS remotes to the system and Vera will still control the motors through the URTSII and RS232 connection. RTS makes this part easy, but lacks multiple stops (% of open) and confirmation of position or movement to Vera.

There are many handheld Z-Wave remotes that work with Z-Wave motorized shades, some being better or more wife friendly than others. This is probably the most wife friendly as it has a dedicated STOP button:
http://www.elec-solutions.com/products/z-wave/tz-3300.html

Some Z-Wave remotes are better than others for integrating them into Vera. I think all of the handheld remotes can be considered “scene controllers” and so you should be able to replicate and copy what is in the remote (the shades) into Vera so you have two points of control. Or you could use a smart phone app like SQ Remote and control everything through Vera. I know a small handheld remote is preferred by wives 80% of the time and in that case RTS might be the winner (my wife has been brainwashed to use an ipod touch and SQ Remote). With Z-Wave’s benefits of mesh network and acknowledgment it can have latency problems at times that a direct single-ended RTS Radio signal doesn’t have. So where a Z-Wave handheld remote wins with increased range and reliability, an RTS remote still has the benefits of being simple, direct and low latency if you happen to be in range (40-70ft of the shade).

[quote=“shady, post:14, topic:167781”]@waltzer11

If you are using RTS and an URTSII, then you can easily add extra handheld RTS remotes to the system and Vera will still control the motors through the URTSII and RS232 connection. RTS makes this part easy, but lacks multiple stops (% of open) and confirmation of position or movement to Vera.

There are many handheld Z-Wave remotes that work with Z-Wave motorized shades, some being better or more wife friendly than others. This is probably the most wife friendly as it has a dedicated STOP button:
http://www.elec-solutions.com/products/z-wave/tz-3300.html

Some Z-Wave remotes are better than others for integrating them into Vera. I think all of the handheld remotes can be considered “scene controllers” and so you should be able to replicate and copy what is in the remote (the shades) into Vera so you have two points of control. Or you could use a smart phone app like SQ Remote and control everything through Vera. I know a small handheld remote is preferred by wives 80% of the time and in that case RTS might be the winner (my wife has been brainwashed to use an ipod touch and SQ Remote). With Z-Wave’s benefits of mesh network and acknowledgment it can have latency problems at times that a direct single-ended RTS Radio signal doesn’t have. So where a Z-Wave handheld remote wins with increased range and reliability, an RTS remote still has the benefits of being simple, direct and low latency if you happen to be in range (40-70ft of the shade).[/quote]

very informative Shady; i really like the link to the “wife-friendly” remote. hahahaha. i really am inclined to listen to your advices/recommendations when it comes to motorized draperies, shades and stuff like that. i am using the automator.app in my iphone. is it right that the Somfy’s URTSII is around $394 and RS-232 is $15.50? thanks for your help.

Yes, the URTSII isn’t cheap at around $400, but it does give you 16 RTS channels to put any number of individual shades or groups on. The USB to RS-232 cable is typically around $12-20.

I should do a pro/con sheet for choosing whether to go full Z-Wave with motorized shades or to integrate 3rd party like Somfy RTS motorized shades. I could try to put in general costs too and put it up on the wiki. I’d need more free time before that happens, maybe I can get to it before the end of the year. The choice of Z-Wave might be cheaper and give you more control, but RTS may have some advantages like adding simple direct remotes or using RTS accessories (ie wind sensors, sun sensors).

[quote=“shady, post:16, topic:167781”]Yes, the URTSII isn’t cheap at around $400, but it does give you 16 RTS channels to put any number of individual shades or groups on. The USB to RS-232 cable is typically around $12-20.

I should do a pro/con sheet for choosing whether to go full Z-Wave with motorized shades or to integrate 3rd party like Somfy RTS motorized shades. I could try to put in general costs too and put it up on the wiki. I’d need more free time before that happens, maybe I can get to it before the end of the year. The choice of Z-Wave might be cheaper and give you more control, but RTS may have some advantages like adding simple direct remotes or using RTS accessories (ie wind sensors, sun sensors).[/quote]

that will be nice and helpful if you can put a pro/con sheet in wiki with costs included. pardon me but i am a little bit confused with the last part of your post; what do you mean by “the choice of Z-wave might be cheaper and give you more control”, do you mean RTS is not Z-wave. sorry about my ignorance - i am not too familiar with this shades, draperies, RTS and stuff. thanks for your patience.

No apologies needed @waltzer11, I’d be surprised if anyone I talked to knew the difference between RTS and Z-Wave. I’ll try to be brief as I could easily turn this post into the Wiki-comparison I mentioned in the earlier post.

RTS = Radio Technology Somfy = single-ended transmission, no mesh, lots of shade accesories, switch and remote options, may have reception issues, single intermediate stop, internal motor controllers
Z-Wave = mesh network, confirmation and acknowledgement of communication, repeating signal, multiple intermediate stops available, external motor controllers

If I was operating a shade that a couldn’t see directly, Z-Wave would be a better choice as it would return confirmation of its postion to Vera for me to see, if operated an RTS shade without seeing it there would be no telling if it moved at all. Also I could send a Z-Wave shade to any percentage of open, maybe using scenes and moving it up 10% at a time as the sun moved across my window, with RTS I’d only have one “My” position and it can’t be changed in Vera (ie if I want a new postion I have to set it in each motor). Hope this helps. Sounds like I should get to that comparison sooner than later. There may not be a significant price difference between these two choices.

[quote=“shady, post:18, topic:167781”]No apologies needed @waltzer11, I’d be surprised if anyone I talked to knew the difference between RTS and Z-Wave. I’ll try to be brief as I could easily turn this post into the Wiki-comparison I mentioned in the earlier post.

RTS = Radio Technology Somfy = single-ended transmission, no mesh, lots of shade accesories, switch and remote options, may have reception issues, single intermediate stop, internal motor controllers
Z-Wave = mesh network, confirmation and acknowledgement of communication, repeating signal, multiple intermediate stops available, external motor controllers

If I was operating a shade that a couldn’t see directly, Z-Wave would be a better choice as it would return confirmation of its postion to Vera for me to see, if operated an RTS shade without seeing it there would be no telling if it moved at all. Also I could send a Z-Wave shade to any percentage of open, maybe using scenes and moving it up 10% at a time as the sun moved across my window, with RTS I’d only have one “My” position and it can’t be changed in Vera (ie if I want a new postion I have to set it in each motor). Hope this helps. Sounds like I should get to that comparison sooner than later. There may not be a significant price difference between these two choices.[/quote]

very well explained Shady; it’s getting clearer to me now. based from what you said, i am leaning towards Z-wave rather than RTS if there is not much price difference. just one more clarification, is it safe to assume that if go for Z-wave, there will be no “remote control” option and also that i will need to buy 2 (i have 2 light curtains as per attached pictures) ABMHZ that cost $259 each. thanks again for your time.

@waltzer11, I am not sure if the ABMHZ can be made to work with motorized drapery track unless the drapery track can work with an external motor controller. They jury is still out as to whether the Somfy Glydea will work with an ABMHZ. BTX is probably your best bet for a compatible motorized drapery track for the ABMHZ, but you’ll have to confirm it with them (they currently use similar external controllers to the ABMHZ). Yes, you would need one per motor/track, so two ABMHZ’s for your two windows. I also mentioned a quiet DC low voltage motorized drapery track that should work with a DBMZ (the DC version of the ABMHZ) and BTX offers those too, but you need to check for compatibility. Intermediate stops may not be possible with drapery motors due to how their limits work and may not work well with the calibration sequence used to tell the motor where to stop. Intermediate stops aren’t really needed in drapery unless you are trying to use them for screen masking in your home theatre, which you are not.

It isn’t that there are no remote control options for Z-Wave motorized shades, there are many options with the TZ-3300 having the only stop button. Most all of the Z-Wave remotes and scene controllers will work with the ABMHZ and DBMZ since those controllers essentially look like a dimming light switch to Z-Wave. The only caveat being that sometimes there are challenges or learning curves related to getting the handheld remote and Vera to play nicely together. In theory it shouldn’t be a problem replicating the handheld remote’s shades into Vera to be controlled and automated from there too, but sometimes there are challenges. RTS is a much simpiler radio technology similar to a garage door opener, so adding remotes is easy and isn’t dependent on the relationship between Primary and Secondary controller as it is in Z-Wave.