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Old 05-09-2012, 01:45 AM   #101 (permalink)
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Hardware failure - a backup plan

I began with my oldest desktop, a P133 that still had a 5.25 inch floppy disk. I turned it on and there was a small 'pop', followed by the sickly smell of burnt plastic. The power supply fried.

The next one was a P4 ... maybe a 533? It powered up but would not boot. The CD drive would not boot. The floppy did not turn. The Zip disk turned but would not boot. The hard drive won't boot. The hard drive controller, cables .. I gave up and retired the computer (took out the zip disk and the CD)

The last one is a Celeron. It powers up but the boot sector on the hard disk is gone. I finally got it to run from DOS 7, from a floppy diskette. It's not perfect, but I can use the PLC programming software and the laptop with an external monitor.

Now to get back to the project ....

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Old 05-13-2012, 01:18 AM   #102 (permalink)
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Change of focus

Quote:
Originally Posted by thingstodo View Post
... I will go through my assumptions and test a few things on low-current loads ... tomorrow ...
Well, the low current loads. Turn on 25.2V through a 20 ohm load. The current is expected to be 1.26 amps. It is actually 1.16? Try a 50 ohm load - expect 0.50 amps and get 0.46 amps. It seems that the DC output has a voltage drop across it of about 2 volts.

In any case, it works the way that I expected it to. Replace the output fuse, the grinder blows it every time. Are things happening too fast for my equipment to measure? The current is obviously going far over 10A for at least a few pulses ... the pulses are about 1 ms long ...

The shunt resistor is 1.6 ohms. There is resistance in the grinder when I use a meter to check. If somehow when the grinder starts to turn the resistance goes down, I could get more than 10A ....

My neighbor thinks that he can get the engine and transmission removed from SalvageS10 sometime in the next week. I need to check out a couple of things before that, so I need to change priorities.

First - I need to be able to drive the dashboard. I have a color-code list for the many-conductor cable that interfaces to the dash. I need to strip some wires and determine what signal represents full scale and what is zero scale. Using a voltmeter and a scope I should be able to determine if the signals are pulsed, simple DC, ... or something else. There is no gas tank, so I can't start the engine but on power-up the dash is driven to minimum and maximum.

Second - I need to figure out what signals the ECU needs to function. If power is all that is required, I should be able to clear the OBD codes even with the engine gone. If the ECU needs to see signals from the engine ... I may have some idiot lights on the dash until I get the electric system fully installed ...

Since the S10 is a very popular conversion, I'll post my results here. The color code for the wiring will be posted along with the results (even though I was sure that I had already posted that color code already).
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Old 05-14-2012, 07:32 PM   #103 (permalink)
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Memory not right, or I broke something

I brought a battery out to SalvageS10, cleaned up the battery posts on the truck a bit, installed the battery and turned the ignition to see the startup sequence that I remember - but that's not what I saw.

I remember a sequence - turn the key, you get a steady tone that shows your seatbelt is not on, the dashboard powers up and shows minimum, a steady rise to maximum (I can't remember if the gauges were done in a series or all at the same time) and then the gauges drop to present values - oil pressure and temperature, motor temperature, fuel, tach and speedometer.

That's NOT what happened today when I put the key into the S10. The tone for seatbelt did sound. The Check engine light lit. And that's about it. NOTHING on the dash lit up.

What did I do wrong?

OK - crank the motor .. the battery cranked (no gas tank, so it could not start). The windows go up and down. The radio works ... but there is no dash display.

I was counting on driving the dash with signals from my PLC 5/60. I have PLC code ready to drive 4 - 20 mA or 0 - 10V signals, even pulsed 12V or 5V. I just needed to know what the existing signals are in order to imitate them. I also need to see what minimum scale and maximum scale look like.

So I need to create a dashboard of some sort. This will PROBABLY make it a bit more difficult to get SalvageS10 licensed. A big empty screen does not inspire confidence in a vehicle inspector. But does a home-made dashboard with salvaged meters inspire more confidence?

My memory is excellent for some things, and very poor for other things. I've learned not to trust my memory, so I'll do some reading and perhaps post on one or two of the chevy sites to determine if I've broken something or if I just don't remember a thing about how this dash used to work.

It would seem very strange that removing the gas tank would make the dash stop working ... but who knows? If that is the problem, then I will not likely get the dash to work again.

Since I did not see a display, I didn't check out the color coded wires going to the dash ... it seems kinda pointless since I would not be able to tell if a signal was being sent to the display.
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Old 05-15-2012, 01:11 AM   #104 (permalink)
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Blown Fuse?

My lovely wife asked a simple question - did you check the fuses on the truck?

... (mental head-slap) ...

When something electrical, like the display on an electronic dashboard, stops working ... perhaps checking that the power is still on would be a GOOD first step ...

So I rushed madly over to the truck to check the fuses. Awesome idea ... but this quick and easy-to-fix was not to be.

.. sigh! ...

There are a few videos on youtube that show an electronic dash for an S10 that would include 1991. The sequence is not exactly as I remember, but there should be something shown when the key is moved to to ACC. And it should include fuel gauge, oil pressure, oil temperature, tach and speedometer.

So something is not working right, and some troubleshooting is required.
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Old 05-16-2012, 12:53 AM   #105 (permalink)
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Getting under the dash

A co-worker - Jeff - who has owned a couple of S10's and whose brother presently owns three (at once?) went through a few troubleshooting questions with me today:

Jeff - What voltage did you use?

Me - The 12V battery, about 12.8V since it was charged up.

Jeff - Oh, the dash is still in the truck?

Me - Yes. I wanted to do the testing before actually changing anything

Jeff - So NOTHING has changed since the last time it was working?

Me - Well, I DID remove the quarter-ton box and the gas tank. So the fuel gauge and one ground are no longer there, some tubing was disconnected. And the rear lights are not connected - brake lights, signals, that stuff.

Jeff - OK. Did you check any of the pins on the connector? Is there power to the dash?

Me - No, I didn't check. I have not even looked for the connector yet.

Jeff - Do you have a Hanes manual?

Me - Yes.

Jeff - Good. After you get some bolts removed and can see the dash connector, check if there is power. If so, check for a good ground. If all still looks good, disconnect the connector from the truck and connect just the 12V and ground pins to a 12V battery. If you don't have pins that will fit, strip some insulation from the wires - follow the color code - and use alligator clips to power up the dash. The dash should show something. The signals for the gas gauge, the oil pressure and temperature, should show a fault when they are grounded. I'm pretty sure that the speedometer and odometer are connected together and one pulse equals .. there's about 4000 pulses per mile. Look it up in the chart I gave you. The tach could be pulses, could be a 0 - 5V signal. I don't remember.

Me - Yes - those are the kinds of things I was hoping to check and verify. OK. Directions to follow .. I can do that! ... what happens if it just doesn't work?

Jeff - These S10 dashes are pretty rugged. They don't usually just die. Every wrecker should each have at least a dozen of these dashes, so getting a used one should be pretty cheap. I've had parts of my dash stop displaying, but it is usually a bad signal ... you said you checked the fuses?

Me - Yes. My wife suggested that.

Jeff - You've got me interested ... let me know what you find.

Me - Thanks ... this should (hopefully) be a good start. I may bug you about it again, though.
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Old 05-22-2012, 02:24 AM   #106 (permalink)
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No progress

Just a quick excuse for no testing on the dash - I spent the long weekend at the lake.

I had planned to work on the arduino logging, the plc simulator program, and the oled board that was frustrating me so badly ...

My old laptop is having ... issues ... I think the hard drive is starting to lose sectors ... or maybe it's time to load windows xp from scratch

My neighbor has more work coming in (he's a mechanic) so I have another couple of weeks to figure out my dash problem


So .. no laptop, no software, no progress

Last edited by thingstodo; 05-22-2012 at 02:43 AM.. Reason: Add neighbor info
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Old 05-28-2012, 02:25 PM   #107 (permalink)
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Instrument cluster checked

The Hanes manual was a lot less useful for the how-to on removing the instrument cluster than I would have thought. It gives diagrams on the circuit, but no pictures on where the screws are, or what each pin is for on the connector.

This guy, however, does a GOOD job showing how to remove the instrument cluster, and a table of what each pin does for the digital cluster as well as the analog cluster.

Instrument Cluster Conversion

Following his instructions I removed the environmental controls, the switches, the various screws on the bottom of the dash, then the digital instrument cluster.

I took the instrument cluster to my basement, then connected 12.5V from a gel-cell battery between 21 (B4) and 24 (B7). There was no response from the cluster. No display at all, just like it was inside the truck.

I re-read the descriptions and decided to try looking at the connector from the other direction, using 21, Battery +12, at B28 and 24, ground, at b31. The result was the same.

Many vehicle connectors are setup up so that if you connect power or signal backward (like looking at the pinout from the back instead of the front) that there will be no damage. Not sure if this is the case or if it was already dead and there was no more damage to do.

This ends my investigation into the digital dash for a while. A used display from the local wrecker is about $120. I guess I'll invest that cash when I'm closer to getting the thing rolling.

No news from the neighbor who agreed to pull the engine and transmission. He was going to have some time last week, which pushed up my schedule for checking things out on the dash to see what voltages were required. I still don't know the voltages and I guess I won't until I buy a replacement.

I should call him and see how booked up he is.

As for some of Jeff's questions, I have not checked. It has been raining or drizzling for a couple of days and I am too lazy to stand in the rain to connect up the battery so that I can check for power on the connector in the dash of the truck. I have no loose pins for that connector, so I'd be using a paper clip or something like that. I'd hate to damage the connector in the truck with my clumsy testing.
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Old 05-28-2012, 08:31 PM   #108 (permalink)
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Instrument Cluster wiring verified

It stopped raining so I went out and checked SalvageS10 with a 12V battery. The power and ground show up as 21 (B4) and 24 (B7).

Of course, B7 showed up without the battery at all (0.3 ohms resistance to ground) so I could have saved myself the effort of taking out the 12V battery ... but it verified.

So the connector in the link is the view as you face the back of the digital instrument cluster, at the male pins.

The pin references of B4 and B7 refer to the silk screened letters beside the male connector, on the instrument cluster circuit board. A1 is on the left of the top row and is pin 1 on the connector and in the chart. A1 - A17 are pins 1 - 17 in the chart. B1 is on the left on the bottom row and is pin 18 on the connector, so B1 - B17 are pins 18 - 34. B4 is the 4rth pin from the left and B7 is the 7th pin from the left.

Since there is still power on these pins in the truck dash, the failure was originally in the digital cluster and has nothing to do with my clumsy removal of the cluster, or experimentally putting 12.5V on the wrong pins.

Last edited by thingstodo; 05-31-2012 at 09:53 PM.. Reason: Correct pin numbers
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Old 06-01-2012, 12:23 AM   #109 (permalink)
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Motor and transmission to come out Monday

Quote:
Originally Posted by thingstodo View Post
My neighbor has more work coming in (he's a mechanic) so I have another couple of weeks to figure out my dash problem
How quickly things change. My neighbor has some time available on Monday during the day so I'll try to take the time off work so that I can document the removal (and perhaps I can learn something while we're at it)

He has about 4 hours so I guess we'll see how far things get. Maybe the radiator, gas tank, exhaust, etc I can do by myself. I'm pretty useless at DOING mechanical stuff (OK at DISCUSSING mechanical work) but after all, I'm not that concerned about the parts that are being removed
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Old 06-02-2012, 10:46 PM   #110 (permalink)
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Arduino, Logging and communications continued

My arduino is getting some attention again - a change of topic from PC hardware frustration and truck hardware frustration.

Just as a review, this is what I'd like the Arduino to do, at the end of the project:
- interface to GPS - accept data in standard format, parse, save info to memory and to file
- interface to PLC - accept data in text format, parse, save info to memory and to file
- select data from memory and display locally
- select data from memory and send out USB to local PC
- interface with Labview, data exchange

When I last visited the Arduino, I had trouble with the 4D OLED shield.

But many things did go together quite quickly:
- the ethernet shield was working to display data to an extremely simple web display, running wired to my router, and wireless from there to my PC or Nook tablet
- the sketch read standard data from my laptop (same format as the data will be from the PLC) and displayed it on the serial monitor to the PC as well as to the web page

The things that are left:
- get the 4D OLED to display local data
- get a second serial port working so that serial data can come from the PLC and GPS
- get datalogging to work to an SD card
- re-load labview and get it to work with the Arduino as a data source
- communicate via OBD II with existing truck equipment

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