So I ordered my parts from trusty PiHut and began the long wait.

Which wasn’t at all long as I had the CCTV Camera parts within a few days. PiHut always deliver faster than I anticipate.

Like everything you buy online the pi was even smaller then I expected. The camera connected very simply but one thing I would change is the connector as it is a little prone to slip out.

CCTV camera componants
The components and SD card for scale

Next was the OS. I had initially intended to put Raspian Jessie Lite on as a header less install and find a program to run surveillance. It turns out this wasn’t needed as there is a dedicated OS already that does exactly what I need. MotionEyeOS. All I needed was an SD card which was still in the post and I would have a CCTV Camera.

Turning my hand to design I knocked up a very simple CCTV camera case in Fusion 360 which, after a few tweaks, fitted the pi perfectly. I used some M2.5 – 12mm machine screws  to secure the lid and I also created a mount with suction cups scavenged from Christmas lights hooks to put on the window. It turned out the best angle for viewing was 45 degrees.

Operating System time

Then once my SD card arrived it was time to mount the Operating System onto the Pi. This is very simple and as a windows user I used the free software package “Etcher” to write the image. The only thing remaining to do was create the relevant WiFi information for the Pi.

 

Using Etcher
Using Etcher to burn the image to SD

The PiZero W has no ethernet connection therefore Wifi settings cannot be entered directly into it. We need to tell it our wifi details at a installation level. To do this go into the root directory of the SD card and create a text file called WPA_supplicant.conf (its a txt file but the extension MUST be .conf not .txt. Into this file you simply add the following text (adjusted to suit your country and WiFi of course)

country=XX
update_config=1
ctrl_interface=/var/run/wpa_supplicant

network={
scan_ssid=1
ssid=”MyNetworkSSID”
psk=”Pa55w0rd1234″
}

Then plug the Pi in. The OS will be installed which will take a few minutes. You should then be able to find its IP either using your router or advanced IP scanner (freeware). I used my router to set a static IP for the Pi so that I can always find it.

Voila CCTV Camera.

Typing the IP address into my browser takes me straight into the camera screen and a little bit of setting tweaking and password setting later I am running a new network CCTV camera to my main recorder. All for around £30.

View from the CCTV Camera

Please feel free to message me about the project. I am not a Pi expert (in fact I am rubbish) but am happy to help anyone feel their way around the project. I can also supply cases of course!

The next project I am planning is already underway and this time its a minimum cost Printer Monitor. The plan is to use a Wemos D1 Mini chip. As a low cost project the parts are coming from China. Slowly.

Network CCTV Camera