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Walleye

DIY Cable for Pro Chrono Digital USB Interface: Complete Instructions

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Walleye, did you ever get an "Apro exception" error when you were setting up the Bluetooth COM ports?

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A quick simple project that works great! Love my new chrono cable...

Thanks for taking the time to document this.

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Bluetooth to my Win8 PC. Not for the faint of heart. Needed to configure the BT2S board, then needed correct the "virtual" COM ports created by Bluetooth pairing. And I'm still not exactly sure how I got it working in the end. It seems bulletproof now, however. Wow that was fun. Will post as much info/details as possible if anyone is interested.

photo_zpsa4d4ce0e.jpg

That's awesome Walleye!! Any further test results? Can you post your steps on how you did it and the correcting of the COM ports when you get a chance.

Thanks!

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Since this thread is talking about wired remotes for the ProChrono, I just wanted to mention another thread I started with instructions for building a stand-alone wired ProChrono remote. Mine is based on the Arduino platform, so no laptop is necessary for remote controlling the chronograph. My remote uses the same cable as the laptop interface does though, just to keep things simple.

I posted a short YouTube video of my remote in action. Of course it's just a prototype/proof of concept right now, so it's ugly but it works.

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I built the cable and once I added the resistor (FYI, turns out if Radio shack doesn’t have the 10K 1/4w the 10K 1/2W works just as well) it works great. My question is, how do you make the connections with the USB and the resistor to the audio cable without it looking like some scary mess? I have soldered and then put a thick coating of the liquid insulation on the connections then brought the two cords together in the middle and tied it off with tape to keep the cords from pulling against the connections. It is the resistor that makes it hard since it is not inline but jumps from the red tip to the ground. So I cannot just heat shrink them into a nice thick cord.So it is stable but looks Butt Ugly. Any suggestions are appreciated.

Anybody know of a way to have this work on a Android tablet, any apps?

Edited by gmich

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I built the cable and once I added the resistor (FYI, turns out if Radio shack doesn’t have the 10K 1/4w the 10K 1/2W works just as well) it works great. My question is, how do you make the connections with the USB and the resistor to the audio cable without it looking like some scary mess? I have soldered and then put a thick coating of the liquid insulation on the connections then brought the two cords together in the middle and tied it off with tape to keep the cords from pulling against the connections. It is the resistor that makes it hard since it is not inline but jumps from the red tip to the ground. So I cannot just heat shrink them into a nice thick cord.So it is stable but looks Butt Ugly.

When I soldered up my cable my connections looked something like this.

post-47370-0-03075900-1386297147_thumb.p

As you can see, the wires coming from each cable are cut to different, but complementary, lengths so that the solder joints for the wires overlap with the ends of the resistor. I used heat shrink tubing over each solder joint and then a larger piece of heat shrink tubing over all 3 wires and the reisistor. Once it's all connected the resistor is pretty much inline with the rest of the wires, and it all collapses into a short, but somewhat stiff, bundle. It still looks a little like a snake that ate a rat, but it's better than a monkey fist in the middle of the cable.

If you're really good with spacial relations and a soldering iron, it is possible to solder the resistor between the tip and sleeve terminals inside the 1/8" stereo jack. But, I haven't tried that yet.

Anybody know of a way to have this work on a Android tablet, any apps?

The only Android efforts I'm aware of are over on the ProChrono Bluetooth option thread.

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I built the cable and once I added the resistor (FYI, turns out if Radio shack doesn’t have the 10K 1/4w the 10K 1/2W works just as well) it works great. My question is, how do you make the connections with the USB and the resistor to the audio cable without it looking like some scary mess? I have soldered and then put a thick coating of the liquid insulation on the connections then brought the two cords together in the middle and tied it off with tape to keep the cords from pulling against the connections. It is the resistor that makes it hard since it is not inline but jumps from the red tip to the ground. So I cannot just heat shrink them into a nice thick cord.So it is stable but looks Butt Ugly.

When I soldered up my cable my connections looked something like this.

attachicon.gifConnections.png

As you can see, the wires coming from each cable are cut to different, but complementary, lengths so that the solder joints for the wires overlap with the ends of the resistor. I used heat shrink tubing over each solder joint and then a larger piece of heat shrink tubing over all 3 wires and the reisistor. Once it's all connected the resistor is pretty much inline with the rest of the wires, and it all collapses into a short, but somewhat stiff, bundle. It still looks a little like a snake that ate a rat, but it's better than a monkey fist in the middle of the cable.

If you're really good with spacial relations and a soldering iron, it is possible to solder the resistor between the tip and sleeve terminals inside the 1/8" stereo jack. But, I haven't tried that yet.

Anybody know of a way to have this work on a Android tablet, any apps?

The only Android efforts I'm aware of are over on the ProChrono Bluetooth option thread.

Great, I appreciate the idea. I am very close with my soldering iron but as usual there are places I am forbidden to even try for, that sounds like one of them.

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Just wanted to thank Walleye for the Original Pdf Instructions on making the Cable. I Purchased the Usb Plug off ebay and Dug thru the attic for a Headphone Cable. Tested It out on a Breadboard, then soldered it all together. I Also Made mine with one shorter cord so my cord is about 3-5 Feet long, then When Using Chrono at the Range I can Plug in a Longer Headphone Extension Cable.

Thanks Again,

- Tom -

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:unsure:

Ok, I can't get my cable to receive from the Pro Chrono even with the resistor. I tried different values (4.7K and 20K) and still no deal. I can change the string from the computer fine, so I know I can talk to the chronograph fine. If I connect the Rx and Tx lines together on the cable end that connects to the chronograph everything bounces back in HyperTerminal so it appears the usb/serial cable is working fine. I've tried two computers (XP, Vista both Dell) and it made no difference. Anyone have any thoughts? Could it be something defective in my Pro Chrono? I hate to buy/build another cable only to find out my chronograph is defective.

Ryan

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Ok, I can't get my cable to receive from the Pro Chrono even with the resistor. I tried different values (4.7K and 20K) and still no deal. I can change the string from the computer fine, so I know I can talk to the chronograph fine. If I connect the Rx and Tx lines together on the cable end that connects to the chronograph everything bounces back in HyperTerminal so it appears the usb/serial cable is working fine. I've tried two computers (XP, Vista both Dell) and it made no difference. Anyone have any thoughts?

Here's the schematic for a USB-to-TTL Module to 1/8" (3.5mm) stereo connector I used to check wired connections from a PC to the ProChrono Digital.

post-47370-0-64746300-1391994725_thumb.p

It sounds like you've done this, but it bears repeating: make sure the TDX wire from the USB module/cable is connected to the RDX (ring) connector on the plug and make sure the RDX wire from the USB module is connected to the TDX (tip) connector on the plug. The 10k resistor is connected between the USB module RDX (TDX/tip on the plug) and the common ground. I got this wrong a couple of times during the builds and ended up learning the following:

If you can change strings on the ProChrono Digital with the String Change button in PCRemote, the USB Module TXD to ProChrono Digital RXD connection is working.

If you can change strings on the ProChrono Digital with the String Change button in PCRemote but the Get Statistics and/or Get Velocities button(s) do nothing, check to make sure you have the 10kΩ resistor connected between the TXD (tip) and GND (sleeve).

It's entirely possible that your USB-to-TTL cable is not behaving. I recall reading somewhere that some folks had trouble with USB-to-TTL cables that weren't based on the FTDI chipsets. When when I was installing the PCRemote software it had FTDI chipset drivers with it, leading me to believe the USB dongle that comes with the ProChrono Digital USB Interface kit uses a FTDI chipset, too.

Hope that helps.

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Hope that helps.

It does. I already tried all of those things and still no joy. Just making sure I didn't miss anything. My USB module is a cheap Chinese Prolific knockoff I picked up on eBay but it look identical to the Amazon link shown in the first post of this thread.

I also tried the USB plug from my handheld ham radio with and without the resistor. It too transmits fine, but also no receive.

I'm not sure at this point if I should spring for another USB module, another Pro Chrono, or just forget about it. I guess the best/cheapest route would be to build another cable first using a known good module. Anyone have a link to a tested FTDI chipset module?

Ryan

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Anyone have a link to a tested FTDI chipset module?

Check some earlier posts in this thread. I posted a link to the cable I bought and a link to the cable I would buy if I had to do it again. Both use FTDI chipsets.

Edit:

Links:

What I ordered: FTDI TTL-232R-3V3-AJ

What I should have ordered: TTL-232R-3V3-WE

Rationale in the prior posts.

Edited by M852

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Thanks to Walleye for the detailed instructions on how to get the serial cable built. I got my set-up done today and it appears to work flawlessly.

I use my sons NERF gun to test indoors using the IR inddor lighting kit I purchased for my CE ProChrono. Load development is gonna be a lot easier for me this year particularly for rifle loads on the public rifle line at my club.

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I didn't realize there was continued interest in this thread, and that you were asking questions. My "subscription" to the thread must have been broken.

I wrote a tutorial last year to make the bluetooth option and saved it as a PDF, but it is was too large to upload and I lost patience at the time. Since there is some interest now, I have saved it to SlideShare. You may view it within Slideshare, if you want to download it you need to create a free Slideshare account. I'll email the PDF to you if you PM me your email address.

http://www.slideshare.net/Bublanski/diy-chrono-bluetooth-procedure-bt2-s

Here are a few pics, the finished product and the "guts":

btdiy1_zps7953bdeb.jpg

btdiy2_zps6114d6ad.jpg

To Boxerglocker, you're welcome, making the cable is a fun, easy project. The bluetooth option is fun too but as I said in my original post about it, it's not for the faint of heart and I'm not sure how I got it working in the end.

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I wrote a tutorial last year to make the bluetooth option and saved it as a PDF, but it is was too large to upload and I lost patience at the time. Since there is some interest now, I have saved it to SlideShare.

Since it's a Bluetooth option you may want to post it over in the DIY Bluetooth Interface for ProChrono Digital thread. Or just have an admin move it over.

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Many thanks to Walleye, I made a USB cable for my ProChrono Digital with he's instruction. I made the cable on the Prolific PL-2303HXD to get it work in Windows8 and it work flawlessly in Win7 and Win8, I didn't had to find drivers Windows made all the work. Cost me 20$ for the USB adapter with 25" cable and connectors.

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Thank you Walleye. I just finished one of thse cables, tested it, and it works great! I bought a 1/8 stereo plug and soldered it on to the end of the USB adapter, tucking the resister inside the plug as well. It's a nice, compact package, and it works well when paired with a 25' audio extension cable.

Somehow while soldering and bending things around, the center pole was disconnected from the solder tab, even though the solder tab was still mechanically held in place. I'm not sure how that happened, but after I figured out the issue, a blob of solder fixed it right up. Ugly, yes, but ya gotta do what ya gotta do :)

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juste received a prochrono paintball model. and I have no jack on the side.

would like to soldier the wires directly on the board. someone could post a pict of the main board from his prochrono board?

 

thanks

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Hello, this is 2019, i tried to make the cable but it doesnt work. The chrono is not recognized. I did every step on the instructions but it doesnt work, theres a new drive for the converter and it is recognized by my computer  win10 64,  only problem is that the chrony is not recognized...any ideas?

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