Major Changes in the works…

There will be some massive disruptions to the live weather conditions over the next few weeks.  The new weather station has arrived and I’m in the process of getting it setup and configured.  This is just in time as the old one which has been in operations since February 2005 has become very brittle.  I was gently cleaning a spider web off the anemometer just last week and ended up breaking one of the wind cups.  Lucky some Crazy Glue fixed it.

After a fair bit of research and consideration about mounting options, I’ve mounted the new anemometer 6+ feet above the roof line with a full 360 degree reading.  Old one was mounted on the fence which had poor reading from the south.

I’ve gone with a satellite mounting bracket with a PVC extension tube with a wood insert.  Didn’t want to put holes in the roof and didn’t want to create a lightning rod. I’m monitoring the setup as there is a little bit of sway in winds over 20km/h.  The base is very stable up till about 3-4 feet in height.  Currently the new wind reading have had better accuracy.

I’m still working on placement of the rain bucket and temperature module.   I’m also testing a new “skycam” setup and will hopefully have a eye to the sky with the new site.

The current Live Weather Conditions site is still displaying the data from the old station.

Stay tuned, Cheers Jeff


Updated current conditions website and software

A while back I decided to ditch the old site templates and setup that I used to run the “Olds Alberta Weather Station” site. Reason, my weather station hardware is nearing retirement and the software used for the site only works with that weather station.  So rather than reworking the templates and setup for the new location, I’ve dumped it and will start fresh.

I’ve decided to try Cumulus from Sandaysoft as the weather station monitoring software.  I had looked at it back in 2007 or 2008, but to move off the FreeWX-Wi was too much work at the time.  The big benefit for me now is Cumulus supports multiple weather stations, so I can change to a new weather station (hopefully in the coming months) without having to recode the website.  Another big benefit with Cumulus is its nice starter package of web templates.  Without much work, the main site is up, a fancy gauge version, and an iPhone site.  I’m still missing lots of the data that I use to show, but I can slowly build upon this.  With my current time to this project very limited over the last year and foreseeable future, this allows me to share the current weather conditions without a lot of work.

Because I’m not running the web server in my home anymore, the uploads to the main website is not every minute, but every ten minutes.  This is due to bandwidth issues with the graphs and html pages.  The Silverlight desktop version only uses a small text file, so that file I can upload more often.  I’ll probably eventually run it in-house again, but for the meantime, this is easier to support.  The likelihood of disconnect between the weather station and the web site is much greater now, so watch the conditions date and time.

Happy weather watching, Jeff


Live Didsbury Weather now Online!

After being offline for almost 1 year, I’ve got the old weather station back online – sort of.

I’ve ran into glitches, delays and mainly lack of time to put into this project.
One of the biggest challenges has been placement of the sensors. The anemometer isn’t properly positioned and will not give accurate measurements. The rest is fairly accurate, now.
The big stop in getting back online was placement of the computers and the weather station. The USB extender I had planned to use was unreliable and after a month of trying to get it to stop crashing the system, I gave up on it. Currently the laptop sits beside the weather station, but this configuration cannot be permanent.
Also, the station is now 6 years old and when I had it down, I found that the solar rechargeable batteries have expired. Replacement cost $150. So I’m now investigating a new replacement station.
Also the software I’ve been using, FreeWX-Wi, has stopped development and no more fixes will be issued. I was having problems with one temperature sensor not reporting correctly in the software. So I need to try implementing a new software package.  For now I’ll continue to use it to display current conditions.

So where does this leave me. Pondering over a new more accurate weather station and a shiny new site and setup.

Until then, the site will offer basic data information updated every minute.

Weather Station status

Just a quick update for those who are checking in here and there.  I’ve got the weather station temporarily up, but location of sensors needs to be adjusted as I’m getting incorrect readings.  Due to work and other tasks, I haven’t been able to dedicate much time to this project.

Weather station shutdown

Hello Olds and Central Alberta Weather Watchers,

All great things must come to an end eventually, and this is the end of this site.  The Westside Olds weather station will be ceasing operation December 16, 2010 due to relocating away from Olds. I’ll still be in the area and will most likely be broadcasting live weather from my new location – but it won’t be as relevant to Olds residents.

History Data (May 2006 to Dec 2010) will still be available at Weather Underground: (you will need to adjust the date search manually)

History WebCam 1:

History WebCam2:

Hoped you enjoyed the service while it was available.  Happy weather watching.