Discussion:
Oscillators
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Bob Martin
2018-10-03 20:48:10 UTC
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Time-Nuts,

I'm already getting requests from people who can't read!
Please don't contact me until everyone has a chance to process
the list of oscillators.

Cheers

Bob

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David Smith
2018-10-03 23:06:58 UTC
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Hi Bob,

I'll be on vacation for the next two weeks and out of internet range part of the time. Please consider my earlier request at the appropriate time.

Best regards,

Dave Smith

-----Original Message-----
From: time-nuts <time-nuts-***@lists.febo.com> On Behalf Of Bob Martin
Sent: Wednesday, October 3, 2018 1:48 PM
To: Time Nuta <time-***@lists.febo.com>
Subject: [time-nuts] Oscillators

Time-Nuts,

I'm already getting requests from people who can't read!
Please don't contact me until everyone has a chance to process the list of oscillators.

Cheers

Bob

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Bob Martin
2018-10-04 00:05:54 UTC
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Time-Nuts,

It has been pointed out that I've been a bit draconoian.
If you will be out of touch from the middle of next week on and are
interested in oscillators, feel free to enter your requests now.
Also let me know when you will be back in contact.

Lastly, I thought I'd given all the step attenuators away but one of
the individuals who responded hasn't gotten back to me so I have one
available. let me know why you want it and it is yours.

Best,

Bob

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Tom Van Baak
2018-10-04 23:46:04 UTC
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Bob, et al.

In general there's no problem using the list to sell or trade or give-away T&F gear. Especially if it's good stuff like what you have! The only thing we ask is that this benefit of using time-nuts as a marketplace be used sparingly. Some suggestions...

It's best to collect a pile of what you want to get rid of and make one (1) posting with a list of items, or even a URL to a web page. Also specify that inquiries about the items be sent to you privately rather than involving the entire 1800-member list -- and give your email address in plain text since many member email clients don't handle group reply correctly. Then, after the items are sold, make one (1) posting indicating that the items are no longer available. Thus, in an ideal world, there are just two bookend postings.

Once or a couple times a year per person would be about right. Again, please use the list to share amongst fellow time-nuts. That's what it's here for. Share your questions, your experience, your experiments, your results. Share web sites or professional papers you run across. And share your old gear. But the main thing is to keep the SNR of the list high, with postings that have significant technical content. Note that even an annotated list of items for sale can be an educational opportunity, especially for newcomers to the group.

Thanks,
/tvb
Moderator, www.leapsecond.com/time-nuts.htm

----- Original Message -----
From: "Bob Martin" <***@comcast.net>
To: "Time Nuta" <time-***@lists.febo.com>
Sent: Wednesday, October 03, 2018 5:05 PM
Subject: [time-nuts] Oscillators
Post by Bob Martin
Time-Nuts,
It has been pointed out that I've been a bit draconoian.
If you will be out of touch from the middle of next week on and are
interested in oscillators, feel free to enter your requests now.
Also let me know when you will be back in contact.
Lastly, I thought I'd given all the step attenuators away but one of
the individuals who responded hasn't gotten back to me so I have one
available. let me know why you want it and it is yours.
Best,
Bob
_______________________________________________
To unsubscribe, go to http://lists.febo.com/mailman/listinfo/time-nuts_lists.febo.com
and follow the instructions there.
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Matthew D'Asaro
2018-10-07 01:16:48 UTC
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Fellow time nuts,
Thanks to a very helpful (and generous) member of this list I now
have a Motorola VP Oncore for my 58503A. Unfortunatly, there appears to
be another problem somewhere with my 58503A. With the receiver installed
it now appears to pass its self test, at least it behaves as the manual
says it should with the power indicator illuminating immediately,
followed a few seconds later by the other lights each flashing in turn,
and then the power light alone remaining lit. At this point it should
(again according to the manual) present an 'scpi>' prompt on the serial
port, but it does not. I am sure I have the correct wiring between my
computer and the unit because I can measure the RS-232 TX line voltage
coming from the 58503A on my PC's RX line. I have tried the default
serial port settings (9600 8N1) as well as other baud rates with no success.

Figuring that, if it will lock, I really don't care if it talks to my PC
I have left it outside connected to an antenna for the last five hours
or so, but I still haven't gotten it to lock.

Questions:
1) Has anyone else experienced problems with these HP units failing to
communicate with the PC? Any solutions?
2) Is there a service manual available anywhere?
3) Does anyone know what the internal LEDs on the back of the board
mean? After powering it up and letting it sit for a few minutes the two
red ones on the far left (with the front of the receiver facing me) are
on along with the green one on the far right. The three red ones in the
middle all flash on momentarily every 15 seconds or so, then they go off
again.
4)Do you have any other hints?

-Matthew

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Mike Cook
2018-10-07 05:48:09 UTC
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Post by Matthew D'Asaro
Fellow time nuts,
Thanks to a very helpful (and generous) member of this list I now have a Motorola VP Oncore for my 58503A. Unfortunatly, there appears to be another problem somewhere with my 58503A. With the receiver installed it now appears to pass its self test, at least it behaves as the manual says it should with the power indicator illuminating immediately, followed a few seconds later by the other lights each flashing in turn, and then the power light alone remaining lit. At this point it should (again according to the manual) present an 'scpi>' prompt on the serial port, but it does not. I am sure I have the correct wiring between my computer and the unit because I can measure the RS-232 TX line voltage coming from the 58503A on my PC's RX line.
What voltage are you finding? IIRC RS232 leaves a logic 1 i.e. -ve voltage on the line if not transmitting. You could try putting a scope on the RS232 chip TX driver input to see if the CPU is sending anything during startup.
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
I have tried the default serial port settings (9600 8N1) as well as other baud rates with no success.
Figuring that, if it will lock, I really don't care if it talks to my PC I have left it outside connected to an antenna for the last five hours or so, but I still haven't gotten it to lock.
It may not lock if it has a saved position which is far away. That happened for my Z3801A which is pretty much the same box and had come from China. I had to force it into survey mode. But that needs RS232 working.
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
1) Has anyone else experienced problems with these HP units failing to communicate with the PC? Any solutions?
2) Is there a service manual available anywhere?
3) Does anyone know what the internal LEDs on the back of the board mean? After powering it up and letting it sit for a few minutes the two red ones on the far left (with the front of the receiver facing me) are on along with the green one on the far right. The three red ones in the middle all flash on momentarily every 15 seconds or so, then they go off again.
4)Do you have any other hints?
-Matthew
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People have only as much liberty as they have the intelligence to want and the courage to take.

Emma Goldman


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Matthew D'Asaro
2018-10-07 06:09:27 UTC
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Thanks. My responses are below.
Post by Mike Cook
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
Fellow time nuts,
Thanks to a very helpful (and generous) member of this list I now have a Motorola VP Oncore for my 58503A. Unfortunatly, there appears to be another problem somewhere with my 58503A. With the receiver installed it now appears to pass its self test, at least it behaves as the manual says it should with the power indicator illuminating immediately, followed a few seconds later by the other lights each flashing in turn, and then the power light alone remaining lit. At this point it should (again according to the manual) present an 'scpi>' prompt on the serial port, but it does not. I am sure I have the correct wiring between my computer and the unit because I can measure the RS-232 TX line voltage coming from the 58503A on my PC's RX line.
What voltage are you finding? IIRC RS232 leaves a logic 1 i.e. -ve voltage on the line if not transmitting. You could try putting a scope on the RS232 chip TX driver input to see if the CPU is sending anything during startup.
The voltage it is sending is -8V, so line not transmitting. I will try a
scope on the driver inputs next - that was my next attempt if I can't
get it to lock.
Post by Mike Cook
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
I have tried the default serial port settings (9600 8N1) as well as other baud rates with no success.
Figuring that, if it will lock, I really don't care if it talks to my PC I have left it outside connected to an antenna for the last five hours or so, but I still haven't gotten it to lock.
It may not lock if it has a saved position which is far away. That happened for my Z3801A which is pretty much the same box and had come from China. I had to force it into survey mode. But that needs RS232 working.
OK. Got it. Looks like I have to get serial working. If I am seeing the
self-test lights, is it safe to assume that it is basically booting? It
would be nice to know if the CPU is basically alive and booted or not...
Post by Mike Cook
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
1) Has anyone else experienced problems with these HP units failing to communicate with the PC? Any solutions?
2) Is there a service manual available anywhere?
3) Does anyone know what the internal LEDs on the back of the board mean? After powering it up and letting it sit for a few minutes the two red ones on the far left (with the front of the receiver facing me) are on along with the green one on the far right. The three red ones in the middle all flash on momentarily every 15 seconds or so, then they go off again.
4)Do you have any other hints?
-Matthew
_______________________________________________
To unsubscribe, go to http://lists.febo.com/mailman/listinfo/time-nuts_lists.febo.com
and follow the instructions there.
People have only as much liberty as they have the intelligence to want and the courage to take.
Emma Goldman
_______________________________________________
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Mark Sims
2018-10-07 07:26:59 UTC
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The 58503A needs a null-modem pinout serial cable to connect to a PC. The baud rate defaults to 9600:8:N:1
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Matthew D'Asaro
2018-10-13 04:16:03 UTC
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All -
I have made substantial progress on my HP 58503A, but I am not
quite there yet. By watching the internal lights and the data on the
processor bus I could see that the CPU was starting to boot and then
restarting every ~15 seconds. Furthermore, the reset circuit didn't seem
to be working right. Sometimes when I power cycled it the front panel
lights would flash to indicate a self-test, other times they would not.
This seemed to indicate that the system was not being reset correctly on
start-up. More telling, when I manually triggered the reset generator
chip, the system would not ever flash its front panel lights even though
I could see that the CPU was being reset per the internal lights.

The problem, as it turned out, was more mechanical than electrical.
As shown in the attached photo, someone had put the case back together
with a screw that was too long! It dug into the board and cut two
traces, one of which was the reset line for the UART chip (and probably
some other chips as well - I didn't fully trace the line). Once I
repaired these two traces (red wires in my picture) it booted right up
and even passed its self-test!

However, the story does not end there. I now have it booting and
appearing to "work" but I can't get it to track satellites. I manually
set the location, date, and time with the following commands:
GPS:INIT:DATE (date)
GPS:INIT:POS (position)
GPS:INIT:TIME (time)

I then setup the unit (inside, but with the GPS antenna near a
window) and left it turned on overnight. However, no dice. The system
does not display errors but won't track any satellites. Here is the
results of a SYSTEM:STATUS? command:

scpi > system:status?
------------------------------- Receiver Status
-------------------------------
SYNCHRONIZATION ........................................... [ Outputs
Invalid ]
SmartClock Mode ___________________________ Reference Outputs
_______________
Locked TFOM 9 FFOM 3
Recovery 1PPS TI --
Holdover HOLD THR 1.000 us
Post by Mark Sims
Power-up: GPS acquisition Holdover Uncertainty ____________
Predict --

ACQUISITION .............................................. [ GPS 1PPS
Invalid ]
Tracking: 0 ____ Not Tracking: 14 _______ Time
____________________________
PRN El Az PRN El Az UTC 05:08:22 [?] 11 Oct 2018
* 1 -- --- *10 -- --- GPS 1PPS Invalid: not
tracking
* 2 -- --- 16 35 50 ANT DLY 0 ns
* 3 -- --- *23 55 129 Position
________________________
* 5 -- --- 26 10 41 MODE Survey: 0% complete
* 6 -- --- 27 21 96 Suspended: track <4 sats
7 57 267 30 25 257 INIT LAT N 47:42:01.770
* 8 13 127 INIT LON W 122:16:26.770
9 81 141 INIT HGT +20.00
m (MSL)
ELEV MASK 10 deg *attempting to track
HEALTH MONITOR .........................................................
[ OK ]
Self Test: OK Int Pwr: OK Oven Pwr: OK OCXO: OK EFC: OK GPS
Rcv: OK
scpi >

Is there anything else I can try?

Thanks in advance,
Matthew D'Asaro
Post by Mark Sims
The 58503A needs a null-modem pinout serial cable to connect to a PC. The baud rate defaults to 9600:8:N:1
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Azelio Boriani
2018-10-13 12:39:23 UTC
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Permalink
Try a SYSTem:PREset first, before sending the GPS:INITial.
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
All -
I have made substantial progress on my HP 58503A, but I am not
quite there yet. By watching the internal lights and the data on the
processor bus I could see that the CPU was starting to boot and then
restarting every ~15 seconds. Furthermore, the reset circuit didn't seem
to be working right. Sometimes when I power cycled it the front panel
lights would flash to indicate a self-test, other times they would not.
This seemed to indicate that the system was not being reset correctly on
start-up. More telling, when I manually triggered the reset generator
chip, the system would not ever flash its front panel lights even though
I could see that the CPU was being reset per the internal lights.
The problem, as it turned out, was more mechanical than electrical.
As shown in the attached photo, someone had put the case back together
with a screw that was too long! It dug into the board and cut two
traces, one of which was the reset line for the UART chip (and probably
some other chips as well - I didn't fully trace the line). Once I
repaired these two traces (red wires in my picture) it booted right up
and even passed its self-test!
However, the story does not end there. I now have it booting and
appearing to "work" but I can't get it to track satellites. I manually
GPS:INIT:DATE (date)
GPS:INIT:POS (position)
GPS:INIT:TIME (time)
I then setup the unit (inside, but with the GPS antenna near a
window) and left it turned on overnight. However, no dice. The system
does not display errors but won't track any satellites. Here is the
scpi > system:status?
------------------------------- Receiver Status
-------------------------------
SYNCHRONIZATION ........................................... [ Outputs
Invalid ]
SmartClock Mode ___________________________ Reference Outputs
_______________
Locked TFOM 9 FFOM 3
Recovery 1PPS TI --
Holdover HOLD THR 1.000 us
Post by Mark Sims
Power-up: GPS acquisition Holdover Uncertainty ____________
Predict --
ACQUISITION .............................................. [ GPS 1PPS
Invalid ]
Tracking: 0 ____ Not Tracking: 14 _______ Time
____________________________
PRN El Az PRN El Az UTC 05:08:22 [?] 11 Oct 2018
* 1 -- --- *10 -- --- GPS 1PPS Invalid: not
tracking
* 2 -- --- 16 35 50 ANT DLY 0 ns
* 3 -- --- *23 55 129 Position
________________________
* 5 -- --- 26 10 41 MODE Survey: 0% complete
* 6 -- --- 27 21 96 Suspended: track <4 sats
7 57 267 30 25 257 INIT LAT N 47:42:01.770
* 8 13 127 INIT LON W 122:16:26.770
9 81 141 INIT HGT +20.00
m (MSL)
ELEV MASK 10 deg *attempting to track
HEALTH MONITOR .........................................................
[ OK ]
Self Test: OK Int Pwr: OK Oven Pwr: OK OCXO: OK EFC: OK GPS
Rcv: OK
scpi >
Is there anything else I can try?
Thanks in advance,
Matthew D'Asaro
Post by Mark Sims
The 58503A needs a null-modem pinout serial cable to connect to a PC. The baud rate defaults to 9600:8:N:1
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and follow the instructions there.
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Matthew D'Asaro
2018-10-14 04:20:47 UTC
Reply
Permalink
All -
I think I have it fixed! The problem was a broken wire inside my
genuine HP 58532A antenna. I was suspicious of the antenna because it
didn't seem to matter if I had it connected or not - the 58503A behaved
exactly the same. I confirmed my suspicions by measuring the DC current
it drew. Zero. Something was wrong so I took it apart and measured the
resistance between the center conductor and the board and found it to be
infinity. As it turns out the center conductor of the micro-coax that
connects the N-connector to the board had broken right where it was
soldered on. It took a bit to figure out how to press the center
conductor out of the connector, reattach the coax, and press it back in.
To press it out I first had to unsolder the shield of the coax and then
I could use the back of a drill-bit placed in a vice to force the center
conductor out of the insulator. Once I had the cable reattached, I could
press it back in by placing it over the center contact of a male
N-connector and then screwing the two together. See the attached pictures.

Anyway, once I had the antenna repaired it found satellites to
track immediately - I didn't even have to set an initial date or
location. It is about 2% of the way through its survey now and hopefully
will have locked in by morning.

Thanks to all of you for your help!

-Matthew D'Asaro
Post by Azelio Boriani
Try a SYSTem:PREset first, before sending the GPS:INITial.
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
All -
I have made substantial progress on my HP 58503A, but I am not
quite there yet. By watching the internal lights and the data on the
processor bus I could see that the CPU was starting to boot and then
restarting every ~15 seconds. Furthermore, the reset circuit didn't seem
to be working right. Sometimes when I power cycled it the front panel
lights would flash to indicate a self-test, other times they would not.
This seemed to indicate that the system was not being reset correctly on
start-up. More telling, when I manually triggered the reset generator
chip, the system would not ever flash its front panel lights even though
I could see that the CPU was being reset per the internal lights.
The problem, as it turned out, was more mechanical than electrical.
As shown in the attached photo, someone had put the case back together
with a screw that was too long! It dug into the board and cut two
traces, one of which was the reset line for the UART chip (and probably
some other chips as well - I didn't fully trace the line). Once I
repaired these two traces (red wires in my picture) it booted right up
and even passed its self-test!
However, the story does not end there. I now have it booting and
appearing to "work" but I can't get it to track satellites. I manually
GPS:INIT:DATE (date)
GPS:INIT:POS (position)
GPS:INIT:TIME (time)
I then setup the unit (inside, but with the GPS antenna near a
window) and left it turned on overnight. However, no dice. The system
does not display errors but won't track any satellites. Here is the
scpi > system:status?
------------------------------- Receiver Status
-------------------------------
SYNCHRONIZATION ........................................... [ Outputs
Invalid ]
SmartClock Mode ___________________________ Reference Outputs
_______________
Locked TFOM 9 FFOM 3
Recovery 1PPS TI --
Holdover HOLD THR 1.000 us
Post by Mark Sims
Power-up: GPS acquisition Holdover Uncertainty ____________
Predict --
ACQUISITION .............................................. [ GPS 1PPS
Invalid ]
Tracking: 0 ____ Not Tracking: 14 _______ Time
____________________________
PRN El Az PRN El Az UTC 05:08:22 [?] 11 Oct 2018
* 1 -- --- *10 -- --- GPS 1PPS Invalid: not
tracking
* 2 -- --- 16 35 50 ANT DLY 0 ns
* 3 -- --- *23 55 129 Position
________________________
* 5 -- --- 26 10 41 MODE Survey: 0% complete
* 6 -- --- 27 21 96 Suspended: track <4 sats
7 57 267 30 25 257 INIT LAT N 47:42:01.770
* 8 13 127 INIT LON W 122:16:26.770
9 81 141 INIT HGT +20.00
m (MSL)
ELEV MASK 10 deg *attempting to track
HEALTH MONITOR .........................................................
[ OK ]
Self Test: OK Int Pwr: OK Oven Pwr: OK OCXO: OK EFC: OK GPS
Rcv: OK
scpi >
Is there anything else I can try?
Thanks in advance,
Matthew D'Asaro
Post by Mark Sims
The 58503A needs a null-modem pinout serial cable to connect to a PC. The baud rate defaults to 9600:8:N:1
_______________________________________________
To unsubscribe, go to http://lists.febo.com/mailman/listinfo/time-nuts_lists.febo.com
and follow the instructions there.
_______________________________________________
To unsubscribe, go to http://lists.febo.com/mailman/listinfo/time-nuts_lists.febo.com
and follow the instructions there.
_______________________________________________
To unsubscribe, go to http://lists.febo.com/mailman/listinfo/time-nuts_lists.febo.com
and follow the instructions there.
Matthew D'Asaro
2018-10-14 04:21:26 UTC
Reply
Permalink
It just locked!

-Matthew
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
All -
I think I have it fixed! The problem was a broken wire inside my
genuine HP 58532A antenna. I was suspicious of the antenna because it
didn't seem to matter if I had it connected or not - the 58503A
behaved exactly the same. I confirmed my suspicions by measuring the
DC current it drew. Zero. Something was wrong so I took it apart and
measured the resistance between the center conductor and the board and
found it to be infinity. As it turns out the center conductor of the
micro-coax that connects the N-connector to the board had broken right
where it was soldered on. It took a bit to figure out how to press the
center conductor out of the connector, reattach the coax, and press it
back in. To press it out I first had to unsolder the shield of the
coax and then I could use the back of a drill-bit placed in a vice to
force the center conductor out of the insulator. Once I had the cable
reattached, I could press it back in by placing it over the center
contact of a male N-connector and then screwing the two together. See
the attached pictures.
Anyway, once I had the antenna repaired it found satellites to
track immediately - I didn't even have to set an initial date or
location. It is about 2% of the way through its survey now and
hopefully will have locked in by morning.
Thanks to all of you for your help!
-Matthew D'Asaro
Post by Azelio Boriani
Try a SYSTem:PREset first, before sending the GPS:INITial.
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
All -
I have made substantial progress on my HP 58503A, but I am not
quite there yet. By watching the internal lights and the data on the
processor bus I could see that the CPU was starting to boot and then
restarting every ~15 seconds. Furthermore, the reset circuit didn't seem
to be working right. Sometimes when I power cycled it the front panel
lights would flash to indicate a self-test, other times they would not.
This seemed to indicate that the system was not being reset
correctly on
start-up. More telling, when I manually triggered the reset generator
chip, the system would not ever flash its front panel lights even though
I could see that the CPU was being reset per the internal lights.
The problem, as it turned out, was more mechanical than electrical.
As shown in the attached photo, someone had put the case back together
with a screw that was too long! It dug into the board and cut two
traces, one of which was the reset line for the UART chip (and probably
some other chips as well - I didn't fully trace the line). Once I
repaired these two traces (red wires in my picture) it booted right up
and even passed its self-test!
However, the story does not end there. I now have it booting and
appearing to "work" but I can't get it to track satellites. I manually
GPS:INIT:DATE (date)
GPS:INIT:POS (position)
GPS:INIT:TIME (time)
I then setup the unit (inside, but with the GPS antenna near a
window) and left it turned on overnight. However, no dice. The system
does not display errors but won't track any satellites. Here is the
scpi > system:status?
------------------------------- Receiver Status
-------------------------------
SYNCHRONIZATION ........................................... [ Outputs
Invalid ]
SmartClock Mode ___________________________ Reference Outputs
_______________
Locked TFOM 9
FFOM 3
Recovery 1PPS TI --
Holdover HOLD THR 1.000 us
Post by Mark Sims
Power-up: GPS acquisition Holdover Uncertainty ____________
Predict --
ACQUISITION .............................................. [ GPS 1PPS
Invalid ]
Tracking: 0 ____ Not Tracking: 14 _______ Time
____________________________
PRN El Az PRN El Az UTC 05:08:22 [?] 11 Oct 2018
* 1 -- --- *10 -- --- GPS 1PPS Invalid: not
tracking
* 2 -- --- 16 35 50 ANT DLY 0 ns
* 3 -- --- *23 55 129 Position
________________________
* 5 -- --- 26 10 41 MODE Survey: 0% complete
* 6 -- --- 27 21 96 Suspended: track <4 sats
7 57 267 30 25 257 INIT LAT N 47:42:01.770
* 8 13 127 INIT LON W
122:16:26.770
9 81 141 INIT HGT
+20.00
m (MSL)
ELEV MASK 10 deg *attempting to track
HEALTH MONITOR
.........................................................
[ OK ]
Self Test: OK Int Pwr: OK Oven Pwr: OK OCXO: OK EFC: OK GPS
Rcv: OK
scpi >
Is there anything else I can try?
Thanks in advance,
Matthew D'Asaro
Post by Mark Sims
The 58503A needs a null-modem pinout serial cable to connect to a
PC. The baud rate defaults to 9600:8:N:1
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Matthew D'Asaro
2018-10-14 22:03:29 UTC
Reply
Permalink
All -
Thanks again for all the suggestions and advice I have gotten on
this project. It ran all night without loosing lock, so I am calling it
fixed. There is just one more order of business before I can use it, and
that is some way of "mounting" the GPS antenna on the roof in a
non-destructive manner, both to avoid damaging the (flat membrane) roof
and so that I can move it if necessary. See the attached photo of what I
have come up with. All the parts (minus the cable and antenna) came from
Home Depot.

The concrete block is a generic 1 sqft paver stone which cost all
of $1.18. This is to provide a heavy base and avoid tipping. Attached to
that is an upside-down PVC toilet flange from the plumbing section. It
is attached with 6x stainless steel machine screws and wing-nuts that
pass all the way through the paver and are counter-sunk on the bottom so
that the heads won't damage the roof. Nylon spacers separate the toilet
flange and paver block by about 1/4 inch so that water can drain if
needed and to provide a space for the coax feed line to come out.
Pressed into the top of the paver is a 3" to 2" reducing adapter and
pressed into that is a 2" to 1-1/4" reducing adapter. The mast itself is
just a 2-foot section of 1-1/4" PVC pipe. The 58532A antenna is
apparently designed to mount over a 1-1/4" mast since its inner diameter
is 43mm and the outside of a 1-1/4" pipe is 42mm.

It is sitting on the back railing of the house for now but I
ordered a 40' length of LMR-250 cable with N-connectors on both ends
from http://www.usacoax.com/ and once that comes I can set it up for
real on the roof with the cable running into my lab. Over and out.

-Matthew
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
It just locked!
-Matthew
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
All -
I think I have it fixed! The problem was a broken wire inside my
genuine HP 58532A antenna. I was suspicious of the antenna because it
didn't seem to matter if I had it connected or not - the 58503A
behaved exactly the same. I confirmed my suspicions by measuring the
DC current it drew. Zero. Something was wrong so I took it apart and
measured the resistance between the center conductor and the board
and found it to be infinity. As it turns out the center conductor of
the micro-coax that connects the N-connector to the board had broken
right where it was soldered on. It took a bit to figure out how to
press the center conductor out of the connector, reattach the coax,
and press it back in. To press it out I first had to unsolder the
shield of the coax and then I could use the back of a drill-bit
placed in a vice to force the center conductor out of the insulator.
Once I had the cable reattached, I could press it back in by placing
it over the center contact of a male N-connector and then screwing
the two together. See the attached pictures.
Anyway, once I had the antenna repaired it found satellites to
track immediately - I didn't even have to set an initial date or
location. It is about 2% of the way through its survey now and
hopefully will have locked in by morning.
Thanks to all of you for your help!
-Matthew D'Asaro
Post by Azelio Boriani
Try a SYSTem:PREset first, before sending the GPS:INITial.
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
All -
I have made substantial progress on my HP 58503A, but I am not
quite there yet. By watching the internal lights and the data on the
processor bus I could see that the CPU was starting to boot and then
restarting every ~15 seconds. Furthermore, the reset circuit didn't seem
to be working right. Sometimes when I power cycled it the front panel
lights would flash to indicate a self-test, other times they would not.
This seemed to indicate that the system was not being reset
correctly on
start-up. More telling, when I manually triggered the reset generator
chip, the system would not ever flash its front panel lights even though
I could see that the CPU was being reset per the internal lights.
The problem, as it turned out, was more mechanical than electrical.
As shown in the attached photo, someone had put the case back together
with a screw that was too long! It dug into the board and cut two
traces, one of which was the reset line for the UART chip (and probably
some other chips as well - I didn't fully trace the line). Once I
repaired these two traces (red wires in my picture) it booted right up
and even passed its self-test!
However, the story does not end there. I now have it booting and
appearing to "work" but I can't get it to track satellites. I manually
GPS:INIT:DATE (date)
GPS:INIT:POS (position)
GPS:INIT:TIME (time)
I then setup the unit (inside, but with the GPS antenna near a
window) and left it turned on overnight. However, no dice. The system
does not display errors but won't track any satellites. Here is the
scpi > system:status?
------------------------------- Receiver Status
-------------------------------
SYNCHRONIZATION ........................................... [ Outputs
Invalid ]
SmartClock Mode ___________________________ Reference Outputs
_______________
Locked TFOM 9
FFOM 3
Recovery 1PPS TI --
Holdover HOLD THR 1.000 us
Post by Mark Sims
Power-up: GPS acquisition Holdover Uncertainty ____________
Predict --
ACQUISITION .............................................. [ GPS 1PPS
Invalid ]
Tracking: 0 ____ Not Tracking: 14 _______ Time
____________________________
PRN El Az PRN El Az UTC 05:08:22 [?] 11 Oct 2018
* 1 -- --- *10 -- --- GPS 1PPS Invalid: not
tracking
* 2 -- --- 16 35 50 ANT DLY 0 ns
* 3 -- --- *23 55 129 Position
________________________
0% complete
* 6 -- --- 27 21 96 Suspended: track <4 sats
7 57 267 30 25 257 INIT LAT N
47:42:01.770
* 8 13 127 INIT LON W
122:16:26.770
9 81 141 INIT HGT
+20.00
m (MSL)
ELEV MASK 10 deg *attempting to track
HEALTH MONITOR
.........................................................
[ OK ]
Self Test: OK Int Pwr: OK Oven Pwr: OK OCXO: OK EFC: OK GPS
Rcv: OK
scpi >
Is there anything else I can try?
Thanks in advance,
Matthew D'Asaro
Post by Mark Sims
The 58503A needs a null-modem pinout serial cable to connect to a
PC. The baud rate defaults to 9600:8:N:1
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jimlux
2018-10-14 23:07:27 UTC
Reply
Permalink
All -
    Thanks again for all the suggestions and advice I have gotten on
this project. It ran all night without loosing lock, so I am calling it
fixed. There is just one more order of business before I can use it, and
that is some way of "mounting" the GPS antenna on the roof in a
non-destructive manner, both to avoid damaging the (flat membrane) roof
and so that I can move it if necessary. See the attached photo of what I
have come up with. All the parts (minus the cable and antenna) came from
Home Depot.
    The concrete block is a generic 1 sqft paver stone which cost all
of $1.18. This is to provide a heavy base and avoid tipping. Attached to
that is an upside-down PVC toilet flange from the plumbing section. It
is attached with 6x stainless steel machine screws and wing-nuts that
pass all the way through the paver and are counter-sunk on the bottom so
that the heads won't damage the roof. Nylon spacers separate the toilet
flange and paver block by about 1/4 inch so that water can drain if
needed and to provide a space for the coax feed line to come out.
Pressed into the top of the paver is a 3" to 2" reducing adapter and
pressed into that is a 2" to 1-1/4" reducing adapter. The mast itself is
just a 2-foot section of 1-1/4" PVC pipe. The 58532A antenna is
apparently designed to mount over a 1-1/4" mast since its inner diameter
is 43mm and the outside of a 1-1/4" pipe is 42mm.
Standard "non-penetrating" roof mounts use this technique - they have a
frame which you ballast, by bricks, pavers, or sacks of gravel.


After that it's more a matter of figuring out how to do the mechanical
structure - sandbags and plumbing fittings are a fine way to cobble
something to together.



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Tom Miller
2018-10-14 23:42:30 UTC
Reply
Permalink
----- Original Message -----
From: "jimlux" <***@earthlink.net>
To: <time-***@lists.febo.com>
Sent: Sunday, October 14, 2018 7:07 PM
Subject: Re: [time-nuts] Troubleshooting an HP 58503A
Post by jimlux
All -
Thanks again for all the suggestions and advice I have gotten on this
project. It ran all night without loosing lock, so I am calling it fixed.
There is just one more order of business before I can use it, and that is
some way of "mounting" the GPS antenna on the roof in a non-destructive
manner, both to avoid damaging the (flat membrane) roof and so that I can
move it if necessary. See the attached photo of what I have come up with.
All the parts (minus the cable and antenna) came from Home Depot.
The concrete block is a generic 1 sqft paver stone which cost all of
$1.18. This is to provide a heavy base and avoid tipping. Attached to
that is an upside-down PVC toilet flange from the plumbing section. It is
attached with 6x stainless steel machine screws and wing-nuts that pass
all the way through the paver and are counter-sunk on the bottom so that
the heads won't damage the roof. Nylon spacers separate the toilet flange
and paver block by about 1/4 inch so that water can drain if needed and
to provide a space for the coax feed line to come out. Pressed into the
top of the paver is a 3" to 2" reducing adapter and pressed into that is
a 2" to 1-1/4" reducing adapter. The mast itself is just a 2-foot section
of 1-1/4" PVC pipe. The 58532A antenna is apparently designed to mount
over a 1-1/4" mast since its inner diameter is 43mm and the outside of a
1-1/4" pipe is 42mm.
Standard "non-penetrating" roof mounts use this technique - they have a
frame which you ballast, by bricks, pavers, or sacks of gravel.
After that it's more a matter of figuring out how to do the mechanical
structure - sandbags and plumbing fittings are a fine way to cobble
something to together.
Don't forget to place a rubber pad under the paver to protect the roof
material.

Regards


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jimlux
2018-10-14 23:57:56 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Post by Tom Miller
Sent: Sunday, October 14, 2018 7:07 PM
Subject: Re: [time-nuts] Troubleshooting an HP 58503A
Post by jimlux
All -
 Thanks again for all the suggestions and advice I have gotten on
this project. It ran all night without loosing lock, so I am calling
it fixed. There is just one more order of business before I can use
it, and that is some way of "mounting" the GPS antenna on the roof in
a non-destructive manner, both to avoid damaging the (flat membrane)
roof and so that I can move it if necessary. See the attached photo
of what I have come up with. All the parts (minus the cable and
antenna) came from Home Depot.
 The concrete block is a generic 1 sqft paver stone which cost all of
$1.18. This is to provide a heavy base and avoid tipping. Attached to
that is an upside-down PVC toilet flange from the plumbing section.
It is attached with 6x stainless steel machine screws and wing-nuts
that pass all the way through the paver and are counter-sunk on the
bottom so that the heads won't damage the roof. Nylon spacers
separate the toilet flange and paver block by about 1/4 inch so that
water can drain if needed and to provide a space for the coax feed
line to come out. Pressed into the top of the paver is a 3" to 2"
reducing adapter and pressed into that is a 2" to 1-1/4" reducing
adapter. The mast itself is just a 2-foot section of 1-1/4" PVC pipe.
The 58532A antenna is apparently designed to mount over a 1-1/4" mast
since its inner diameter is 43mm and the outside of a 1-1/4" pipe is
42mm.
Standard "non-penetrating" roof mounts use this technique - they have
a frame which you ballast, by bricks, pavers, or sacks of gravel.
After that it's more a matter of figuring out how to do the mechanical
structure - sandbags and plumbing fittings are a fine way to cobble
something to together.
Don't forget to place a rubber pad under the paver to protect the roof
material.
A scrap of carpet, plastic runner, or plywood works well. The carpet
gets pretty gross after a few years, depending on your climate, but it
keeps sharp edges from poking where they shouldn't.

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Matthew D'Asaro
2018-10-15 00:05:37 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Thanks for the (important) suggestion. I will make another trip to the hardware store for some rubber sheeting or similar.

Matthew
Post by Tom Miller
Sent: Sunday, October 14, 2018 7:07 PM
Subject: Re: [time-nuts] Troubleshooting an HP 58503A
All -
Thanks again for all the suggestions and advice I have gotten on this project. It ran all night without loosing lock, so I am calling it fixed. There is just one more order of business before I can use it, and that is some way of "mounting" the GPS antenna on the roof in a non-destructive manner, both to avoid damaging the (flat membrane) roof and so that I can move it if necessary. See the attached photo of what I have come up with. All the parts (minus the cable and antenna) came from Home Depot.
The concrete block is a generic 1 sqft paver stone which cost all of $1.18. This is to provide a heavy base and avoid tipping. Attached to that is an upside-down PVC toilet flange from the plumbing section. It is attached with 6x stainless steel machine screws and wing-nuts that pass all the way through the paver and are counter-sunk on the bottom so that the heads won't damage the roof. Nylon spacers separate the toilet flange and paver block by about 1/4 inch so that water can drain if needed and to provide a space for the coax feed line to come out. Pressed into the top of the paver is a 3" to 2" reducing adapter and pressed into that is a 2" to 1-1/4" reducing adapter. The mast itself is just a 2-foot section of 1-1/4" PVC pipe. The 58532A antenna is apparently designed to mount over a 1-1/4" mast since its inner diameter is 43mm and the outside of a 1-1/4" pipe is 42mm.
Standard "non-penetrating" roof mounts use this technique - they have a frame which you ballast, by bricks, pavers, or sacks of gravel.
After that it's more a matter of figuring out how to do the mechanical structure - sandbags and plumbing fittings are a fine way to cobble something to together.
Don't forget to place a rubber pad under the paver to protect the roof material.
A scrap of carpet, plastic runner, or plywood works well. The carpet gets pretty gross after a few years, depending on your climate, but it keeps sharp edges from poking where they shouldn't.
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To unsubscribe, go to http://lists.febo.com/mailman/listinfo/time-nuts_lists.febo.com
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Achim Gratz
2018-10-15 18:10:58 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
The concrete block is a generic 1 sqft paver stone which cost all
of $1.18. This is to provide a heavy base and avoid tipping.
If you want to keep your roof undamaged, you need padding under that
concrete block (some geotextile sheet plus perhaps a bit of rubber mat
like they use for playgrounds) or it will cut through the roofing sheet
over time.
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
It is sitting on the back railing of the house for now but I
ordered a 40' length of LMR-250 cable with N-connectors on both ends
from http://www.usacoax.com/ and once that comes I can set it up for
real on the roof with the cable running into my lab. Over and out.
You'll want to have a good think about lightning protection before you
run that cable near anything that enters your house. You should also
check that the grounding of your electrical installation is properly
done.


Regards,
Achim.
--
+<[Q+ Matrix-12 WAVE#46+305 Neuron microQkb Andromeda XTk Blofeld]>+

SD adaptations for Waldorf Q V3.00R3 and Q+ V3.54R2:
http://Synth.Stromeko.net/Downloads.html#WaldorfSDada

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Tom Miller
2018-10-15 19:39:05 UTC
Reply
Permalink
----- Original Message -----
From: "Achim Gratz" <***@nexgo.de>
To: <time-***@lists.febo.com>
Sent: Monday, October 15, 2018 2:10 PM
Subject: Re: [time-nuts] Troubleshooting an HP 58503A
Post by Achim Gratz
Post by Matthew D'Asaro
The concrete block is a generic 1 sqft paver stone which cost all
of $1.18. This is to provide a heavy base and avoid tipping.
If you want to keep your roof undamaged, you need padding under that
concrete block (some geotextile sheet plus perhaps a bit of rubber mat
like they use for playgrounds) or it will cut through the roofing sheet
over time.
Buy your wife a new door mat and use the old one under the block. Kill two
birds with one stone.



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Hal Murray
2018-10-15 02:22:29 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Your setup looks good to me.

One thing to consider. Most of the white plastic plumbing parts are not UV
resistant. A layer of paint should protect it. Or you can just wait, see
what happens, and fix it if/when it breaks.

Another approach if you want to avoid holes in the roof is to attach the
antenna to the side of the edge of the roof. I think fascia is the word.
--
These are my opinions. I hate spam.




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