Odds and Ends

Useful applications

A network scanner for your wireless device can be helpful - I use Fing. Fing allows me to figure out what IP/network a device is on as well as what servers are running on a device. The more devices you manage, the more useful this sort of thing becomes.


PuTTY - an SSH client. I do most of my Pi configuration through PuTTY

WinSCP - FTP client. Downloading a lot of files through the built in file manager is kind of a pain on my phone so I usually bring the Pi in and access it with my PC using FTP.

Downloading data from the RPI

A table of the detections gets stored @ ?? and can easily be downloaded with the built in file manager. Downloading the recordings is more easily done with ftp. I’ve used FileZilla for some years now but ran into issues downloading folders from the RPI. As it turns out, FileZilla has a bug where it isn’t able to recursively download files within folders. This is kind of a necessity as BirdNET creates a folder for each species it detects and each folder may have multiple files. I used WinSCP to get around this issue as it doesn’t suffer from the problem.

Connectors At some point, how you connect to the battery comes into play. You may need to disconnect the converter in order to charge the battery so having some kind of plug makes this a little easier. I’d originally used a 12V 2-prong automotive plug (SAE) because it worked for my depth finder on my kayak and that’s what I could get in town. Later I figured out I could order 8 or 10 barrel plugs for the same price as one of the 2 prong connectors so I changed everything over to them. All of the extra plugs came in handy when I started adding batteries and solar panels.

Soldering There are a lot of things to go wrong in this project. Soldering the connections will eliminate a few of those. Don’t worry, there will still be plenty of problems left over. I’m by no means an expert solderer, but I’ve gotten better with practice and now when I troubleshoot issues I know that a “loose connection” is probably NOT the issue. That saves enough time that it is well worth the effort and time to do the soldering. A couple of sizes of heat shrink tubing are pretty useful to cover up my ugly solder jobs as well.

Tools Self-Adjusting Wire strippers from Harbor Freight are the best things since sliced bread. The cheap soldering iron from the big box store might get you through this project but not much else. Mine quit, so I went back to the butane soldering iron I’d had for several years. About the only thing that can go wrong with it is running out of fuel. A heat gun works really well for working with heat shrink tubing although a butane lighter, or even hair dryer, will get the job done in a pinch. I use a cheap voltmeter mostly to make sure I’ve got the polarity right when wiring up the barrel plugs and checking battery voltage.