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Get tuner status after auto-tuning IC-7300 and AH-4 using custom controls?


Björn (SM0SBL)
 

I'm using a custom button in the commander to initiate an auto-tune sequence.
As I'm running my radio remote I would like to find a way to see the result after tuning.
Easiest would be to read the status directly from the radio using another custom command to see if the tuner is still turned on after the auto-tune cycle but it seam not possible to read values from the radio, only to write commands to the radio.
I'm I right?
Anyone who has already solved this in one way or the other?
As far as I understand I will either have to hope for the best, or implement e.g. an Arduino snooping the control signals to the AH-4 to see what the 'answer' is after a tuning sequence using a simple web interface.

--
Regards, 73 de
Björn, SM0SBL


Joe Subich, W4TV
 

but it seam not possible to read values from the radio, only to write
commands to the radio. > I'm I right?
That is correct. The User Defined Commands are "send only". The UDC
support is not a full CAT control implementation.

As far as I understand I will either have to hope for the best, or
implement e.g. an Arduino snooping the control signals to the AH-4 to
see what the 'answer' is after a tuning sequence using a simple web
interface.
There is no "Answer." The AH-4 interfaces with a simplistic 2 wire
(+13V, "Start", "Key", ground) system. The response in minimal - just
a 20 ms "off" followed by a 200 ms "on" pulse on the "Key" line if
tuning fails. See:
<https://hamoperator.com/HF/AH-4_Design_and_Operation.pdf>

73,

... Joe, W4TV


On 2020-10-01 6:12 AM, Björn (SM0SBL) wrote:
I'm using a custom button in the commander to initiate an auto-tune sequence.
As I'm running my radio remote I would like to find a way to see the result after tuning.
Easiest would be to read the status directly from the radio using another custom command to see if the tuner is still turned on after the auto-tune cycle but it seam not possible to read values from the radio, only to write commands to the radio.
I'm I right?
Anyone who has already solved this in one way or the other?
As far as I understand I will either have to hope for the best, or implement e.g. an Arduino snooping the control signals to the AH-4 to see what the 'answer' is after a tuning sequence using a simple web interface.
--
Regards, 73 de
Björn, SM0SBL


Dave AA6YQ
 

+ AA6YQ comments below

I'm using a custom button in the commander to initiate an auto-tune sequence.
As I'm running my radio remote I would like to find a way to see the result after tuning.
Easiest would be to read the status directly from the radio using another custom command to see if the tuner is still turned on after the auto-tune cycle but it seam not possible to read values from the radio, only to write commands to the radio.

+ Correct. Reading results and acting on them would require the provision of a full programming language with debugging capability.

73,

Dave, AA6YQ


ART W2NRA
 

Stating the obvious, one way you can tell if the tuner worked is to read the power output. If the power output in less than your power setting your antenna probably not tuned. Can you read the power output?

73, Art W2NRA
CWOPS #1955


Dave AA6YQ
 

+ AA6YQ comments below

Stating the obvious, one way you can tell if the tuner worked is to read the power output. If the power output in less than your
power setting your antenna probably not tuned. Can you read the power output?

+ The IC-7300 has a built-in SWR meter. Thus one could complement the user-defined command sequence that initiates tuning with a
second user-defined command sequence that toggles between two states:

1. when it's first clicked, the sequence issues the <txmeter swr> command, and then issues commands that set the RF power output to
5 watts, set the mode to RTTY, and switch from RX to TX

2. when it's clicked a second time, the sequence issues commands that switch from TX to RX, set the RF power output to 100 watts,
set the mode to CW or SSB, and then set the TX meter to whatever you prefer to monitor when transmitting during normal operation.

<https://www.dxlabsuite.com/commander/Help/CommandSequences.htm#Command%20Sequences>

73,

Dave, AA6YQ


Björn (SM0SBL)
 

On Thu, Oct 1, 2020 at 02:40 PM, Joe Subich, W4TV wrote:
There is no "Answer." The AH-4 interfaces with a simplistic 2 wire
(+13V, "Start", "Key", ground) system. The response in minimal - just
a 20 ms "off" followed by a 200 ms "on" pulse on the "Key" line if
tuning fails. See:
I'm fully aware of that. 
This is what I call 'Answer' as the hardware design engineer that I am :o)
I'm currently working on a solution including an Arduino with ethernet shield that snoops the key-line of the AH-4 interface to measure if there is a second dip due to not possible to tune or the lack of the extra dip wich indicates a successful tuning.
This will not tell me weather the tuner is turned on or not but is a good indicator what state it should be in.
I also thought of a webcam pointed at the rig, but that use lot more bandwidth over my 4G-modem...

The Arduino is present anyway as I'm implementing an antenna disconnector á la SM3JGG where both coax and AH-4 interface cable will be disconnected when told so over a simple webpage or in case of a power outage.
(https://sites.google.com/site/sm3jggwebcac/)

I will share my code and design files when the project is done and have proven to work during the winter.



 
--
Björn, SM0SBL


Björn (SM0SBL)
 

On Fri, Oct 2, 2020 at 03:34 AM, Dave AA6YQ wrote:
+ The IC-7300 has a built-in SWR meter. Thus one could complement the user-defined command sequence that initiates tuning with a
second user-defined command sequence that toggles between two states:

1. when it's first clicked, the sequence issues the <txmeter swr> command, and then issues commands that set the RF power output to
5 watts, set the mode to RTTY, and switch from RX to TX

2. when it's clicked a second time, the sequence issues commands that switch from TX to RX, set the RF power output to 100 watts,
set the mode to CW or SSB, and then set the TX meter to whatever you prefer to monitor when transmitting during normal operation.

I'm sorry Dave, but I don't understand how you mean?

As the rig is remote I can only 'see' things through the communication interfaces and as DXLabs cannot read status information I cannot see anything that way.
I was adviced to involve some other softwares as a layer between DXLabs above but for me that complicates stuff to much and increase the risk of an unusable station until the spring arrives when it is again possible to get out to the island where the station is located.

I will most probably go with the snooping idea that, even if it fails, don't render my station unusable (except for the fact it is involved in connecting the antenna which I must deal with using potential backup solutions...)
Or is your suggested solution actually doable in my setup in a way I don't understand?

I'm also fully aware of the fact that DXLabs is NOT made for remote usage in the first place so I will not try to make you implement the read-back of status.
I use it remotely as well because I really like the wonderful integration of a multitude of tools in a such a clever way, and all for free!
 
--
Björn, SM0SBL


Dave AA6YQ
 

+ AA6YQ comments below

On Fri, Oct 2, 2020 at 03:34 AM, Dave AA6YQ wrote:


+ The IC-7300 has a built-in SWR meter. Thus one could complement the user-defined command sequence that initiates tuning with a
second user-defined command sequence that toggles between two states:

1. when it's first clicked, the sequence issues the <txmeter swr> command, and then issues commands that set the RF power output to
5 watts, set the mode to RTTY, and switch from RX to TX

2. when it's clicked a second time, the sequence issues commands that switch from TX to RX, set the RF power output to 100 watts,
set the mode to CW or SSB, and then set the TX meter to whatever you prefer to monitor when transmitting during normal operation.


I'm sorry Dave, but I don't understand how you mean?

As the rig is remote I can only 'see' things through the communication interfaces and as DXLabs cannot read status information I cannot see anything that way.

+ Commander can be configured to monitor and display the output of your IC-7300's SWR meter while you are transmitting. See

<https://www.dxlabsuite.com/commander/Help/TXMeter.htm>

+ Thus after activating the automatic tuner on a new band, transmitting a tone at 5 watts on a clear frequency while monitoring the SWR meter displayed by Commander will indicate the tuner's effectiveness before you switch to full power output. That can be automated with a command sequence, as described above.

73,

Dave, AA6YQ


Björn (SM0SBL)
 

On Fri, Oct 2, 2020 at 07:33 PM, Dave AA6YQ wrote:
+ Commander can be configured to monitor and display the output of your IC-7300's SWR meter while you are transmitting. See

<https://www.dxlabsuite.com/commander/Help/TXMeter.htm>

+ Thus after activating the automatic tuner on a new band, transmitting a tone at 5 watts on a clear frequency while monitoring the SWR meter displayed by Commander will indicate the tuner's effectiveness before you switch to full power output. That can be automated with a command sequence, as described above.
Smart workaround, I like that :o)
I got so locked in on the thought that I could not get any information FROM the rig but that is of course only valid for the custom commands and not for the built in functionality.

Thank you!
--
Björn, SM0SBL