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Weather Station Hardware => Davis Instruments Weather Stations => Topic started by: af4ex on February 20, 2011, 09:49:34 AM

Title: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on February 20, 2011, 09:49:34 AM
Hello all,
Just received my Vantage Vue in the mail this week and now have it installed in the backyard on a mast up about 20 feet. Works great and am delighted that the readings it produces match the local weather reports (so the wife asks "Then why did you need to buy this expensive "toy", if you can get the reports free?"). Good question, but she doesn't understand what makes weathermen (and weathergirls) tick. :grin:

Yes, it's expensive, but I believe nothing is 'overpriced' if the company makes money selling it. I'm all for American ingenuity and enterprise (which must be motivated partly by profits, else we wouldn't have jobs).

Having said that, I didn't buy the data logger because I did feel it was a bit over-featured for what I need. I'm also an amateur radio operator and am accustomed to tinkering and building my own circuits.

So I was wondering if anyone has figured out the pinouts on that 20-pin connector on the bottom of the console. All I need are the serial outputs so that I can capture and archive the readings. I will also forward them to my APRS (Amateur Position Reporting System) equipment, which currently consists of a Kenwood TH-D72A VHF handie-talkie, with built-in GPS/TNC/digipeater. This will put my weather reports on the amateur radio RF networks, which indirectly link into to several Internet gateways.

Yes, I know there's some additional memory and logging functionality in the Davis product, but I plan to archive my streaming data, so I don't think I need all the bells and whistles in the WeatherLink logger.

I found this interesting discussion from last October, but no links to the pinout or hardware interfacing details:
http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=9068.50

Is anyone in this group familiar with these interfacing issues?

Thanks,

John/af4ex
[README: a month later (19-Mar-2011)
We actually came up with some good "homemade" serial interface ideas later in this post. Check out the table on page 4 to see what these are:
http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10721.msg106400#msg106400
:grin:
]

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: JACK10562 on February 20, 2011, 10:03:00 AM
Hi John.

In that thread there is a link to a very resourceful member's site, where he has mapped the pinout.

http://madscientistlabs.blogspot.com/2011/01/davis-weatherlink-software-not-required.html

If you've already seen that page, then I'm afraid that I can't be of any further help to you on this.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: dalecoy on February 20, 2011, 10:12:14 AM
Here's a similar topic:  http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10315.0

Please keep us advised on how it goes.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on February 20, 2011, 10:17:48 AM
@jack10562
> ... there is a link to a very resourceful member's site, ...

Ah, I completely missed reading that link. Exactly the kind of info I'm looking for!

I'll report back any success (or failure) here. First, I need to learn a bit more about running the Vue, my very first weather station (just an amateur at weather too).

Thanks,
John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on February 20, 2011, 05:54:32 PM
Hi John.  That resourceful member would be me.

Your timing is very good.  I just had a guy report a successful hookup to a Vue using my DIY method.  I helped him troubleshoot a problem he was having, and he's reported back that his Vue is working perfectly with the WeatherView32 software.  Not only that, but he was able to flash a firmware update to the Vue without the logger as well.  How cool is that???  See the comments to the blog post linked above for all the details.  I've pasted in his final setup below.

Quote
Well, USB-COM converter I've bought on e-bay. Like this: http://cgi.ebay.com/FTDI-USB-RS232-TTL-Converter-FT232-FT232RL-3-3V-/120648223859?pt=Vintage_Electronics_R2&hash=item1c1731cc73

$15. Good price compared to DataLogger :)

Windows 7 x64, driver for virtual COM port - no problem.

I use this terminal program: http://realterm.sourceforge.net/rss.xml
Very customizable, I like it best of all I've seen.

And now I've flashed new 2.14 firmware and tested WeatherView32 software - everything works SUPERB! YESSS!

Looks like he ordered from an ebay seller out of Hong Kong and got his converter for $15.  You could get it from the Sparkfun link in my blog for the same price, and get it a lot quicker (assuming you are in the US).  He's out of the Ukraine, so that route made more sense to him.  Note the terminal program he used: whatever it was he started out with didn't work right.

Leave a comment in my blog if you need a hand.  I'll also try to keep an eye on this thread.  Now back to sniffing the wireless side of this thing...
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on February 20, 2011, 08:10:51 PM
@DeKay
> Hi John.  That resourceful member would be me.
> Your timing is very good.

Good work, DeKay, and, yes, the timing is perfect!

Your solution is very simple and provides the serial access I am looking for.

I will order the FTDI part and give it a try.

Thanks!
John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on February 22, 2011, 01:18:59 PM
After conferring with DeKay (who should be recognized as the 'pioneer' here) I have come up with an idea for building an inexpensive (i.e. < $100) wireless interface between the Davis Vantage Vue console and a USB-equipped computer within a hundred feet or so.

Instead of hooking the $15 USB-COM adapter directly into the expansion port on the console, I will use a pair of XBee transceivers to serve as a wireless serial connection between the console and some nearby computer. They're really amazing gadgets and relatively cheap (~$20 each), considering the performance they deliver. http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8664

I'll plug one of these XBees into the console and the other one on the computer, using the $15 USB-COM to complete the connection to the computer. Then, with a little software glue that I'll write, we should be able to interface to the host of weather software that's normally accessed via WeatherLink.

There's a few other parts needed: 20-pin connector, small pcb boards, and some wiring to power the interface from the console and the computer. I've got some parts on order already and will design this thing as I go. Hopefully won't be more than $100 out of my pocket. (But this is my first weather station, which I've only had for a few days, so I expect there will be a learning curve as I proceed. So be patient while I work out the kinks here).

BTW, I'm not trying to compete with Davis here, whom I admire greatly for the quality of their product line. Rather I see it as filling a 'missing link', a simple serial interface for those folks who don't need a full-featured data logger interface.

Who knows, maybe this will inspire Davis to add a similar product to their existing offerings (before someone else does).  :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on February 22, 2011, 01:38:51 PM
... I forgot to mention the 'motivation' for wanting to build this wireless interface. I currently have the Davis console in our kitchen area, where the whole family can see and use the weather station. But I also want to send the reports, automatically, to the amateur APRS network, from my ham station upstairs.

So, instead of buying another console (and WeatherLink), I'm hoping this little homemade gadget will serve the same purpose, streaming RF data to my equipment upstairs while still available downstairs for the family to enjoy,

John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on February 22, 2011, 10:22:49 PM
I just thought I'd clarify what John/af4ex is on to here.  Two $20 wireless modules, one $15 USB-COM adapter, a bit of wire, and some willingness to get your hands dirty, and you've got a wireless link between your console and your PC.  For any purpose you want.  There are threads like this (http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10676.msg102603#msg102603) asking about how to extend the range between the logger and a PC.  Well, this is really a great way to do it, and you don't even need a logger in the first place!

af4ex mentions some software that he needs to write, but I'm not sure what that would be for a general application.  He'll need a bit of custom software for his specific application, sure.  But others have reported that other software written to interface to the logger works just fine with the USB-COM adapter method.  It should just work.  Once configured the XBee modules should give you a transparent serial link between the console and the PC.  I think.  But af4ex has got the parts on order, so we'll know soon enough.

And like John/af4ex, I think Davis has a great product in the ISS and the console.  I admire the quality of the product and their willingness to disseminate technical information.  It has helped me a great deal.  Their interfaces, though, aren't so great.  I'd humbly suggest that they unbundle the software from the interface and drop the price to something a little more reasonable.  Or build something in to the next rev of the console.  This stuff isn't hard to do.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on February 23, 2011, 06:47:54 AM
@DeKay
> af4ex mentions some software that he needs to write, but I'm not sure what that
> would be for a general application.

I'm a complete 'weather newbie' here, with respect to operating the weather station and associated software. So it will be a (fun) learning curve for me to figure out what has to be done.

Ideally I won't have to write any additional software 'glue', if the XBee wireless serial port performs 'transparently' as advertised. But I've never used these XBee's before, and am used to situations where the hardware interface creates issues (wrong format or ordering etc) which have to be fixed 'in software'.

If everything goes according to plan, this will be a fairly simple pair of gadgets that you plug in. One of them (a homemade XBee dongle) will plug into the Davis serial port on the bottom of the console. The other (ready-made Xbee dongle from SparkFun) will just plug into a USB port on your computer. They'll need to be configured for initial use, but beyond that it should work just like a regular serial port. Still working out the details on that 'homemade' dongle (Which uses a nonstandard connector).

And, yes, so far it looks like the  whole project will cost less than $100. (DIY, with some wiring and  assembly required)

 :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on February 23, 2011, 01:34:18 PM
While we are throwing around ideas, you could hook up an XBee directly to an appropriate wireless router with a compatible serial port, like this hack (http://www.rwhitby.net/projects/wrt54gs) on a WRT-54G, or this port (http://www.dd-wrt.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?p=403401&sid=2dee07086212c9d4333810579b3db2f0) on an Asus RT-16.  These routers could serve a web page with weather data or push your APRS data. 

The Asus router in particular is insane: 128 Meg of RAM, 32 Meg of Flash, 480 MHz processor, 2 USB ports, Wireless B/G/N.  All this at only 8 Watts of power consumption, and I can buy one new for $90.  The USB port would give you the capability to archive your data to an external USB drive or thumb drive.  This would give you some impressive capabilities without having to run a PC all the time.  It would be a fun project for someone who wanted to write a little software.  Free software projects like weewx or wview give you a heck of a head start as well.

This would be the ultimate setup in my opinion (after writing a little more software and adding a few extra remote XBees to support home automation and monitoring features, of course).
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on February 27, 2011, 05:25:45 PM
Phase I of the "homemade" Vantage Vue serial adapter is complete and was successful.

The  goal was to duplicate DeKay's initial groundbreaking results and to assess the feasibility of a wired serial to USB interface, using the VUE expansion port on the bottom of console, i.e. eliminate the need for WeatherLink for those folks (like me) seeking only a simple serial connection to the console.

In Phase II we will assess the feasibility of an XBee-powered wireless serial interface to extend the effective distance, so that the console and the computer can be in different places in the house.

Depending on the outcome of Phase II, Phase III might include the fabrication of a DIY "wireless dongle" board/kit, to make the interface available to the everyone.

So far, I've spent less than $20 to construct a wired serial interface: mainly for the serial-to-USB ("FTDI Basic 3.3v") adapter ($15) and a 2mm header pin socket ($1) from

SparkFun electronics:
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9873
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8272

Yes, the socket is supposed to be used for the XBee's, but it also happens to match the 2mm pitch for the console port, which is rather inaccessible. Using a small file as a blade, I sawed the socket into two smaller 1x2 sections for plugging into the power and data pins on the expansion port.
Photos numbered left to right across:
1) Before and after shots showing the original 1x10 socket strip and smaller sections hacked apart with file.
2) Showing the finished console connector, with white heat-shrink tubing applied to keep the metal parts from touching.
3) Soldering jig for the console connector, before applying heat-shrink tubing.
4) Soldering jig for the USB connector plug, which plugs into the back of the FTDI Basic seen below
5) Completed cable, with heat-shrink tubing applied, ready to be plugged in
6) Interface cable attached to console, getting ready to plug into FTDI adapter.
7) All hooked up and running (ignore black dangling connector, which is a micro-USB for my cell-phone)
8.)8) Screen shot of Vantage Vue data streaming to serial terminal (after "STRMON" command)
(http://www.qsl.net/a/af4ex/images/makingTheAdapter27Feb11.png)

CAVEATS:
1. This cable is obviously not a finished 'product' but just a piece of test-gear to help me figure out the finished designs. But it is robust enough to leave in place semi-permanently, if you're not planning on moving the console box around a lot.
2. To build a cable like this requires some experience with soldering and circuit construction. Wait for the 'dongle board' if you're novice at this (but that might not be ready for a while).
3. You MUST use the shrink-wrap or the wires will definitely touch and short out everything.
4. Be careful probing around the pins with voltmeter. The 3-volt Vcc and Gnd pins are right next to each other and a slip of the probe could prove disastrous.
5. Using DeKay's pinout diagram for navigation, one of the connectors (blue and green) hooks the USB Rx/Tx to the console Tx0,Rx0 pins. The other connector (red and black) hooks up to the gnd pin (leaving the red wire available for XBee connection later). So  the connectors end up at right angle to each other. (Good thing the rows are also separated by 2mm, like the individual pins).

Software
I'm not familiar with the weather software at all. All I have is Cumulus which, as you can see below, is working fine with my $20 interface. I'm going to play around writing my own APRS handing routines (using Groovy, a JVM-compatible scripting language)
(http://www.qsl.net/a/af4ex//images/af4ex-wx-27Feb11.png)

Should be getting my XBee chips and USB dongle tomorrow, so I can start on Phase II of this project.

Thanks again to DeKay, whose "pioneering" efforts, produced the interface knowledge needed to build the cable.

73
John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on February 27, 2011, 05:54:16 PM
You gotta love it when it works  \:D/
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on February 28, 2011, 06:38:01 PM
Woo Hoo! Sent my first CWOP report via WUHU! (using the homebrew interface of course)  8-)

Last report from AF4EX received 9 minutes 39 seconds ago
Wind Calm Gusts to 5.0 MPH   Temp 81F  Humidity 52%  Dewpoint 61F   Pressure 1015.2 mb



My XBee chips and parts arrived, so now I can begin Phase II, the _wireless_ homebrew serial interface.
 :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on February 28, 2011, 10:07:57 PM
Awesome + 3 dB     \:D/

The XBees should theoretically "just work" once they are properly configured.  How do you intend to power the one on the console?  Keep the console plugged in to the AC adapter and leech off of it via Pin 18?  That seems to be the cleanest and simplest way.  Or is there a clever way to sleep the console XBee to conserve power without missing any data?

One thing I haven't bothered looking in to yet is seeing how much data if any the console buffers.  So if you were to poll the console every, say, 5 minutes, would you get all of the data over that period or just that from the last set of readings?

Keep us posted!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: d_l on February 28, 2011, 10:11:09 PM
One thing I haven't bothered looking in to yet is seeing how much data if any the console buffers. 

I don't think there is any LOOP buffering.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 01, 2011, 06:50:24 AM
@DeKay
> The XBees should theoretically "just work" once they are properly configured.

Hopefully that will be true.

Minor complication, I have eye surgery this morning so will have to give the WX stuff a rest for a day or two.  :roll:

Then onward with Phase II!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: jamiem1978 on March 02, 2011, 02:09:22 PM
Thank you DeKay!! I also have success using your discovery. I have my vue up and running on VWS with this setup. Works great!!!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on March 02, 2011, 11:00:05 PM
Thank you DeKay!! I also have success using your discovery. I have my vue up and running on VWS with this setup. Works great!!!

You're welcome!  And thanks for passing along that VWS works on this interface.  It seems that every piece of software thrown at this solution so far is working.  Still hoping to hear from someone that tries the software that comes with the actual logger.

I don't think I'll be getting a Christmas card from Davis this year...
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 03, 2011, 08:04:29 AM
@DeKay
> I don't think I'll be getting a Christmas card from Davis this year...

There's another way to look at that: the weatherLink was a costly addition to the overall price of a Davis system. I know I hesitated for awhile because of this. So they might actually sell _more_ station units, to folks like me who were dragging their feet. So I think you should get at least a thank-you card from them. :-\

I'm back from the eye surgery (cataract removal), which went very well. The eye is still a bit itchy, but that shouldn't stop me from working on the wireless interface.

I've already configured my two XBee modems for 19200 baud service and have started to layout the proto-board for the Davis box connection. (Nothing to do for the remote computer side connection. Just buy the SparkFun XBee Explorer and plug it into a USB port).

On the Davis side, this looks like it will be a very simple interface, because the XBee and the Davis boxes already operate at 3.3v. Just a few wires to hookup and it should work transparently as a serial port.

Might take another day or two to finish up the Phase II project and write it up.
 :grin:




Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: JACK10562 on March 03, 2011, 09:01:47 AM
Davis should consider (although they won't) selling just the dongle users can hook up a console to their computer. A lot of people don't use the Weatherlink software "bundled" with the hardware, anyway, and (we) end up stuck paying big $.$$ just to access the data on a PC/MAC.

I started out with a USB weatherlink and then "upgraded" to the WLIP "logger". Needless to say they both shipped with the exact same software CD, which of course I no longer have the need for.

You guys have proved there is an alternative, at least for those who don't mind getting their hands dirty!

Keep up the great work!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: d_l on March 03, 2011, 09:23:29 AM
I started out with a USB weatherlink and then "upgraded" to the WLIP "logger". Needless to say they both shipped with the exact same software CD, which of course I no longer have the need for.

That really isn't true.  The WeatherLink software has the ability to check reception diagnostics, change numerous configuration settings, and plot reception percentages versus time. No other third-party software can do all this. So if you are having problems with your system, the WL software is indispensable.

Of course, you may not need multiple copies of the software though after buying several loggers.  :-)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: JACK10562 on March 03, 2011, 11:45:27 AM
Very good points, d__l, thanks for the reminder concerning the pluses. 
My point was using WL strictly for reporting purposes.

Give these guys here a little more time digging around, and who knows what they'll be able to find!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on March 03, 2011, 09:34:49 PM
The Weatherlink software has the ability to display reception diagnostics. but the same information can be displayed right on the console (on a VP2 anyway).  Look for "Console Diagnostics Mode" just before Appendix A of the manual and give it a try if you haven't before.  I was impressed that Davis went to the effort to put a cool feature like this in, but I guess it helps them too in diagnosing problems.  Try it if you haven't before - it won't hurt anything.  I geeked out when I gave it a try.

Also, any configuration setting in the software would also be accessible through the datalogger / DIY serial interface that Davis has documented very thoroughly.

So, JACK10562, I'd say you were right in the first place   ;)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 05, 2011, 05:17:30 PM
Good news: I've got the Phase II XBee wireless interface working!

It's streaming data to APRS/CWOP as I write this note. The VUE console is downstairs in the family room beaming data to my laptop in the hamshack upstairs. Everything seems to be working flawlessly. :mrgreen:

I'll post a writeup this evening with pictures and notes on how this Phase II prototype was constructed.

Also got my NWS ID (AU006) and have been transmitting data to APRS/CWOP continuously since 1-Mar-2011. (Went down for about an hour today while installing the XBee interface, which replaces the wired USB-COM interface).

Proving that you don't need a WeatherLink to run a VUE weather station over the Internet!

John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SpartanWX on March 05, 2011, 11:47:30 PM
Cost?  Experience required to cobble this together?  Sounds intriguing.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 06, 2011, 08:22:12 AM
@SpartanWX
> Cost?  Experience required to cobble this together?  Sounds intriguing.

So far less than $100, as promised, but you have to be experienced with the soldering iron and circuit construction. Yes, intriguing because these XBee devices are really amazing: postage-stamp sized 2.4GHz modem transceivers that transparently extend serial connections throughout the house!

My 1-milliwatt pair have now been chugging away for about 16 hours now without a hiccup, delivering my VUE station reports to APRS/CWOP. :-)

Here's how I did it. First, the easy part.

Buy a USB EXplorer ($25) and a 1mw XBee ($22) from SparkFun, plug it into your destination computer, configure it, and you're halfway done! (You can use a higher power unit of course, but more expensive and higher drain on batteries)
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8687
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8665
[You can probably get these slightly cheaper if you shop around, but I just got everything from SF for convenience of the their excellent support]

This is what it will look like when it's running. The red/green status lights are nice, green blinks whenever a record is received wirelessly from the VUE console!
(http://www.qsl.net/a/af4ex/images/USBexplorer.gif)

Now the console-side transceiver. Good news: it will be cheaper because we'll build it from inexpensive parts, plus another $22 XBee Modem. But it will of course be more difficult to put together. Don't attempt this unless you have a fine-tipped soldering iron and some building experience.

We'll use the SparkFun XBee breakout board ($3) and a pair of 2mm header sockets ($1 each) which need to be soldered to the breakout board for mounting the XBee transceiver ($22, same as above). Buy an extra header socket, which will be cut up to make the console connector cable (details in previous Phase I posting).
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8276
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10030

You'll also need some 0.1" spacing PC board (PCB) and a six-pin 0.1" header for the console connector. I had some of these pieces laying around, but you can get them at SparkFun or Radio Shack. Typically you buy oversized pieces and cut them to size. Shouldn't cost more than a few bucks I would guess.

So here's a Radio Shack PCB which I hacked down to size and mounted the XBee breakout board and the 1x6 header socket for the console connector cable
(http://www.qsl.net/a/af4ex/images/PCBlayout.png)

After laying out the PCB you'll need to flip it over and make the connections from the XBee pins to the console header socket
Vcc -> Vcc
Gnd -> GND
Dout -> RXD0
Din <- TXD0

Note that TX _output_ goes to XBee _input_ etc. Most common wiring errors occur here. Also be careful with the soldering iron. It's incredibly easy for solder to "bridge" across pins if you're not careful. Inspect all work with a magnifier before applying power!
(http://www.qsl.net/a/af4ex/images/PCBwiring.png)

Note that the header socket uses the same ordering from DeKay's original design, so that the same connector cable can be used for both the wired and wireless versions (Phase I and Phase II)

[Have I mentioned that without DeKay's intrepid research, none of this stuff we're doing would be possible? We love you, DeKay!]

The final hardware step is to build the connector cable, essentially the same cable as constructed in Phase I. If you've done this then all you have to do is connect the red wire to the Vcc 3v connection and you're ready to go. (Don't forget the shrink wrap. I'll guarantee short circuits if you don't use it. Cheap to buy (Radio Shack etc) and easy to apply (hair dryer etc)).
(http://www.qsl.net/a/af4ex//images/colorCoded.png)
(http://www.qsl.net/a/af4ex/images/ConsoleCable.png)

The last step is to configure the XBee modems for operation at 19200 baud. The default setting is 9600 baud. Download the excellent X-CTU  utility from Digi Corp to do this.
http://www.digi.com/support/kbase/kbaseresultdetl.jsp?kb=125

Just plug the XBee's into the USB explorer and run the utility to set baud rate (also you can check out other parameters with this tool).
[added 15-Mar: More detailed XBee instsructions and troubleshooting here: http://www.instructables.com/id/Changing-Xbee-Baud-Rates/#step1
]

Now you have a pair of transceivers. Plug the USB explorer into your destination computer and the homebrew unit into your console using the console connector.
(http://www.qsl.net/a/af4ex/images/Finished.png)

Enjoy!

Next on the agenda, discussions about Phase III, custom PCB for making this available to the masses.

John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on March 06, 2011, 10:44:23 AM
=D&gt;

Awesome job and, better yet, a very detailed writeup that others could follow (I know those take a lot of time to put together).   It is great that others are going to be able to do this without removing a single screw on the console.  I'll put a link to this on my blog if you don't mind.

Have you determined if there will be an impact on console battery life by connecting up to Vcc rather than DC In?  Maybe a switch or a jumper so you could easily choose between one or the other?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 06, 2011, 12:07:15 PM
@DeKay
> ... Have you determined if there will be an impact on console battery life ? ...

Not yet, the XBee specs say it consumes 50ma @ 3.3v, which translates into 0.165 watt power consumption overall. It does indeed run on battery power (I tried it), but 50ma probably will cut the battery life in half (disabling the 3 LED's on the USB explorer [on the computer side] would help a bit). But I plan to run it from the wall wart most of the time.

I'm going to put a quick-disconnect plug in the 3.3 volt  line on the cable so that I can insert an ammeter and do some direct measurements to verify power consumption. Also will allow disonnecting the power if I want to use it with USB-COM interface (where it is internally USB powered). I did run it on the USB-COM with the extra 3volt line connected and it worked fine. But I think it would be safer to disconnect the power if you're not using it. You don't want two power sources bucking each other (in case one shorts out etc).

I should make it clear that the console cable is a kluge, with those 2mm plugs hacked out of an XBee socket. Difficult to make and install, but it works and avoids having to open the case, as you pointed out.

Is it worth making this thing? Sure, if you have the skills. It will probably be a month or so minimum before we have a custom board designed and available. I would like it to have both an XBee and a USB connector so that it could be used wired or wireless. It will have a custom 2x10 socket to plug right into VUE console.

The idea is to produce a PCB that will be much simpler to construct for beginners and perhaps, if there is a demand, have some ready-made units for sale. (Hurray, I can quit my day job!) :-)

But there will be some design issues to solve. What features are needed? Let me know. I have virtually zero experience in the hobby weather arena.

I've designed a couple of very simple circuit boards years ago, but none as complicated as this will be.

So ask questions and tell me what features you'd like to have. Then I'll decide what I can do (or perhaps find someone more experienced to help out). [SparkFun, are you listening?]

Thanks,
John/af4ex

 
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 06, 2011, 12:37:09 PM
I said:
> I should make it clear that the console cable is a kluge, with those 2mm plugs
> hacked out of an XBee socket. Difficult to make and install,
> but it works and avoids having to open the case, as you pointed out.

You're probably wondering why I didn't use 2x10 header receptable with 2mm pitch, instead of the kluge plugs?

Well, they're hard to find (because 2mm is not very popular). Samtec makes them for $2.75 each, but the minimum shipping is $10. So, not wanting to go over my $100 budget (and also being cheap) I decided to make my own. :-)

Digikey carries it too, but they were out of stock, so I didn't want to wait on a back order.

Here's the spec. If anyone can find a good source ("cheap") for these, let us know. It would be much easier to build this plugin using this receptacle:

Samtec Part #:ESQT-110-02-G-D-760
 ("2mm elevated pin header")
http://www.samtec.com/ProductInformation/TechnicalSpecifications/Overview.aspx?series=ESQT
http://www.samtec.com/SuddenService/OnlineOrder/OnlineOrder.aspx

John/af4ex

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Garth Bock on March 06, 2011, 01:28:47 PM
Ok my head is reeling a bit. You mean to say I could, with your setup, uncable my Envoy from my weather computer and have it stream the serial data via Zwave or Zigbee and have a wireless receiver at the pc to receive the data ? I could put my Envoy where I want and the computer where I want ? Why isnt Davis thinking of this ? You are doing one heck of a job !!!! =D&gt; =D&gt; =D&gt; =D&gt;
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 06, 2011, 01:45:05 PM
@Garth Bock
> Ok my head is reeling a bit. ....

I'm not sure what an Envoy is, but sounds like some wireless gadget. Yes, my circuit would replace that and the WeatherLink also. Plugs into the 20-pin socket at the bottom of the VUE (I'm told the VP2 has a similar connection). Then, acting as a virtual COM port (COM4 etc), allows a computer in range to see the remote console as a local serial device. So far it has been totally 'transparent' to the functionality of WUHU and CUMULUS, the only two programs I have tried.

I'm a complete newbie at this weather game, but am handy with the electronics. And, yes, Davis is perfectly welcome to take this design and make it into a commercial product to fill that huge gap in their product line ("low-cost wired/wireless serial interfaces"). Hopefully, with a price tag around $99.95 (wireless) or $29.95 (wired).

 :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: mmorris on March 06, 2011, 01:57:36 PM
Nice device but if your sending data to WU and your computer has to be shut down there is always a reason your device has no way to send the data so there will be gaps. Unless you put in a logger. The wireless looks interesting. I suppose If you got WeatherLink data logger all ready you could integrate that into sending that data wireless also,     
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on March 06, 2011, 02:01:34 PM
Here is the Envoy manual (http://www.davisnet.com/product_documents/weather/manuals/envoy_manual.pdf).  Looks to me that the same solution applies, looking at Page 4 of the document.

af4ex: It looks like Digikey has a few headers in stock now (6) for the outrageous price of $5.13.  Look here (http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?WT.z_header=search_go&lang=en&site=us&keywords=ESQT-110-02-G-D-760-ND&x=0&y=0).
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 06, 2011, 02:24:34 PM
@mmorris
> Nice device but if your sending data to WU and your computer has to be
> shut down there is always a reason your device has no way to send the
> data so there will be gaps.

Actually, I've got that situation partially covered. I'm using a "discarded" Eee PC notebook (with a damaged LCD screen) as my weather computer. Uses a solid state drive, has WiFi within the house, and can run for about 6 hours on battery backup. So it looks like I will be dedicating it to weather related tasks, and will rarely need to shut it down (once I'm all set up).

So far I've been able to keep it going for 5 days now, even while developing this wireless interface.

:-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 06, 2011, 02:33:46 PM
Here is the Envoy manual (http://www.davisnet.com/product_documents/weather/manuals/envoy_manual.pdf).  Looks to me that the same solution applies, looking at Page 4 of the document.

af4ex: It looks like Digikey has a few headers in stock now (6) for the outrageous price of $5.13.  Look here (http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?WT.z_header=search_go&lang=en&site=us&keywords=ESQT-110-02-G-D-760-ND&x=0&y=0).


Says here the Wireless Weather Envoy has been discontinued. Is there a replacment?
http://www.davisnet.com/weather/products/weather_product.asp?pnum=06314

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: dalecoy on March 06, 2011, 02:35:33 PM

I'm not sure what an Envoy is,

The regular Envoy is essentially a VP2 console without a display.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: dalecoy on March 06, 2011, 02:37:39 PM
http://www.davisnet.com/weather/products/weather_product.asp?pnum=06316 is the most recent part number (for the last several years).

Instruction manual at:  http://www.davisnet.com/product_documents/weather/manuals/07395-281_IM_06316.pdf
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 06, 2011, 02:42:09 PM
@mmorris
> If you got WeatherLink data logger all ready you could integrate that into
> sending that data wireless also,...

I don't plan on buying a WeatherLink. That was the motivation for building this replacement. I could write my own logger I guess. Right now I'm letting APRS/CWOP do my logging. I suppose that will change as I learn more about these personal weather stations.
 :grin:     
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: mmorris on March 06, 2011, 02:52:07 PM
@mmorris
> If you got WeatherLink data logger all ready you could integrate that into
> sending that data wireless also,...

I don't plan on buying a WeatherLink. That was the motivation for building this replacement. I could write my own logger I guess. Right now I'm letting APRS/CWOP do my logging. I suppose that will change as I learn more about these personal weather stations.
 :grin:     

Just another aspect of the hobby your having fun that all that counts, I've enjoyed readin the thread  =D&gt; I myself already own a serial data logger wired so I don't plan on using your project. Keep lookin forward.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: d_l on March 06, 2011, 03:05:43 PM
Says here the Wireless Weather Envoy has been discontinued. Is there a replacment?
http://www.davisnet.com/weather/products/weather_product.asp?pnum=06314

That was a VP1 Envoy page, not a VP2 version.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: lobolobo on March 08, 2011, 08:24:00 AM
First of all say hello to everyone from Madrid (Spain - Europe).

@AF4EX and DeKay

Second, congratulations and say thank you to AF4EX and DeKay for the information about the pinout of Davis port. Simply fantastic, very instructive, and very interesting.

I´m quite confused about one thing in this post. I read all about the XBee here and i feel quite confused about one thing. In the Breakout Board for XBee Module DOUT means Tx an DIN means Rx, so, if this is correct (only if this is correct), what about the photo in what we can see the wire connections? It´s labeled correct? In AF4EX´s photo, you labeled de green color wire like Rx, is this correcto or it would be Tx? Same with the blue colored one. I said that because of the XBee pins distribution (PIN 1= VCC or POWER. It would be 3,3v or so i think. PIN 2= DOUT (Tx), PIN3= DIN (Rx) ... etc)

@DeKay

In the other hand, another doubt is, what are TxD1 and RxD1 (in the console port) for? Can we use them for something special. Sorry about my ignorance.

I will try to make this project to connect mi Vantage Pro (the original, the VP1) to my computer in order to use some kind of special and compatible weather software like Cumulus or something like that.

Thanks in advance for your requests and again, congratulations.

(Sorry about my english)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 08, 2011, 10:32:22 AM
@lobolobo
> It´s labeled correct?

Yes, it's correct, but I should have clarified more that the labels 'RXD0' and TXD0' refer to the _destination_ pins on the 20-pin connector.
So the XBee _output_ goes to the 20-pin _input_ etc.
Vcc -> Vcc
Gnd -> GND
Dout -> RXD0
Din <- TXD0

FYI, my 1-milliwatt wireless XBee's are still running and sending data to APRS/CWOP, from downstairs to upstairs, about 20 feet direct path, through the ceiling. I carried the laptop around the house  and found that the signal starts to fade at about 40 feet and going through several walls. There's a range test function in X-CTU for measuring signal strength etc, but I haven't used it yet. For 10 or 20 feet there doesn't seem to be any range issues. If you have to transmit further than 30 ft or so, through several walls etc, then you may to need use the 60mw transceivers.

Hope that helps,
John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on March 08, 2011, 11:10:36 AM
In the other hand, another doubt is, what are TxD1 and RxD1 (in the console port) for? Can we use them for something special.

I don't know what they are for.  They don't spit out anything during a console reset, and they don't respond like TxD0 and RxD0 do.  It could be they are there for factory testing and that there is some hidden command to wake it up.  Or maybe they were brought out to the expansion port "just in case" but never used.  It would probably take a deep dive into the firmware to figure it out.  Nothing I'd be interested in, because all the good stuff you'd ever need is already on TxD0 / RxD0.

Using them for "something special" would mean you'd have to change the firmware to make it happen.  Not impossible, but pretty hard without the actual Davis code.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: lobolobo on March 08, 2011, 12:01:30 PM
@DeKay and af4ex  
 
Very grateful for your requests.


Yes, it's correct, but I should have clarified more that the labels 'RXD0' and TXD0' refer to the _destination_ pins on the 20-pin connector.

OK, now I see it. Understood.

May be a detailed photo sowing the Vantage Vue expansion port with the wires conected would be very interesting.


I don't know what they are for.  They don't spit out anything during a console reset, and they don't respond like TxD0 and RxD0 do.  It could be they are there for factory testing and that there is some hidden command to wake it up.  Or maybe they were brought out to the expansion port "just in case" but never used.  It would probably take a deep dive into the firmware to figure it out.  Nothing I'd be interested in, because all the good stuff you'd ever need is already on TxD0 / RxD0.

Using them for "something special" would mean you'd have to change the firmware to make it happen.  Not impossible, but pretty hard without the actual Davis code.

OK, i got it. Thanks.

I will continue visiting this post with great interest.

Thank you very much.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 08, 2011, 02:12:08 PM
@lobolobo
> May be a detailed photo sowing the Vantage Vue expansion port with the
> wires conected would be very interesting.

Good idea. Here's DeKay's pinout diagram, showing where the 2mm sockets are plugged in:
(http://www.qsl.net/a/af4ex//images/colorCoded.png)

Maybe this will help to eliminate some confusion about the wiring.

Muchas gracias!

[Edit: I also inserted this figure into the main writeup above]
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: lobolobo on March 08, 2011, 03:12:16 PM
Muchas gracias a usted caballero ...  =D&gt;
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SpartanWX on March 08, 2011, 11:28:24 PM
@mmorris
> If you got WeatherLink data logger all ready you could integrate that into
> sending that data wireless also,...

I don't plan on buying a WeatherLink. That was the motivation for building this replacement. I could write my own logger I guess. Right now I'm letting APRS/CWOP do my logging. I suppose that will change as I learn more about these personal weather stations.
 :grin:     
I have a weatherlink with serial output.  As I understand it you are eliminating the weatherlink from the equation, which is cool.  However, I'd like to retain it for its logging capabilities should the WXPC go down.

In the very near future me and my VP2 will be relocating to a townhouse somewhere in the DC burbs.  Methinks that they're not going to be to keen on me slapping a weather station in the side yard.  I plan on finding a surrogate house in the area to foster my setup.  Wireless transmission between the serial weatherlink and the netbook is going to practically be a necessity.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 09, 2011, 06:47:37 AM
@SpartanWX
>  Methinks that they're not going to be to keen on me slapping a weather station in the side yard.
> I plan on finding a surrogate house in the area to foster my setup.

You face a problem common to ham radio operators, who are similarly restricted on setting up antennas. (But we're pretty good at constructing antennas that look like flag poles, or out of nearly invisible magnet wire)  :grin:

Digi makes higher power  XBee chips, which SparkFun says have a range "up to 15 miles". But they don't mention you'd have to set up an outdoor antenna system to get that range. It's still only 100 milliwatts, less than those 1/2 watt Citizen Service walkie talkies.
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9085

A more practical solution would be to pipe the data over the internet. It's only 19.2K baud so a regular high-speed cable should have the bandwidth.  There's probably remote logging software available to do that or you could write your own. Conceptually very simple, just set up a two-way socket (IP address + port number) and read and write to it like a file.

Or if you would settle for 'near real-time' performance, just spool the data to a file, and do a file transfer several times a day.

I finally got Cumulus working, so have switched to that from WUHU. It seems to have some logging capabilities. At some point though, I'll start writing my own software, once I figure out what I want to do with the data.

John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SpartanWX on March 09, 2011, 09:36:15 AM
@SpartanWX
>  Methinks that they're not going to be to keen on me slapping a weather station in the side yard.
> I plan on finding a surrogate house in the area to foster my setup.

You face a problem common to ham radio operators, who are similarly restricted on setting up antennas. (But we're pretty good at constructing antennas that look like flag poles, or out of nearly invisible magnet wire)  :grin:

Digi makes higher power  XBee chips, which SparkFun says have a range "up to 15 miles". But they don't mention you'd have to set up an outdoor antenna system to get that range. It's still only 100 milliwatts, less than those 1/2 watt Citizen Service walkie talkies.
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9085

A more practical solution would be to pipe the data over the internet. It's only 19.2K baud so a regular high-speed cable should have the bandwidth.  There's probably remote logging software available to do that or you could write your own. Conceptually very simple, just set up a two-way socket (IP address + port number) and read and write to it like a file.

Or if you would settle for 'near real-time' performance, just spool the data to a file, and do a file transfer several times a day.

I finally got Cumulus working, so have switched to that from WUHU. It seems to have some logging capabilities. At some point though, I'll start writing my own software, once I figure out what I want to do with the data.

John/af4ex

I intend on communicating the data over the internet... but I need a means of communicating the data wirelessly from the console (which receives the data from the external station wirelessly) to the computer that is going to spit the data onto the internet.

Right now I have a clever arrangement with an end table that hides the PC and all the associated cabling and connections to the console.  At someone else's house I am at their mercy.  They may allow me to put the console somewhere where they are able to view it, but the PC might have to be in the closet or basement.  I need to transmit the data from the serial connection on the logger at the console, wirelessly to the serial connection on a PC which will be connected to the internet.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 09, 2011, 10:01:01 AM
@SpartanWX
>  I need to transmit the data from the serial connection on the logger at the console, wirelessly to the serial connection on a PC
> which will be connected to the internet.

In that case, the homemade XBee wireless serial interface (as described in this post) would be a good (and inexpensive) solution. No different than a wired serial connection once it is initially configured. The 1-milliwatt model should easily transmit from one room to any other in a normal-sized house, i.e., from the console in some open area, to a computer tucked away in a closet somewhere etc.

I've got my VUE console in the family room and have strapped the XBee adapter to the rear stand, out of sight. It's actually small enough to squeeze into the plugin compartment at the bottom (which I'm guessing is comparable to the VP2), but that might cut the range down a bit. Haven't tried it yet. (Get an  XBee with the "chip antenna" (same price) for the console side, which has a smaller footprint and would be easier to cram into the plugin compartment.)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on March 09, 2011, 01:29:26 PM
It's actually small enough to squeeze into the plugin compartment at the bottom (which I'm guessing is comparable to the VP2), but that might cut the range down a bit. Haven't tried it yet. (Get an  XBee with the "chip antenna" (same price) for the console side, which has a smaller footprint and would be easier to cram into the plugin compartment.)

Couldn't you drill a hole in the battery cover and thread the XBee antenna through it?  That should help maintain the range rather than taking a sure hit by going to an XBee with a chip antenna.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 09, 2011, 02:00:23 PM
@DeKay
> Couldn't you drill a hole in the battery cover ...?

It might not make much difference, since the bulk of the console will still be shielding above it. (I'm sending signals upstairs to my ham shack).

I'm going to order two more XBee's, probably with chip antennas and an Arduino XBee shield and another USB Explorer. It'll be a backup, to keep my WX link going in case of hardware failure. And also give me a opportunity to play around with networking these things. When I have some backup devices, then I'll feel safer about experimenting with them. (Might break off the antenna etc).

Out of the box, the XBee is set up for "transparent serial" mode, which allows only 2-way comm. But there is an API built in, which allows the XBee's to talk on a network. So you could have these plugged into a bunch of computers, all sharing the Davis WX console output uniformly. I'd also like to try them out for robotics remote control, so I'll hook one up to my Arduino Uno and see how well it controls motors and such.

There's a lot of possibilities (and fun) packaged into these little $20 gizmos! (A lot cheaper than a tankfull of gas, these days)
 :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SpartanWX on March 09, 2011, 03:40:17 PM
@SpartanWX
>  I need to transmit the data from the serial connection on the logger at the console, wirelessly to the serial connection on a PC
> which will be connected to the internet.

In that case, the homemade XBee wireless serial interface (as described in this post) would be a good (and inexpensive) solution. No different than a wired serial connection once it is initially configured. The 1-milliwatt model should easily transmit from one room to any other in a normal-sized house, i.e., from the console in some open area, to a computer tucked away in a closet somewhere etc.

I've got my VUE console in the family room and have strapped the XBee adapter to the rear stand, out of sight. It's actually small enough to squeeze into the plugin compartment at the bottom (which I'm guessing is comparable to the VP2), but that might cut the range down a bit. Haven't tried it yet. (Get an  XBee with the "chip antenna" (same price) for the console side, which has a smaller footprint and would be easier to cram into the plugin compartment.)
So if I understand correctly...

I need these for the serial connection on the console datalogger:
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9111
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8665

and these for the USB connection on my WXPC:
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9819
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8665

And I am good to go after tweaking them for the data transmission?

And if I wanted to get outrageous, I could get these:
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9085

and transmit 15 miles?

Seems too easy.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 09, 2011, 04:12:34 PM
@SpartanWX
> So if I understand correctly.

You got WXPC parts correctly (basically a USB XBee dongle), but wrong on the console side. Reread page 2 of this post:
Quote
Now the console-side transceiver. Good news: it will be cheaper because we'll build it from inexpensive parts, plus another $22 XBee Modem. But it will of course be more difficult to put together. Don't attempt this unless you have a fine-tipped soldering iron and some building experience.

We'll use the SparkFun XBee breakout board ($3) and a pair of 2mm header sockets ($1 each) which need to be soldered to the breakout board for mounting the XBee transceiver ($22, same as above). Buy an extra header socket, which will be cut up to make the console connector cable (details in previous Phase I posting).
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8276
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10030

You'll also need some 0.1" spacing PC board (PCB) and a six-pin 0.1" header for the console connector. I had some of these pieces laying around, but you can get them at SparkFun or Radio Shack. Typically you buy oversized pieces and cut them to size. Shouldn't cost more than a few bucks I would guess.

So you will have to build an ad-hoc XBee dongle on the console side to plug into the 20-pin connector. You'll need some PC Board and header strips, with 0.1" inch space holes too, which you'll cut to fit. (Radio Shack sells this for a few bucks).

Mostly importantly, you'll need a fine-tipped soldering iron and some experience with circuitry like this. Novices typically apply too much heat and melt the plastic or too much solder, which bridges and shorts everything out.

That said, it is a rather simple circuit. Only four wires to jumper on the back of the PCB. The trickiest part is making those 2mm plugs. (Or plunk down $15 to get the Samtec 2x10 header receptacle, which will make it a bit easier to plug into the console).

Forget about transmitting 15 miles. A bare wire antenna at 100mw will only get out a thousand feet or so. You'll need an external antenna system with very high-gain antennas (30dB or so, and very precisely aimed) to get out 15 miles. And it would probably only work in fair weather, rain/snow/wind would cause some serious attenuation (and that's probably exactly the kind of rotten weather you'd be interested in monitoring). :-|

Hope that helps,
John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SpartanWX on March 09, 2011, 04:25:19 PM
@SpartanWX
> So if I understand correctly.

You got WXPC parts correctly (basically a USB XBee dongle), but wrong on the console side. Reread page 2 of this post:
Quote
Now the console-side transceiver. Good news: it will be cheaper because we'll build it from inexpensive parts, plus another $22 XBee Modem. But it will of course be more difficult to put together. Don't attempt this unless you have a fine-tipped soldering iron and some building experience.

We'll use the SparkFun XBee breakout board ($3) and a pair of 2mm header sockets ($1 each) which need to be soldered to the breakout board for mounting the XBee transceiver ($22, same as above). Buy an extra header socket, which will be cut up to make the console connector cable (details in previous Phase I posting).
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8276
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10030

You'll also need some 0.1" spacing PC board (PCB) and a six-pin 0.1" header for the console connector. I had some of these pieces laying around, but you can get them at SparkFun or Radio Shack. Typically you buy oversized pieces and cut them to size. Shouldn't cost more than a few bucks I would guess.

So you will have to build an ad-hoc XBee dongle on the console side to plug into the 20-pin connector. You'll need some PC Board and header strips, with 0.1" inch space holes too, which you'll cut to fit. (Radio Shack sells this for a few bucks).

Mostly importantly, you'll need a fine-tipped soldering iron and some experience with circuitry like this. Novices typically apply too much heat and melt the plastic or too much solder, which bridges and shorts everything out.

That said, it is a rather simple circuit. Only four wires to jumper on the back of the PCB. The trickiest part is making those 2mm plugs. (Or plunk down $15 to get the Samtec 2x10 header receptacle, which will make it a bit easier to plug into the console).

Forget about transmitting 15 miles. A bare wire antenna at 100mw will only get out a thousand feet or so. You'll need an external antenna system with very high-gain antennas (30dB or so, and very precisely aimed) to get out 15 miles. And it would probably only work in fair weather, rain/snow/wind would cause some serious attenuation (and that's probably exactly the kind of rotten weather you'd be interested in monitoring). :-|

Hope that helps,
John/af4ex
At the console side, I already have the WeatherLink datalogger (serial version, currently going to WXPC via Serial->USB converter).  Wouldn't I just plug the XBee Explorer Serial into the serial output of the WeathLink datalogger (after I configure it of course)?

I've got a soldering iron... but it's the monster pistol-grip melts stuff variety.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: dalecoy on March 09, 2011, 04:56:40 PM
For someone who wants to learn how to solder, the following would be a good investment:

http://store.cs-sales.net/nelsokitwist.html

Includes soldering iron, tools, a practice project, and excellent instructions.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 09, 2011, 04:57:27 PM
@SpartanWX
Quote
At the console side, I already have the WeatherLink datalogger (serial version, currently going to WXPC via Serial->USB converter).  Wouldn't I just plug the XBee Explorer Serial into the serial output of the WeathLink datalogger (after I configure it of course)?

I've got a soldering iron... but it's the monster pistol-grip melts stuff variety.

Ok, then maybe you don't need to do any soldering at all! But I know nothing about the WeatherLink (or the Serial Explorer either), so you'll have to do the pioneering here.

If the WL expects to plug into a 9-pin serial connection, then it sounds like it might work "out of the box".

All you'll have to do is configure the XBee's for 19200 baud with the X-CTU utility, and then just plug and play.

[In any case, forget the pistol-grip soldering iron. Much too big for this kind of work.]

John/af4ex

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 09, 2011, 05:02:35 PM
For someone who wants to learn how to solder, the following would be a good investment:

http://store.cs-sales.net/nelsokitwist.html

Includes soldering iron, tools, a practice project, and excellent instructions.

In fact, that is exactly the soldering station I use. But make sure you use a 1/32" tip. I recall that the tip that came with mine was a tad too big.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 09, 2011, 05:32:56 PM
@SpartanWX
> http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9111

Reading the specs on this part I see that it needs a separate power supply because, unlike USB, there is no power in the serial interface itself. No problem, just follow the SparkFun recommendations.

Also, in the user comments, one reader says a 'null modem' is required. That essentially reverses the read and write lines and is needed for certain kinds of applications. I don't know if it's really needed but you can get them at Radio Shack for a few bucks. It looks exactly like this one in Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Null_modem

You can call or email SparkFun Customer Support to get answers to some of these issues.

DeKay, any words of wisdom for Mr. SpartanWX before he goes and orders all of these parts? What about levels? Does WL use standard RS-232 voltages (+/- 15v etc)?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on March 09, 2011, 05:43:51 PM
DeKay, any words of wisdom for Mr. SpartanWX before he goes and orders all of these parts? What about levels? Does WL use standard RS-232 voltages (+/- 15v etc)?


WL is designed to connect directly to a standard serial port, so it must use standard RS-232 voltages (if there is such a thing).  I was about to add what you followed up with, af4ex.  Just pay attention to the gender of your connectors, and buy a null modem adapter whether you need one or not.  In my experience, you will always need one when you don't have one, and vice versa.

I like where this thread is going.  More people seem to be catching the bug and giving this a shot.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: dalecoy on March 09, 2011, 05:53:22 PM
For the record, the physical connection to the serial logger is with a 4-wire "telephone cable".  That connects (in the standard configuration) to a "dongle" supplied by Davis that has the usual 9-pin connector.  As I recall, inside that dongle, the usual RTS/DTR/CTS/etc. fakeout connections are made.

I don't think I've ever actually measured the voltages, but on the other hand I've never had it fail to work with any serial port that I hooked it to.

The "hacker" way to make the connection would be to just use a "telephone cable", strip one end, and connect the wires.  And with RS-232, there shouldn't be any danger of blowing anything out, even if the first try has the RX and TX reversed.  So, no null modem would be required, in that case.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 09, 2011, 05:59:58 PM
DeKay, any words of wisdom for Mr. SpartanWX before he goes and orders all of these parts? What about levels? Does WL use standard RS-232 voltages (+/- 15v etc)?


WL is designed to connect directly to a standard serial port, so it must use standard RS-232 voltages (if there is such a thing).  I was about to add what you followed up with, af4ex.  Just pay attention to the gender of your connectors, and buy a null modem adapter whether you need one or not.  In my experience, you will always need one when you don't have one, and vice versa.

I like where this thread is going.  More people seem to be catching the bug and giving this a shot.
Well, SpartanWX, we think it should work, but no guarantee until you try it.

Go forth and connect, wirelessly!
:grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SpartanWX on March 09, 2011, 11:46:01 PM
DeKay, any words of wisdom for Mr. SpartanWX before he goes and orders all of these parts? What about levels? Does WL use standard RS-232 voltages (+/- 15v etc)?


WL is designed to connect directly to a standard serial port, so it must use standard RS-232 voltages (if there is such a thing).  I was about to add what you followed up with, af4ex.  Just pay attention to the gender of your connectors, and buy a null modem adapter whether you need one or not.  In my experience, you will always need one when you don't have one, and vice versa.

I like where this thread is going.  More people seem to be catching the bug and giving this a shot.
Well, SpartanWX, we think it should work, but no guarantee until you try it.

Go forth and connect, wirelessly!
:grin:

This project is a couple of months out on the event horizon.  I still need to find a house/townhouse/apartment and a job in metro DC before the first of May.  I'll be taking the VP2 offline, sending it in for refurbishment, and cobbling this together then.

Thanks for the info... sounds doable for sure.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 10, 2011, 07:03:33 AM
@SpartanWX
> This project is a couple of months out on the event horizon. 

Then it is very likely that someone else will have tested and verified your idea by that time. Good luck on the job/house quest!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Bushman on March 10, 2011, 09:49:04 AM
RS-232 "standard voltages"  http://www.lammertbies.nl/comm/info/RS-485.html#char
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 14, 2011, 08:01:34 PM
@me
> I'm going to order two more XBee's, probably with chip antennas ...

Received the chip-antenna XBee's. One was DOA (failed the TEST/IDENTITY check in X-CTU). Configured the other one for 19200 baud and replaced the wire-anntenna device in the Davis VUE console.

It works fine, but still a little too bulky to fit in plugin compartment. So I still have it strapped to the back of the console, where it is out of view.

The custom design (for which I'm still working out the details) will all be on one board, which will easily fit the plugin space (at least on the VUE).

So these results are consistent with SparkFun's claim that the chip antenna has the same range as the wire antenna. (But I'm still skeptical, will run some X-CTU range tests when I get the replacement chip).

John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Bushman on March 14, 2011, 08:11:51 PM
I cannot understand what physics would allow the chip antenna to be as good.  BTDT in RC transmitters.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 14, 2011, 08:35:12 PM
Agreed. The 2.4GHz operating frequency corresponds to a wavelength of about 12cm. So the wire antenna is a little shorter than a "quarter-wave whip" antenna, the standard in ham VHF/UHF work.

Did a llttle a sleuthing a found this discussion, which claims the wire has a 3dB advantage over the chip: http://www.electro-tech-online.com/general-electronics-chat/90015-chip-vs-whip-antenna.html

Makes sense, else why would Digi even bother to make the wire version, which is bulkier and more prone to damage?

In any case, the chip-antenna is working fine in my setup, where it is transmitting about 20 feet to the upstairs location.

:-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on March 15, 2011, 03:22:57 AM
Seems to me - maybe wrongly - that this thread has two quite separate parts:

1. Accessing wx serial data at the console socket;

2. Transporting that serial data to a PC that may be some little distance away;

I can understand the interest in [1] for electronics hobbyists. But there are presumably several options for [2], including a plain serial cable connection to a PC which would I assume be fine as long as the PC wasn't more than 40-50 feet cable run away (for a simple unboosted cable). And then there are wireless options.

af4ex: you are clearly most interested in the XBee/ZigBee modules as a wireless option. But why not also consider a WiFi option? Is it just a cost issue? A WiFi device server would likely cost more than an XBee module, but (assuming you already have a WiFi network installed): (i) You only need one device (at the Vantage end); (ii) No need for more clutter at the PC end; (ii) you're going to get all the range you normally get with your WiFi installation; (iv) No concerns at all possible interference or channel reconfiguration issues between XBee and WiFi; etc

So if lowest possible cost is the only issue then probably XBee still wins. But are there any other reasons why you still might prefer XBee over eg WiFi?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 15, 2011, 08:48:55 AM
@johnd
> af4ex: you are clearly most interested in the XBee/ZigBee modules as a wireless option. But why not also consider a WiFi option?

Cost is partly the culprit. I balked at paying $180 for WeatherLink features I don't need, which would only get me a serial connect, Still more $$$ to get wireless. So for less than $100 I get both. (I still think Davis should provide "low cost" solutions for simple serial connections).

If you look at my Cumulus web page I seem to be getting the full spectrum of weather information, just using my simple serial link. What am I missing? www.qsl.net/af4ex/wx Also I am transmitting my info to APRS/CWOP. Again, they're getting all the data they need. http://www.findu.com/cgi-bin/wxpage.cgi?call=AF4EX [Ironically, that data glitch you see on 12 March was caused by the flakey WiFi in my laptop. The XBee's haven't dropped a single bit. I now use CAT-5, to hook the the laptop to the Internet]

But weather is only one of my interests. I have other environmental sensors that I want to monitor. I have a VLF antenna in my back yard that I use for detecting whistlers and other kinds of electromagnetic pulse signals. Also interested in geomagnetism, solar physics and "climate change" issues, so I'm developing my own generic data channels for this purpose. So eventually will have a sensor farm, and a web page, for detecting and analyzing interesting signals from nature.

And it's only a hobby. I find delving into small bits of information and hardware very enjoyable.
 :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: d_l on March 15, 2011, 10:29:29 AM
Cost is partly the culprit. I balked at paying $180 for WeatherLink features I don't need, which would only get me a serial connect, Still more $$$ to get wireless. So for less than $100 I get both. (I still think Davis should provide "low cost" solutions for simple serial connections).

I just want to point out that I (or anybody) by carefully shopping, can buy an actual Davis serial weatherlink logger for only $109, which gives both a serial connection AND data logging capabilities.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on March 15, 2011, 10:57:27 AM
Cost is partly the culprit. I balked at paying $180 for WeatherLink features I don't need, which would only get me a serial connect
No, as above, I understand your motivation for wanting to bypass the Davis logger, but it was specifically the wireless part of your set-up that I was commenting on.

Quote
If you look at my Cumulus web page I seem to be getting the full spectrum of weather information, just using my simple serial link. What am I missing? www.qsl.net/af4ex/wx Also I am transmitting my info to APRS/CWOP. Again, they're getting all the data they need. http://www.findu.com/cgi-bin/wxpage.cgi?call=AF4EX [Ironically, that data glitch you see on 12 March was caused by the flakey WiFi in my laptop. The XBee's haven't dropped a single bit. I now use CAT-5, to hook the the laptop to the Internet]

But weather is only one of my interests. I have other environmental sensors that I want to monitor. I have a VLF antenna in my back yard that I use for detecting whistlers and other kinds of electromagnetic pulse signals. Also interested in geomagnetism, solar physics and "climate change" issues, so I'm developing my own generic data channels for this purpose. So eventually will have a sensor farm, and a web page, for detecting and analyzing interesting signals from nature.

That's all fine, but it's about the wx data in general, not specifically the wireless link. So it sounds like you had a problem WiFi link which is what prompted you towards the XBee solution (as well as being a little cheaper than a WiFi device server). But in general is there any reason to think that XBee will be any more robust than WiFi? And XBee might, just possibly, cause some interaction/interference with WiFi, or at least prompt a channel reconfiguration, which you might not want to do for other reasons.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 15, 2011, 11:43:25 AM
@johnd
> But in general is there any reason to think that XBee will be any more robust than WiFi?

Probably not, but I think it's a universal solution, equivalent to a serial connection. How would you share that over WiFi?

I don't really know how WeatherLink connects to applications using WiFi. Doesn't that lock you into WeatherLink? How do you get the serial connection on the remote-side computer?

I have my console downstairs, but I can connect to it upstairs wirelessly as COM5 through the USB port. How does that work with your WL/WiFi combo? Would I still have serial access to the signals?

At some point I plan to switch over to weewx on a Linux box. http://www.weewx.com/ Do any of you guys use this? It's opensource so I can extend it (in Python) to process other data besides weather. From what I understand so far, it uses a serial connection, just like wview.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Bushman on March 15, 2011, 12:24:09 PM
I think you are going to need some extra work to get it to interface.  BICBW.  Interestingly (to me, any way...) is that I've been doing a bunch of Python work lately so I'm itching to try this on a PC.  Can't see what it would not work.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 15, 2011, 12:40:08 PM
@Bushman
> I think you are going to need some extra work to get it to interface. 

Are you talking about the WL/WiFi interface, or XBee? For XBee it should be as simple as installing the Linux drivers for the FTDI serial2USB chip.
 
>... I've been doing a bunch of Python work lately so I'm itching to try this
> on a PC. 

The author claims weewx is "unix only" and hasn't been ported to Windows yet. Might not be a trivial port.

"Unix only. I haven't tried porting to Microsoft Windows, but given the portability of Python it is likely to be a large, but not mammoth, project."
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on March 15, 2011, 12:51:57 PM
Interestingly (to me, any way...) is that I've been doing a bunch of Python work lately so I'm itching to try this on a PC.  Can't see what it would not work.

There is PyWeather of course. Don't know much about it but it claims compatibility with the VP2.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Bushman on March 15, 2011, 12:55:44 PM
@Bushman
> I think you are going to need some extra work to get it to interface. 

Are you talking about the WL/WiFi interface, or XBee? For XBee it should be as simple as installing the Linux drivers for the FTDI serial2USB chip.
 
>... I've been doing a bunch of Python work lately so I'm itching to try this
> on a PC. 

The author claims weewx is "unix only" and hasn't been ported to Windows yet. Might not be a trivial port.

"Unix only. I haven't tried porting to Microsoft Windows, but given the portability of Python it is likely to be a large, but not mammoth, project."

I meant other than the Xbee connection.  Don't know for sure...

And my Python  work was a port form from Linux to Windows.  Was not that bad.  I will have to check Pyweather though.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on March 15, 2011, 01:01:42 PM
Probably not, but I think it's a universal solution, equivalent to a serial connection. How would you share that over WiFi?
Well I was just assuming using a standard serial/WiFi device server like:

http://www.audon.co.uk/enet132wa.html

(This is UK pricing - I dare say that there is substantially cheaper pricing available in the US for similar devices)

Quote
I don't really know how WeatherLink connects to applications using WiFi. Doesn't that lock you into WeatherLink? How do you get the serial connection on the remote-side computer?
Just run standard Redirector software that presents the serial data stream to the application on a virtual com port.

Quote
I have my console downstairs, but I can connect to it upstairs wirelessly as COM5 through the USB port. How does that work with your WL/WiFi combo? Would I still have serial access to the signals?
Yes - as above.

NB I'm not necessarily suggesting that this is a superior solution. It's likely a bit more costly, but potentially simpler and maybe more robust (no USB involved).
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 15, 2011, 02:13:48 PM
@johnd
> NB I'm not necessarily suggesting that this is a superior solution. It's likely a bit more costly, but potentially simpler and
> maybe more robust ...

If I understand correctly I would need these these gadgets to make your solution work:

Wireless Weather Envoy $195
WeatherLink $180 (for logging)
Wifi-2-Serial $150 http://aaxeon.com/s.nl/sc.7/category.903/.f

 :shock: Substantially more than I paid for my Vantage Vue (which I think is expensive, but worth it), even after discounts! And I don't think it is very robust, since there are several, potentially expensive, points of failure in the setup, vs. replacing a $20 XBee chip in my design.  Actually, my experience has been that USB is very robust, once you get the right drivers installed.

Like I said, Davis really needs to fill that gap in their product line ("low-cost serial interface").

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Bushman on March 15, 2011, 02:25:26 PM
That low cost interface with one of these inline would sure be nice...  :)  http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10216 Frankly, the new Vantage Pro3 should have an SDHC slot in it.  But I won't hold my breath!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on March 15, 2011, 02:29:19 PM
If I understand correctly I would need these these gadgets to make your solution work:

WeatherLink $180 (for logging)

Why do you think you would need the logger? Maybe I've misunderstood, but I thought that part of this approach was that you could take a serial feed direct from the Envoy socket? So the serial feed would be connected direct to a device server of one sort or another
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 15, 2011, 02:48:40 PM
@johnd
> Why do you think you would need the logger?

Actually, I don't need it, but I understand others think it is essential.
Revised BOM:
Wireless Weather Envoy $195
WeatherLink $180 (OPTIONAL, for logging)
Wifi-2-Serial $150 http://aaxeon.com/s.nl/sc.7/category.903/.f

So we're still looking at > $300, still "pricey" IMHO.   :-k



Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: d_l on March 15, 2011, 03:12:03 PM
Actually, I don't need it, but I understand others think it is essential.
Revised BOM:
Wireless Weather Envoy $195
WeatherLink $180 (OPTIONAL, for logging)
Wifi-2-Serial $150 http://aaxeon.com/s.nl/sc.7/category.903/.f

So we're still looking at > $300, still "pricey" IMHO.   :-k

Your experiments are interesting and certainly appreciated for their potential for new types of connections, but you are using strawman MSRP costs.

Best price BOM:
Wireless Weather Envoy $126
WeatherLink $109 (OPTIONAL, for logging)
Wifi-2-Serial $150 Delete the need for a wireless serial interface as the Envoy is intended to be placed near a computer and the ISS to Envoy wireless connection substitutes for the WiFi.

Total price of "only" $235.  Not cheap, but a reliable, weather logging solution with a Davis warranty.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: JACK10562 on March 15, 2011, 04:09:07 PM

Total price of "only" $235.  Not cheap, but a reliable, weather logging solution with a Davis warranty.

And none of the fun of possibly breaking things until they "work"!.  8-)

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 15, 2011, 04:17:21 PM
Actually, I don't need it, but I understand others think it is essential.
Revised BOM:
Wireless Weather Envoy $195
WeatherLink $180 (OPTIONAL, for logging)
Wifi-2-Serial $150 http://aaxeon.com/s.nl/sc.7/category.903/.f

So we're still looking at > $300, still "pricey" IMHO.   :-k

Your experiments are interesting and certainly appreciated for their potential for new types of connections, but you are using strawman MSRP costs.

Best price BOM:
Wireless Weather Envoy $126
WeatherLink $109 (OPTIONAL, for logging)
Wifi-2-Serial $150 Delete the need for a wireless serial interface as the Envoy is intended to be placed near a computer and the ISS to Envoy wireless connection substitutes for the WiFi.

Total price of "only" $235.  Not cheap, but a reliable, weather logging solution with a Davis warranty.

Ok, thanks for setting me straight on that. I was just guessing at how to set it up.

Yes, a good choice for those who want reliability and support "out of the box"!
 :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: dalecoy on March 15, 2011, 04:32:33 PM
How do you get the serial connection on the remote-side computer?


Telnet works fine.  Or SSH if you need security.  And therefore, not limited to any particular software package.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 15, 2011, 08:03:38 PM
Good news, I found out why my 2nd XBee (with the chip-antenna) didn't work. I apparently entered "ATDB 4" instead of "ATBD 4" to set the baud to 19200. SparkFun sent me a nice little note with a pointer to some more detailed instructions on how to use and troubleshoot these things.
http://www.instructables.com/id/Changing-Xbee-Baud-Rates/#step1
(Also updated the instructions on page 2 with this link)

So now I have the "chip-antenna to chip-antenna" working!

Now, is it working "just barely"? or with plenty of headroom to spare? Don't know, so will do some range testing eventually to answer those questions (and to prove/disprove that the chip-antenna is inferior to the wire antenna etc).

So the reliability of the XBee's just went up 25%, 4 out of 4!

 :cool:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SpartanWX on March 17, 2011, 02:15:02 PM
Actually, I don't need it, but I understand others think it is essential.
Revised BOM:
Wireless Weather Envoy $195
WeatherLink $180 (OPTIONAL, for logging)
Wifi-2-Serial $150 http://aaxeon.com/s.nl/sc.7/category.903/.f

So we're still looking at > $300, still "pricey" IMHO.   :-k

Your experiments are interesting and certainly appreciated for their potential for new types of connections, but you are using strawman MSRP costs.

Best price BOM:
Wireless Weather Envoy $126
WeatherLink $109 (OPTIONAL, for logging)
Wifi-2-Serial $150 Delete the need for a wireless serial interface as the Envoy is intended to be placed near a computer and the ISS to Envoy wireless connection substitutes for the WiFi.

Total price of "only" $235.  Not cheap, but a reliable, weather logging solution with a Davis warranty.
This Xbee concept has merit though.

I have a VP2 and a logger (serial) already.  I need to locate the VP2 console in a different area of my house from were the WXPC is.  I need a wireless means (economical) of communication between the VP2 console/logger and the WXPC.  The xbee appears to do this for approximately $80. 

Do you know of anything else that is competitive with this?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on March 17, 2011, 02:27:52 PM
Do you know of anything else that is competitive with this?

As has been said above, I suspect not - if you are looking for the cheapest possible solution. But finding a WiFi bridge device with a serial port interfacce (ie a serial-to-WiFi device server in other words) might possibly give a more convenient solution (eg less clutter at the PC) assuming that you already have a WiFi network set up. But it's likely to be more costly.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: dalecoy on March 17, 2011, 03:00:37 PM

I have a VP2 and a logger (serial) already.  I need to locate the VP2 console in a different area of my house from were the WXPC is.  I need a wireless means (economical) of communication between the VP2 console/logger and the WXPC. 

Do you know of anything else that is competitive with this?

Exactly why do you require wireless? 

For instance (1) - are there telephone connections in both locations, and do you have only one wired phone number?

For instance (2) - perhaps communication over house electrical wiring? 
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 17, 2011, 04:05:59 PM
@johnd
>  But finding a WiFi bridge device with a serial port interface
> (ie a serial-to-WiFi device server in other words) might possibly
> give a more convenient solution (eg less clutter at the PC)

How could you have less clutter than this?
(http://dlnmh9ip6v2uc.cloudfront.net/images/products/09819-01_i_ma.jpg)

Just plug in a $20 XBee to this $25 dongle (from SparkFun) and your weather computer will have a self-powered wireless serial link to your remote Dave console, which will have a similar, self-powered* dongle (without WeatherLink, if you build the AF4EX "homebrew dongle"). No need for WiFi-to-serial box or Envoy (and their associated wall-wart supplies).

As for wireless schemes using "house wiring", they tend to be noisy and unreliable (and tend to generate RF interference which will greatly annoy your neighbors, if they're ham radio operators)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Power_line_communication
 :-|

*if you use WeathLink, then you'll need an RS-232 dongle, which does need a wall-wart supply (the "SpartanWX" solution). Still fairly compact and very easy to implement.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: dalecoy on March 17, 2011, 04:24:25 PM
Note that I'm not objecting to wireless, and certainly recognize the "less clutter" of the XBee/SparkFun combination.

And I understand the drawbacks of other solutions like power line stuff (and I'm W5VBQ and my wife is KB5EVP)

And I just offered two examples - not intended to be the complete set of alternatives. 

The question that was asked was: "Do you know of anything else that is competitive with this?"

My answer was intended to say "If you remove the restriction of a wireless requirement, yes there are competitive things under many circumstances."

A lot depends on the entire set of requirements, including the specific environment.  And, of course, sometimes it's "because it's cool" or "I like that".
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on March 17, 2011, 09:18:02 PM
And, of course, sometimes it's "because it's cool"...

^^^ This.  For me anyway.  I figured out the interface, yet haven't logged a single second of data.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 18, 2011, 10:43:38 AM
@dalecoy
> The question that was asked was: "Do you know of anything else that is competitive with this?"

Dale has a good point. So let's build a little decision matrix to help us decide which method is "better". Of course, "better" is based on a particular set of usage criteria, e.g. cost vs reliability etc.

Here's a first stab at it [edit: with some updates]. Let me know if I left off any important usage parameter or information:

"Homebrew Serial Solutions" for VP2/VUE
AUTHOR/SOLUTIONWireless?Self-powered?Reliable?EasyToImplement?Cost
(Davis)WL/Envoyyesnoyesyes~$235 ("school" solution)
DeKay*,USB2COMnoyesyesno, need expertise~$15 (connects to 20-pin socket)
AF4EX,XBeeyesyesyes[so far]no, need expertise<$100 (connects to 20-pin socket)
SpartanWX, RS-232yespartlyProbablyyes~$80(needs WeatherLink/serial)
johnd, WiFi-to-SerialyesnoProbablyyes~$100(needs WeatherLink/serial)
d_l,MAX233noyesYesno, need expertise~$20 (connects to 20-pin socket)

* H/T to DeKay for figuring out how to use the 20-pin console socket for us frugal Davis WX fans! http://madscientistlabs.blogspot.com/
Notes:
1. SpartanWX proposed using a SparkFun XBee RS-232 dongle with WeatherLink. No soldering and should work fine, but somebody needs to build it and prove that it works.
2. WiFi (proposed by johnd) cost is fuzzy, because I don't know if it needs WeatherLink, or not.
3. AF4EX cost is also a bit fuzzy, because you might have to buy PC board and header strips, wire, solder etc, if you don't have them laying around like I did. My actual cost was around $60 because (being a ham) I have lots of parts in my junk box.
4. d_l,MAX233. Needs some way to plug into Davis 20-pin connector, so not easy unless you have construction skills
5. Reliable='probably' means it hasn't been tried yet (AFAIK), but should work because it uses industry-standard components, or includes other solutions that have been shown to work.
6. [26Mar11]SLOweather has verified that d_I's idea works, using a A232DBH3V

So far, DeKay's original idea, using an FTDI chip, is the cheapest and is reliable[depending on your hardware skills]. But it's wired, not wireless. For most of you, if you already have WeatherLink, SpartanWX's idea seems unbeatable, followed closely by johnd's Wifi idea.

For those who don't need all the features of WeatherLink, then I think the DeKay wired or AF4EX XBee interfaces are optimal, provided you have the necessary constructing skills (until "somebody" comes up with a ready-made dongle).
 :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on March 18, 2011, 02:06:07 PM
2. WiFi (proposed by johnd) cost is fuzzy, because I don't know if it needs WeatherLink, or not.

As we've said before, if the idea is to take a serial data feed direct from the console pins then no you wouldn't need a WL logger. The device server to WiFi just needs a serial data input. And - assuming you already have a WiFi LAN set-up, NO extra cluuter at the PC at all - no ugly circuit board hanging off a USB port.

But it's (relative) simplicity over cost - as I've said before I'm sure that this isn't the cheapest conceivable solution.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 18, 2011, 02:29:10 PM
@johnd
> As we've said before, if the idea is to take a serial data feed direct
> from the console pins then no you wouldn't need a WL logger.

Ok, I think I'm getting it now. (You'll have to forgive my ignorance in this area. I'm a complete noob, weather-hardware-wise).

You are essentially taking the serial output of the Davis console and converting it to WiFi, where it will appear as a virtual COM port anywhere within WiFi range. Correct? ... and all you need (in addition to serial output) is a little serial2wifi box, having a cost on the order of $100 US. Right?

Ok, I agree that could be a good solution for a lot of users.

The only 'caveat' that I see is that you'll need some kind of serial output from your Davis console. So that would require:
1. A WeatherLink interface (which many of you already have), or
2. A DeKay-style, USB2COM interface. But that's not standard RS-232, so an additional "level-shifter" might be required, depending on the wifi box specs.

Did I get it right that time? (I've already amended my table).
 :-)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: d_l on March 18, 2011, 02:50:35 PM
Not to change the subject, but do you think a Max233 adapter work with the appropriate connectors attached to it as a serial output connection? More specifically the A232DBH3v version offered as a fully assembled unit with hood kit for $20 here: http://www.compsys1.com/workbench/On_top_of_the_Bench/Max233_Adapter/max233_adapter.html  I've previously used these as console interfaces for DSL modems.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 18, 2011, 02:57:52 PM
Not to change the subject, but do you think a Max233 adapter work with the appropriate connectors attached to it as a serial output connection? More specifically the A232DBH3v version offered as a fully assembled unit with hood kit for $20 here: http://www.compsys1.com/workbench/On_top_of_the_Bench/Max233_Adapter/max233_adapter.html  I've previously used these as console interfaces for DSL modems.

I've never used these, but I think they're the standard for "level-shifting" 3/5 volt logic to RS-232 (two-way). So, yes, add that to DeKay's FTDI design (3v logic) and then I believe you will have a real, wired "RS-232" interface for less than $50, comparable to WeatherLink, but without the fancy logger of course.

I'll add it to the table.
John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: 130dB on March 18, 2011, 03:04:18 PM
Another and maybe the cheapest solution , if you do not care about the data logger and want serial out, is to mount and wire an RJ11 or RJ45 female chassis connector to the data logger access panel door. Wire the connector to a header and connect it to the pins. According the data logger manual the max distance is 48 feet of 4 conductor serial cable . Run your cable to a remote computing device with the proper male connectors at both ends. Attach a RJ11 or RJ45 to DB9 adapter (properly wired) and you should be good to go. If you do not have serial port use serial to USB adapter.

Of course, if I got this all wrong and there needs to be conversion of the raw data from the pins before interfacing with a serial port on a computing device, we may need to through in a conversion circuit with a MAX232 or similar IC.

Dave
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on March 18, 2011, 03:06:15 PM
You are essentially taking the serial output of the Davis console and converting it to WiFi, where it will appear as a virtual COM port anywhere within WiFi range. Correct? ... and all you need (in addition to serial output) is a little serial2wifi box, having a cost on the order of $100 US. Right?
Yes that would be the proposition. I'm not specially promoting this as a solution, more just wanting to clarify that once you have serial output from the console pins then - given the universality of serial data links - there are a whole bunch of different ways of getting the data to a PC, from a simple cable to various wireless options. XBee is one wireless option but there are others and all with pros/cons.

Quote
The only 'caveat' that I see is that you'll need some kind of serial output from your Davis console. So that would require:
...2. A DeKay-style, USB2COM interface. But that's not standard RS-232, so an additional "level-shifter" might be required, depending on the wifi box specs.

This is kind of at the boundary of what I readily know about, but yes I'm sure you're right although there seem to be some pretty cheap interface circuits available.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 18, 2011, 03:09:19 PM
Another and maybe the cheapest solution , if you do not care about the data logger and want serial out, is to mount and wire an RJ11 or RJ45 female chassis connector to the data logger access panel door. Wire the connector to a header and connect it to the pins. According the data logger manual the max distance is 48 feet of 4 conductor serial cable . Run your cable to a remote computing device with the proper male connectors at both ends. Attach a RJ11 or RJ45 to DB9 adapter (properly wired) and you should be good to go. If you do not have serial port use serial to USB adapter.

Of course, if I got this all wrong and there needs to be conversion of the raw data from the pins before interfacing with a serial port on a computing device, we may need to through in a conversion circuit with a MAX232 or similar IC.

Dave

DeKay can probably answer this more authoritatively than I, but you won't have a 'standard' serial signal. Still need the DeKay or the MAX233 interface to convert to USB or RS-232, respectively.
 :-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 18, 2011, 03:47:28 PM
Not to change the subject, but do you think a Max233 adapter work with the appropriate connectors attached to it as a serial output connection? More specifically the A232DBH3v version offered as a fully assembled unit with hood kit for $20 here: http://www.compsys1.com/workbench/On_top_of_the_Bench/Max233_Adapter/max233_adapter.html  I've previously used these as console interfaces for DSL modems.

I've never used these, but I think they're the standard for "level-shifting" 3/5 volt logic to RS-232 (two-way). So, yes, add that to DeKay's FTDI design (3v logic) and then I believe you will have a real, wired "RS-232" interface for less than $50, comparable to WeatherLink, but without the fancy logger of course.

I'll add it to the table.
John/af4ex
Oops, just remembered that DeKay is making USB signals, so your idea is different, making RS-232. But you'll have to figure out a way to connect to that 20-pin socket in the console (see page 1 of this post for the way I did it, sort of a "kluge", but it works).

Amended the table on page 4 (reply #94)
http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10721.msg106400#msg106400
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on March 19, 2011, 12:36:42 AM
Another and maybe the cheapest solution , if you do not care about the data logger and want serial out, is to mount and wire an RJ11 or RJ45 female chassis connector to the data logger access panel door. Wire the connector to a header and connect it to the pins. According the data logger manual the max distance is 48 feet of 4 conductor serial cable . Run your cable to a remote computing device with the proper male connectors at both ends. Attach a RJ11 or RJ45 to DB9 adapter (properly wired) and you should be good to go. If you do not have serial port use serial to USB adapter.

Of course, if I got this all wrong and there needs to be conversion of the raw data from the pins before interfacing with a serial port on a computing device, we may need to through in a conversion circuit with a MAX232 or similar IC.

Dave

Yes, you do have it wrong.  There needs to be a level conversion from the LVTTL 0-3.3V levels on the console to the serial port on a standard PC.  Not doing this would likely fry the console's processor.  A MAX232 is a 5V device so that won't work either: you'd need a 3.3V powered variant (of which, of course, there are many).  If it were me and I wanted to go the serial route, I'd give one of these (http://www.sparkfun.com/products/133) powered off 3.3V a shot, as discussed on the long running comments section (http://madscientistlabs.blogspot.com/2011/01/davis-weatherlink-software-not-required.html) of my blog (http://madscientistlabs.blogspot.com).  For $6.95 (!!!), you can't go wrong in trying.  This is your new low cost champion right here, assuming you don't get a little extreme and DIY yourself a USB to serial cable for three dollars (http://jethomson.wordpress.com/2010/02/21/diy-usb-to-serial-cable-for-3usd/).
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on March 25, 2011, 11:36:13 PM
Yup. as of this afternoon, I can say that A232DBH3V works as an RS-232 interface for the VP2 console.

As far as the "appropriate connectors" go, I found some 2mm 20 pin solder tail/PC mount female connectors at Digi-Key which work fine. Because of the Davis socket design, I don't believe an IDC connector would work.

FWIW, the connectors I found don't have the keying projections that the Davis connector/socket use.

Now to figure out a PC board for the connector, cable, and a handle to insert/remove it.

Thanks to dekay for the background work and d_l for the A232DBH3v tip...

Not to change the subject, but do you think a Max233 adapter work with the appropriate connectors attached to it as a serial output connection? More specifically the A232DBH3v version offered as a fully assembled unit with hood kit for $20 here: http://www.compsys1.com/workbench/On_top_of_the_Bench/Max233_Adapter/max233_adapter.html  I've previously used these as console interfaces for DSL modems.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 26, 2011, 09:36:32 AM
@SLOweather
> ...  I can say that A232DBH3V works as an RS-232 interface for the VP2 console.

Which means it should also work in the VUE console. Thanks for validating that, I have updated the "homebrew serial solutions" table on page 4 with this information:
http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10721.msg106400#msg106400

Can you provide a link for that Digikey "2mm 20 pin solder tail/PC mount female connector" part?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: lobolobo on March 26, 2011, 01:03:31 PM
Hi, af4ex,

could you tell me how to configure the XBEE connected to the Davis and the one connected to the PC?

I´m trying to use X-CTU but i don´t know how to configure both XBEEs.

X-CTU: Whenn i push the buttom "Read" X-CTU says that is XB24.ZB and un the function set says: "ZIGBEE ROUTER AT"

Both XBEEs are configured to 19200 baud.

Range test give me always errors (Time out waiting for data)

Thank´s in advance.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 26, 2011, 02:16:31 PM
Hi, af4ex,

could you tell me how to configure the XBEE connected to the Davis and the one connected to the PC?

I´m trying to use X-CTU but i don´t know how to configure both XBEEs.

X-CTU: Whenn i push the buttom "Read" X-CTU says that is XB24.ZB and un the function set says: "ZIGBEE ROUTER AT"

Both XBEEs are configured to 19200 baud.

Range test give me always errors (Time out waiting for data)

Thank´s in advance.

Hi LoboLobo,

How are you connecting to the Davis side? Actually the wiring configuration doesn't make much difference, it's all the same logic, so I'll assume you're using the 'SpartanWX' idea, using an RS-232 dongle attached to WeatherLink.

Also will assume you have already configured both XBee's to talk at 19200 baud (since they are set to 9600 baud by default), which means you've figured out the '+++' sequence to put the XBee into terminal mode and then set the baud with 'ATBD 4' followed by 'ATWR' to write the new setting to each XBee (in turn of course). [If not, then follow the link to the Instructables guide back on page 2 of this post]

I'll also assume you were able to load the appropriate drivers, if you've already run the X-CTU utilitity successfully. If not, follow the link on page 2 to the Digi drivers download. (Installing the drivers is a little confusing because they don't tell you exactly which directory has the correct driver. It's FTDI-VCP, because you're just setting up a Virtual Com Port, not a custom USB application etc]

So, I think you're almost ready to go. No need to run the 'range test', which requires you to setup the remote XBee with a 'loopback' (input connected to output) and observe the performance at different ranges (using a laptop etc). Just plug in one of the 19.2K XBee's into the Davis dongle (making sure it has power).

If you want to get an idea of signal strength, you can use the 'ATDB' command to fetch the instantaneous signal strength. So you perform a crude range test by just issuing an ATDB command while moving the sensors apart or closer together. (You'll need to have the Davis side running of course, while you're this test.

BTW, the 'ATDB' and 'ATBD' commands are easily confused. I thought one of my XBee's was bad because it wouldn't return '4' after setting 'ATDB 4'.  Then I realized that I had used the wrong command  ](*,) Easy way to remember 'BD' -> BauD  'DB' ->DeciBel. Drrr.

Then, after plugging the 'readymade' dongle (SparkFun 'USB explorer' or equivalent) into the PC side,  and runnning your weather software everything should start working. You'll have to reconfigure the serial port # (COM4 etc). Should be the same one you used for X-CTU (unless you've added some more serial stuff in the meantime).

Your weather station then should start talking to your software 'automagically' and wirelessly! It's really cool, you won't believe how simple it is.
 8-)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: lobolobo on March 26, 2011, 02:32:07 PM
atdb says 0

atbd is correct (4 = 19.2K baud)

Nothing happens. Cumulus couldn´t read nothing. Give me an error that says it couldn´t initialize the station. Cumulus run perfectly wuit the FTDI interface via USB but not with the XBEE´s  ](*,) ](*,) ](*,)

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 26, 2011, 02:39:47 PM
FYI, I've had my homebrew wireless XBee running almost continuously since the first week of March. Here is my entire weather 'lifetime', all three weeks of it (sending my data to APRS/CWOP):
http://www.findu.com/cgi-bin/wxpage.cgi?call=AF4EX&last=720

Started with WuHu, switched over to Cumulus around March 12, which caused a big glitch because it handled computer "standby" differently. Also had WiFi problems (so had to switch computers). Had a cable modem failure (no Internet) and replacement. Switched back and forth between XBee wireless and DeKay wired mode a few times (to allow some XBee testing)

But through it all, these homebrew serial interfaces (wired and wireless) performed flawlessly. Never had a single glitch caused by the interface.
 :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 26, 2011, 02:46:05 PM
atdb says 0

atbd is correct (4 = 19.2K baud)

Nothing happens. Cumulus couldn´t read nothing. Give me an error that says it couldn´t initialize the station. Cumulus run perfectly wuit the FTDI interface via USB but not with the XBEE´s  ](*,) ](*,) ](*,)



Are you using the correct COM port #? It might have changed between wired and wireless.

Go back and run the X-CTU utility again, with both dongles running. Put the utiltity into terminal mode (with +++). You should see the data streaming in from the console. Make sure you're using that same COM# in Cumulus.

How far apart are the units? Which homebrew interface are you using on the Davis side?
:-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: lobolobo on March 26, 2011, 02:50:08 PM
No good news. I tried everything you said but nothing. Check connections. Every thing seems OK ... #-o #-o but nothing ...
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 26, 2011, 03:10:57 PM
No good news. I tried everything you said but nothing. Check connections. Every thing seems OK ... #-o #-o but nothing ...

What is your interface on the Davis side? Are you using the design from page 2? Did you use heat-shrink wrapping on the wires? If you have a voltmeter make sure the 3volts is getting to the XBee.

The most likely problem (if you're using the page 2 design) is that you're not connecting reliably to the 20-pin socket. (Remember I said it was a 'kluge', but it does work if you're careful about the construction and installation).
Recheck the wiring.

The XBee's seem to be very robust. I plugged both of them backwards on my first attempt (right after my eye surgery) and they survived!  :roll:

A more rellable connector can be constructed, using the Samtec part I mentioned. Also, SLOweather has found a part that seems to work. Waiting for him to respond on exactly which Digikey part he used (I couldn't find it using the nomenclature he had in his post).

Don't give up. You'll get it working eventually. (And perhaps learn more about circuit construction and troubleshooting than you anticipated).
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: lobolobo on March 26, 2011, 03:18:42 PM
No good news. I tried everything you said but nothing. Check connections. Every thing seems OK ... #-o #-o but nothing ...

What is your interface on the Davis side? Are you using the design from page 2? Did you use heat-shrink wrapping on the wires? If you have a voltmeter make sure the 3volts is getting to the XBee.

The most likely problem (if you're using the page 2 design) is that you're not connecting reliably to the 20-pin socket. (Remember I said it was a 'kluge', but it does work if you're careful about the construction and installation).
Recheck the wiring.

The XBee's seem to be very robust. I plugged both of them backwards on my first attempt (right after my eye surgery) and they survived!  :roll:

A more rellable connector can be constructed, using the Samtec part I mentioned. Also, SLOweather has found a part that seems to work. Waiting for him to respond on exactly which Digikey part he used (I couldn't find it using the nomenclature he had in his post).

Don't give up. You'll get it working eventually. (And perhaps learn more about circuit construction and troubleshooting than you anticipated).

I think everything you comment is correct in my system. Everything is the same. Both XBEE responds correct if i put them in the SPARKFUN USB EXPLORER.

3 VOlts to XBEE correct.
Heat-shrink wrapping on the wires
The wires are the same for the serial cable version and its OK but when i connect the XBEE nothing happens, they don´t see one to each other.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 26, 2011, 04:05:05 PM
No good news. I tried everything you said but nothing. Check connections. Every thing seems OK ... #-o #-o but nothing ...

What is your interface on the Davis side? Are you using the design from page 2? Did you use heat-shrink wrapping on the wires? If you have a voltmeter make sure the 3volts is getting to the XBee.

The most likely problem (if you're using the page 2 design) is that you're not connecting reliably to the 20-pin socket. (Remember I said it was a 'kluge', but it does work if you're careful about the construction and installation).
Recheck the wiring.

The XBee's seem to be very robust. I plugged both of them backwards on my first attempt (right after my eye surgery) and they survived!  :roll:

A more rellable connector can be constructed, using the Samtec part I mentioned. Also, SLOweather has found a part that seems to work. Waiting for him to respond on exactly which Digikey part he used (I couldn't find it using the nomenclature he had in his post).

Don't give up. You'll get it working eventually. (And perhaps learn more about circuit construction and troubleshooting than you anticipated).

I think everything you comment is correct in my system. Everything is the same. Both XBEE responds correct if i put them in the SPARKFUN USB EXPLORER.

3 VOlts to XBEE correct.
Heat-shrink wrapping on the wires
The wires are the same for the serial cable version and its OK but when i connect the XBEE nothing happens, they don´t see one to each other.

Ok, it still sounds like a connection problem to me. Perform a continuity check on all the wires from pin to pin. Use a big magnifier (unless you have really good eyes) to insure that the sockets are reliably connected to the bottom connector. Also make sure that the sockets stay connected after you put the lid back on. I used some paper toweling as padding to hold the connections in place securely.

If all else fails, you can mail your connector to me and I'll check it out for you. (Just the cable, not the XBee's or dongle boards.) It should only weigh a few grams, so shouldn't cost much to send in a small envelope.

John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: lobolobo on March 26, 2011, 04:24:45 PM
Very appreciated. I´ll try to check everything one more time and i´ll tell you the results.  #-o

 :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: lobolobo on March 26, 2011, 05:38:06 PM
GOOD NEWS!!!!!  :grin: :grin: :grin:

No problem with the assembly. Everything was OK. No problem with connections, with bad soldering ... nothing.

The problem was the XBEE configuration. I purchased a XBEE Series 2 (ZB) and when i configured the XBEE in the USB EXPLORER (PC SIDE) as a COORDINATOR AT everything comes OK!!!!!  :grin: 8-)

So one "XBEER" more transmiting from the Davis (VP 1) to my computers via XBEE using Cumulus.  \:D/ \:D/

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 26, 2011, 06:05:15 PM
@lobolobo
> GOOD NEWS!!!!!   
> No problem with the assembly. Everything was OK.
> No problem with connections, with bad soldering ... nothing.

Well done! Welcome to the Davis Homebrew Serial Interface Club!  =D&gt;  =D&gt; =D&gt;
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: lobolobo on March 26, 2011, 06:34:22 PM
The truth is that I would not have done it without your and DeKay´s help. Thank you very much both of you men.
  =D&gt; =D&gt; =D&gt;
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on March 27, 2011, 02:19:45 PM
Nice going SLOweather and lobolobo.  Spread the word.  And a tip of the hat to af4ex for outstanding technical support.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on March 28, 2011, 11:19:49 AM

Can you provide a link for that Digikey "2mm 20 pin solder tail/PC mount female connector" part?

http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?Detail&name=952-1361-5-nd

I bought 20.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 28, 2011, 11:33:04 AM

Can you provide a link for that Digikey "2mm 20 pin solder tail/PC mount female connector" part?

http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?Detail&name=952-1361-5-nd

I bought 20.

Excellent.

Do the solder pins protrude above the console casing when plugged in, such that they could be attached to a printed circuit board (for making a "custom dongle")?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on March 28, 2011, 11:56:19 AM

Do the solder pins protrude above the console casing when plugged in, such that they could be attached to a printed circuit board (for making a "custom dongle")?

Yup. Been working on that. ExpressPCB doesn't seem to have a premade 2mm connector component. I guess I'll have to make one.

(http://www.sloweather.com/blog/2011/110328davispins.jpg)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on March 28, 2011, 12:07:49 PM
FWIW, here's the alpha rev. proof-of-concept AD232DB to 2mm connector Davis serial adapter.

(http://www.sloweather.com/blog/2011/110328davisserial.jpg)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Jumpin Joe on March 28, 2011, 12:08:56 PM
Okay... now for the "Dummies 101" question.

Is this a way to have your Davis Pro2 console and USB logger in one room and transmit the data to your PC in another room without a physical connection?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on March 28, 2011, 12:26:19 PM
As far as the SparkFun RS232 Shifter Board Kit mentioned a while back, I bought a couple to try. No joy on the first couple of experiments, but that is not yet a definitive no-go. I just tried it on my WeatherElement hub, not on a real PC. And since they are kits, I may have made an assembly error or something.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: d_l on March 28, 2011, 12:43:19 PM
And since they are kits, I may have made an assembly error or something.

I just wanted to point out that Sparkfun also sells the RS232 Shifter as a fully assembled and tested unit for those that might have difficulty soldering all the components due to lack of fine motor skills like me.  This part is somewhat difficult to find on the Sparkfun site unless you are specifically looking for it.  All that would be needed is to solder wires to the PCB.  RS232 Shifter SMD (http://www.sparkfun.com/products/449)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on March 28, 2011, 12:59:32 PM
Okay... now for the "Dummies 101" question.

Is this a way to have your Davis Pro2 console and USB logger in one room and transmit the data to your PC in another room without a physical connection?

If you are referring to the "alpha rev. proof-of-concept A232DB to 2mm connector Davis serial adapter", then, no. This is a way to spend about $30 to connect your Davis console (VP, VP2, Vue Envoy) to a computer or other device via RS232 serial, rather than spending $120 or so on a Davis serial WeatherLink.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on March 28, 2011, 01:14:04 PM
Prior to purchasing the kits, I had heard from one of the engineers here at work that they had tried these for an engineering project with less than satisfactory results. I'm not surprised that it doesn't work on my interface.

I'll bring one to work and try it on a real PC serial port, just for completeness.


I just wanted to point out that Sparkfun also sells the RS232 Shifter as a fully assembled and tested unit for those that might have difficulty soldering all the components due to lack of fine motor skills like me.  This part is somewhat difficult to find on the Sparkfun site unless you are specifically looking for it.  All that would be needed is to solder wires to the PCB.  RS232 Shifter SMD (http://www.sparkfun.com/products/449)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: d_l on March 28, 2011, 01:29:30 PM
Prior to purchasing the kits, I had heard from one of the engineers here at work that they had tried these for an engineering project with less than satisfactory results. I'm not surprised that it doesn't work on my interface.

I'll bring one to work and try it on a real PC serial port, just for completeness.

I'd heard that the RS232 Shifter, either kit or assembled part, might not work in some situations whereas the Max233 in the A232DBH3v wouldn't have those problems.  However, I have had feedback from others who successfully used the RS232 Shifter as modem console port.  So it does work on some electronic parts.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 28, 2011, 01:37:23 PM

Do the solder pins protrude above the console casing when plugged in, such that they could be attached to a printed circuit board (for making a "custom dongle")?

Yup. Been working on that. ExpressPCB doesn't seem to have a premade 2mm connector component. I guess I'll have to make one.


Good work. The depth below the casing is 4mm on the VUE console, so that would leave more than 3mm protuding. Sounds like that would work, if I'm careful not to build up the solder underneath too much.

BTW, I found these $2.70 PCBs which seem to have 2mm pitch.
http://www.veroboard.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=21

Though my earlier idea was to take one of Sparkfun's Eagle drawings for their USB Explorer and modify it for this kind of 2mm header.
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8687

Problem is, I've never done anything with Eagle circuits. But it looks simple. (What could possibly go wrong?  :) )
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on March 28, 2011, 02:25:09 PM

BTW, I found these $2.70 PCBs which seem to have 2mm pitch.

(deletia...)

(What could possibly go wrong?  :) )

From the web page...

Hole Pitch: 0.1 in – (2.54 mm)

We need 2mm (0.079") pitch...
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on March 28, 2011, 02:32:32 PM
Digi-Key has one style 6.3" x 3.9" for $25 per board:

http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?Detail&name=438-1038-ND
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 28, 2011, 03:43:23 PM

BTW, I found these $2.70 PCBs which seem to have 2mm pitch.

(deletia...)

(What could possibly go wrong?  :) )

From the web page...

Hole Pitch: 0.1 in – (2.54 mm)

We need 2mm (0.079") pitch...

oops, you're right. I was looking at the wrong line: "Copper Square Size: 0.08×0.08 in - (2×2 mm)" referring to the size of the pads I guess.

> Digi-Key has one style 6.3" x 3.9" for $25 per board ...
Too much money, especially since we only need the 2X10 holes to have 2mm pitch. The rest of the board should be 0.1 in.

Modifying SparkFun's Eagle files seems to be the best bet. Hopefully resulting in a PCB that will be easy to populate with FTDI and/or XBee parts etc, all of which should fit nicely in the console plugin compartment.
http://www.sparkfun.com/tutorials/115

We're making progress, I think.
 :-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on March 29, 2011, 11:10:33 AM
For my application, in ExpressPCB, I successfully modified the 20 pin 0.1" connector to 2mm spacing. It took just a few minutes.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 29, 2011, 12:38:36 PM
For my application, in ExpressPCB, I successfully modified the 20 pin 0.1" connector to 2mm spacing. It took just a few minutes.

My understanding is that ExpressPCB is easier to use than EaglePCB, but Eagle is more open and uses standard Gerber formats.

I haven't used either one, so I've got some learning to do. I'm hoping I can start with one of SparkFun's public dongle designs, add a standard 2mm connector part and be done. Probably won't be that simple, but certainly easier than starting from scratch.

Sounds like your "SLOdongle" may be the first to see light of day. Will it incorporate an XBee?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on March 29, 2011, 01:40:57 PM
Yeah, I think ExpressPCB only works with their PCB service. I used them once before, back when white LEDs came out, to make some light strips. I learned the last time to make multiple small boards on one larger one to cut costs, and then cut them down later.

Nope, no XBee. that's all your'n. :)

I'm specifically interested in the plain-Jane RS-232 device. For WeatherElement development and other hobby stuff, I have at least 3 wired stations laying about. the price savings over WLinks will pay for the development of this for me. That doesn't include the fun/entertainment/education aspect.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on March 29, 2011, 01:47:26 PM
FWIW, I found this cool prototyping plastic in the Jameco catalog:

Quote
ShapeLock -- "Shape-then-lock" Design Plastic

Build your invention now -- without machine tools. Create super-strong custom parts, prototypes, molds, servo brackets, robot housings, sculptures, science projects, and more.

Space-age plastic melts in a microwave or hot water at 160°F, then remains safely moldable by hand until locking rigidly at room temperature. Simply reheat in order to re-shape as often as you like.

This easy-to-use material is non-toxic, lightweight, machine-able, and paint-able -- plus it can be dyed with hobby-shop pigments. Full instructions are included, in addition to email support and online information at www.ShapeLock.com

http://www.jameco.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product_10001_10001_2112508_-1
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: linuxfreak on March 30, 2011, 12:51:09 AM
Hey guys,

If you look in Eagle, libraries, con-molex.lbr, 87758-2016, 20 Pin - 2mm Dual Row Single Wafer, Vertical T/H HDR.
Source: http://www.molex.com/pdm_docs/sd/877580616_sd.pdf


Is that what you need??

George
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on March 30, 2011, 08:43:23 AM
Hey guys,

If you look in Eagle, libraries, con-molex.lbr, 87758-2016, 20 Pin - 2mm Dual Row Single Wafer, Vertical T/H HDR.
Source: http://www.molex.com/pdm_docs/sd/877580616_sd.pdf


Is that what you need??

George


Hi George!
That appears to be a part# for the male plug. We need the female connector part. But the pin spacing looks OK, for design purposes. (When you hear the term 'molex connector', it normally conjures up a much thicker pin size, for heavy power connections, but I guess Molex makes some of these smaller pin-sized parts too).
http://parts.digikey.com/1/parts/350600-conn-header-20pos-2mm-vert-gold-87758-2016.html

If I understand correctly, I can use this con-molex.lbr library component with the Eagle layout editor. Is this included with standard Eagle installation? (I am complete noob with this new-fangled PCB design stuff)

Thanks,
John/af4ex

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: linuxfreak on April 01, 2011, 07:53:11 PM
Hi John,

All I know is it is Eagle 5.7.0, I think mine is the professional version.  Just look through your library under connectors, con-XXX.lbr, and check descriptions for 2mm pitch connectors, as long as they aren't SMD, they should be proper thru-hole style and the pad spacing should work, can't see why you couldn't duplicate the pads over and over to make a 2mm pitch protoboard layout.  ;)  Here's a *short* list of library files in my copy:

con-3m.lbr                                    3M Connectors
con-amp-champ.lbr                        IEEE488 (Centronics) Connectors from AMP
con-amp-micromatch.lbr                 AMP Connectors, Type  MicroMatch
con-amp-mt.lbr                             AMP Connectors, Type MT
con-amp-mt6.lbr                           AMP Connectors, Type MT6
con-amp-quick.lbr                         AMP Connectors, Type QUICK
con-amp.lbr                                 AMP Connectors
con-amphenol.lbr                          Amphenol Connectors
con-avx.lbr                                  AVX Connectors
con-berg.lbr                                 Berg Connectors
con-bosch.lbr                               BOSCH Automotive Connectors
con-chipcard-iso7816.lbr                ISO 7816 Chipcard (Package)

etc, etc, etc,  77 connector libraries in all!!  #-o

George

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on April 02, 2011, 08:30:31 AM
@linuxfreak
> ...Just look through your library under connectors, con-XXX.lbr, and
> check descriptions for 2mm pitch ...

Actually I haven't installed Eagle yet, still reading up on the techniques. Looks pretty simple, but we'll probably make some mistakes in the learning process.

Thanks!

[For those also interested in learning automated PCB layout, Sparkfun has an excellent series of tutorials on this and many other topics: http://www.sparkfun.com/tutorials]
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: vellecadp on June 07, 2011, 10:16:06 AM

If you are referring to the "alpha rev. proof-of-concept A232DB to 2mm connector Davis serial adapter", then, no. This is a way to spend about $30 to connect your Davis console (VP, VP2, Vue Envoy) to a computer or other device via RS232 serial, rather than spending $120 or so on a Davis serial WeatherLink.

As a newbie, I am very interested in this thread.  I am graduating from an OS WMR968 unit to a new Vantage Pro2 and was very disappointed when I found out I needed to spend another $150 to get the WL software and data logger to read the information on my PC.  The OS units, while not the quality of the Davis, have a much simpler interface for working with the PC.

I am guessing that if you can assemble the kit of parts for the Console Connector to the Serial Adapter as described above, then you should have a functioning interface that can allow the weather software on your PC to read the data from the Console......correct?  Am I correct to assume you do not need to supply any power via this interface and that the 4 wire connections on the serial interface will handle all the actions needed?  I really do not want to fry my console.

I have taken the leap and ordered some parts (the and am waiting for them to arrive.  I will be using my Weather Display software to drive the collection of data and post to my CWOP and WeatherUnderground pages.

Thanks for any help you can offer.

Regards,

Dennis
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on June 07, 2011, 10:22:52 PM

...I am guessing that if you can assemble the kit of parts for the Console Connector to the Serial Adapter as described above, then you should have a functioning interface that can allow the weather software on your PC to read the data from the Console......correct?  Am I correct to assume you do not need to supply any power via this interface and that the 4 wire connections on the serial interface will handle all the actions needed?  I really do not want to fry my console.


Hi Dennis, welcome to the Davis wxforum!

Yes, your assumptions are all correct. The methods in this posting allow you to construct a relatively inexpensive, wireless, self-powered serial interface. Even cheaper if you just use a USB2COM chip without the XBee's.

The trickiest part of the construction is the connection to the back of the console socket. It's a kluge, but it will work if you follow the instructions carefully.

I'm working on a more reliable customized PCB interface for this circuit, but have been sidetracked by other issues, so will still  be awhile before anything is available for testing.

I've been using my wireless XBee interface now since March, which has performed flawlessly. The problems I experience in keeping the station reports flowing are always in my Internet connection and household WIFi. The XBee circuits have never dropped any data. Totally solid.

Keep us informed on your progress, when you get your parts.

John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: vellecadp on June 08, 2011, 07:50:26 PM

Hi Dennis, welcome to the Davis wxforum!

Yes, your assumptions are all correct. The methods in this posting allow you to construct a relatively inexpensive, wireless, self-powered serial interface. Even cheaper if you just use the USB2COM chips without the XBee's.

The trickiest part of the construction is the connection to the back of the console socket. It's a kluge, but it will work if you follow the instructions carefully.

I'm working on a more reliable customized PCB interface for this circuit, but have been sidetracked by other issues, so will still  be awhile before anything is available for testing.

I've been using my wireless XBee interface now since March, which has performed flawlessly. The problems I experience in keeping the station reports flowing are always in my Internet connection and household WIFi. The XBee circuits have never dropped any data. Totally solid.

Keep us informed on your progress, when you get your parts.

John/af4ex

Thanks for the feedback John.  I will keep you all apraised of my progress.  Can not wait for the parts to arrive.

Dennis
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: neulos on June 23, 2011, 12:18:06 PM
Hi Everybody,

I have a OS WMRS200 and recently I won a Davis Vantage Pro2 station in a TV program (first time ever I win something!). I am one of the contributors to wfrog (www.wfrog.org), a open source lightweight data logger written in Python. This is my current station: http://www.mallorcaweb.net/jpuigsegur/wfrog/ which runs in a PC engines ALIX 3D2 board with linux.

For my new Vantage Pro2 I plan to use wfrog (wfrog uses PyWeather for the Davis driver) and linux and therefore I do not need / do not want to buy Weatherlink. Instead my idea is to connect the VantagePro2 directly to my datalogger using a FTDI USB 2 RS232 3.3V converter which seems to be the best option if a wireless link is not necessary. In this thread I've found several links where I can buy that converter, but didn't find (maybe it's there and I didn't see it) any link for the connector on the console side. I am not looking for something fancy, I can do some soldering if necessary. There are some Digi-Key links but they are broken and I am not sure either that Digi-Key sells in Europe where I am based.

Maybe something like this could also work: http://www.robotshop.com/eu/netmedia-10inch-jumper-wires.html
What do you think?

Jordi.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on June 23, 2011, 12:28:47 PM
There are some Digi-Key links but they are broken and I am not sure either that Digi-Key sells in Europe where I am based.

This Digi-Key link still works for me:
http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?Detail&name=952-1361-5-nd
and is the connector I use.

Here's a link to Digi-Key European sales

http://www.digikey.com/info_3.html
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on June 23, 2011, 01:41:56 PM
Hi Everybody,
...
Maybe something like this could also work: http://www.robotshop.com/eu/netmedia-10inch-jumper-wires.html
What do you think?
...

Hi Jordi,

The robotshop link says "Work with any 0.60 - 1.0mm header pins", which sounds like it should work with the 2mm spaced Davis connector pins, but I'd probably ask them first before ordering.

Actually, I would recommend using SLOweather's Digikey connector, the simplest way to make this connection.

I did it the hard way: hacking several 2mm XBee receptacles ($1 each) into pieces, which works fine, but is a bit tricky to fabricate.
:-]
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on June 23, 2011, 02:18:26 PM
Actually, I would recommend using SLOweather's Digikey connector, the simplest way to make this connection.

Yeah, my first testing was with some clip leads. The connector is much nicer and safer.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: neulos on June 23, 2011, 06:10:11 PM
Yup .. the Digi-key link works. I don't know how I checked it before.

Do you know if it is also possible to get the cable and connector that goes into the FTDI basic breakout 3.3V?

Thanks,
Jordi.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on June 23, 2011, 09:38:37 PM
Yup .. the Digi-key link works. I don't know how I checked it before.

Do you know if it is also possible to get the cable and connector that goes into the FTDI basic breakout 3.3V?

Thanks,
Jordi.

Adafruit makes a USB cable with a builtin 3.3v FTDI chip for $20.
http://www.adafruit.com/products/70

Just clip off their header receptacle and replace with the DigiKey plug. I haven't tried this but it looks like it might work (if you're not going to use the XBEE's).

John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: neulos on June 24, 2011, 03:08:27 AM
Thanks,

I understand that this is the same item as the one in sparkfun:

http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9717

5V power and 3.3V I/O. That's right because we are not going to use the power, right?

Jordi.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on June 24, 2011, 06:22:49 PM
Thanks,

I understand that this is the same item as the one in sparkfun:

http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9717

5V power and 3.3V I/O. That's right because we are not going to use the power, right?

Jordi.
Yes, it appears that this SFE cable is identical to the Adafruit cable, and a few bucks cheaper, because SFE considers the 5v power to be a 'mistake'.

But as long as you don't try to power an XBee (3.3v) it should work as a 'wired' serial interface.

:-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Gulfcoast on June 25, 2011, 12:34:39 PM
Is there a cable in the world that will plug right into the VP2 console and the computer without a bunch of wiring?  Looks like the VP2 console has about 20-pins...  Thanks
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Bushman on June 25, 2011, 12:51:59 PM
No commercially available plug - you have to make your own.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Gulfcoast on June 25, 2011, 01:00:21 PM
That sounds simple, but knowing which wire (and how many wires) to solder on a plug might get a little complicated, for the average guy.   :-)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on June 25, 2011, 01:32:18 PM
@Gulfcoast
> ...might get a little complicated, for the average guy...
Yes, that's true, but all the information you need, pinouts etc., can be found on pages 1 and 2 of this post. Requires some experience with soldering and building small electronic circuits.

It's the Davis 20-pin connector, with its 2mm spacing, which complicates everything. I'm designing a plug-in board which will solve this problem, but have been sidetracked with other projects, so not much progress has been made yet.

John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: hswaters on June 25, 2011, 09:52:12 PM
Ok so I went to sparkfun and they have this cable already made up.

http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9717

Will this work for the Davis vantage vue? I expect the connector on the non usb end may need to be modified but other wise is this the correct setup?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on June 26, 2011, 07:04:12 AM
Yes, this is the same cable we've been discussing with Jordi in the previous recent posts. It exposes the Gnd, Serial Input (Rx) and Serial Out (Tx) lines, which need to be connected to the 20-pin Davis output (using the Digikey connector described above).

From page 1 of this post:
"Using DeKay's pinout diagram for navigation, one of the connectors (blue and green) hooks the USB Rx/Tx to the console Tx0,Rx0 pins. The other connector (red and black) hooks up to the gnd pin (leaving the red wire available for XBee connection later)." [These colors refer to the colors in my cable described on pages 1 and 2 of this post]

You may not have to cut the wires. Just release the pin header sockets using the instructions here (http://www.ladyada.net/learn/chumby/serial.html) and insert them over the DigiKey connector pins. Probably need to use heat-shrink tubing to keep them from shorting out. The Sparkfun cable is the same one 'Lady Ada' (aka Limor Fried, the gal who runs Adafruit) is selling.

From LadyAda's photos, looks like the Tx wire is orange and Rx wire is Yellow. Remember to invert these: Tx goes to Davis RxD0 and Rx goes to Davis TxD0!

If you or Jordi can get this to work, it will be a definite improvement over the method I used, for only a few more dollars investment.
 :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on June 26, 2011, 07:22:52 AM
@me
> From LadyAda's photos, looks like the Tx wire is orange and Rx wire is Yellow ...

Yup. The Sparkfun cable has the same color scheme:
http://www.sparkfun.com/datasheets/DevTools/FTDI%203.3V%20IO%205V%20Vcc%20Cable.pdf
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: neulos on June 26, 2011, 04:50:53 PM
I just ordered the Sparkfun cable. For the connector I'll check first in a local electronics shop and If it is not available I will try to find a seller in Europe that doesn't charge 25$ for shipping (too much for a 2$ connector). I'll let you know when things are (hopefully) working.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on June 26, 2011, 10:00:18 PM
Yes, $25 is a lot of money for shipping a $2 item. You might want to check out the Samtec part that I researched back in March.
ESQT-110-02 Series ('elevated' which means it has nice long leads which will extend further than the regular board mounted variety)
http://www.samtec.com/ProductInformation/TechnicalSpecifications/Overview.aspx?series=ESQT

I think they're located in Taiwan, but have offices in Europe. Perhaps you could talk them into sending you a free sample.  :grin:
http://www.samtec.com/aboutus/worldwide_locations.aspx

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: ride-with-jesse-james on July 02, 2011, 08:53:56 PM
Admitted noob here. I have followed all the directions to create the cable from the console to the FTDI from Sparkfun and got the VCP to recognize the FTDI  on my Mac, but since I am not much of a comm expert, I am running into problems getting any software to recognize the console. Do I need to pass some other information to the console through my terminal in order for the software to recognize it?  I am trying to use Lightsoft Weather Center and it sees the usb to serial connection, but does not find the Vantage Vue.  Am I missing something?  I am not interested in using the XBee option as this will be connected to a computer directly.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on July 02, 2011, 11:38:55 PM
Admitted noob here. I have followed all the directions to create the cable from the console to the FTDI from Sparkfun and got the VCP to recognize the FTDI  on my Mac, but since I am not much of a comm expert, I am running into problems getting any software to recognize the console. Do I need to pass some other information to the console through my terminal in order for the software to recognize it?  I am trying to use Lightsoft Weather Center and it sees the usb to serial connection, but does not find the Vantage Vue.  Am I missing something?  I am not interested in using the XBee option as this will be connected to a computer directly.

Most of us are letting our software (Cumulus, WuHu, etc) take care of the communications over the serial connection. Unfortunately I know very little about the Mac, but I'm sure there must be some free or affordable weather software which is Davis compatible.

But for testing and debugging, you should be able to communicate directly with the Davis console using a terminal program. Again I'm not familiar with the Mac, but perhaps something like 'minicom' is available there.

Don't forget to set your terminal up for 19.2K baud. That's the default for the Davis consoles. If the console is in 'streaming' mode, you should see a stream of weather data pouring out onto the terminal screen.

You can turn the streaming on and off with 'STRMON' and 'STRMOFF', respectively. There are many other commands too, but I've never had to use them. I run Cumulus, which automatically talks to the Vantage Vue and sends my reports to the CWOP/APRS network. I didn't have to do anything to get this to work. Cumulus just assumes that I'm using WeatherLink.

You might check out DeKay's original posting in his blog, where he first published the console logger pinout, and how he figured it out. Somewhere in there is a link to the Davis serial interface manual which describes all of the serial interface commands:
http://madscientistlabs.blogspot.com/2011/01/davis-weatherlink-software-not-required.html

Hope That Helps,
John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on July 04, 2011, 02:37:02 PM
Admitted noob here. I have followed all the directions to create the cable from the console to the FTDI from Sparkfun and got the VCP to recognize the FTDI  on my Mac, but since I am not much of a comm expert, I am running into problems getting any software to recognize the console. Do I need to pass some other information to the console through my terminal in order for the software to recognize it?  I am trying to use Lightsoft Weather Center and it sees the usb to serial connection, but does not find the Vantage Vue.  Am I missing something?  I am not interested in using the XBee option as this will be connected to a computer directly.

Jesse, don't know if this will help you, but be aware that the console is a bit fussy as to the serial port setup.  Have a look at this comment (http://madscientistlabs.blogspot.com/2011/01/davis-weatherlink-software-not-required.html?showComment=1298084049246#c3345750866751650626) that I made on my blog regarding comm port setup.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: hswaters on July 06, 2011, 12:03:18 PM
I purchased the SparkFun cable http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9717 and before I tried to connect anything I checked the pins on the cable and on the console.  The RX and TX on both the console and the cable have 3.3 volts.  I was expecting one end or the other to supply the signal voltage and the other end to not have any voltage.   Did I get the wrong cable?  Is what I am seeing normal?  Am I looking at the wrong pins on the console?    On the console I turned it upside down and the words EXPANSION are right side up and the connection runs length wise left to right.  I assumed that pin 1 is on the right bottom.  As for the xbee connector to solder the wires to I have not found one around Houston any place yet.  I guess I may have to order one.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on July 07, 2011, 07:12:36 AM
@hswaters
>  The RX and TX on both the console and the cable have 3.3 volts.
>  I was expecting one end or the other to supply the signal voltage
> and the other end to not have any voltage.  

It's normal for digital circuits to use 'pullup' resistors to keep the lines high until a signal is applied. This keeps the line from 'flapping in the breeze' with no signal. The resistor is large, 10K or so, so it's easy for the signal pins to pull these lines back down to low.

> Did I get the wrong cable?  Is what I am seeing normal?  
> Am I looking at the wrong pins on the console?  

You've got it positioned OK, with pin 1 on lower right. Verify that pin 15 (GND) is zero volts and pin 13 (VCC) is 3.3v.


> As for the xbee connector to solder the wires to
> I have not found one around Houston any place yet.

(As a reminder for all who might be reading this) remember that there are two ways to do this interface, wired and wireless:
1) Wired. All you need is the Sparkfun 9717 cable (or equivalent [I built my own cable!]), which has the builtin USB-to-Serial converter chip (FDTI etc), and some kind of connector to plug into the bottom of the console. Sounds like hswaters is going to build his own (see Page 1 of this post) using an XBee socket ($1 from Sparkfun). Tricky to build but works fine (if you have the skills to build stuff like this). Or you could order the ready-made plug like Jordi did, which will cost some more, but will be much easier to build.

2) Wireless. (See Page 2 of this post) You'll need 2 Xbee transceivers, one of them a ready-made Sparkfun Explorer (or equivalent) and the second one will be a home-made board, similar to Explorer, but with a custom connector to that very unique connector on the bottom of the console.

Hope That Helps,
John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: neulos on July 07, 2011, 09:46:59 AM
Hi,

I just got my FTDI cable and tried it but didn't work. I connected ground, Tx and Rx cables (taking care to switch Tx and Rx). I used "sudo minicom -s" in Linux with 19200 8N1 configuration. I didn't get any reply. I also consider the posibility of a driver issue, so I have to test it with Windows, downloading the driver and using hyperterm.

There's one thing that puzzled me: I configured local echo on and didn't see any of the keys I pressed on my screen.

Any ideas?

Jordi.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on July 07, 2011, 11:50:53 AM
@neulos
> I used "sudo minicom -s" in Linux with 19200 8N1 configuration. I didn't get any reply.

Hmm, that is strange. I suspect it might be minicom. I've had similar issues with it. Try another Linux terminal program, such as "screen", which converts your xterm window into a serial comm window.

:-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: neulos on July 07, 2011, 04:05:02 PM
@neulos
> I used "sudo minicom -s" in Linux with 19200 8N1 configuration. I didn't get any reply.

Hmm, that is strange. I suspect it might be minicom. I've had similar issues with it. Try another Linux terminal program, such as "screen", which converts your xterm window into a serial comm window.

:-|

John,
You were right: it was minicom. I've tried with "sudo screen /dev/ttyUSB0 19200" and is working nicely. I have used screen for other purposes and I didn't realize that it could be used in this situation.

btw, do you know how tu turn on local echo in screen?

Thanks,
Jordi.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on July 07, 2011, 07:46:14 PM
Glad to hear you got the serial working.

I'm not a big fan of minicom, so not sure how to turn on the local echo (or 'half duplex'). Here's the man page. Talks about toggling echo with 'A' command.
http://linux.die.net/man/1/minicom

Not a 'user friendly' program, IMHO.
:-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on July 08, 2011, 09:50:01 AM
@neulos
> btw, do you know how tu turn on local echo in screen?

Oops, I read your post too quickly, thought you were asking about minicom. ('screen' is not great name for a terminal program, or any app for that matter. Too vague and hard to search on Google). :-|

Did a quick check of the linuxhelp page for 'screen' and did not see any instructions for half-duplex etc.
http://linuxhelp.blogspot.com/2005/01/screen-window-manager-for-console.html

Once you get your serial connections working correctly, you won't really need the echo.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: hswaters on July 09, 2011, 06:56:22 PM
Well my connectors came in today and I have the Davis Vantage Vue talking to my pc (Cumulus).  I Wish I had found the right connector before ordering the one I did but with some solder and my antique Dremel tool I made a useable connector.  Anyway I ordered three of the little buggers just in case things did not go very well and I totally destroyed one, partially mangled the second and the third is in a little box for some possible use later.  After getting the cable rigged and plugging it in I installed Cumulus and told it to look on port 16 and when I finished the setup it was reading data as if it had been done by a pro.  Now I have to get the data to wunderground and on the same page as my webcam, figure out if I am going to get a netbook to run it all and various other things.  I may later build the wireless thingy mentioned in some places on this thread as I do like to have the console on my desk by my "main pc" but I don't want to dedicate it to running a cam and the weather station. 

This is the cable I used
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9717
(http://dlnmh9ip6v2uc.cloudfront.net/images/products/09717-01_i_th.jpg)

This is the connector I should have used, (I think, someone please correct me if I am wrong)
http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?Detail&name=ESQT-110-02-G-D-760-ND
(http://media.digikey.com/Photos/Samtec%20Photos/ESQT-110-02-G-D-760.jpg)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on July 09, 2011, 10:21:49 PM
@hswaters
> Well my connectors came in today and I have the Davis Vantage Vue talking to my pc (Cumulus).  

Congratulations! Good to have another home-brewed interface "on the air".

> I Wish I had found the right connector before ordering the one I did but with some solder
> and my antique Dremel tool I made a useable connector.

Same experience here. The important thing is that it works.

> This is the connector I should have used, (I think,
> someone please correct me if I am wrong)
> .... name=ESQT-110-02-G-D-760-ND

That is the 'elevated' part made by Samtec. I haven't tried any of these commericial sockets, but I think it would work. But you might have to trim the pins a bit on this elevated part, if the pins protrude out of the case too far.

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Andiadm on July 10, 2011, 09:57:38 AM
First of all I would like to thank DeKay for his excellent work.

I made my solution in such a way, that it does WiFy: this little small excellent module
(http://www.rovingnetworks.com/images/rn-174.png)
called RN-174 (http://www.rovingnetworks.com/rn-174.php) is happy if you connect GND, 3.3V, RX an TX. Setup is a little tricky (you need to make an Adhoc connection to config the SSID and 19200 Baud Rate) but then it works like a charm. The Eval-Kit should resell in the US at around $80 (I am fom Germany, so no clue about your prices ...) and the module itself for something like 30$. So if any of you folks around are good in designing & manufacturing a PCB, go ahead.

The wireing I did using these
(http://www.kabel-center.de/descr_artikel/C/C-IDE-599/IDE-Kabel-2-5-Zoll-Stecker_gross.jpg)
They have the 2.0mm pitch and you only need to remove the little nose at the side and it fits quite well.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on July 10, 2011, 10:15:29 PM
First of all I would like to thank DeKay for his excellent work.

I made my solution in such a way, that it does WiFy: this little small excellent module

You are welcome, and thanks for sharing yours!  This is a superb solution.

It looks like Digikey has the board (http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?lang=en&site=US&KeyWords=rn-174&x=0&y=0) and the module (http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?Cat=3539948&k=RN-171) for anybody else who wants to give this a shot.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: linuxfreak on July 11, 2011, 02:07:48 PM
Hey Dekay, did you look at the data sheet??  :shock: \:D/  I think I see a Davis ISS replacement in the works!  ;) That module is a 32bit SPARC uP, 7 AD sensor ports, and can go low power mode between transmissions to save power.... 3.3Volt!  ;) \:D/

Looking like a Wi-Fi replacement for the 928MHz FHSS transmitter. Maybe an upgrade for the VP1 weak ISS?

George
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on July 11, 2011, 02:25:35 PM
Looking like a Wi-Fi replacement for the 928MHz FHSS transmitter. Maybe an upgrade for the VP1 weak ISS?

Let me know when you've got the design done  :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Andiadm on July 11, 2011, 05:19:34 PM
I think I see a Davis ISS replacement in the works!  ;)

To be honest, I though about that as well  ;)

At the end, the quality of a weather station is 99% the sensors, and mostly the ones with the best sensors are not the best ones IT wise. If one could find out which analog signal these sensors are producing, it would be about time to hook them up to something else than the ISS to transmit these values to something else than a Davis console.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Bushman on July 11, 2011, 05:42:52 PM
One thing to keep in mind is that by switching to 2.4 gHz you will lose a ton of range.  Cypress makes a nice certified 900 spread spectrum chip/module
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Flag on July 12, 2011, 03:14:32 AM
I think I see a Davis ISS replacement in the works!  ;)

To be honest, I though about that as well  ;)

At the end, the quality of a weather station is 99% the sensors, and mostly the ones with the best sensors are not the best ones IT wise. If one could find out which analog signal these sensors are producing, it would be about time to hook them up to something else than the ISS to transmit these values to something else than a Davis console.

Yes this is so true and one problem when connecting sensors with different types of loggers that people want to use based on something the IT department has set in stone and further based on so called company standards, security and punching holes in firewalls.

And this is where many of the other high end logger manufacturers have short sighted vision as non wireless systems generally only have a single output stream.   
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: vellecadp on July 13, 2011, 09:30:33 AM
First of all I would like to thank DeKay for his excellent work.

The wireing I did using these
(http://www.kabel-center.de/descr_artikel/C/C-IDE-599/IDE-Kabel-2-5-Zoll-Stecker_gross.jpg)
They have the 2.0mm pitch and you only need to remove the little nose at the side and it fits quite well.

Can you advise what cable/connector assembly you are using and where you obtained the assembly?

I have tried assembling my kit of parts and the connector is the biggest issue I have and have not had success in getting communications with my rig.  I would like to try this if possible.

Thanks,

Dennis
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Bushman on July 13, 2011, 10:34:49 AM
Looks to me like a regular hard drive ribbon cable.  Cool idea.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on July 13, 2011, 01:40:33 PM
Looks to me like a regular hard drive ribbon cable.  Cool idea.

An HD cable won't work, at least not directly. The HD cable is standard 0.10" pin spacing, the Vue and VP spacing is 2mm. The OP mentions that it is 2mm spacing
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on July 13, 2011, 08:34:56 PM
At the end, the quality of a weather station is 99% the sensors, and mostly the ones with the best sensors are not the best ones IT wise. If one could find out which analog signal these sensors are producing, it would be about time to hook them up to something else than the ISS to transmit these values to something else than a Davis console.

There is less analog than you'd think.  It is a digital interface to the temperature / humidity sensor (some details here (http://madscientistlabs.blogspot.com/2011/02/busy-weekend-coming-up.html)).  The wind speed and rain bucket are reed switches.  Analog comes down to the wind direction (a 20K potentiometer (http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=7651.msg73374#msg73374)) and the pressure sensor.  The latter is the only thing I've been able to find much detail about.  The one in my console is unmarked, but maybe wxtech has been able to dig up some details on this thing?

(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_Nvf6aanA8XE/TRlLh3nJyiI/AAAAAAAAAJs/NO1pBWWwZMY/s320/What+is+this.jpg)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Bushman on July 13, 2011, 08:46:54 PM
Looks to me like a regular hard drive ribbon cable.  Cool idea.

An HD cable won't work, at least not directly. The HD cable is standard 0.10" pin spacing, the Vue and VP spacing is 2mm. The OP mentions that it is 2mm spacing

I have a half dozen 2mm spacing cables in my  kit that says you are wrong.  Several are from 2.5" IDE devices to attach to MBs.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on July 14, 2011, 02:59:55 AM
Analog comes down to the wind direction (a 20K potentiometer)...

No, you're thinking of the VP2 anemometer. The Vue has a Hall Effect direction sensor. Granted, this may still effectively be interfaced as an analogue device - I'm not really sure about the design details of interfacing such a sensor. But I guess that most non-switch-based sensors are still analogue in their actual sensing element, even if the interface to downstream circuitry, ie after some initial on-chip preprocessing of the raw signal, is digital.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: adnadeau on July 21, 2011, 04:34:12 PM
DeKay and AF4EX/John:  I think you two did a great job of solving the interface dilemma.  Thanks to both of you.  I've been following this thread since it started.

I used AF4EX's connection method with a few changes; I used liquid electrical tape instead of tubing.  If I were going to do it again, I'd use a glue gun to tie the two headers together.  The Xbees work just fine.  Now to look more closely at that WiFi module...

DeKay:  If you look closely at your sensor picture you can see some writing in the upper right corner of the module.  Looks like M5535C or one of its siblings.  http://www.meas-spec.com/product/t_product.aspx?id=5029

Alan
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on July 21, 2011, 08:09:44 PM
DeKay:  If you look closely at your sensor picture you can see some writing in the upper right corner of the module.  Looks like M5535C or one of its siblings.  http://www.meas-spec.com/product/t_product.aspx?id=5029

Alan

 =D&gt;

Thanks so much Alan!  Great find!  You know, I seem to remember Googling around to ID this part, but I came up empty.  I must have been using the other number on there (serial number) and either didn't think to try or didn't notice the other number.

I looked up your link and the description didn't sound quite right.  So I pulled out the original high-res pic and can see that it is actually 5534CM.  Applications include "Weather control systems" according to its product page (man, I'd love to be able to control the weather). Here is its product page (http://www.meas-spec.com/product/t_product.aspx?id=5027), here is where you can buy it (http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?lang=en&site=US&KeyWords=ms5534&x=0&y=0), and here is some Arduino code to drive it (http://ulrichard.is-a-geek.net/?p=10)!

The cool thing about this part is that it has a digital interface rather than an analog one I had originally guessed at.  It also is factory calibrated.  Davis was smart and kept things simple: the amount of A/D they have to do in the console is exactly zero.  But there seems to be a price to pay for this simplicity: $27.27 for a single piece, to be exact.  Good thing they are cheaper by the 1,000  :lol:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: C5250 on July 21, 2011, 10:42:41 PM
There is less analog than you'd think.  It is a digital interface to the temperature / humidity sensor (some details here (http://madscientistlabs.blogspot.com/2011/02/busy-weekend-coming-up.html)).  The wind speed and rain bucket are reed switches.  Analog comes down to the wind direction (a 20K potentiometer (http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=7651.msg73374#msg73374)) and the pressure sensor.  The latter is the only thing I've been able to find much detail about.  The one in my console is unmarked, but maybe wxtech has been able to dig up some details on this thing?

This actually depends upon the vintage.

I believe Davis switch to the Sensirion digital temp/hum sensor around 2007, before then there where separate analog temperature and humidity sensors. With all the pics you have, I'm sure you must have noticed the "missing devices". This is a big part of the reason the firmware is so bloated by now, it has to support all the various sensor types that have been used over the years. Not to mention three different LCD's.


Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DanITman on July 22, 2011, 08:52:07 AM
Has anyone probed the data port on the ISS that connects to the wired counsel.  I'm wondering if this interface can be tapped into directly instead of having to use the counsel.

Thanks
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: C5250 on July 22, 2011, 09:20:20 PM
It's a standard serial connection, so it's possible. The problem would be that the DavisTalk protocol is not publicly documented, so there is no easy way to decode the data.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DanITman on July 24, 2011, 02:47:31 PM
It's a standard serial connection, so it's possible. The problem would be that the DavisTalk protocol is not publicly documented, so there is no easy way to decode the data.

I wonder if WL software can decipher this DavisTalk when hooked directly to the ISS.  I might try this when I get home in a week.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Shane8813 on July 25, 2011, 09:43:56 AM
I would like to start off by apologizing. I'm not sure if it's the appropriate place for this post. I am new to this forum. I have spent the last 3 days reading all your members post and I Would Like Thank Everyone for all the trial and errors and sacrifices you made so we can better understand things. Ok, I'll make it brief. I just purchased Davis Vantage VUE and absolutely love it. Wife was not so happy about the price. Anyway, I am a huge electronics fan and know a lot about  functions and features of electronics,but I have no clue about the inner workings of such sophisticated equipment. I do not want to spend $150 for the data logger if I don't have to. I would rather use optional software. I read on one of the post that some one might start making some and selling them. Do you know of anyone? I'm wanting to expand all the capabilities of this unit for a fraction of the price of course. Thanks For Your Time. I'm looking forward to keep reading on. Just getting into the hobby.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on July 25, 2011, 08:13:26 PM
I would like to start off by apologizing. I'm not sure if it's the appropriate place for this post. I am new to this forum. I have spent the last 3 days reading all your members post and I Would Like Thank Everyone for all the trial and errors and sacrifices you made so we can better understand things. Ok, I'll make it brief. I just purchased Davis Vantage VUE and absolutely love it. Wife was not so happy about the price. Anyway, I am a huge electronics fan and know a lot about  functions and features of electronics,but I have no clue about the inner workings of such sophisticated equipment. I do not want to spend $150 for the data logger if I don't have to. I would rather use optional software. I read on one of the post that some one might start making some and selling them. Do you know of anyone? I'm wanting to expand all the capabilities of this unit for a fraction of the price of course. Thanks For Your Time. I'm looking forward to keep reading on. Just getting into the hobby.

Hi Shane,
Welcome to the Davis WX Forum! You are in the right place if you're looking for an inexpensive, 'do it yourself' serial interface (with emphasis on "DIY") for your Davis station. For about $20 or so you can build a wired cable with an FTDI or equivalent "USB-to-COM" interface device. Either the completely home-brew cable, which I built on page 1 of this post. Or the modified Sparkfun/AdaFruit cable described on page 7, which a few have built already.

Or for about $60 or so you can build the wirless, XBee-powered interface (which I've been using successfully for months now).

The hardest part of both these approaches is the connection to the "non-standard" 2mm pitch, 20-pin connector on the Davis port. There are commerical plugs available but they're a bit pricey for us DIY'ers.

I was thinking about designing a ready-made PCB but it's turned out to be more difficult than I thought with the little spare time I have now.

If you're handy with a soldering iron and have already built some electronic circuits then the DIY ideas in this post should be no big problem for you. We'll help you trouble-shoot if you run into problems.

HTH,
John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: C5250 on July 25, 2011, 10:59:57 PM
I wonder if WL software can decipher this DavisTalk when hooked directly to the ISS.  I might try this when I get home in a week.

No. WL only uses the standard serial commands to obtain the translated data from a console/Envoy.

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on July 26, 2011, 12:00:48 PM
I read on one of the post that some one might start making some and selling them. Do you know of anyone?

I have another thread gong about this. I have received the parts to produce 20 boards. 100 boards were ordered last Thursday, and are slated to ship today. I hope to receive the boards sometime later this week.

Then I'll build up one for immediate testing, and then a few more to distribute at cost to the original respondents for their testing. After that, we'll see about opening up to sales.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on July 29, 2011, 04:32:47 PM
WiFi XBees! (http://www.digi.com/products/wireless-wired-embedded-solutions/zigbee-rf-modules/point-multipoint-rfmodules/xbee-wi-fi.jsp#overview)

These just came out.  Looks like you can get connectivity between the console and a wireless router for $49.  This is comparable to the price of two serial point-point XBees and much more flexible.  These modules support b/g/n, have their own built in wireless stack, and also have the same LVTTL serial interface as the other XBees.

If, like the current XBee solution, the link is essentially transparent, then wouldn't any current software (such as Weatherlink or Cumulus) that supports a TCP/IP interface "just work"???

I gotta get me one of these...
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on July 30, 2011, 08:09:06 AM
@DeKay
> WiFi XBees ...

Yes, very nifty, much greater bandwidth and same board footprint. But how does that help us in interfacing with the 19kb Davis boxes? Which the regular XBees seem to handle perfectly.

I stumbled across another XBee clone, made by Seeed in Hong Kong, called the 'RFBee', which is an 'open source' clone of the regular XBee, i.e. fits in an XBee socket and provides similar functionality.
http://www.seeedstudio.com/depot/rfbee-v11-wireless-arduino-compatible-node-p-614.html

The modulation scheme is different, so these are not drop-in replacements etc, the RFBees can only talk to each other. The advantage is that they give you the source code for the firmware, which is Arduino based, thus readily accessible to hobbyists. So much greater 'tinkerability' than XBee, which is proprietary, for the same price!

http://garden.seeedstudio.com/index.php?title=RFbee_V1.1_-_Wireless_Arduino_compatible_node

Reading the forum discussions, I gather that the reliability is perhaps not as great as XBee (which I can testify is 'rock solid'). But provides a great opportunity for learning how it works.

John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on July 30, 2011, 04:25:37 PM
@DeKay
> WiFi XBees ...
Yes, very nifty, much greater bandwidth and same board footprint. But how does that help us in interfacing with the 19kb Davis boxes? Which the regular XBees seem to handle perfectly.

I was wondering if this would basically work as a serial to wifi adapter, much like the USB to serial converter.  One XBee on the console end and just a computer on the other, communicating through a wireless router.  The XBee seems to take care of bundling the serial bits into TCP/IP packets in its transparent mode.  Page 25 of the product manual (http://ftp1.digi.com/support/documentation/90002124_B.pdf) says...

Quote
When operating in transparent mode, the modules act as a serial line replacement. All
UART data received is queued up for RF transmission. When RF data is received, the
data is sent out through the UART.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on July 30, 2011, 10:31:20 PM
@DeKay
> WiFi XBees ...
Yes, very nifty, much greater bandwidth and same board footprint. But how does that help us in interfacing with the 19kb Davis boxes? Which the regular XBees seem to handle perfectly.

I was wondering if this would basically work as a serial to wifi adapter, much like the USB to serial converter.  One XBee on the console end and just a computer on the other, communicating through a wireless router.  The XBee seems to take care of bundling the serial bits into TCP/IP packets in its transparent mode.  Page 25 of the product manual (http://ftp1.digi.com/support/documentation/90002124_B.pdf) says...

Quote
When operating in transparent mode, the modules act as a serial line replacement. All
UART data received is queued up for RF transmission. When RF data is received, the
data is sent out through the UART.

Yes, it can provide the same serial 'transparency' as the regular XBee's, but with much greater bandwidth, way above 1Mbps as I recall. But since the Davis boxes communicate at a meager 19kb, this extra bandwidth capability would be wasted. Right?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on July 31, 2011, 12:26:01 PM
WiFi XBees! (http://www.digi.com/products/wireless-wired-embedded-solutions/zigbee-rf-modules/point-multipoint-rfmodules/xbee-wi-fi.jsp#overview)

These just came out. 

Looks like these might be excellent value. But, low cost aside, aren't these effectively just another WiFi device server. Or am I missing something?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on July 31, 2011, 06:24:14 PM
@johnd
> ... aren't these effectively just another WiFi device server. Or am I missing something?

I'm not sure what Digi's market goal is for these devices. They apparently default to transparent UART mode, just like we're using the regular XBee's. But they have other programmable modes too, so perhaps intended for inclusion in WiFi-enabled products as OEM parts. Or perhaps serve as an Internet bridge to link XBee-Pro networks to wider area networks.

:-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on July 31, 2011, 08:58:54 PM
Yes, it can provide the same serial 'transparency' as the regular XBee's, but with much greater bandwidth, way above 1Mbps as I recall. But since the Davis boxes communicate at a meager 19kb, this extra bandwidth capability would be wasted. Right?

It isn't the bandwidth that interests me, it is the flexibility.  I think that if you have one of these and forward a port on the router, that you could then access the console from any computer anywhere anytime without having a computer running 24x7 at home.

I think.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on July 31, 2011, 10:22:20 PM
> ... forward a port on the router, that you could then access the console
> from any computer anywhere anytime without having a computer running
> 24x7 at home.

A virtual serial connection, interesting. But it still has to follow the old serial port rules, connect to only one device at a time etc. And you'd probably need some minimal processor (Atmel maybe) running in the background to set it up and provide control.

Not a whole lot of documentation available on this yet. Here's what I found at the Digi site:
http://ftp1.digi.com/support/temp/XBee%20Wi-Fi%20Beta/
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on August 01, 2011, 09:21:21 AM
@johnd
> ... aren't these effectively just another WiFi device server. Or am I missing something?

I'm not sure what Digi's market goal is for these devices. They apparently default to transparent UART mode, just like we're using the regular XBee's. But they have other programmable modes too, so perhaps intended for inclusion in WiFi-enabled products as OEM parts. Or perhaps serve as an Internet bridge to link XBee-Pro networks to wider area networks.

Ok, but that's answering a slightly different question. So the XBee-Pro may potentially offer more flexible network configuration, but most people (individual users at least, if not oems) will probably use them as simple serial-to-WiFi network access points. So, in this more limited role and in the context of Vantage consoles, do the XBPs offer anything that other WiFi serial device servers do not (other than being cheaper, which is of course a big plus, although they will typically need to be mounted inside a case or some other hardware for any serious application, which is a small extra cost and hassle)?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on August 01, 2011, 12:22:35 PM
And you'd probably need some minimal processor (Atmel maybe) running in the background to set it up and provide control.

Why would this be?  There is an initial setup of the module needing a PC, of course, but it isn't clear to me why I'd need a processor running continually in the background if I am not interested in anything but current weather conditions.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on August 01, 2011, 01:19:34 PM
> Why would this be?

Just guessing here, but I suppose primarily to handle user interaction with the device, turning it on and off, changing virtual parameters, handling error conditions etc. Unless that's all built into the device and/or defined via XCTU. I don't really know.

We don't need that for the UART because the FDTI chip handles the connection for us, which can only be established for the connection defined by XCTU, and once it's made, no further adjustments are necessary or allowed, e.g. you can't change the baud rate or endpoint users while it's in operation.

But in the webosphere, 'connections' technically don't exist, they mostly appear as 'restful', stateless HTTP transactions, which means the actual serial connections have to managed somewhere, under the hood (in cookies and server/client caching etc).

:-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: corwyyn on August 15, 2011, 02:04:22 AM
Hey all, just wanted to drop in and let you know there is another homebrew wireless link up and running.  I have been following this thread for a couple of months and finally gathered all of the pieces to assemble my xBee link; actually I had assembled one a couple of weeks ago but the two mini connectors for the console (assembled following af4ex's posts on page two) kept having problems so I bit the bullet and ordered a 2mm pitch 20-pin connector from digi-key.  I don't have any photos of the units right now but I'll try to get some up soon.  Thanks to everyone who contributed time, effort and info on this project - it was a bit frustrating but a whole lot of fun :-P , especially when the data started showing in Cumulus.  Now to get the web page up and running  ;)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on August 15, 2011, 11:18:57 PM
@corwyyn
> ... - it was a bit frustrating but a whole lot of fun , especially when the data
>  started showing in Cumulus.  Now to get the web page up and running  ...

Congrats! Welcome to the Davis Homebrew Serial Interface Club. Let us know when you get the web page up. I'm using Cumulus too, so let us know if you encounter any difficulties.

And don't forget to forward your reports to CWOP, which will provide more outlets for viewing your data as well as making it available for mesoscale forecasting.

Here's my latest CWOP data on findu.com:
http://www.findu.com/cgi-bin/wxpage.cgi?call=AF4EX
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: hazyarc on August 24, 2011, 04:34:47 PM
Hi All, new member to forum here.  I'm just about to bite the bullet and purchase a Vantage Vue from Amazon (they have a sale going on!) and have been reading this thread with great interest.  If I'm interested in a simple, USB connection to my PC and start gathering data in Cumulus, from what I've gathered, I would need

http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?Detail&name=952-1361-5-nd

and

http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9717

Is this correct?  Thanks!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on August 24, 2011, 05:25:20 PM
Hi All, new member to forum here.  I'm just about to bite the bullet and purchase a Vantage Vue from Amazon (they have a sale going on!) and have been reading this thread with great interest.  If I'm interested in a simple, USB connection to my PC and start gathering data in Cumulus, from what I've gathered, I would need

http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?Detail&name=952-1361-5-nd

and

http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9717

Is this correct?  Thanks!

Yes. I believe several forum members have succeeded recently with that arrangement. Seems to be the simplest and most reliable solution to the problem. Please post your results here, successful or otherwise, so that we all can learn from your experience (and help you out if you run into difficulty).

Thanks,
John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: hazyarc on August 24, 2011, 05:29:47 PM
Thank you...will do.  

I think I may need a little clarification on the connection to the console though.  Once I receive the connector from Digikey and the modified cable from Sparkfun...what exactly do I do with it to connect it to the console?  I apologize if this is detailed in a prior post, but it seems that there were several different methods posted in this thread using different equipment, and I want to make sure I don't fry my console!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on August 24, 2011, 05:33:19 PM
@hazyarc
> ... about to bite the bullet and purchase a Vantage Vue from Amazon (they have a sale going on!)
http://www.amazon.com/Davis-Instruments-6250-Vantage-Wireless/dp/B002LLVFK0
Wow, free shipping too (in the US). That's a good deal! :-]
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on August 24, 2011, 05:40:38 PM
Thank you...will do.  

I think I may need a little clarification on the connection to the console though.  Once I receive the connector from Digikey and the modified cable from Sparkfun...what exactly do I do with it to connect it to the console?  I apologize if this is detailed in a prior post, but it seems that there were several different methods posted in this thread using different equipment, and I want to make sure I don't fry my console!

Study the console pinouts on page 2 of this post (thanks DeKay!). I didn't use this cable or plug (did it the 'harder way'), but basically you're going to hook up VCC, ground and the Tx/Rx connections from the USB2COM chip to the Davis interface. You will need to be careful soldering to the Digikey plug. Use heat-shrink tubing to insulate the wires from each other, to prevent any nasty short circuits etc.

Any of you who have already succeeded with this particular cable and plug, please chime in with any additional insights from your own experiences!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: gwynethh on September 15, 2011, 04:47:57 PM
WiFi XBees! (http://www.digi.com/products/wireless-wired-embedded-solutions/zigbee-rf-modules/point-multipoint-rfmodules/xbee-wi-fi.jsp#overview)

These just came out.  Looks like you can get connectivity between the console and a wireless router for $49.  This is comparable to the price of two serial point-point XBees and much more flexible.  These modules support b/g/n, have their own built in wireless stack, and also have the same LVTTL serial interface as the other XBees.

If, like the current XBee solution, the link is essentially transparent, then wouldn't any current software (such as Weatherlink or Cumulus) that supports a TCP/IP interface "just work"???

I gotta get me one of these...

Did I miss something or do these need to be set up first (baud rate etc) via something like the Development Kit via USB and the X-CTU software? Or is an Ethernet configuration possible? If the Ethernet configuration is acceptable then this module sure seems great and easy for anyone with a WiFI connection/device.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on September 15, 2011, 11:19:21 PM
WiFi XBees! (http://www.digi.com/products/wireless-wired-embedded-solutions/zigbee-rf-modules/point-multipoint-rfmodules/xbee-wi-fi.jsp#overview)

These just came out.  Looks like you can get connectivity between the console and a wireless router for $49.  This is comparable to the price of two serial point-point XBees and much more flexible.  These modules support b/g/n, have their own built in wireless stack, and also have the same LVTTL serial interface as the other XBees.

If, like the current XBee solution, the link is essentially transparent, then wouldn't any current software (such as Weatherlink or Cumulus) that supports a TCP/IP interface "just work"???

I gotta get me one of these...

Did I miss something or do these need to be set up first (baud rate etc) via something like the Development Kit via USB and the X-CTU software? Or is an Ethernet configuration possible? If the Ethernet configuration is acceptable then this module sure seems great and easy for anyone with a WiFI connection/device.

Not sure. Wasn't much information available on these when they first appeared. All I understood was that it could run in USART mode like the regular XBee's, so didn't see much advantage over the regular XBee's for the Davis serial interface.

Since then another similar device has appeared from Seeed Studio in Hong Kong [$69.90, free shipping!]
http://www.seeedstudio.com/depot/wifi-bee-p-823.html?cPath=139_141
http://seeedstudio.com/wiki/index.php?title=Wifi_Bee

There seems to be more info about this device, and it is open source, so the software is more accessible for user modfications etc.

It appears to allow the Davis serial port to be accessible via Wifi, but support still seems to be in the early stages so you're still on your own for some of the operations. For example, not clear if more than one computer can connect simultaneously etc.

Also still not clear what the advantage would be over just using two $20 Xbee's which also gives you an end-to-end wireless hookup, but only between two designated computers.

:-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: gwynethh on September 16, 2011, 08:48:46 AM
I may have missed this (Ya I did darn it but seeing Sparkfun has it as a module and better price is new) another less expensive WiFI option may be http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10822
which is a RN-XV module by Roving Networks. It apparently has the same footprint as XBees and is less expensive than the other wireless modules/options. Currently out of stock but at 35$ each I may experiment with one after I get my Vantage Vue2 up and running in a week or two.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: gwynethh on September 16, 2011, 09:04:04 AM
First of all I would like to thank DeKay for his excellent work.

I made my solution in such a way, that it does WiFy: this little small excellent module
(http://www.rovingnetworks.com/images/rn-174.png)
called RN-174 (http://www.rovingnetworks.com/rn-174.php) is happy if you connect GND, 3.3V, RX an TX. Setup is a little tricky (you need to make an Adhoc connection to config the SSID and 19200 Baud Rate) but then it works like a charm. The Eval-Kit should resell in the US at around $80 (I am fom Germany, so no clue about your prices ...) and the module itself for something like 30$. So if any of you folks around are good in designing & manufacturing a PCB, go ahead.

snip


Have you tested the range yet? I see Sparkfun has the RN-XV module listed for 35$ so I may try one.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on September 16, 2011, 11:56:59 AM
I may have missed this (Ya I did darn it but seeing Sparkfun has it as a module and better price is new) another less expensive WiFI option may be http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10822
which is a RN-XV module by Roving Networks. It apparently has the same footprint as XBees and is less expensive than the other wireless modules/options. Currently out of stock but at 35$ each I may experiment with one after I get my Vantage Vue2 up and running in a week or two.

Ok, so now we have _three_ wifi "bee" gadgets to play with :-]

I'm too busy now, but I will eventually get one of these to experiment with. I like the open source aspect of Seeed, but also note that it's a brand new product and will likely have some operating glitches. (I've purchased several Seeed products already. Very good in general (for the price), but not without problems. Support is hit and miss. Seeed tries to offer help, but are usually slow to respond)

Ultimately it has to be 'rock solid' 24/7 before I will trust it to post my weather reports. The two XBee v1 units I'm using now have been amazingly reliable. They have been running almost continuously since March 2011 with no XBee serial failures so far that I have detected. My home Wifi and  Internet connection (and a creaky old Vista laptop), on the other hand, are the source of virtually all my reporting outages.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Andiadm on September 17, 2011, 01:32:45 AM
Have you tested the range yet? I see Sparkfun has the RN-XV module listed for 35$ so I may try one.

Yes, it works just fine. I have a distance of round 30 meters between the console and the WiFi Router and no dropouts or whatsoever. I am a happy camper with this solution.

BTW, with all of these WiFi gadgets, you can only have 1 active serial session at a time, reason is, that the device is made to listen to one source of commands only. Some have an ability to stream out whatever comes in on the serial port, there you could have more clients. But devices where you have to send a command to receive something, such as the Vantage, its always a 1:1 connection.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on September 17, 2011, 09:10:05 AM
@andiadm
> BTW, with all of these WiFi gadgets, you can only have 1 active serial session at a time, reason is,
> that the device is made to listen to one source of commands only.

Yes, that is true when operating in the so-called 'USART' mode, which is designed to emulate an end-to-end serial connection, as you have described.

The frustrating aspect of all this is that these little XBee gadgets are capable of supporting much more: low-power, self-organizing, ad-hoc networks of sensors:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZigBee

So, with appropriate software in place, it should be possible to create a network of weather and other kinds of low-power sensors which can inserted in a 'plug and play' manner for reporting and exchanging their data with other sensors and network monitors.

To conserve power, the data rates are somewhat capped, at around 250kbps I believe. So I view these WiFi/XBee units as somewhat of a hybrid "bridge" to faster tcp/ip networks (for processing video and other high-bandwidth signals etc).

This is all very appealing to me, but I'm still in the learning stage and haven't quite figured out how to get these ideas working with the Davis boxes.

:-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: iamturnip on September 25, 2011, 10:07:13 PM
Hello all!

I was very happy to find this thread on the ol' interwebs! I bought a Vantage Vue for my father( in Central Ontario Canada) last month, and mine(Vancouver, BC) is currently in the mail. I love to tinker with electronics, and also have my own electronics repair and recycling company so I get ample time to play - but not on my own stuff!

Yes, it's expensive, but I believe nothing is 'overpriced' if the company makes money selling it. I'm all for American ingenuity and enterprise (which must be motivated partly by profits, else we wouldn't have jobs).

This quote really drew me into the conversation. I had a friend debate with me about why I was buying such a pricey unit. I told him if there was a Canadian made unit I would pay double if it meant more jobs stayed here. All too often we go for cheap and in turn wreak our own countries in the process. Bravo af4ex for your comment.

I will be following the instructions in this thread on making my own dongle for the the console. I am a long time Linux(Debian flavour) user and will be looking at using free and open source software to power my needs. Currently I am looking at weeWX -  http://www.weewx.com/ If anyone has any other Linux type suggestions I look forward to hearing from you.

I hope to have some results and photos back to this thread by the end of October. Hopefully work will not take me away from this side project too much!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on September 25, 2011, 11:40:35 PM
Welcome, iaturnip.  Good to see a fellow DIYer, Linux user, and Canuckistanian on this forum.  Just shout if you need any help getting your interface going.

I hadn't tried weeWX yet as it had a ton of dependencies that I'd have to track down to run on by Arch box, and I couldn't be bothered at the time.  I don't know your needs, but you could always try grabbing these perl scripts as well if you really want to get your hands dirty: http://andrew.mcmillan.net.nz/projects/Davis%3A%3AVantagePro
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on September 26, 2011, 07:00:53 AM
@iamturnip
> I hope to have some results and photos back to this thread by the end of October.

Glad to hear that you've found some inspiration in these pages. Welcome aboard. Looking forward to seeing your first results with your Vantage Vue!

John/af4ex
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: gwynethh on October 04, 2011, 01:52:54 PM
Still waiting on the RN-XV WIFI module from Sparkfun. It is in stock from Digikey but I ordered two other things from the people at Sparkfun so am awaiting the full order. I did pickup a cheap laptop IDE cable to make up a connector for the back of the Vantage (someone else noted it has the correct pin spacing). One laptop IDE cable can make up 4 connectors for the expansion connector so plenty to practice with and cheap too (a spare or Ebay).
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on October 04, 2011, 11:22:09 PM
I did pickup a cheap laptop IDE cable to make up a connector for the back of the Vantage (someone else noted it has the correct pin spacing). One laptop IDE cable can make up 4 connectors for the expansion connector so plenty to practice with and cheap too (a spare or Ebay).

So you are taking a Dremel to the laptop cable connectors or you ordered new connectors?  The flat ribbon cable itself is the right stuff (1mm pitch), but the connectors on the laptop cable will be way too wide.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: gwynethh on October 05, 2011, 09:07:09 AM
 
[/quote]

So you are taking a Dremel to the laptop cable connectors or you ordered new connectors?  The flat ribbon cable itself is the right stuff (1mm pitch), but the connectors on the laptop cable will be way too wide.
[/quote]

An exacto knife and patience will cut the connector to the required 20 pin (2X10) size hence 2 of the right size connectors per end of the IDE cable. I also pulled out the unnecessary pins from the resulting connector to minimize chance of a short.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: gwynethh on October 20, 2011, 11:41:41 AM
Well we have made a bit of progress on connecting a RN-XV WIFI module to our VP2. The module will now boot up and connect to our home wireless network access point. From the wireless connection we can access the module and send internal commands to it. Still trying to figure why we can't read the serial data out of the VV2 yet. We may be messed up somewhere thought we are pretty sure TX and RX are connected properly and the expected baud rate is set to 19200 8N1. We will play around a bit more today to see what our problem is.

 \:D/ All right success! Looks like we had a bad connection on either the RX or TX pins at the VP2 with one of our modified laptop IDE cable derived plugs.

So to summarize
1 RN-XV
1 XBee breakout board
2 10 pin SIP sockets
(all the above from SparkFun at a total cost of $43.46)
1 used laptop IDE cable (will provide 4 of the needed back panel connectors to the VV2)
Cumulus software
some set up frustration plus patience and time will add WIFI connectivity to the VV2.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on October 21, 2011, 05:30:21 AM
Outstanding job, gwynethh!  It would be interesting to see if multiple PCs trying to access the console at the same time cause any problems.  If the messages back and forth are short enough, I'm theorizing that it just might work: the RN-XV's TCP-IP stack might keep everything straight.  But what I know about networking could fit on the head of a pin.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on October 21, 2011, 06:37:09 AM
Good work, gwynethh, and just in time, Sparkfun is sold out of these RN-XV WIFI units again :-|

I'm still trying to understand how the serial connection works with these gadgets.

Some questions:

1) Would it be possible to establish a connection on a remote computer, miles away away from the console?
2) Is the connection 'broadcast' to everyone or just to a specific IP address?
3) What software do you need to connect on the client side?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: gwynethh on October 21, 2011, 08:54:11 AM
Good work, gwynethh, and just in time, Sparkfun is sold out of these RN-XV WIFI units again :-|

I'm still trying to understand how the serial connection works with these gadgets.

Some questions:

1) Would it be possible to establish a connection on a remote computer, miles away away from the console?
2) Is the connection 'broadcast' to everyone or just to a specific IP address?
3) What software do you need to connect on the client side?

1. I'm way not sure on this but as far as i can tell so far, the RN-XV acts just like any client on a wireless network so if you can remote access your router you should be able to obtain the data from the RN-XV.
2. The RN-XV connects to a wireless router in a manner typical to other WiFI devices (e.g. a laptop). During the initial XV setup (in Adhoc mode) you can assign a wireless channel (saves scanning time), the SSID to try to connect to and the security of your router (e.g.WEP-128) along with needed security phrase or code. The IP address is obtained via DHCP (?) during the connection process to the router and can be seen in your router status.
3.When setting up the XV I used a laptop with win7, running TeraTerm (free). For remote weather display I am using the last release of Cumulus though I'd guess any weather client that allows TCP/IP connection would also work.

As for the "how" the serial connection works in detail that is beyond me.
I hope I haven't confused you as my knowledge of the XV is just enough to work through the manual and after a bit of trial and error was able to succeed.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: gwynethh on October 21, 2011, 08:58:32 AM
Outstanding job, gwynethh!  It would be interesting to see if multiple PCs trying to access the console at the same time cause any problems.  If the messages back and forth are short enough, I'm theorizing that it just might work: the RN-XV's TCP-IP stack might keep everything straight.  But what I know about networking could fit on the head of a pin.

I will try that this weekend by also trying to run Cumulus (at the same time as running Cumulus on our main PC) on my wireless laptop. Should be interesting.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on October 22, 2011, 07:27:10 AM
... not sure on this but as far as i can tell so far, the RN-XV acts just like any client on a wireless

Looking at the data sheet and user manual (http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10822) I see that this is a bit different than I imagined. Instead of setting up a web server on port 80 (needing a client-side piece to communicate with) it merely sets itself up as a client on its own WiFi network at 169.254.1.1 port 2000.

Then, to allow Cumulus to see the joined port 2000 device, you need to bridge ('join') that network with your router's WiFi Internet network and then set up a virtual com port using this tool: http://www.pira.cz/eng/piracom.htm

Then all your weather program needs is the virtual com port number. A little effort required to set it up, but seems to be a very simple connection once it's set up. (I wonder how robust it is, compared to the 'rock-solid' XBee connection. Time will tell.)

So it should be easy to set this up remotely, so that you can connect to the virtual com port from a remote computer by using the 'port forwarding' feature of your router.

I recall there was some interest a while ago about setting up the Davis weather station at one house and then accessing console serial at another house miles away. This should do the trick.

It also seems to have a fairly high bandwidth (450kbps). I have another sensor application (detecting lightning sferics in the VLF spectrum) which has audio bandwidth. Looks like this little gadget (which also has some built-in 'analog-to-digital' converters) could sample and send the data to a nearby access point to my spectrum analyzer. Uses a 32-bit Sparc processor, so plenty of signal-processing muscle power.

Might even handle webcam pictures sent in slow-scan format: https://www.argentdata.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=150

Yes, this looks like a very useful device. I think I'll get one (when they're back in stock.  :grin:)

Thanks,
John/af4ex

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: gwynethh on October 22, 2011, 09:52:21 AM
... not sure on this but as far as i can tell so far, the RN-XV acts just like any client on a wireless

Looking at the data sheet and user manual (http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10822) I see that this is a bit different than I imagined. Instead of setting up a web server on port 80 (needing a client-side piece to communicate with) it merely sets itself up as a client on its own WiFi network at 169.254.1.1 port 2000.


Are you are referring to the default Ad Hoc connection address (necessary for initial configuration)? After configuration it will connect to any wireless Access Point (AP) on a address determined by dhcp and port 2000 (and SSID and security). My ignorance of these matters is exceptional so I will defer to those of you are more knowledgeable. Party On.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on October 22, 2011, 06:07:49 PM
> Are you are referring to the default Ad Hoc connection address ...?
Yes, it seems to support several connection modes, all useful for various purposes.

Comparing the RN-XV board to the similar one by Seeed Studio, I think the RN-XV wins because it's cheaper and offers more performance (32-bit Sparc vs. 8-bit Atmel), even though the Seeed is open source and provides all the hardware specs for tinkerering etc.

I'm no network guru but know a little bit about this socket-level stuff because years ago I was forced to write my  own client/server routines (in C) because all the fancy object-oriented frameworks weren't available.
:-|
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: gwynethh on October 24, 2011, 09:41:49 AM
Outstanding job, gwynethh!  It would be interesting to see if multiple PCs trying to access the console at the same time cause any problems.  If the messages back and forth are short enough, I'm theorizing that it just might work: the RN-XV's TCP-IP stack might keep everything straight.  But what I know about networking could fit on the head of a pin.

No luck with multiple PCs accessing the base at the same time. The second instance will not connect and will cause the first instance to error out. Maybe someone with more wireless router savvy could cure this but a no go for us.

Update. By playing with the "Discon Period" and restart settings in Cumulus we got two instances of Cumulus running on different PCs though they might cause a restart of each other if the data requests overlap/collide.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SLOweather on October 25, 2011, 06:49:36 PM

No luck with multiple PCs accessing the base at the same time. The second instance will not connect and will cause the first instance to error out. Maybe someone with more wireless router savvy could cure this but a no go for us.

Update. By playing with the "Discon Period" and restart settings in Cumulus we got two instances of Cumulus running on different PCs though they might cause a restart of each other if the data requests overlap/collide.

Yeah, that's the problem. You are still connected via serial (a point to point protocol), even though you are using a multipoint protocol to do it. If you want to run multiple programs on the same console with this lash-up, the best thing to do would be run Virtual VP connected to the console via wireless on one machine, and then have the other computers or programs connect to VVP.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: iamturnip on November 04, 2011, 12:38:05 AM
Hello folks,

So I finally got the FTDI Basic part from Sparkfun, and had a good friend of mine, Jax, but together the DIY dongle. My hands sometimes are not good for fine work so sometimes I leave it up to him!

He used a hard drive IDE cable from a G3 Ibook, that he removed the ribbon cable from, a cut up piece of IDE cable from a desktop computer, and good old glue gun glue to do the job. I didn't need it to be super fancy.

(http://thehackery.ca/vantage/IMG_1163.JPG)

He used the red wire of the IDE cable to signify Ground, so I knew which way to plug it into the console.

(http://thehackery.ca/vantage/IMG_1162.JPG)

A first test via Mincom showed no results. I was a bit disappointed, after all it is a pretty simple set up. Jax tried it out on his nifty pocket PC with Hyperterm. He bent a wire and stuck it in the connecter to join RX and TX, and after turning off Hardware Flow Control, he had it echoing back what he typed. Sure enough after turning off Hardware Flow control on my Minicom, I was talking to the Davis Console instantly. What a great feeling to see random data spitting out at you!

I want to thank Dekay for the information you provided the world free of charge. A thanks to af4ex for the pictures to help us along. A thanks to everyone else for their stories of struggle and success. I would also like to thank Jax for his young hands - he is a great kid and has some neat projects at - http://www.jax184.com (the least I can do for him).

My next post will outline my work with  Free and Open Source software to do something with all this data. Hopefully I will have a link to share for my live web feed of my weather station data.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: af4ex on November 04, 2011, 07:33:41 AM
Turnip, good to hear that you have a working interface. Thanks for the photos. Keep the data flowing!
 :grin:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: neulos on November 04, 2011, 11:10:56 AM
A couple of months ago, and thanks to this forum, I was able to connect my Davis without a data logger to a computer. I used the FTDI cable (http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9717 (http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9717)) and SAMTEC connector (http://www.samtec.com/ProductInformation/TechnicalSpecifications/Overview.aspx?series=ESQT (http://www.samtec.com/ProductInformation/TechnicalSpecifications/Overview.aspx?series=ESQT)). It is been working now since 25th September flawlessly. You can see the weather station online at http://www.puigsegur.cat/meteosantjoan/24hours.html (http://www.puigsegur.cat/meteosantjoan/24hours.html) and also in Weather Underground (http://www.wunderground.com/weatherstation/WXDailyHistory.asp?ID=IIBSANTJ2) and PWS (http://www.pwsweather.com/obs/SANTJOAN.html#).

The connexions were:
* FTDI black (ground) - console number 15 (ground)
* FTDI orange (Tx) - console númber 5  (Rx)
* FTDI yellow (Rx) - console númber 6 (Tx)
(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_Nvf6aanA8XE/TTzcIXs-aJI/AAAAAAAAAKQ/SFMqAEJXWZY/s1600/VP2+Expansion.jpg)

I think I never got around to post the pictures, so here they are:

(https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-B1ClIZqhDUI/TjPSZ3DieeI/AAAAAAAAFS0/ESuMuQFWqOI/s800/davis-4.jpg)

Here you can see the whole setup with the old Oregon WMRS200 waiting to be substituted. The aluminium box under the Oregon is the ALIX3D2 computer I use to run wfrog (www.wfrog.org):

(https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-mdyDDwemgcg/TjPSWAZiARI/AAAAAAAAFSo/JlkpdpGQAt0/s800/davis-2.jpg)




Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on November 04, 2011, 08:30:40 PM
I want to thank Dekay for the information you provided the world free of charge. A thanks to af4ex for the pictures to help us along. A thanks to everyone else for their stories of struggle and success. I would also like to thank Jax for his young hands - he is a great kid and has some neat projects at - http://www.jax184.com (the least I can do for him).

My next post will outline my work with  Free and Open Source software to do something with all this data. Hopefully I will have a link to share for my live web feed of my weather station data.

Nice job iamturnip, and you are welcome.  Looking forward to seeing your contribution.  They all add up.

Jax's site is pretty cool.  I skimmed his resurrection of the NeXT cube this morning and was very impressed: you should suggest that he submit that to Hackaday (http://hackaday.com).  I'm hoping you might have another project to get him working on in the coming weeks, so keep his phone number handy.

A couple of months ago, and thanks to this forum, I was able to connect my Davis without a data logger to a computer... It is been working now since 25th September flawlessly.

A nice, clean job there Neulos. 

I should have sold this design to Davis, given the problems some people have had with the off-the-shelf USB interface.  I haven't heard of anyone losing a single bit of data so far with the DIY version.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: belfryboy on November 06, 2011, 05:18:17 AM
I shall be posting images of my setup in a few days, I have found a company in the UK that will give me (free, gratis!) bare PCBs so I have fitted the breackout 20 pin header to a FTDI cables that I bought off Ebay for Ł12, and the people at Harwin were nice enough to give me free samples of the 20 pin connector!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: iamturnip on November 21, 2011, 09:13:43 PM
Well so far I have had the best luck with wview. I tried out weewx first but was having some minor issues with it. The only reason I abandoned weewx is the "apt-get install magic" of wview. As a Debian user I will always favour a package that is part of apt over a hand built option.

The good news is, the home made connector communicate real time data to the wview no problem, but there is a downside.

I would like to point out at this time that the home made versions we are building here do not have an archive buffer between the console and a computer as the Davis part does. This buffer as far as I understand from poking around is what a piece of software like wview uses to build its archive data from. There is a post from another user related to this on this forum here - http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=13034.0 (http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=13034.0). I am hoping to hear back from him on this issue.

I have not exhausted all open source software programs yet, but might be forced to if I cannot resolve this issue. wfrog looks interesting, but I I don't really like the html layout that comes default with it.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: neulos on November 22, 2011, 03:28:01 AM
I can confirm that wfrog works with this type of setup. I am one of wfrog project leaders and I've got a Davis connected to a Alix 3D2 board using a FTDI cable and running voyage linux and wfrog (see the link below). wfrog only expects Davis basic events (every two seconds) so it doesn't need the datalogger.

I understand that you might not like the default html setup. With good knowledge of html it shouldn't be difficult to change (it is based in cheetah templates).
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: belfryboy on November 22, 2011, 04:14:59 AM
I would like to point out at this time that the home made versions we are building here do not have an archive buffer between the console and a computer as the Davis part does. This buffer as far as I understand from poking around is what a piece of software like wview uses to build its archive data from.

I have a working logger clone with archive facitilty that should work with the Davis Vue.

here is an image of the prototype
(http://farm7.staticflickr.com/6098/6376489793_108e2ff966.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/77614806@N00/6376489793/)
Logger MkII (http://www.flickr.com/photos/77614806@N00/6376489793/) by belfryboy (http://www.flickr.com/people/77614806@N00/), on Flickr
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: iamturnip on November 22, 2011, 12:55:21 PM
I can confirm that wfrog works with this type of setup. I am one of wfrog project leaders and I've got a Davis connected to a Alix 3D2 board using a FTDI cable and running voyage linux and wfrog (see the link below). wfrog only expects Davis basic events (every two seconds) so it doesn't need the datalogger.

I understand that you might not like the default html setup. With good knowledge of html it shouldn't be difficult to change (it is based in cheetah templates).

Thank you for the confirmation that wfrog works with my setup. I will certianly give it a try tonight. I suppose I should clarify my html statement. I do like the simplicity of it, but I found some of the graphs harder to read. Perhaps looking at my own data first will help me navigate them better. But you are right, with some knowledge of coding I can change it to my liking.

I have a working logger clone with archive facitilty that should work with the Davis Vue.

Oh how I love the hacker-DIY community. This is fantastic belfryboy! Would you be open to sending more information on your prototype? I never thought getting a weather station would lead to so much learning and fun!

On a side note, my station survived its first wind storm here, but it was a baby one (top speed 51km/h) compared to what we will get in the season, usually at least one good storm with 80 - 110km/h gusts.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: sboyd8 on November 24, 2011, 09:05:30 PM
 :?:  With regard to the desire to have a wifi non-logging interface to the console:

I've been thinking about all these wifi tablets, some of which are running cell phone like mobile app software, pricing approaching less than $50 for a 7" no-name tablet, would make great secondary consoles in other rooms of the house.

What I'd like is to buy two or three of these cheap tablets, stick them on the wall, one in the bedroom upstairs and one out in the garage/workshop.  The only purpose would be to run something like Cumulus to display what I can see at my Davis console in multiple locations.  Right now my option is to buy multiple Davis consoles, they are pricey.

This discussion appears to have most of the pieces of the puzzle, make a cable/converter to plug into the Davis console, pluck out the data and put it on my local wifi net.  Then find something like Cumulus that would run on the cheap tablets, or an App someone has designed to run on the I-Phone or Droids or some such wifi enabled cell phone devices, figure out how to let multiple units tap the data without stepping on each other.

Could be a real money maker for you guys.  A lot of amateurs buying Davis not to put up a broadcasting weather hub but for the quality of the station.  We want extra consoles that don't cost an arm and a leg.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Bushman on November 24, 2011, 09:39:58 PM
Search for the threads on the Kodak WIFI picture frame.  Solved.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Mr.Wizard on November 27, 2011, 04:32:11 PM
I would like to point out at this time that the home made versions we are building here do not have an archive buffer between the console and a computer as the Davis part does. This buffer as far as I understand from poking around is what a piece of software like wview uses to build its archive data from.

I have a working logger clone with archive facitilty that should work with the Davis Vue.

here is an image of the prototype
(http://farm7.staticflickr.com/6098/6376489793_108e2ff966.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/77614806@N00/6376489793/)
Logger MkII (http://www.flickr.com/photos/77614806@N00/6376489793/) by belfryboy (http://www.flickr.com/people/77614806@N00/), on Flickr

Is it possible to somehow get the logging and wireless capability together?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: belfryboy on November 28, 2011, 03:35:27 AM

Is it possible to somehow get the logging and wireless capability together?
If the wireless module is simply a serial interface then of course. It would just need to connect to the RX and TX lines. I could have a look at this if anyone wants it.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Mr.Wizard on November 28, 2011, 09:46:23 AM

Is it possible to somehow get the logging and wireless capability together?
If the wireless module is simply a serial interface then of course. It would just need to connect to the RX and TX lines. I could have a look at this if anyone wants it.

I was just looking at what Gwynethh was doing and also John/af4x, but the units they were building had no logging capability correct?  The wireless looks good to me as I want my console upstairs, and our only computer is in the basement, but I dont want to run it 24/7. 
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: belfryboy on November 28, 2011, 10:05:31 AM
as i said, very simple to add logging capability.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Mr.Wizard on November 28, 2011, 10:23:18 PM
Let's pretend Santa leaves a Data Logger in my sock, what parts do I need to stream the data from upstairs to downstairs using the xbees?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on November 28, 2011, 10:49:50 PM
Let's pretend Santa leaves a Data Logger in my sock, what parts do I need to stream the data from upstairs to downstairs using the xbees?

Nothing, besides a cable to connect between the xbee header and the terminal block shown on belfryboy's logger.  Look at this post (http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10721.msg104689#msg104689) to see how af4ex made the connection to the xbee on the console side.

The logger and the interface are two totally separate functions.  That is why we can have one, the other, or both.  belfryboy's design is the logger plus a terminal block connected to the consoles Tx / Rx lines that makes it easy to connect up the computer interface.  Like he said: very simple.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Mr.Wizard on November 29, 2011, 10:43:03 AM
Let's pretend Santa leaves a Data Logger in my sock, what parts do I need to stream the data from upstairs to downstairs using the xbees?

Nothing, besides a cable to connect between the xbee header and the terminal block shown on belfryboy's logger.  Look at this post (http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10721.msg104689#msg104689) to see how af4ex made the connection to the xbee on the console side.

The logger and the interface are two totally separate functions.  That is why we can have one, the other, or both.  belfryboy's design is the logger plus a terminal block connected to the consoles Tx / Rx lines that makes it easy to connect up the computer interface.  Like he said: very simple.
My mistake, I should have clarified a Davis weather logger in my sock, as there is the possibility of that occuring. 

So it looks like this for the computer side
Buy a USB EXplorer ($25) and a 1mw XBee ($22) from SparkFun, plug it into your destination computer, configure it, and you're halfway done! (You can use a higher power unit of course, but more expensive and higher drain on batteries)
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8687
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8665

but what would be needed to get the davis data logger to connect to another xbee?  the same as what would plug into the destination computer? Dont have a Davis logger so I dont know what end is on it
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on November 29, 2011, 07:33:26 PM
but what would be needed to get the davis data logger to connect to another xbee?  the same as what would plug into the destination computer? Dont have a Davis logger so I dont know what end is on it

You buy the Davis logger with either a standard USB or standard RS-232 connection that is meant to plug in directly to a PC.  If you want a wireless setup, you'd be better off just buying an off the shelf wireless extender for this.  Please start another thread if you have more questions, because what you are talking about has basically nothing to do with this topic.  Or just use the search function to find threads like this one (http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10676.0).
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on December 11, 2011, 09:46:56 PM
I thought there might be a few people out there interested in a very cool hack.  A reader of my blog has figured out how to directly hook up a Davis console to his router and upload the data directly to wunderground.  No interface PC required.

He used a Linksys WRT54G, which already has an internal serial interface at compatible voltage levels to the console.  Many other routers have a similar connection inside.  This part I figured would be straightforward, and it was.  The tricky part is the software.  He looks to have that nailed and has made the script available in the public domain.  Check it out at this link (http://blog.ancient-workshop.com/post/2011/12/10/Weather-Station-Hacking) and start voiding another warranty!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Bushman on December 11, 2011, 09:53:32 PM
You've created a monster!! LOL  Awesome work and it is amazing to me to see the spin-offs.  WOW!  Wow!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: iamturnip on December 21, 2011, 01:51:17 AM
He used a Linksys WRT54G, which already has an internal serial interface at compatible voltage levels to the console.  Many other routers have a similar connection inside.  This part I figured would be straightforward, and it was.  The tricky part is the software.  He looks to have that nailed and has made the script available in the public domain.  Check it out at this link (http://blog.ancient-workshop.com/post/2011/12/10/Weather-Station-Hacking) and start voiding another warranty!

Ha! Just as I finished having Jax add the logger chip to the USB dongle we created earlier - there is a new hack! I love this! Who knew so many people were hacking away at this Davis equipment. I am happy now with what I have thanks to the great people on this forum. No more additions to my unit for some time.

Now I have to wrap my head around wview. For some reason it wants to record my inside temp as the the daily high for outside. I only wish it was 21C outside right now.

Happy Holidays and Good New Year everyone.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: HandyGeek on December 26, 2011, 03:42:59 PM
Is it correct that this Hirose connector will connect without modification?

http://octopart.com/df11-20ds-2dsa%2805%29-hirose-260412 (http://octopart.com/df11-20ds-2dsa%2805%29-hirose-260412)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: HandyGeek on December 26, 2011, 07:36:23 PM
I thought there might be a few people out there interested in a very cool hack.  A reader of my blog has figured out how to directly hook up a Davis console to his router and upload the data directly to wunderground.  No interface PC required.

He used a Linksys WRT54G, which already has an internal serial interface at compatible voltage levels to the console.  Many other routers have a similar connection inside.  This part I figured would be straightforward, and it was.  The tricky part is the software.  He looks to have that nailed and has made the script available in the public domain.  Check it out at this link (http://blog.ancient-workshop.com/post/2011/12/10/Weather-Station-Hacking) and start voiding another warranty!

QUESTION:  Could his code be modified to post to a weather data service other than Wunderground - or perhaps to multiple services?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: n8zuz on January 09, 2012, 05:07:33 PM
I bought the FTDI cable from sparkfun and the sockets from digikey.  I notice neulos only connected ground, tx, and rx.  No VCC (voltage-collector-to-collector). 

What is the purpose of VCC?  Should I hook it up?  I'm thinking it's the positive voltage reference but I could be wrong.

Thanks,
Jeff
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on January 09, 2012, 08:07:40 PM
I bought the FTDI cable from sparkfun and the sockets from digikey.  I notice neulos only connected ground, tx, and rx.  No VCC (voltage-collector-to-collector). 

What is the purpose of VCC?  Should I hook it up?  I'm thinking it's the positive voltage reference but I could be wrong.

Thanks,
Jeff

You are wrong, actually.   :-)

The ground connection establishes a common reference between the two circuits.  That, Tx, and Rx are all that should be connected.  Leave Vcc unconnected.  Connecting Vcc could actually do bad things.  Very bad things.  Bad things as in dogs and cats living together bad.  Bad things as in introducing a big current loop and letting the magic smoke out bad.  Vcc is there on the console to power the circuitry in the Davis logger, which does not have a battery of its own.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: n8zuz on January 09, 2012, 10:38:14 PM
Been wrong before so that's OK.  I'll keep it in mind when I solder up the cable at a later date. I want to get things going first.  My console has a 3F difference between indoor/outdoor sensors sitting on a table for over an hour.  It doesn't want to work on good C batteries neither. 

Thanks,
Jeff
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: hppillai on January 12, 2012, 07:17:14 PM
Nice discussion. Trying to hook up Vue with Breakout Board for FT232RL USB to Serial x1 configured for 3.3V. Will be using cumulus for the time being. Later plans to migrate to a linux software! Will report problems/progress!

HPillai
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: belfryboy on January 13, 2012, 03:43:44 AM
I have just ordered the first batch of my boards (20) I have even added an option for a serial interface now, just for those that want it. PM me if you are interested. Remember, this board does have the datalogging option, but will not work with Weatherlink. I have successfully tested it with cumulus and Weather Display on Windows XP.

Davis logger for around $60 -  Bargain!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on January 13, 2012, 01:29:14 PM
I have just ordered the first batch of my boards (20) I have even added an option for a serial interface now, just for those that want it. PM me if you are interested. Remember, this board does have the datalogging option, but will not work with Weatherlink. I have successfully tested it with cumulus and Weather Display on Windows XP.

Davis logger for around $60 -  Bargain!

Somebody sometime should really dig into why Weatherlink doesn't work when everything else does.  This nags at me, but I'm busy playing with something else right now to spend the time on it.

By option for a serial interface, do you mean that your design includes a USB to serial adapter?  Is that mounted to the board, or do you include a separate adapter that plugs into your board?  Or do you mean an RS-232 serial to LVTTL serial adapter?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: C5250 on January 13, 2012, 06:24:15 PM
Somebody sometime should really dig into why Weatherlink doesn't work when everything else does.  This nags at me, but I'm busy playing with something else right now to spend the time on it.

Most likely because it uses the DMPAFT cmd and it doesn't get a valid response.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on January 13, 2012, 06:58:07 PM
Most likely because it uses the DMPAFT cmd and it doesn't get a valid response.

That should mean that if I have both my DIY logger and my DIY interface hooked up, it should work.  Correct?  I think belfryboy has already tried this with no luck, but I'll give it another shot and see.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: C5250 on January 13, 2012, 10:14:51 PM
Most likely because it uses the DMPAFT cmd and it doesn't get a valid response.

That should mean that if I have both my DIY logger and my DIY interface hooked up, it should work.  Correct?  I think belfryboy has already tried this with no luck, but I'll give it another shot and see.

I would suggest sending the DMPAFT cmd and examining the response. Will probably have to capture it, as the response will be binary. Should get an ACK (0x06) in response, then sending an ESC will abort the cmd. The next step would be to send a date/time, but that needs a CRC or it will be ignored.

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: belfryboy on January 14, 2012, 05:19:05 AM

By option for a serial interface, do you mean that your design includes a USB to serial adapter?  Is that mounted to the board, or do you include a separate adapter that plugs into your board?  Or do you mean an RS-232 serial to LVTTL serial adapter?

I can plug the logger into a 9 pin sub-d serial port ( i have added an RS-232 level shifter to the board)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: hppillai on January 14, 2012, 05:48:46 PM
Thanks DeKay and af4ex  =D&gt;... This is a wonderful  :grin:! Everything worked without any trouble and right now I have Cumulus running. Since the terminal program running, I am planning to write a simple c code to communicate with console on COM5, download/update data every 2 second and write it to a file for linux.
Question: Am I wasting time "reinventing the wheel" by writing this code :? !

Right now the working system is:
Davis INSTRUMENTS 6250 Vantage Vue Wireless Weather Station
Sparkfun Breakout Board for FT232RL USB to Serial x1 configured for 3.3V
DeKay's gnd-gnd, Tx-Rx and Rx-Tx hardware connection
Realterm Terminal on Windows 7 for testing
Cumulus from Sandysoft for recording data!

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on January 14, 2012, 10:13:23 PM
Thanks DeKay and af4ex  =D&gt;... This is a wonderful  :grin:! Everything worked without any trouble and right now I have Cumulus running. Since the terminal program running, I am planning to write a simple c code to communicate with console on COM5, download/update data every 2 second and write it to a file for linux.
Question: Am I wasting time "reinventing the wheel" by writing this code :? !

There is lots of stuff out there right now running on Linux that will talk to the console and get the data out of it.  But you'll learn about zero if you decide to use it.  If you write your own code, you'll learn way more than you think you will in the process and understand the interface inside out once you are done.

Only you can answer the question you pose.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on January 15, 2012, 12:06:24 AM
I would suggest sending the DMPAFT cmd and examining the response. Will probably have to capture it, as the response will be binary. Should get an ACK (0x06) in response, then sending an ESC will abort the cmd. The next step would be to send a date/time, but that needs a CRC or it will be ignored.


Suggestion taken.  I am getting an ACK and a real data record after sending a proper date/time and CRC.  Other ideas?  The one thing I'm wondering is that my logger chip is currently the 4 Mbit version.  If Weatherlink on startup is somehow querying the chip and not finding the 1 Mbit version, maybe it packs up its bag and goes home?  Maybe tomorrow I'll put the 1Mbit version in there and see if there is different behavior.

The one thing I do know is that when Weatherlink is fired up and told to Auto Detect, it speeds through all the comm ports but pauses for a while on COM4, which is where my USB to Serial converter lives.  It spins there for a bit before giving up.

On a different note, I mentioned "learning something" in a previous message.  Today I learned:

(https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-SObz3s3yRdk/TxJaXcDhIXI/AAAAAAAAAXA/4ZrLbaA6R8Q/s702/dmpaft-annotated.jpg)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on January 15, 2012, 12:45:50 PM
Maybe tomorrow I'll put the 1Mbit version in there and see if there is different behavior.


Today is tomorrow.  Same behavior with the 1Mbit part in place.  The odd thing is that with the 4Mbit part in place, the console would beep twice on powerup instead of the three times it would with no logger.  Now I'm back to getting three beeps the last two times I've powered it up connected to the 1Mbit part.  DMPAFT is still giving me the expected output.  Hmmmm...

I will say though that Realterm (http://realterm.sourceforge.net/) knocks my socks off.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: C5250 on January 15, 2012, 10:37:27 PM
Interesting... I don't see any other possible reason why it shouldn't work. There isn't any way for WL to directly query the logger PROM.

It looks like Realterm can spy on the connection, maybe try that and see what WL might stall on?

BTW: I know I said in the past the only thing the firmware checked was the status byte for ready. Today, I noticed another bit of code that checks bits 5-3 of the status byte. It does a shift right 3 times, AND with 0x07, and then compare with 0x01. So bit 3 has to be 1 and bits 4 & 5 have to be 0, or that test will fail.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: tremors834 on June 28, 2012, 04:03:30 PM

We'll use the SparkFun XBee breakout board ($3) and a pair of 2mm header sockets ($1 each) which need to be soldered to the breakout board for mounting the XBee transceiver ($22, same as above). Buy an extra header socket, which will be cut up to make the console connector cable (details in previous Phase I posting).
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8276
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10030


I know this is an older thread but Im curious if anyone can confirm that the above SparkFun parts are correct. I can't see the socket 10030 fitting the breakout board 8276
Thanks
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: belfryboy on July 03, 2012, 03:17:05 AM
you would need this one:

2mm 10 pin socket (http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8272)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout and possible software support
Post by: pimohdaimaoh on August 06, 2012, 12:21:18 AM
Hi guys specially af4ex and DeKay im mike from the PHILIPPINES and im a new here in thif forum, well I read almost all your topics and shared ideas here and im very proud of you having hack the VUE console pinouts, I was about to reject for a plan not to purchase Davis Vue because I want to have a weather station in which can connect to Wunderground,WUHU etc... not after I read your posts here and my interest to buy that console is returned (im almost tend to buy other weather stations either LA Cross or WS-2080 but im worried to their standards unlike Davis instruments) so even I still dont have Davis because Im still saving for that instrument till next month (im im lucky).

without further ADO, I wanna ask sir, if that setup can be allowed to run any weather software applications? and every weather software has a distinct instrument to choose example in CUMULUS, did you still selecting Davis products there in sensor settings like that? how about the other weather software? they have distinct sensors to be choose so that tha software will link the consoles DATA to the internet.

Thak you for your time and replies ^_^; (soon after I got one I will proceed this setup like yours)   =D&gt;
Title: Re: Vantage Pro2 Console wireless adapter
Post by: LPPF on September 02, 2012, 09:39:41 AM
Hi, All! I’ve been playing around with a Vantage Pro2 for a while and watching these messages. I think you are very close to what I view as a “perfect” adapter but not quite there yet. If I understood software and the hardware involved better maybe I could cobble something together but until then I have to rely on the experts like DeKay and morter01 and hope they can point me in the right direction. Ideally I’d like to have a wireless connection on my wireless console to connect to my home network that would upload to Wunderground and other internet based services. This way I could have my console in the kitchen where it is easily viewed, the router in the upstairs office where the wiring mess is out of the way, and data continuously uploaded without having to leave a computer running. Having the wireless adapter run off the console power would be a big plus.  If someone has done this, I could duplicate it if schematics, diagrams & directions were available but the actual designing is way out of my capabilities. Thoughts, ideas, suggestions?

Thanks much!
Title: Re: Vantage Pro2 Console wireless adapter
Post by: DeKay on September 02, 2012, 01:20:26 PM
Ideally I’d like to have a wireless connection on my wireless console to connect to my home network

Like page 10 of this very thread? (http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10721.msg129370#msg129370).
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: LPPF on September 02, 2012, 03:26:57 PM
That's part of the puzzle but if I'm understanding things correctly, this just provides a wireless connection from the console to the computer. I still have to have a computer running to upload to Wunderground, etc. I've seen a number of posts that have created some sort of wireless connection to a computer but haven't found anything that will post the data without the computer running. Thinking a little more, I guess what I want would also have to have some sort of data storage so that historical data could be downloaded to the computer at times when the computer is on. Thanks for your suggestion!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on September 02, 2012, 05:17:40 PM
I've seen a number of posts that have created some sort of wireless connection to a computer but haven't found anything that will post the data without the computer running.

Except for this thread (http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=16363.0) started by morter01 (whom you specifically mentioned) that does exactly this.  Granted, that was a direct serial link rather than a wireless one over a Roving Networks module, but the commands to and responses from the console are exactly the same.  I would think it would be pretty straightforward to mod the script used by morter01 to set up a connection over the network rather than the serial port.  In fact, the serial port setup was one of the trickier things to get right.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: iBangkok24 on December 30, 2012, 11:39:37 AM
Dear All,
I just try to make the home brewed xbee version. The problem is what ever I type in the terminal the VUE always response with

.
OK.

(http://i903.photobucket.com/albums/ac239/55ting55/Capture-11_zps685ea0ad.jpg)

Help please.

P.S. I got "LCD OK" when power the console on (plug in the power adapter)
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: iBangkok24 on December 30, 2012, 12:16:01 PM
Ok, just read another post. It seem like I'm having a "New" VUE.

As I can see in the weather link manual. It said you need to use "BLUE" Serial adapter (The one that convert phone jack (RJ11) to Serial (DB9)). So I think the thing that make the home brewed cable work might be just another resister jump between some pin of the console.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: m1kew1lson on January 08, 2013, 10:14:38 AM
Is there an issue following the steps laid out on http://madscientistlabs.blogspot.com/2011/01/davis-weatherlink-software-not-required.html if you have a new unit? http://wx.sloweather.com/dsi-01.php
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on January 08, 2013, 03:02:37 PM
Is there an issue following the steps laid out on http://madscientistlabs.blogspot.com/2011/01/davis-weatherlink-software-not-required.html if you have a new unit? http://wx.sloweather.com/dsi-01.php

Yes.  The new firmware breaks both approaches.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: IHateHail on January 13, 2013, 07:14:29 PM
Million dollar question....
Does the XBee solution still work?  Or is it also affected?

Sorry, had to ask.  Just got my new Vantage Vue v.3.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on January 13, 2013, 08:15:18 PM
Million dollar question....
Does the XBee solution still work?

No.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: iBangkok24 on January 14, 2013, 08:36:36 AM
My bus pirate is on the way, and my PCB for wireless xbee data logger is also on theway. When I have them both I will try program the security Register on my DIY logger, will feed back then.

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: n7xrd on March 03, 2013, 11:22:34 PM
 :shock: So now that version 3.12 is out will these wireless xbees work again with a new Vantage Vue??
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: JACK10562 on March 04, 2013, 08:13:05 AM
According to this, it should. This topic reply was in another thread:


I can report that the SLOweather DSI-01 Does work with this firmware release!  =D&gt;

VP2 Wireless FW 1.9 > 3.12, update was done on WeatherLinkIP that I believe is Green dot, mfg code F10112A54


http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=18391.0

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: n7xrd on March 04, 2013, 08:29:26 AM
According to this, it should. This topic reply was in another thread:


I can report that the SLOweather DSI-01 Does work with this firmware release!  =D&gt;

VP2 Wireless FW 1.9 > 3.12, update was done on WeatherLinkIP that I believe is Green dot, mfg code F10112A54


http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=18391.0


now that I think about it they don't have an update yet for the Vue which is what I am purchasing I have the VP2 at home this will be at the cabin.... :-(
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: IHateHail on March 04, 2013, 03:00:53 PM
Yeah, I am in the same boat.  Recently purchased a Vue with the 3.00 firmware... :mad:
Was going to build my own data logger... :mad:
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: kd5byb on May 04, 2013, 11:34:40 AM
Good morning all...

I'm new to the forum - found this post while looking for solutions to what I'll call "the two console problem."  Or, better said, I want one console in the family room for the family to use, which having another back here in the ham-shack connected to my computer for logging and CWOP/APRS.  (I am an amateur radio operator / severe weather spotter)

I *was* very excited, as it seems like the XBee solution would do exactly what I wanted.  But, reading through the thread, it seems like units with the latest firmware do not work with the XBee link.  If I were to buy a Vantage Vue (like I was really close to doing this morning!) I would not be able to use the XBee to do what I wanted.

But, then it got really confusing - it seems like in the last few posts, there was confirmation that some external, non-Davis software was working, through what I assume to be the serial pins on the console.

My question then becomes this:  If I were to buy a Vantage Vue today, would the unit I receive be capable of using the XBee link?  Please pardon if this was conclusively answered elsewhere - I've tried to search looking for "XBee and 3.12" but the search returns nothing.  Most likely operator error...  ;)

thanks much and 73,
ben, kd5byb
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on May 04, 2013, 12:55:07 PM
Sorry I don't have an answer and pretty sure you've understood this already, but let me just underline:

The issue is not the firmware revision per se (so don't let answers confuse you which relate to the firmware revision but in older consoles), but the console hardware. You need an answer for the so-called green-dot consoles (even though they don't have green dots any longer!) - that is consoles whose Mfg Code (on the label) starts with TWO letters (not a single letter). So that would be Vue Mfg Codes as from version 'MA' (I think we're currently up to ME).

These started being manufactured in the second half of last year (ie 2012) and so virtually all stock made prior to that will have already shipped, though there might be the odd one lurking in a low-volume dealership here or there (typically a dealer selling them as a sideline, eg a chandlers).
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: SlowModem on May 04, 2013, 12:57:43 PM
Did the firmware updates affect the Vue, too,  or just the VP2?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: torkelmj on May 05, 2013, 01:25:59 AM
The issue is not the firmware revision per se (so don't let answers confuse you which relate to the firmware revision but in older consoles), but the console hardware.

Rather, it's a combination of the v. 3.xx firmware *and* that little something which indicates that the unit is a "new" console.

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on May 05, 2013, 03:53:43 AM
Rather, it's a combination of the v. 3.xx firmware *and* that little something which indicates that the unit is a "new" console.

Maybe. But the one single factor that defines whether a console will work eg with an XBee or not is whether it's a console hardware revision earlier than Rev 'M' or not. So why not focus on that specific point?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: torkelmj on May 05, 2013, 05:44:47 AM
Maybe. But the one single factor that defines whether a console will work eg with an XBee or not is whether it's a console hardware revision earlier than Rev 'M' or not. So why not focus on that specific point?

Will knowing that specific point contribute to making a workaround to this problem? Sounds like a passive "accept it as-is" to me.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: johnd on May 05, 2013, 06:03:40 AM
Will knowing that specific point contribute to making a workaround to this problem?

We have users here (and potentially other readers of this thread in future) effectively asking 'How do I know if a particular Vue console is compatible with XBee?'. They need the simplest/clearest answer surely? The Mfg Code provides that, the firmware revision does not, at least in the present state of understanding (which may change of course, depending on what other facts may emerge) and so far as I am aware.

Your agenda may well be different.
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: kb1pvh on May 16, 2013, 09:01:46 PM
 FYI, I ended up buying the Davis serial datalogger and used a XBee Explorer Serial https://www.sparkfun.com/products/9111 on the console and the XBee Explorer Dongle https://www.sparkfun.com/products/9819 on shack computer. It's pricey, but I needed the console in the kitchen and the wife said  =; to laptop on counter.

Dave-KB1PVH
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: tul9033 on May 20, 2013, 08:53:24 PM
I've got a Davis 6250 on the way and have spent hours reading these threads to connect the console to a Windows 7 PC in a closet 30 ft away.  Running some form of data logging software, internet viewing, and weather station availability.
Just when I though I had a grasp on things I see things changes with the new revisions.
Could someone please be so kind as to redirect me to a solution that works with the new revision 6250?
Thank you very much!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: dalecoy on May 20, 2013, 09:32:45 PM
I've got a Davis 6250 on the way and have spent hours reading these threads to connect the console to a Windows 7 PC in a closet 30 ft away.  Running some form of data logging software, internet viewing, and weather station availability.
Just when I though I had a grasp on things I see things changes with the new revisions.
Could someone please be so kind as to redirect me to a solution that works with the new revision 6250?
Thank you very much!

Off-topic, but:  http://www.davisnet.com/weather/products/weather_product.asp?pnum=06510SER
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: tul9033 on May 20, 2013, 09:45:37 PM
My thought it was on on topic because I was looking for a DIY solution which is what this thread pertains to.  No?
Thanks for the response, I saw the Davis solution when I was researching the 6250.  I came here for the cheaper DIY project.

I've got a Davis 6250 on the way and have spent hours reading these threads to connect the console to a Windows 7 PC in a closet 30 ft away.  Running some form of data logging software, internet viewing, and weather station availability.
Just when I though I had a grasp on things I see things changes with the new revisions.
Could someone please be so kind as to redirect me to a solution that works with the new revision 6250?
Thank you very much!

Off-topic, but:  http://www.davisnet.com/weather/products/weather_product.asp?pnum=06510SER
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: misher on October 06, 2013, 07:26:29 PM
Hello, new member here..
I am having problems with my diy data cable.
I have a Vantage Vue and a FTDI Cable 5V VCC-3.3V I/O which has been wired to the expansion port in the following method:
Cable  -  Expansion Port
GND   -   GND
RX     -   TX
TX     -   RX
I installed the FTDI virtual com port drivers and had a successful install.
I set the baud rate to 19200 @com3 and directed cumulus (software) to look for the data on com 3.
No luck....

What am i missing here?
The baud rate setting is not visible on the vue console so i assume it doesnt read any connection....
Thanks!
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: misher on October 06, 2013, 08:05:31 PM
Just read that the "new" vue consoles effectively block the diy approach.....
Darn...
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Keshka on December 19, 2013, 02:29:27 PM
Hello gang! Thank you all for the work provided here, wonderful thread.

I am trying to duplicate the steps John/af4ex has outlined.

Some details:
1. Vantage PRO2 product 6312 mfg code A50623A04 (on start up says rev may 27 2005)
2. pair of xBee series 1
3. xBee 'a' is plugged into ladyada's usb adapter, the adapter to a port on my computer.
4. xBee 'b' is connected to the Vantage per John's instructions
5. both xBee's have been configured with X-CTU
6. X-CTU is used for serial communication testing
7. when xBee 'b' had pin 2 and 3 shorted and disconnected from the Vantage I can perform a successful loop back test. So they do talk.

The problem:
connected to pins 5 & 6 of the Vantage, I can get no response back at all. Have tried sending TEST many times and per Davis a hex '0A'. I get nothing. I see no configuration setting on the Vantage in the menu. From ground to either pin 5 or six I measure an open voltage of 3v. I can send photos of my set up if needed. Anyone have any ideas what I did wrong?

Keshka
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on December 19, 2013, 07:22:23 PM
The problem:
connected to pins 5 & 6 of the Vantage, I can get no response back at all. Have tried sending TEST many times and per Davis a hex '0A'. I get nothing. I see no configuration setting on the Vantage in the menu. From ground to either pin 5 or six I measure an open voltage of 3v. I can send photos of my set up if needed. Anyone have any ideas what I did wrong?

Keshka

Did you connect the ground of xBee 'b' to one of the console's ground pins (15 or 16)?
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: jordy98x1 on December 24, 2013, 11:06:44 AM
So can anybody advise, is there any DIY dataloggers that will work with ALL versions of hardware/FW on the VV2? I am currently on Rev 1.90 and have NO intentions on upgrading unless I am forced to. If I do upgrade, I assume I will have to either buy a new logger or build one!


Thanks,

Jordan
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: torkelmj on December 25, 2013, 07:01:15 PM
I am currently on Rev 1.90 and have NO intentions on upgrading unless I am forced to. If I do upgrade, I assume I will have to either buy a new logger or build one!

Jordan, that may or may not be the case. Upgrading to a NEW CONSOLE: new data logger(*) probably REQUIRED. Upgrading only the firmware from v. 1.90 to v. 3.xx - new data logger NOT REQUIRED.

I write "probably" because you never really know what's available of "pre-2012" (approximately) units. None of the units I've received from the US during the last 6 months have had the v. 1.90 firmware, so I guess the supply of older units is non-existent or at best very limited.


(*) or a suitable DIY-variant.

Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: jordy98x1 on December 29, 2013, 10:23:51 AM
I think I will leave everything as is! i am considering getting another Logger for one of my original consoles. I wonder how big of a problem that will be!


Jordan
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: Keshka on January 03, 2014, 08:43:42 PM
Thank you for responding DeKay. I have connected xBee "b" the same as this post:
http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10721.msg104689#msg104689 (http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10721.msg104689#msg104689)

ground to pin 15
3v to pin 13
 
rx to pin 6
tx to pin 5

if I only disconnect pins 5 & 6 from the Vantage and short the on my xBee board....'a' and 'b' will talk

Keshka
 
Title: Re: Vantage Vue Console logger pinout
Post by: DeKay on January 03, 2014, 09:29:21 PM
Thank you for responding DeKay. I have connected xBee "b" the same as this post:
http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10721.msg104689#msg104689 (http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=10721.msg104689#msg104689)


And you've set the baud rate on the XBees to 19,200 baud and 8N1?