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Old 17-07-2015, 14:46   #16
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Re: PTCIIe won't talk to Winlink/Airmail or update

That's why I really like the right angle adapters, the don't add leverage or depth (but then you have to have the available height). I've had the same trouble, ordered two of the RA adapters, taken the screws out of one and used them to replace the sockets on the other. IIRC I actually had to drill one side of the RA to do it.

I think the screw sockets in my 19HS are removed, but I can't check that until tonight.
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Old 17-07-2015, 17:48   #17
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Re: PTCIIe won't talk to Winlink/Airmail or update

Quote:
Originally Posted by skipgundlach View Post
I love L-Com; I've done business with them many times.

However, my problem is that I have female studs at the end of the adapter. I also have female studs on the modem. One or the other of the pair have to go for it to make it onto the modem. The picture shows the female studs; that's what's on the modem, too, and would normally be, instead, screw-down pins extending behind the adapter.
I don't recommend a simple adapter. Get a 9-pin male/female straight through extension cable. It should have male screws at both ends which is what you want. If you have to route the 9-pin cable in such a way that the 9-pin connectors will not fit just cut the cable in two and then reconnect the 9 wires using heat sealed butt splices or a terminal block. Do not try to extend the USB cable a long way with a SSB system. It will never work right. You want the USB cable to be extremely short (a few inches at most).

The type of USB to serial adapter you need will have the FTDI chipset. There are many of these on the market including the Tripplite but they are not the only one. Do not ignore this advice as there are many horror stories of other chipsets that get Windows all screwed up. Use only adapters with FTDI and you should be ok.

USB RS232 Cables

Bottom line:

Find a USB to serial adapter with FTDI chipset and a cable less than 1 foot (500mm) in length. Find or make a 9-pin extension cable for as much length you need. Put ferrites recommended for SSB systems at both ends of the serial extension cable. It doesn't hurt to put one on the USB cable too but I haven't needed that.
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Old 17-07-2015, 18:18   #18
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Re: PTCIIe won't talk to Winlink/Airmail or update

I turn it on right after I click to open the window. Like the same second or so.
I am using a serial to Bluetooth converter and running airmail on a windows 8.1 Toshiba tablet. This is the only way I could get it to work. I also seem to recall it didnt work at all originally and I sent my modem back to Farallon for repairs.
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Old 17-07-2015, 20:45   #19
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Re: PTCIIe won't talk to Winlink/Airmail or update

I opened up my 19HS, the case is pretty loose anyway (it's quite old). The screw posts are part and parcel of the assembly and hold on the d-sub outer shield. So removal would not be easy. You could probably do it if you opened the case, cut off the posts, and then screwed the whole thing into the Pactor from the back side, and then put on the case. Not a solution I would like.

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Old 23-07-2015, 13:06   #20
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Re: PTCIIe won't talk to Winlink/Airmail or update

Well.

I got the new serial adapter. Tripp-Lite told me that I could safely take off the studs (mine were hex, and screwed to something inside the case; apparently they were strictly to attach to and not integral to the housing.

I went through the setup process and then connected it.. I configured the speed to the fastest that the modem would support - 4800 at the moment..

Connected it to the modem. Did passthrough test, passed.

Tried to use HT, and the modem could not be found. No solutions anywhere in configuration, baud rate or otherwise tried.

Put back on the previously thought wonky (I still think so, but this time it came right up) serial adapter, reconfigured AirMail to look for that com port, and tried again.

Modem failed a few times, and then succeeded - but said I had V.2 and "I promised to upgrade" (I already have, twice, but the modem is sick, somewhere) and went on.

Tried several stations (the control cable turned on the radio and made the frequency change), and no response. Also, the modem, based on the lights, made some defined number of attempts and then quit trying. But no disconnect was sent; I had to manually do a dirty disconnect to get to my next connection/try.

I also tried to get into dumb terminal to update the license (recall that Germany sent me the unlock code); no keystrokes appeared, so I couldn't try that.

So, regardless, I think, of whether the serial adapter is the problem, it seems we have problems in the modem.

Other ideas?

Thanks.

L8R
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Old 23-07-2015, 14:57   #21
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Re: PTCIIe won't talk to Winlink/Airmail or update

Skip,

How long is the USB cable? Look at what I wrote previously about long USB cables and HF radio. They don't get along together. Also, tell us about where you put suppression ferrites on the USB cable and serial cable to the radio.

If the terminal program can speak to the modem then Airmail should as well. If it can't then figure that out and get it working before trying a connection.

The unlock code issue is something you may have to take up with PTC. They should be able to tell you why the unlock code is getting lost.

It's a good idea to capture the "welcome" message that the modem types out when you hit carriage return at the terminal screen. There may be hints there that help diagnose some of this.

Dan
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Old 23-07-2015, 17:00   #22
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Re: PTCIIe won't talk to Winlink/Airmail or update

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Originally Posted by transmitterdan View Post
Skip,

How long is the USB cable? Look at what I wrote previously about long USB cables and HF radio. They don't get along together. Also, tell us about where you put suppression ferrites on the USB cable and serial cable to the radio.
The chokes are at the extreme ends of the USB cable(s).

The new Tripp-Lite is only 3' long. It's com7
The old cable is 6' long; it's com4

Quote:
Originally Posted by transmitterdan View Post


If the terminal program can speak to the modem then Airmail should as well. If it can't then figure that out and get it working before trying a connection.
I think that there's a problem in the modem; dumb terminal doesn't get any response (in the window) to keystrokes, but cycling the power while in DT shows changes in state on the bar below.

Quote:
Originally Posted by transmitterdan View Post

The unlock code issue is something you may have to take up with PTC. They should be able to tell you why the unlock code is getting lost.
PTC (Farrallon) tells me to send it to them for repair.

Quote:
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It's a good idea to capture the "welcome" message that the modem types out when you hit carriage return at the terminal screen. There may be hints there that help diagnose some of this.
That's part of my perception of the problem. Nothing happens in the screen area when I attempt key entry.

Quote:
Originally Posted by transmitterdan View Post
Dan
So, tomorrow I pull it out and send it off. Perhaps it will be ready/back by the time we get back from the Bahamas..

L8R

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Old 23-07-2015, 17:28   #23
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Re: PTCIIe won't talk to Winlink/Airmail or update

Skip,

I don't understand this then.

Quote:
Originally Posted by skipgundlach View Post

Connected it to the modem. Did passthrough test, passed.
If the modem doesn't respond at all what test did it pass?

Also, it will never turn on RF unless it gets a bunch of valid commands from Airmail. So the PTC modem has to be mostly working if it tuned the radio and actually transmitted something.
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Old 23-07-2015, 19:12   #24
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Re: PTCIIe won't talk to Winlink/Airmail or update

I got far enough, once, after several attempts, that it initialized with the old cable. That resulted in it telling me I had to upgrade my firmware, but I could promise to do it later.

The computer tuned the radio, not the modem. The modem put signals (well, the lights suggested it was) out and looked for signals back, which weren't forthcoming.

I'm off the boat more than I'm on lately so haven't been involved in any nets - but so far all my FSK tests show the power climbing as I hold the mike key, all the way to the end, with no SWR light coming on - but I think the radio is fine.

So, I'm thinking my control cable to the radio is doing a great job (com2) but neither of the serial adapters have much impact other than to either the new cable not find it at all, or have limited success with the old cable.

The test I did is the utility included with the new adapter, which had passive and active throughput (tx only and tx/rx) loopback-style tests, which the CABLE seemed to pass - but I don't know how it feeds back (active).

In any case, Farrallon wants it there, so I'll send it, and there will be another period of inactivity as I wait for that to work its way, as well as for us to return; we won't have it try to catch up to us in the Bahamas.

Thanks for all the fish, so to speak :{))

See you in some number of weeks >4.

L8R

Skip
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Old 13-01-2016, 13:50   #25
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Re: PTCIIe won't talk to Winlink/Airmail or update

Update:

Modem back from Farallon, reinstalled as original, checked speeds and com ports.

All works with original gear.

So, I now have a surplus Tripp-Lite serial-usb adapter.

Anybody need one?

L8R

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