Topics

P3 display flashing on/off.


W9BIK
 

Hello fellow K3'ers...

Last night my P3 display started intermittently flashing on/off rapidly.  The entire display would rapidly flash on/off, including the border lines, function key menu, waterfall, etc.  Sometimes this will happen once, then again anywhere from several seconds to several minutes later. Other times it would start flashing and continue to flash rapidly for several seconds, then stop, then repeat a few seconds later. Every now and then it would start flashing continuously and I needed to cycle power on the K3s and P3. Very intermittent to say the least.

During my preliminary troubleshooting I noticed the flashing would stop when I disconnect the serial cable between the K3s and the P3. I re-seated the serial cable on both ends multiple times in an attempt to clean the contacts to no avail. I also re-seated the ribbon cable inside the P3 to no avail. I also tried re-seating the IF cable connecting the K3s and P3 multiple times, although the flashing would continue regardless if the IF cable was connected or not.  Thinking the serial cable may be intermittent, I tried moving the cables around, during both flashing on the display and when not flashing, and that had no effect. I also tried running a separate ground wire between the K3s and P3 - no difference. Note that this setup worked fine for a few years and just started happening.

I then discovered the flashing stops on the P3 while the K3s was keyed up (PTT button on the front panel mike) and resumes when un-keyed. This happened both in the K3s TX mode (RF out) and in the Test mode (no RF out). This, together with the flashing stopping when the serial cable is disconnected, led me to believe the K3s is at fault and not the P3.

So, before going any deeper into the troubleshooting, has anyone else experienced this issue or possibly have any insight as to its root cause?

Thanks,

Chuck
W9BIK


Gerard
 

Yeah, have this happening the last few years....especially in winter.  Think it might be capacitors.

Gerard EI5KF

On Tue 30 Jun 2020, 17:39 W9BIK, <w9bik@...> wrote:
Hello fellow K3'ers...

Last night my P3 display started intermittently flashing on/off rapidly.  The entire display would rapidly flash on/off, including the border lines, function key menu, waterfall, etc.  Sometimes this will happen once, then again anywhere from several seconds to several minutes later. Other times it would start flashing and continue to flash rapidly for several seconds, then stop, then repeat a few seconds later. Every now and then it would start flashing continuously and I needed to cycle power on the K3s and P3. Very intermittent to say the least.

During my preliminary troubleshooting I noticed the flashing would stop when I disconnect the serial cable between the K3s and the P3. I re-seated the serial cable on both ends multiple times in an attempt to clean the contacts to no avail. I also re-seated the ribbon cable inside the P3 to no avail. I also tried re-seating the IF cable connecting the K3s and P3 multiple times, although the flashing would continue regardless if the IF cable was connected or not.  Thinking the serial cable may be intermittent, I tried moving the cables around, during both flashing on the display and when not flashing, and that had no effect. I also tried running a separate ground wire between the K3s and P3 - no difference. Note that this setup worked fine for a few years and just started happening.

I then discovered the flashing stops on the P3 while the K3s was keyed up (PTT button on the front panel mike) and resumes when un-keyed. This happened both in the K3s TX mode (RF out) and in the Test mode (no RF out). This, together with the flashing stopping when the serial cable is disconnected, led me to believe the K3s is at fault and not the P3.

So, before going any deeper into the troubleshooting, has anyone else experienced this issue or possibly have any insight as to its root cause?

Thanks,

Chuck
W9BIK


KE1F Lou
 

I am having exactly the same issue.
Lou KE1F 



Sent from my Galaxy Tab® A

-------- Original message --------
From: W9BIK <w9bik@...>
Date: 6/30/20 12:39 PM (GMT-05:00)
To: Elecraft-K3@groups.io
Subject: [Elecraft-K3] P3 display flashing on/off.

Hello fellow K3'ers...

Last night my P3 display started intermittently flashing on/off rapidly.  The entire display would rapidly flash on/off, including the border lines, function key menu, waterfall, etc.  Sometimes this will happen once, then again anywhere from several seconds to several minutes later. Other times it would start flashing and continue to flash rapidly for several seconds, then stop, then repeat a few seconds later. Every now and then it would start flashing continuously and I needed to cycle power on the K3s and P3. Very intermittent to say the least.

During my preliminary troubleshooting I noticed the flashing would stop when I disconnect the serial cable between the K3s and the P3. I re-seated the serial cable on both ends multiple times in an attempt to clean the contacts to no avail. I also re-seated the ribbon cable inside the P3 to no avail. I also tried re-seating the IF cable connecting the K3s and P3 multiple times, although the flashing would continue regardless if the IF cable was connected or not.  Thinking the serial cable may be intermittent, I tried moving the cables around, during both flashing on the display and when not flashing, and that had no effect. I also tried running a separate ground wire between the K3s and P3 - no difference. Note that this setup worked fine for a few years and just started happening.

I then discovered the flashing stops on the P3 while the K3s was keyed up (PTT button on the front panel mike) and resumes when un-keyed. This happened both in the K3s TX mode (RF out) and in the Test mode (no RF out). This, together with the flashing stopping when the serial cable is disconnected, led me to believe the K3s is at fault and not the P3.

So, before going any deeper into the troubleshooting, has anyone else experienced this issue or possibly have any insight as to its root cause?

Thanks,

Chuck
W9BIK


Gerard
 

It does not effect the external display.  And now I got a second newer K3S and other P3 for SO2R.  It has not happened yet on that setup.  Electolytics I'd say......some only have 1500hrs life.  I've not bothered to investigate yet....other priorities.....maybe this winter if I'm around, might investigate.

Gerard EI5KF

On Tue 30 Jun 2020, 17:45 KE1F Lou, <lmecseri@...> wrote:
I am having exactly the same issue.
Lou KE1F 



Sent from my Galaxy Tab® A

-------- Original message --------
From: W9BIK <w9bik@...>
Date: 6/30/20 12:39 PM (GMT-05:00)
Subject: [Elecraft-K3] P3 display flashing on/off.

Hello fellow K3'ers...

Last night my P3 display started intermittently flashing on/off rapidly.  The entire display would rapidly flash on/off, including the border lines, function key menu, waterfall, etc.  Sometimes this will happen once, then again anywhere from several seconds to several minutes later. Other times it would start flashing and continue to flash rapidly for several seconds, then stop, then repeat a few seconds later. Every now and then it would start flashing continuously and I needed to cycle power on the K3s and P3. Very intermittent to say the least.

During my preliminary troubleshooting I noticed the flashing would stop when I disconnect the serial cable between the K3s and the P3. I re-seated the serial cable on both ends multiple times in an attempt to clean the contacts to no avail. I also re-seated the ribbon cable inside the P3 to no avail. I also tried re-seating the IF cable connecting the K3s and P3 multiple times, although the flashing would continue regardless if the IF cable was connected or not.  Thinking the serial cable may be intermittent, I tried moving the cables around, during both flashing on the display and when not flashing, and that had no effect. I also tried running a separate ground wire between the K3s and P3 - no difference. Note that this setup worked fine for a few years and just started happening.

I then discovered the flashing stops on the P3 while the K3s was keyed up (PTT button on the front panel mike) and resumes when un-keyed. This happened both in the K3s TX mode (RF out) and in the Test mode (no RF out). This, together with the flashing stopping when the serial cable is disconnected, led me to believe the K3s is at fault and not the P3.

So, before going any deeper into the troubleshooting, has anyone else experienced this issue or possibly have any insight as to its root cause?

Thanks,

Chuck
W9BIK


W9BIK
 

Hi Gerard,

Maybe try swapping the two P3's and see if the symptoms stay with the old setup? If so, it would confirm the issue lies within the K3s.

Chuck
W9BIK


W9BIK
 

Here is a link to a video I shot showing the issue. Hopefully it is accessible from here.

https://photos.app.goo.gl/32VjRyny1gJmfx1Y8

Chuck
Wpbik
 


Al N1AL
 

Hi Chuck,


Have you tried doing a Parameter Initialization?  (Described in the Troubleshooting section of the P3 manual.)


Alan N1AL


 


On 2020-06-30 10:39, W9BIK wrote:

Hello fellow K3'ers...

Last night my P3 display started intermittently flashing on/off rapidly.  The entire display would rapidly flash on/off, including the border lines, function key menu, waterfall, etc.  Sometimes this will happen once, then again anywhere from several seconds to several minutes later. Other times it would start flashing and continue to flash rapidly for several seconds, then stop, then repeat a few seconds later. Every now and then it would start flashing continuously and I needed to cycle power on the K3s and P3. Very intermittent to say the least.

During my preliminary troubleshooting I noticed the flashing would stop when I disconnect the serial cable between the K3s and the P3. I re-seated the serial cable on both ends multiple times in an attempt to clean the contacts to no avail. I also re-seated the ribbon cable inside the P3 to no avail. I also tried re-seating the IF cable connecting the K3s and P3 multiple times, although the flashing would continue regardless if the IF cable was connected or not.  Thinking the serial cable may be intermittent, I tried moving the cables around, during both flashing on the display and when not flashing, and that had no effect. I also tried running a separate ground wire between the K3s and P3 - no difference. Note that this setup worked fine for a few years and just started happening.

I then discovered the flashing stops on the P3 while the K3s was keyed up (PTT button on the front panel mike) and resumes when un-keyed. This happened both in the K3s TX mode (RF out) and in the Test mode (no RF out). This, together with the flashing stopping when the serial cable is disconnected, led me to believe the K3s is at fault and not the P3.

So, before going any deeper into the troubleshooting, has anyone else experienced this issue or possibly have any insight as to its root cause?

Thanks,

Chuck
W9BIK


W9BIK
 

Hi Alan,

No, I have not tried that.  Maybe this evening after work I'll give that a try. Thanks for the suggestion.

I'm pretty sure the issue is in the K3s, probably on the KIO3B, but I am not quite ready to put money on that yet.  There is still a possibility it could be the P3, and I do need to somehow positively isolate the issue to either the K3s or P3. I am looking for a way to do that.

Keying up the K3s prevents the flashing, as does removing the RS232 cable. I don't see much in the P3 that would affect the entire display flashing by keying the TX or removing the cable other than changing display modes or loss of serial data. Maybe I'm missing something though, so at this point I am willing to try anything I have not yet tried.

Chuck


Joe Subich, W4TV
 

I then discovered the flashing stops on the P3 while the K3s was
keyed up (PTT button on the front panel mike) and resumes when
un-keyed.
PTT is a red herring ... The display update is suspended in transmit
unless you have the TXMON option installed (which does not appear to
be the case).

73,

... Joe, W4TV


On 2020-06-30 12:39 PM, W9BIK wrote:
Hello fellow K3'ers...
Last night my P3 display started intermittently flashing on/off rapidly.  The entire display would rapidly flash on/off, including the border lines, function key menu, waterfall, etc.  Sometimes this will happen once, then again anywhere from several seconds to several minutes later. Other times it would start flashing and continue to flash rapidly for several seconds, then stop, then repeat a few seconds later. Every now and then it would start flashing continuously and I needed to cycle power on the K3s and P3. Very intermittent to say the least.
During my preliminary troubleshooting I noticed the flashing would stop when I disconnect the serial cable between the K3s and the P3. I re-seated the serial cable on both ends multiple times in an attempt to clean the contacts to no avail. I also re-seated the ribbon cable inside the P3 to no avail. I also tried re-seating the IF cable connecting the K3s and P3 multiple times, although the flashing would continue regardless if the IF cable was connected or not.  Thinking the serial cable may be intermittent, I tried moving the cables around, during both flashing on the display and when not flashing, and that had no effect. I also tried running a separate ground wire between the K3s and P3 - no difference. Note that this setup worked fine for a few years and just started happening.
I then discovered the flashing stops on the P3 while the K3s was keyed up (PTT button on the front panel mike) and resumes when un-keyed. This happened both in the K3s TX mode (RF out) and in the Test mode (no RF out). This, together with the flashing stopping when the serial cable is disconnected, led me to believe the K3s is at fault and not the P3.
So, before going any deeper into the troubleshooting, has anyone else experienced this issue or possibly have any insight as to its root cause?
Thanks,
Chuck
W9BIK


Gerard
 

Mine is different, flashing in cold weather, nothing on K3 changes it.  So thinking electolytics P3


On Tue 30 Jun 2020, 19:22 W9BIK, <w9bik@...> wrote:
Hi Alan,

No, I have not tried that.  Maybe this evening after work I'll give that a try. Thanks for the suggestion.

I'm pretty sure the issue is in the K3s, probably on the KIO3B, but I am not quite ready to put money on that yet.  There is still a possibility it could be the P3, and I do need to somehow positively isolate the issue to either the K3s or P3. I am looking for a way to do that.

Keying up the K3s prevents the flashing, as does removing the RS232 cable. I don't see much in the P3 that would affect the entire display flashing by keying the TX or removing the cable other than changing display modes or loss of serial data. Maybe I'm missing something though, so at this point I am willing to try anything I have not yet tried.

Chuck


W9BIK
 

Thanks Joe.

The thought that the PTT response is a red herring had occurred to me. That's one reason why I am not 100% sure whether its the K3s or the P3. You are correct that I do not have the TXMON option installed. However, when I disconnect the serial cable the flashing stops, or at least it did the few times I tried that. I try running it for a longer period with the serial cable disconnect tonight and see what happens.

Chuck


Nolan - KI5IO
 

Friend of mine in Eastern Oregon Mountains was experiencing what seemed similar.  Tried all sorts of normal trouble-shooting steps with no resolution.

He was running WSJTx and monitoring WSPR.  When that APP was running the flashing was constant.

He finally did a clean removal of WSJTx and downloaded the current version, did the install ... turned on to where he was again monitoring WSPR and "no flashing".

May be a different type of flashing, but thought I would toss it into the mix of this conversation.

---
73 - Nolan K.
KI5IO


W9BIK
 

IT'S FIXED!

I thought I'd give a brief feedback on what fixed this issue. The fix boiled down to simply reseating the 40 pin ribbon connector on the P3's I/O board. Works good now.

I'd like to publicly give a big shout out to Alan, N1AL, for his thoughts and guidance as I troubleshot this issue. We exchanged several emails off-thread that were very helpful in guiding me to the root cause. Alan designed the P3 hardware and firmware, so I knew I was in good hands. Thanks Alan! 

73,
Chuck
W9BIK


T Gahagan
 

Thanks for reporting the solution to this issue.  My P3 just started doing this and was unsure where to start.  WA7U