Control of blinds, shades and window openers with Zwave and WiFi

Z-Wave and WiFi Group Controller: Cloning Motors Into the Group

Z-Wave and WiFi group control for blinds, shades and window openersIn Part 1 we had a look at an overview of the controller we designed for blinds, shades, and window/skylight openers.

It can also be used for our CurtainCloser™ and ShadeSlider™ systems.

As we have mentioned, our Unity controller can control as many motors as you assign to the group, whether there are 2 or 200 motors in the group (for simultaneous operation).

This is accomplished with our group transmitter module (included in the kit), which is triggered by Z-Wave or WiFi digital radio control signals.

Assigning a Master Channel to Each Motor in the Group

These instructions assume that you have a master remote, and that you have already created a master channel for the motor you want to control. If you have not done this, please see this page and follow the instructions, before you start creating your group:

How to create a master channel assignment for a motor

The instruction link above refers to a 15 ch remote with one of our wireless battery motors, but if you have any of our wired radio equipped motors, the process is the same. When you have created a master channel for a motor (which also allows you to set individual travel limits), you can clone it to the transmitter module we are discussing in this article.

Controlling a Group of Motors: Cloning to the Group Transmitter

group transmitter for blind and shade remote control motorsHere is the cloning procedure:

  • Make sure the master REMOTE is set to the master channel you want to clone; the next actions must be completed within 6 seconds of each other:
  • Press and release the P2 button TWICE on the MASTER REMOTE that holds the master channel you want to clone, the motor will beep once and jog each time. PLEASE NOTE: If you have a multi-channel wall remote, there is no P2 button; just use the combination keypress of UP and STOP instead.
  • Press and release the setting button on the DCG-1R-RFT Radio Transmitter Module once, and it should flash once.
  • At this point, you are finished - the transmitter module will control the motor, and the travel limits will not be changed. You can insert a wire into the N (common) connector and touch it to the open/close/stop terminals to test the operation.
  • Please Note: Wait 10 seconds for programming cycle to complete before you clone another channel.

Here is the 'un-cloning' procedure:

  • Follow the exact same instructions as above, the only difference is that the motor will beep 5 times and jog to indicate channel was removed from transmitter.

A Word About Digital Radio Signal Range

The antenna position affects range profoundly. If you wall mount the controller with the Zwave antenna pointing straight up, you will usually get the best results. We have tested a single installation here with about 60 feet of range with the Zwave hub on one floor and the controller on a second floor, with about 4 rooms in between (typical wood frame/sheetrock home construction).

It is important to understand that the radio signal that is transmitted from the controller to the motor is much more powerful than the Zwave signal - it will reach anywhere in a typical home, so it's ok to put the controller close to the Zwave hub and let the direct motor control signal do the heavy lifting.

Also, keep in mind that most Zwave devices are also 'signal forwarders' (including the Qubino unit in our controller) so adding more devices in your home should improve the Zwave range results.

If you are dealing with a concrete or cinder block structure, please note that your radio signals will not have as much range.

Mounting The Group Transmitter Internally

We ship the group transmitter outside of the housing to make it easier to assign the motors. Once you have assigned the motors to the group, you can place it inside the housing, if you prefer. We have attached some industrial grade velcro to make this easy.

You can remove the cover by undoing the four corner screws that hold the cover on. Please note that the group transmitter is turned upside-down when it is placed internaly. The 2 following pictures show how this is done.

placement of group transmitter outside housing


placement of group transmitter inside housing

Purchase This Unit in Our Online Store

You can purchase our Unity group controller for blinds and window openers, and our other control products in our online DIY automation store.

Adrian Biffen
Senior Partner
NodeSwitch™ Controls

We sincerely hope you enjoy our advanced technology products; if you have any questions, please contact us at any time!

Articles in this series:

Part 1: Z-Wave Group Control of Blind & Shade Motors: Introduction

Part 1A: Z-Wave & WiFi Blind Control: Cloning Motor Channels (you are here)

Part 2: Blind Motor Quick Start Pairing With Your Z-Wave Hub

Part 2A: Homeseer Blind Motor Control with Zwave