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Author Topic: Channel Master rotor control compatibility  (Read 7466 times)
W9PDS
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Posts: 26




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« on: May 04, 2009, 06:51:03 AM »

Hi Folks,

I have had a small VHF beam installed on a rooftop tower for a few years now installed with a small Channel Master rotor. It works well and I have no complaints thus far.

However, I would like to add the ability to do computer rotor control.

Does anyone know if the rotor itself is compatible with more advanced controllers that I can hook up to a PC?

I'm just not sure if these things are universal or if the control signals are brand-dependant.

Thanks,

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WB2WIK
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Posts: 20611




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« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2009, 09:02:46 PM »

They are very model dependent.  I don't know of any such programs for a Channel Master rotator.

There are ones pretty popular for CDE (Hy-Gain) and Yaesu rotators, however.
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K8AC
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Posts: 1477




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« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2009, 04:46:19 AM »

Never saw a Channel Master with any sort of PC interface.  The ones I've used were fairly recent, of the 9000 series, and I found the controls to be interchangeable (control cable to rotator were all 4 wire).  The one I'm using now for HDTV even has a remote control.  These rotators are quite simple and it wouldn't be impossible to design a controller with a PIC MCU that would emulate one of the rotator controllers that are supported by the popular logging programs.  It might also be possible to use one of the new controllers I've seen advertised that work with just about any rotator design.  You might have to do some work to get the motor drive voltages to match up and get the indicator to work properly.  
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K8AC
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« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2009, 04:52:12 AM »

Just checked my Channel Master 9515 paperwork and see that it's 3 wire, not 4 as I previously stated.  No schematic included, but there is probably no indicator sensor in the rotor itself so not sure how they figure the heading in the controller, but they do.  

The remote control and controller features user specified fix beam headings and I used that when I turned a HexBeam with the rotator.  Channel 2 became Japan, Channel 3 became Europe, etc.
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KB1LKR
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Posts: 1898




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« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2009, 02:03:34 PM »

Aren't the three wire TV rotors just CW, CCW & common, w/ no sensor (other than an end switch?), compared to the older 4 & 5 wire units?
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W9PDS
Member

Posts: 26




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« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2009, 08:08:27 AM »

Thanks for the replies. I was hoping I could just stick a different controller on the cable & be done with it.

The controller that came with my rotator does have an infra-red remote control that can accept a 3 digit coordinate set. I've had some luck emulating that signal from my PC using an IR transmitter off a serial port & sending the coorinates to the controller via a script.

I'll keep working on that angle I guess. I really would rather not change out the rotor if I don't have to. Like I said, it works fine except for the PC control. Not to mention a new rotor would be expensive & require a roof trip to install.

73,
W9PDS
 
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W5DQ
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« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2009, 04:22:21 PM »

Most 3 wire old 'clacking' style rotors (including the Channel Master 9515 which 'clacks' electronically) count the number of relay actuations (which causes the 'clacking' sounds) to determine position indication. There is no potentiometer in the rotor providing feedback like the larger rotors have.

Now having said that, I have seen where some hams have 'engineered' an external position feedback pot to use as a reference and simply drive the rotor with a pulsed 30V A/C signal to cause it to move, stopping when the pot said too. These setups are usually one off copies and custom for the purpose, usually for satellite tracking purposes.

Search for Alliance U100/U110 rotors since those are the most common type used for these purposes.

Good Luck. You'd be better off getting a CDE or Yaesu (or whatever) if your serious about PC control.

Gene W5DQ
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Gene W5DQ
Ridgecrest, CA - DM15dp
www.radioroom.org
YO3DMU
Member

Posts: 8




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« Reply #7 on: August 06, 2011, 07:40:08 AM »

The Channel Master rotors can be controlled via USB-UIRT infrared interface
http://www.usbuirt.com
supported by the PstRotatorAz program
http://www.qsl.net/yo3dmu/index_Page346.htm
« Last Edit: August 06, 2011, 07:43:09 AM by YO3DMU » Logged
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