Author Topic: It's Alive!!!!!!  (Read 5308 times)

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Offline sacreyweather

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #25 on: August 12, 2013, 09:22:02 PM »
Hi Don,

The gain is set at 10*10, the default. Haven't changed a thing, so far. Antenna is slowly coming along.

John
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Offline miraculon

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #26 on: August 12, 2013, 11:00:18 PM »
John,

With wide-open gain and the amplifier inputs "open circuit" you could be getting enough noise pickup from the strikes (or any large noise) to register.

Try reducing the gain until you get your antenna hooked up.

Try a much lower setting, like 2x2 for now. You can bring it back up when you get the antenna hooked up.

Greg H.



Blitzortung Stations #706 and #1682
CoCoRaHS: MI-PI-1
CWOP: CW4114 and KE8DAF-13
WU: KMIROGER7
Amateur Radio Callsign: KE8DAF

Offline sacreyweather

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #27 on: August 13, 2013, 06:53:25 AM »
Hi Greg,

Set the gain at 2x2 for the time being.

John
CWOP: D2073, GR2AE, GR3, Cumulus, PWSweather,  CoCoRaHS: AR-SL-23  

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Offline dfroula

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #28 on: August 13, 2013, 09:13:31 AM »
Why change the gain?!!!! I think it's cool that you are detecting without an antenna! Try sticking a few feet of wire in each amp input and see what happens....

The data you sent is perfectly valid.

Offline sacreyweather

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #29 on: August 14, 2013, 07:32:09 PM »
Hi Don,

Question on the wires. Would I make 2 wires into a loop for each, or use 4 wires?

Thanks,

John
CWOP: D2073, GR2AE, GR3, Cumulus, PWSweather,  CoCoRaHS: AR-SL-23  

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Offline sacreyweather

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #30 on: August 17, 2013, 08:41:46 AM »
Morning Folks,

Up and running with the version 2 antenna in the house currently.

Gain is:

Channel A: 4*4*40 120mV
Channel B: 4*2*40 120mV

CWOP: D2073, GR2AE, GR3, Cumulus, PWSweather,  CoCoRaHS: AR-SL-23  

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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #31 on: August 17, 2013, 08:50:01 AM »
Yep, saw you pop in there a few minutes ago! Welcome Aboard, John!...
Been quite a journey for you, huh?

Something I've been perusing...
Try something... turn off your LCD brightness, all the way to zero, contrast doesn't matter, and see if you can upgain those antennas gradually... without getting interference mode... right now you've got clusters E & W that might trigger I mode, but your NS antenna might come up much higher...
Mike
 

Offline dfroula

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #32 on: August 17, 2013, 09:14:57 AM »
Congrats on getting the antennas built!

Your gain values are in line with what I have been running with the version 1 flat panels (52 turns).

I'm currently running 5x2x40=400. I can run 4x4x40=640, but interference mode triggers a bit earlier on lightning activity than I like.

With the fewer number of turns in version 2, your gain sounds about optimal.

There is a firmware bug in v2.5 that will reset the backlight value back to 70% after a reset, even if you save the 0% value to flash memory. I have found that the noise is audible with the LCD backlight at 70%, but that the level at the gains used by the flat panel will not cause false triggering (controller a few meters from panels).

With the higher gains required by my ferrite antennas, the LCD backlight at 70% will overwhelm the amp if it is within a few meters of the antenna.

I keep my LCD at 100% brightness with a timeout to 0% after 30 seconds. 100% produces very little noise.

Regards,

Don

Offline sacreyweather

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #33 on: August 17, 2013, 09:30:41 AM »
Hi Mike and Don,

Have the brightness down to 0%. Made a difference, for sure.

Channel A: 10*8*40 120mV
Channel B: 4*2*40 120mV

If I change the gain to anything higher on channel B, it goes into interference mode.  Have been slowly raising the gain on A.
CWOP: D2073, GR2AE, GR3, Cumulus, PWSweather,  CoCoRaHS: AR-SL-23  

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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #34 on: August 17, 2013, 09:41:07 AM »
I have found that the noise is audible with the LCD backlight at 70%, but that the level at the gains used by the flat panel will not cause false triggering (controller a few meters from panels).

With the higher gains required by my ferrite antennas, the LCD backlight at 70% will overwhelm the amp if it is within a few meters of the antenna.

And my amp is 20' away... If any level of LCD brite applied. Why should this be??? Low end displays?  There is a solid shield across the back of LCD. This doesn't seem to be charge-pump (Contrast level) issues... . If backlight on, radiation. I wish I had a scope...  This may not even be an LCD hardware issue, this might even be due to mounting of DISC board, PWM signal... noted a couple of posts related to LCD related EMI over on the other forums...
 

Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #35 on: August 17, 2013, 09:42:04 AM »
Hi Mike and Don,

Have the brightness down to 0%. Made a difference, for sure.

Channel A: 10*8*40 120mV
Channel B: 4*2*40 120mV

If I change the gain to anything higher on channel B, it goes into interference mode.  Have been slowly raising the gain on A.
Betcha B is your EW orientated antenna... ya got cells both directions. :lol:
 

Offline miraculon

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #36 on: August 17, 2013, 10:14:25 AM »
John,

That's great that you got the antenna up and running. I was confused by your earlier open-input signal/strikes, but now it looks like you are in business.

I too have had issues with directional noise, but DTE Energy (the local Detroit-Area utility) installed a new transformer yesterday. (I had complained about noise, plus my neighbor in back of me thought that he saw some kind of "light" coming from the pole)

The new transformer seems to be helping my old USB6.8 "Green" system more than the RED. I still have a N-S issue with RED, but I can get away with much higher gains than before.

I also went with the zero LCD backlight after 30 seconds. When I worked for "Major Automotive Supplier" we used to have problems with PWM dimming in radios, so I am not at all surprised that it is causing problems with the detector. It could be harmonics of the PWM getting into the ADC.

The RED controller is in a guest bedroom, I decided to disable the backlight and clicker.

Greg H.




Blitzortung Stations #706 and #1682
CoCoRaHS: MI-PI-1
CWOP: CW4114 and KE8DAF-13
WU: KMIROGER7
Amateur Radio Callsign: KE8DAF

Offline sacreyweather

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #37 on: August 17, 2013, 10:34:49 AM »
I'm just amazed at the strikes this picks up. Have had several at 3300km away in the British Virgin Islands, northern Manitoba and off the west coast of Guatemala. My old Boltek didn't even come close to that. The amp/antenna is sitting about 10 feet away from me in front of my unused fireplace. Where this computer is, there are actually 2 computers.
CWOP: D2073, GR2AE, GR3, Cumulus, PWSweather,  CoCoRaHS: AR-SL-23  

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Offline miraculon

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #38 on: August 17, 2013, 10:38:43 AM »
How big is the Boltek antenna box? If I understand correctly they have two orthogonal ferrite rods in the box. It doesn't look very big.
In fairness, the Blitzortung antennas are either large loops or much larger ferrite rod antennas.
Maybe this will spark a "Boltek Modders" movement to install larger ferrite antennas... :lol:

Greg H.


Blitzortung Stations #706 and #1682
CoCoRaHS: MI-PI-1
CWOP: CW4114 and KE8DAF-13
WU: KMIROGER7
Amateur Radio Callsign: KE8DAF

Offline sacreyweather

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #39 on: August 17, 2013, 10:43:05 AM »
The antenna box on a Boltek is a little smaller than a 3" x 5" index card. Pretty small.
CWOP: D2073, GR2AE, GR3, Cumulus, PWSweather,  CoCoRaHS: AR-SL-23  

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Offline miraculon

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #40 on: August 17, 2013, 11:48:58 AM »
Congrats on getting the antennas built!

Your gain values are in line with what I have been running with the version 1 flat panels (52 turns).

I'm currently running 5x2x40=400. I can run 4x4x40=640, but interference mode triggers a bit earlier on lightning activity than I like.

With the fewer number of turns in version 2, your gain sounds about optimal.

There is a firmware bug in v2.5 that will reset the backlight value back to 70% after a reset, even if you save the 0% value to flash memory. I have found that the noise is audible with the LCD backlight at 70%, but that the level at the gains used by the flat panel will not cause false triggering (controller a few meters from panels).

With the higher gains required by my ferrite antennas, the LCD backlight at 70% will overwhelm the amp if it is within a few meters of the antenna.

I keep my LCD at 100% brightness with a timeout to 0% after 30 seconds. 100% produces very little noise.

Regards,

Don

Just as an experiment, I put the default PWM setting to 100%, even though I had time-out set to 0% after 60 seconds. It has made a difference! :shock:

I wonder if this time-out just disables the display, but the PWM generator is actually still running.

I set the gain to 5x5x40 with 200mV thresholds on both, and so-far-so-good!

Greg H.





Blitzortung Stations #706 and #1682
CoCoRaHS: MI-PI-1
CWOP: CW4114 and KE8DAF-13
WU: KMIROGER7
Amateur Radio Callsign: KE8DAF

Offline sacreyweather

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #41 on: August 17, 2013, 12:00:02 PM »
Hi Greg,

Changed the gain

Channel A: 16*10*40 200mV
Channel B:  4*4*40 200mV

Changing the brightness on the LCD didn't seem to make a difference.
CWOP: D2073, GR2AE, GR3, Cumulus, PWSweather,  CoCoRaHS: AR-SL-23  

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Offline miraculon

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #42 on: August 17, 2013, 12:35:57 PM »
It must have been a coincidence with the PWM change. The noise came back, then I tried changing between 70% - 100% and it didn't make a difference for me either.

Greg H.



Blitzortung Stations #706 and #1682
CoCoRaHS: MI-PI-1
CWOP: CW4114 and KE8DAF-13
WU: KMIROGER7
Amateur Radio Callsign: KE8DAF

Offline sacreyweather

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Re: It's Alive!!!!!!
« Reply #43 on: August 17, 2013, 02:04:50 PM »
Antenna is now outside, approx. 50ft. from the house, and about 60 ft. from me. It is on top of my storm cellar. Still have to bury the line.

Have the gain set at 5*5*40 120mV both channels currently, LCD brightness at 0%.
CWOP: D2073, GR2AE, GR3, Cumulus, PWSweather,  CoCoRaHS: AR-SL-23  

Saline Weather on Twitter
Blitzortung Station 1387

 

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