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Weather Station Hardware => Other Weather Station Hardware => Topic started by: DaleReid on March 27, 2020, 03:11:58 PM

Title: Has Texas Weather Instruments finally shut down everything?
Post by: DaleReid on March 27, 2020, 03:11:58 PM
I needed to look up some key presses to adjust my TWI WRL-25 and went to the net to see if I could locate the pdf that had been out there.  I haven't 'cleaned' in awhile, so where the paper manual is, I don't know.

Anyway, I get a message saying that the web page is not available.  Not that it is missing, but there were some contacts to the web host on how to get ahold of them to 'resolve the issue' if I were the page owner.

Sounds like they let their host subscription expire. 

Well, it was a great run.  Hope that someone has all the inside documentation and diagrams so it can be released to those needing to fix their stations.

Oh, anyone got the pdf of the manual for the 25 for the 8000? Until I find my hard copy?
Thx.  Dale
Title: Re: Has Texas Weather Instruments finally shut down everything?
Post by: Dyacon.com on April 02, 2020, 04:15:44 PM
Dale,

I just emailed Texas Weather Instruments. Let me know if you ever learn what the status of the company.
Title: Re: Has Texas Weather Instruments finally shut down everything?
Post by: DaleReid on April 02, 2020, 04:59:46 PM
I surely will.  There are a quite a few of us with their stations (I have (don't tell my wife) 5) with about five or six of the consoles that I got when no one else was buying.

I had a good relationship with David and James and they were always helpful.  I only had problems with the humidity sensor (and I'm tearing one part now which has been a six month project) to see if there are chances to repair it, and the solar sensor which James told me to use a LiCor sensor which works just fine.

Repair is of course an ongoing concern with no schematics, and also conversions should one want to use an RM Young wind monitor instead of their wind vane and anemometer (the vane breaks very easily and even if available was $25.00).

That being said, I jokingly told them their design was so robust and stuff put together so well it never broke, and the sale of new units was dwindling. 

I hope both of them are employed somewhere, and I would hope that someone on the email end was reading emails.

The only other thing I can think of is that Ambient Weather had handled their line, and I bought a replacement temp/humidity pagoda from them, so if Ambient is available for you to contact, someone there may have a better way of getting ahold of them.

Best of luck and I hope you can secure some information, too.
Dale
Title: Re: Has Texas Weather Instruments finally shut down everything?
Post by: WX4GPS on April 21, 2020, 10:01:40 PM
Could someone tell me what jack the rain booked up to and what pins on a WR-25?
Title: Re: Has Texas Weather Instruments finally shut down everything?
Post by: DaleReid on April 21, 2020, 10:14:15 PM
It definitely is the BLUE one, and the outer pair, pins 1 and 8.

If you are using a junction box, the humidity and temperature  pagoda plugs into one of the three blue ones sockets, an 8 conductor cable runs to the WR-25 from another, and the rain gauge then plugs into the third, or remaining one.  Sequence makes no difference, they are all in parallel.

If you are wiring JUST a rain sensor, use an 8 pin RJ-45 type plug, and put the wires into the outer pins to crimp.  I have also run a pagoda in straight to a station, and the two conductors from the 0.01" tipping bucket of any sort, and then at the plug crimped the outer wires to the rain and the inner wires to the pagoda. Messier, but it works just fine and 'simulates' the junction box.

Let us know if it works OK.
Dale
Title: Re: Has Texas Weather Instruments finally shut down everything?
Post by: WX4GPS on April 21, 2020, 11:49:39 PM
Dale, thank you for the prompt reply.  I had donated my 1992 model WR-25 to our local EMA, and at some point, wind readings were just random and the EMA was sending it into TWI, and they could not find anything wrong and well they finally decided it was time to take it down, it lived a happy useful 20+ years, and they asked if I wanted it back, and they did a hack job on all the cabling, and they said turned out the junction box had water in it so I was handed sensor with very to the little cable on them.  so I was able to crimp a connector on the little bit of wire on the temperature-humidity sensor, and the wind sensor everything works perfectly.  The rain gauge I need to rewire and that is why I was asking. so Ill get it back to a wind/dir/tmp/humidity/rain/pressure type station which is good for me and carry it out even further life. as a backup to my Campbell Scientific once I complete the move.

I am trying to get some documentation together, there used to be a gentleman that had a repository for weather station manuals and stuff and his site is no longer, so I searched groups.io and came up with nothing, so I set up a groups.io, and going to try to slowly find things like manuals, pinout on sensors, replacement parts, photographs, etc. Cause you never know when these companies are just gonna close shop.

Ron
Title: Re: Has Texas Weather Instruments finally shut down everything?
Post by: DaleReid on April 22, 2020, 08:41:20 AM
I have some of the original plastic bound manuals.  All the boards inside are pretty much the same, and setup and the calibration sequence works for all the same.

Getting a working temp/humidity is the real key, and I'm slowly working on dissecting one that no longer is accurate.  A couple people here have successfully swapped out the Honeywell humidity sensor and the little transistor which inputs temperature.  I have the board somewhat stripped of sealer material and wanted to transilluminate it so someone might see about re-creating one.

As you mentioned, these seem to be tough as nails, which means that most of the time they never need replacement, which means few repeat sales.  I have a couple and two 8000 series.  The real catch is that without the PROM chips to do some of the updating and switch from one wind speed sensor and various add ons like solar or lighting module, there is zero guidance on how these things can be updated, if at all.

I have a lot of projects in the mix and it is spring so the yard out here needs my attention, but if I can lay my hands on those manuals and if I can find the .pdf docs which basically are the manuals which up to a few months ago were on their now-defunct web site, you could archive those and make them available. 

You never know when someone will want to have the info.

When you set up your repository, could you post the info about it?

Oh, what kind of wind sensor do you have?  An RM Young 5103?  A Texas Instruments gold anodized one?  The Texas Weather anemomenter/vane on the end of a short aluminum bar?   There were only three choices I guess.

I'm glad you just didn't toss it in the junk. 

Dale
K9ELD
Title: Re: Has Texas Weather Instruments finally shut down everything?
Post by: havtrail on April 22, 2020, 04:23:07 PM
Dale, thank you for the prompt reply.  I had donated my 1992 model WR-25 to our local EMA, and at some point, wind readings were just random and the EMA was sending it into TWI, and they could not find anything wrong and well they finally decided it was time to take it down, it lived a happy useful 20+ years, and they asked if I wanted it back, and they did a hack job on all the cabling, and they said turned out the junction box had water in it so I was handed sensor with very to the little cable on them.  so I was able to crimp a connector on the little bit of wire on the temperature-humidity sensor, and the wind sensor everything works perfectly.  The rain gauge I need to rewire and that is why I was asking. so Ill get it back to a wind/dir/tmp/humidity/rain/pressure type station which is good for me and carry it out even further life. as a backup to my Campbell Scientific once I complete the move.

I am trying to get some documentation together, there used to be a gentleman that had a repository for weather station manuals and stuff and his site is no longer, so I searched groups.io and came up with nothing, so I set up a groups.io, and going to try to slowly find things like manuals, pinout on sensors, replacement parts, photographs, etc. Cause you never know when these companies are just gonna close shop.

Ron

Have you tried looking for saved info from that gentleman's website URL on the "wayback machine" at the Internet Archive (www.archive.org)? You might get lucky and find that some of it has been preserved there in digital form.

Rich K.
Title: Re: Has Texas Weather Instruments finally shut down everything?
Post by: Kev on May 19, 2020, 10:20:52 PM
Dale, I downloaded all of the files awhile ago from TWIs website, I anticipated the website going dark at some point. I just uploaded them to my Mediafire account- http://www.mediafire.com/folder/7uyinvi986o15/Texas_Weather_Instruments_-_Manuals_and_Files

Yes, I made a post about TWI awhile ago with photos of the new location.  I did a Google Street View and it shows as of December 2018 the sign gone from the building.  They have clearly been out of business at least since then. All manufacturing had ceased when they closed the Dallas location. Only repairs and parts from 2014 on.  They were using stock leftover from the factory.  The pictures really show it well- https://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=37855.0

Iíve been absent for a bit, projects and work have eaten up all my time lately.  I have some very interesting and exciting news on the WX front however.

Any luck with dissecting the TWI humidity board circuit yet for a schematic?
Title: Re: Has Texas Weather Instruments finally shut down everything?
Post by: DaleReid on May 19, 2020, 10:33:46 PM
With the advent of spring I have been busy with a bunch of stuff  Still haven't discovered all the goodies packed away in the shed, but getting closer.

I have the board at hand and will again begin the dissection process to clear away the remaining bits of elastomer seal.

I had tried transilluminating the board to show traces but not too good of luck with that.  The next couple days will be busy again but I will refocus and try to get that done.  Thanks for the reminder.

Did you find a copy of TWI-CAL disk to post?  I found one in with a WPS- 10 station and the files aren't too big.  Well, one file is all that's on the disk.

I had lost a lot of time setting up a RaspPi4 to run Weewx, and Belchertown skins and then Tom released a new version and I got caught in the time sink of updating and fixing my problems and trying to learn Linux enough to get the thing running.  It seems stable now but with a good rain and warm temps coming my wife thinks I should do lawn work....
Title: Re: Has Texas Weather Instruments finally shut down everything?
Post by: Kev on May 19, 2020, 11:02:57 PM
The experience is mutual, haha.  Never enough time. And Honey-dos are unavoidable. Hope you're doing well.

I remember you had uncovered one resistor and an IC if I recall correctly. And some of the resistor bands had come off with the RTV sealant.  You should be able to look at that piece of RTV and see the colors stuck to the bottom I would think.

Well, the copy of TWI-Cal I have is the trial version from their site.  Is yours the full version?  Can you email it to me and I'll add it to the file repository for folks to have access to?  Also, it looks like the one manual I'm missing is the WPS-10.  I thought I downloaded it but apparently not.  Would you be able to scan yours at some point?

I've still been experimenting with my WR-25. I made a pretty cool discovery. Heathkitís wind boom is 100% compatible with the TWI WR-25 (or any of their consoles wired for their default wind sensor array).  You do however have to blackout (I used bits of electrical tape, tape the non-printed side, the tape will pull off the silk screen paint) all but 5 of the slots on the optical disk to get the correct wind speed.  Otherwise 22 MPH will read as 102 MPH, which is pretty amusing.  Wind direction works without modification.  Same 4-bit gray code as TWI. NOTE: This will only work with the 4001 wiring of the Heath wind sensors.  The WR-25 has 16-point resolution (Same as the ID-4001) while the ID-5001 has 32. If you use an ID-5001 wind boom you must convert it to the wiring configuration of the ID-4001.  However, I assume if you have a WRL-8000 you would use the wiring configuration of the ID-5001 wind boom since the 8000 is 32 point resolution. Again, this will only work if the console is configured for TWIs in-house wind sensors. You do not need dual voltage.  Both the white and blue wires get hooked to the single wind power supply from the TWI unit.  It puts out 8 volts, which is enough to power the 15v IR LEDs and not too much power for the 5v photo transistors.
Title: Re: Has Texas Weather Instruments finally shut down everything?
Post by: Kev on May 21, 2020, 11:28:27 AM
Dale,

Disregard my comment on TWI-Cal, I was tired and had it mixed up with TWIs Weatherview 32 software which was licensed. So, yes, the TWI-Cal file I uploaded would be fully operational for sensor calibration.  I located the three missing TWI operation manuals and have added them.

If you have the following files Iíll add them, these were already dead links on the website back when I downloaded the original files:

TWI PRM FIles (For Weatherview 32 TWI_LOG
32bit One Six Server
TWI_LOG
WS2Update

And the Weatherview 32 software, if you have a copy.