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Old Jul 28, 2012, 04:51 AM
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"no data from powerlab 8" message

Hi guys,

been using my Powerlab 8 for a few weeks without problems, I also have the software installed under windows XP with latest SP and security patches.

Now i'm running into a problem, while i was charging my pack, i heard 3 beeps from PL8 and then software lost connection from PL8, message displayed on top :
no data from powerlab 8.
PL8 is running fine, continues to charge.

I tried rebooting PC, installing again USB driver from link given in software, shuting down PL8 and disconnecting from power supply for a while. Servo cable is connected properly at the back with black wire on the side of PL8. Red light is on on little board but nothing works.

I run on COM5, i checked the USB properties, driver is ok,

any idea ?

thanks a lot for your help
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Old Jul 29, 2012, 01:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hlalibe View Post
Hi guys,

been using my Powerlab 8 for a few weeks without problems, I also have the software installed under windows XP with latest SP and security patches.

Now i'm running into a problem, while i was charging my pack, i heard 3 beeps from PL8 and then software lost connection from PL8, message displayed on top :
no data from powerlab 8.
PL8 is running fine, continues to charge.

I tried rebooting PC, installing again USB driver from link given in software, shuting down PL8 and disconnecting from power supply for a while. Servo cable is connected properly at the back with black wire on the side of PL8. Red light is on on little board but nothing works.

I run on COM5, i checked the USB properties, driver is ok,

any idea ?

thanks a lot for your help
Hi:

If you have an ohm meter, I recommend checking continuity on each of the red/blk/wht wires between the JR servo style connector and the FUIM3 PCB assembly. Only other possibility might be the USB port or connector on your PC. Did you try different USB ports? Based on what you wrote, that's about all I can think of.

If you're getting a red light on the FUIM3, I kind of doubt there is any problem with it, but you might try installing and running the FUIM3 tester program. Download it here:

http://revolectrix.com/downloads.htm

Scroll down to software section, click the link titled "FUIM3 PC Interface Tester"

Make sure you have the FUIM3 plugged into the PL. It must have power during testing.

Tim Marks
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Old Jul 29, 2012, 03:56 AM
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Hi Tim,

thanks for your feed-back, some more info from my side:

- continuity on servo wires: none, all combinations displaying 2 to 6 Kohm
- tried on my 3 USB ports, none working. I re-installed driver from Revo web site.

I downloaded and ran the FUIM3 PC Interface Tester, tested it on COM3, fails to open on all 3 USB ports, on COM5 it opens the port on all 3 USB ports but test fails (red light comes up when i click the Test button though):

Starting FUIM3 Echo Test.
Opening port COM5
Port COM5 is open.

PLEASE VERIFY THAT THE LED IS NOW ON

Testing 9600bps... FAILED
Make sure 5V is connect to the pigtail (FUIM2 ONLY)
Closing COM5

******* FAILED *******

I confirm my USB port works, i have another USB to serial adapater for my Curtis motor controller, just checked it and it comunicates fine with the controller.

Parameters of my port: 9600, data bits 8, parity none, stop bit 1, flow control none.
But they must be ok because i haven't changed them and it's been working for a while.

Anything else you can think of ? Or should I contact my reseller to get another board ?

thanks a lot for your help

Hugues
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Last edited by hlalibe; Jul 29, 2012 at 04:27 AM.
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Old Jul 29, 2012, 09:39 AM
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Just to confirm, you have the FUIM3 not the FUIM2, correct?

FUIM2



FUIM3
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Old Jul 29, 2012, 09:53 AM
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FUIM3 confirmed
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Old Jul 29, 2012, 01:04 PM
President, FMA, Inc.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hlalibe View Post
Hi Tim,

thanks for your feed-back, some more info from my side:

- continuity on servo wires: none, all combinations displaying 2 to 6 Kohm
- tried on my 3 USB ports, none working. I re-installed driver from Revo web site.

I downloaded and ran the FUIM3 PC Interface Tester, tested it on COM3, fails to open on all 3 USB ports, on COM5 it opens the port on all 3 USB ports but test fails (red light comes up when i click the Test button though):

Starting FUIM3 Echo Test.
Opening port COM5
Port COM5 is open.

PLEASE VERIFY THAT THE LED IS NOW ON

Testing 9600bps... FAILED
Make sure 5V is connect to the pigtail (FUIM2 ONLY)
Closing COM5

******* FAILED *******

I confirm my USB port works, i have another USB to serial adapater for my Curtis motor controller, just checked it and it comunicates fine with the controller.

Parameters of my port: 9600, data bits 8, parity none, stop bit 1, flow control none.
But they must be ok because i haven't changed them and it's been working for a while.

Anything else you can think of ? Or should I contact my reseller to get another board ?

thanks a lot for your help

Hugues
Hi:

1) The wires should read like 0, 0.1 or 0.2 ohm, not 2-6 k ohm.

2) In the last post I gave you, I made a mistake. Please correct the following, and try again:

Do not plug the FUIM3 into the PL8 when you check it with the tester software. Apply around +4.8v to +6v across the red and black wires of the JR type servo pigtail instead (observe proper polarity). Hopefully you have a 4 cell NiCd or NiMH battery lying around and you can connect it to the FUIM3 pigtail?

Now if the red/blk/wht wires are not broken (they will read 0 ohm), and you apply power across the red/blk wires of the FUIM3, then set the COM port to the one that is available in the software (other than COM1, COM2). If you say it talks to COM5 in the past, then COM5 should be available in the list.

I just did this on my test FUIM3. Here is what I get:

Starting FUIM3 Echo Test.
Opening port COM4 (mine is talking on COM4)
Port COM4 is open.

PLEASE VERIFIY THAT THE LED IS NOW ON

Testing 9600bps... OK
Testing 19200bps... OK
Testing 38400bps... OK
Testing 56000bps... OK
Testing 57600bps... OK
Testing 115200bps... OK
Closing COM 4

************* PASSED ***********

Let me know how you make out. If the FUIM3 Tester passes the FUIM3, then you know this is not the problem. If you follow the instructions above, and it still fails, then it's likely the FUIM3 is bad.

Tim Marks
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Old Jul 29, 2012, 03:23 PM
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i measured the resistance again, with the FUIM3 not plugged in into anything:
- black and red: scale of ohmmeter on 20K, reading 5.59 (if i use a lower scale i read infinity)
- black and white: 18.56
- red and white: 8.70

I got myself a 4.8V NiMH, followed your procedure, made sure the device gets 4.8V, tested again on COM 5, same results as before, Failed. The red led blinks where i click on Test. Checked other USB ports, same.

I closely inspected all connections of the board with a magnifying glass, no apparent defect or bad connections.

Shall i contact my reseller ? I bought it at eflight.ch

thanks for your advice

P.S: in the meantime, I'm charging 3 packs of 7S using the MPA board with the 6 channels. While charging, i can see only the first 7 cells data on the display of the PL8. Is there a way to see all 21 cells ? Or the only way is through the software ?
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Old Jul 29, 2012, 04:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hlalibe View Post
i measured the resistance again, with the FUIM3 not plugged in into anything:
- black and red: scale of ohmmeter on 20K, reading 5.59 (if i use a lower scale i read infinity)
- black and white: 18.56
- red and white: 8.70

I got myself a 4.8V NiMH, followed your procedure, made sure the device gets 4.8V, tested again on COM 5, same results as before, Failed. The red led blinks where i click on Test. Checked other USB ports, same.

I closely inspected all connections of the board with a magnifying glass, no apparent defect or bad connections.

Shall i contact my reseller ? I bought it at eflight.ch

thanks for your advice

P.S: in the meantime, I'm charging 3 packs of 7S using the MPA board with the 6 channels. While charging, i can see only the first 7 cells data on the display of the PL8. Is there a way to see all 21 cells ? Or the only way is through the software ?
Hi:

I can't tell from your test results if you have broken wires or not because your readings don't make any sense. I guess in either case, it can't hurt for you to get the FUIM3 swapped out and try again.

When you parallel packs together, it makes all packs look like one big pack to a charger. You can not "see" the individual cells in paralleled packs. That's just the way it works. Having CCS operational won't make any difference.

Tim Marks
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Old Jul 29, 2012, 04:19 PM
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Ok I'll contact them tomorrow

Actually, I have 3 separate packs , not connected together . Even with the software I cannot read individual cells ?
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Old Jul 30, 2012, 12:56 AM
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Originally Posted by hlalibe View Post
Ok I'll contact them tomorrow

Actually, I have 3 separate packs , not connected together . Even with the software I cannot read individual cells ?
Hi:

Sorry, I don't follow you. Maybe you could supply a quick sketch or something?

Tim Marks
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Old Jul 30, 2012, 07:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Tim Marks View Post
Hi:

Sorry, I don't follow you. Maybe you could supply a quick sketch or something?

Tim Marks
sorry, there is something i misunderstood probably. I could do a drawing but ...it's easy:

- i have 3 separate LiPo packs, 7S each, they are not connected to each other.
- they have different state of charge
- the cells need to be balanced.

So i connect their balance cable and power cable to the MPA.
Then i start the charger telling it i have 3 packs.

From that point onward i thought i could see the cell voltage of each of the 21 cells, on the PL8 display and on computer screen.

But what you tell me is that as the packs are now connected n parallel through the MPA, it is not possible anymore to read individual cells ?

I though there was some kind of switching electronics on this board that could allow to charge them separately.

But then, the board says we can mix packs of different number of cells and different SOC. How do you manage this ? If I have a pack at 3.7 V per cell and another one at 4.0 volts, when i connect them on the MPA board, current will flow from the highest pack to the lowest ? and packs will equilibrate like this ? That probably explains the sparks that comes sometimes when i plug the power connector.

SO there is no way to monitor a cell internal resistance when charging them like this, right ?

sorry for the confusion,

thanks

I sent a mail to eflight.ch just now

Hugues
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Old Jul 30, 2012, 03:28 PM
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Hi:

Comments below in red...




Quote:
Originally Posted by hlalibe View Post
sorry, there is something i misunderstood probably. I could do a drawing but ...it's easy:

- i have 3 separate LiPo packs, 7S each, they are not connected to each other.
- they have different state of charge
- the cells need to be balanced.

So i connect their balance cable and power cable to the MPA.
Then i start the charger telling it i have 3 packs.

From that point onward i thought i could see the cell voltage of each of the 21 cells, on the PL8 display and on computer screen.

But what you tell me is that as the packs are now connected n parallel through the MPA, it is not possible anymore to read individual cells ? Correct.

I though there was some kind of switching electronics on this board that could allow to charge them separately. No, there are no switching electronics in the MPA, only polyfuses and temperature stickers to show when there is a high-current issue like a short circuit.

But then, the board says we can mix packs of different number of cells and different SOC. Different state of charge, yes. But the closer the packs are to similar SOC, the better for the life of the batteries. But NEVER NEVER NEVER different cell counts. The PCB DOES NOT SAY THIS! ! !How do you manage this ? If I have a pack at 3.7 V per cell and another one at 4.0 volts, when i connect them on the MPA board, current will flow from the highest pack to the lowest ? and packs will equilibrate like this ? That probably explains the sparks that comes sometimes when i plug the power connector. Yes, this is essentially correct.

SO there is no way to monitor a cell internal resistance when charging them like this, right ? Correct. If you put two hoses together using a coupling, can you then identify the water that comes out of hose 1 versus hose 2? There are a lot of good analogies between water and electrons. This one works too.

sorry for the confusion, No problem. That's what we're here for.

thanks

I sent a mail to eflight.ch just now

Hugues
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