Just a real quick update for you. Many of you should have received your Fermostats and hopefully you are getting a chance to put them to good use! I now have a forum up and running on the website for you to post questions and comments. You can get to it from the 'Support' page or at this address:
If you prefer to send an email, send to the address: email@example.com
The Help Documents on the 'Support' page are all up to date. There is one new video there, it contains some help with familiarization and getting your Fermostat hooked up. More videos are coming to help you use your Fermostat to it's full potential.
The remainder of the Fermostats should be delivered on Tuesday, with the exception of the International orders, they should go out next week sometime.
I'm happy to announce that the first batch of units shipped out yesterday morning. The plan was to ship them Saturday, but the post office had other plans.
The last several weeks have been a fury of activity! It's nice to finally have something tangible to show for it.
Almost all of the first donation level has now been shipped and a little more than half of the second donation level should go out tomorrow. The remainder of the units should ship either this weekend or first thing Monday! Shipping has gone fairly well so far. I have been using the Shipstation.com to help out with all the shipping tasks and it has been a huge help! Despite the problems I've had recently uploading some Kickstarter orders, it still has saved a ton of time and effort.
It's been a long and very busy few months and it was very rewarding shipping the first several units out. I hope you love them! I have had some great help along the way and I am grateful for that. A special thanks to my wife for putting up with me (or without me) during the midst of all this.
Even though we've eclipsed this milestone, there is still a great deal of work to be done. As people start using the Fermostats, there will be bugs found and changes requested to go along with the planned upgrades along the way. I'm excited to see the evolution of this product and I'm glad that you could help me create it!
There is some less than exciting news to pass along. I reluctantly made the last minute decision to ship the units without most of the SD Card functionality included. The ability to upgrade your Fermostat with an SD Card Firmware upload is still there, which is why I made the decision to leave some parts out. There were several bugs in the code that I didn't have the time to properly address. I decided to wait to release these functions when they were a little more solid. I hope to have the data logging function and external program creation functionality available for download within a couple weeks. The web tool should be available by then too. I will be sure to keep you updated. If you are interested in helping test this feature before then, shoot me an email and I can get you this update so you can help test.
So, once you receive your Fermostats, you will want to know how they work! I am in the process of creating a few tutorial videos for you to familiarize yourselves with your new toys. I will post them to the 'Support' page of the website when they are finished. There are currently a few documents out on the website now that can be of some help, but far from conclusive. I also plan on having an online forum up and running within a week or so where you can post your questions, comments, experiences, programs, etc, etc. Until then, feel free to email me with anything you need.
Thanks as again for your support and patience!
I just wanted to send out another quick update. This one does indeed contain some, well, less than favorable news as well as some really great news.
I have gotten word that, despite the daily interaction with the supplier to express the urgency and schedule impact, the LCD screens haven't shipped yet and could still be another week or more before they actually ship. This will probably push out the deliveries until very late December or early January. I am very sorry to keep you guys waiting, but hopefully this will be the last major delay. I was really hoping to deliver these to you by Christmas. I am extremely sorry to pass the delay from the supplier on to you, but that is the risks of early interactions with suppliers on short timelines.
Really Great News
All additions that were mentioned as stretch goals have been successfully incorporated into the Fermostat. These additions include the larger, graphic LCD screen and removable flash memory (micro SD Card). They do factor into some of the delays we've seen, but the additions will provide significant improvement over the device that everyone signed up to receive.
The most important of the upgrades, I feel, is the SD Card bootloader. You will now be able to upgrade your Fermostat's firmware by downloading the latest build from the Ohmbrew Automations website and flashing the internal memory of the Fermostat. This will allow you to be able to upgrade your Fermostat as new features and functions become available as well as fix any bugs that arise.
In addition to the physical upgrades to the Fermostat, we are in the process of creating a website that will allow you to create, store and share your programs in your online Program Library. You will be able to transfer programs between your online library and your Fermostat. This website will also allow you to upload and display your data logs from your Fermostat so you can graphically see what really went on throughout the process of your program.
We plan to have a beta release of this website sometime in January, shortly after you start receiving your Fermostats,
Here is a screenshot of the web tool. Please post any comments if you have any thoughts, ideas or request for the website.
Final production of the Fermostats will be done locally here by an elite team of manufacturing specialists I have assembled. Many of the smaller parts have already been received, the power cords, temperature cables and completed cases are all currently in transit and will arrive tomorrow. Then the assembling fun shall begin!
For those of you who are interested in how your Fermostat is created, here are some of the steps required for final assembly. One step is to have the transformer and LCD screen fastened and soldered on fabbed and assembled PC Board.
The cases will need to have a few modifications before the PCB can be installed. The PCB standoffs need to be screwed in. The power input/output modules need to be installed into the cutouts. Then the internal power wiring harnesses and temperature jack connection will need to be installed. Then it is ready to have the PCB installed.
The PCB will also be connected to the internal power wiring harness and then screwed onto the PCB standoffs.
The case covers will then be installed and then each unit will be thoroughly tested and will be ready to ship to the eagerly awaiting Kickstarter participants
This process will begin in a couple days, so we are getting VERY close!
The surveys will also be going out this week, so keep an eye out for those.