Hardware: Overview

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Note - Some Information May be Out of Date

Finished rails (load cell mounts). Two go under the hive, one on each side.
Pi2 with Hive Interface board in eBay enclosure. Lux sensor is located top left.
(Old) Pi and USB Hub installed in a Polycase NEMA enclosure.
(Old)HX711 with screw terminals and metal shield installed connected to P5 on the Pi. P5 is no longer used as it was dropped from the + models.

An early goal of Hivetool was to develop a $50 scale, that being accomplished..
The latest components are available as a kit with matched load cells, sensor interface board, software image. This new design may approach $150 depending on options. The developers kit is available to

  • Get beta units in the field for testing and refinement.
  • Gather user feedback, and
  • Provide a platform to foster open source community development.

It is available at cost plus a voluntary contribution to the Center for Honeybee Research, a 501(c)(3) organization, to help cover R&D expenses. The kit currently contains the specialized, hard to find or special order items:

  1. Four matched 50 kg Class C3 load cells
  2. One HX711 ADC board (soldering required)

Dev Kit Order Form

Only common tools are needed for construction, hack saw, drill, center punch, wrenches, screw drivers, soldering iron.

The rest of the materials, load cell rails or frame, enclosure, power supply may be obtained locally or from online suppliers.

  • Sensors:
    • Weight
    • Temperature
    • Humidity
    • Lumens
    • Rain Gage
    • Battery Voltage
  • Raspberry Pi Model 2B+ recommended.
    • 16 Gig Micro SD card class 10 min.
    • Hivetool & Raspbian Linux software image.
  • PiCam Video Camera (Optional)
  • Communication - Wi-Fi, Ethernet, Cellular Modem
  • Power Options:
    • AC Adapter (5V 2A Phone charger)
    • Sensor Board 12 V .25A
    • 30-50W Solar Panel, 12V Deep Cycle Battery
  • See parts List for Identity & sources
  • Register Hivetool to get Free Internet Data Access

Parts List

New Interface Board

Interface Board Sensor Wiring

Frame Assembly


GPIO Pinout

Proposed design changes.