Weather Station Hardware > Hydreon RG-11 Optical Rain Gauge/Sensor

RG11 as a rain rate/intensity detector

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I have 2 of my RG11s connected to an industrial controller, one as a drop counter, one as 0.0001" tipping bucket.

During a rain, I took 15 sets of readings, once a minute, and reduced the data.

Especially on the drop counter, you can see the waves of rain pass through.

Now to automate the data logging and add a Davis gauge before it rains again.


Have you tried working with any of the Ardunio products to set up a data collector? If you have even a basic understanding of programming they are pretty easy to program to do most anything you want. A program in the IDE is called a "sketch". There are some pretty simple sample sketches out there for free to read from the RG-11. That's what I'm doing my experimenting with.


Hi Kevin,

Way back in '97, I did a lot with Basic Stamp 2s. I even had an article published in Circuit Cellar Ink regarding a project.

Alas, almost 20 years later, I am currently wrapped up in elder care, and my time is limited. I just don't have the room in the daily schedule right now to get involved in the Arduino/RPi craze.

OTOH, I have 20 years as a utility controls tech, and, post retirement, I am responsible for maintaining and upgrading the controls system for our small mutual water company. And, because of that, I have a lot of Ebayed surplus industrial controllers laying around. So, I play with those. I know the programming, all of the interfacing and display, such as it is, it taken care of for me, and extending my programming abilities by playing with weather instruments makes me a better programmer for my water company.

Having said that, you might be interested in something rain related I cooked up almost 10 years ago.

Take a Lexan window pane and mount it on top of a wooden frame. Glue a piezo transducer to the middle of the underside. Jack the transducer into a mike jack on a PC. Put it out in the rain and run a strip chart program.

Watch the waves of rain roll through...

More here:,21358.0.html

and here:

Somewhere I posted links to some wav files I recorded of rainfall on the transducer. I'll see if I can find them.

Hijacking my own RG11 thread... :)

A picture of the piezo rain transducer:

Heavy rain recording  (1:10 minutes, 12.1 MB)

Light rain recording (1:00 minute, 10.3 MB)

Old Tele man:
Rain *amount* is measured in VOLUME...cubic inches per square-inch per unit time...however, each falling rain drop has multiple characteristics: (1) physical size/volume, (2) velocity, and (3) impact rate. Also, at the cross-over from water into ice, even #1 physical size/volume changes!


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