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N96GY not communicating with sensor

Discussion specific to Fine Offset and similar rebadged weather stations
User avatar
kingqueen
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2013 6:52 pm
Weather Station: Maplin N96GY / Fine Offset 1081
Operating System: Windows 7 HP 64 bit
Location: Wetherby, UK
Contact:

N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby kingqueen » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:09 pm

Hello

I have bought the N96GY with the intention of using it with Cumulus software. But I bought it cheap from Ebay. - this item: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/261171521333 . As you can see I have no comeback as it was sold as untested, so I guess this is my fault!

The unit says on the front "Maplin Gadget Wireless Weather Forecaster" and on the back it is N96GY using frequency 433.9MHz. The outdoor transmitter has no markings on it other than the battery orientation and two quality control check stickers.

I can't get the outdoor sensor to communicate with the indoor unit.

I have followed the instructions multiple times.

1) I start with batteries out of both units
2) I install two brand new AA batteries in the remote transmitter unit. The red LED on the back of the sensor goes on for 4 seconds. It then goes off. Two seconds later there is a very brief "blip" of the LED.
3) I install three AA batteries in the indoor unit. All the LED segments show, then the Pressure window shows 3553 and the Time window shows 280. After a couple of seconds, the unit beeps and enters normal mode.
4) The unit shows the indoor temperature, humidy etc. but for outdoor temperature it shows --- and similarly for wind speed and rain measurements.

I have tried doing the above then leaving the indoor and outdoor units right next to each other for protracted periods, to no result. I have also tried connecting the wind and rain sensors to the outdoor transmitter, in case this makes a difference, but it doesn't appear to. I've also tried installing the batteries in the reverse order - transmitter first, indoor unit second - to no avail.

Have I bought a dead duck? Has anybody any suggestions as to what has occurred, which part is broken please? Is there a frequency mismatch - how can I tell which frequency the transmitter is using?

Thank you for any insight anybody can bring!
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User avatar
steve
Cumulus Author
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Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby steve » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:18 pm

Hi Doug, welcome to the forum. It does sound like it's broken. The transmitter light is supposed to flash every 48 seconds - is it doing that?

There are some clever people on here who know more about these stations than I do, so someone may be able to suggest something.
Steve
-----
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Please read the posts in the Announcements section about the current status of Cumulus development since I have retired from my day job

User avatar
kingqueen
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2013 6:52 pm
Weather Station: Maplin N96GY / Fine Offset 1081
Operating System: Windows 7 HP 64 bit
Location: Wetherby, UK
Contact:

Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby kingqueen » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:24 pm

Thank you! Yes, the LED on the back of the sensor transmitter flashes every 48 seconds.

I forgot to mention, on initialising the indoor unit shows the "radio receiving" signal for two and a half minutes. This then goes out, whilst the display still shows "---" for the various outdoor measurements.

Thank you
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User avatar
William Grimsley
Posts: 833
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Weather Station: Davis Vantage Vue
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Location: Latitude: 50.70189285 Longitude: -3.30849957
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Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby William Grimsley » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:28 pm

kingqueen wrote:I forgot to mention, on initialising the indoor unit shows the "radio receiving" signal for two and a half minutes. This then goes out, whilst the display still shows "---" for the various outdoor measurements.


That sounds definitely like a communication problem. My Davis Vantage Vue, also shows "---" when there is no communication between the Davis Vantage Vue and the Davis Vantage Vue Console. I'm not familiar with any weather station, other than the Davis Vantage Vue, so I'll let Steve help you! :D

jim-easterbrook
Posts: 111
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Weather Station: WH1081, Elecsa AstroTouch 6975
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Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby jim-easterbrook » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:38 pm

I note the seller says he has 5 or 6 of them, and he's clearing someone else's junk. I wonder if there's a mix of frequencies and you've got an 866MHz transmitter with your 433MHz receiver?
Jim

User avatar
kingqueen
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2013 6:52 pm
Weather Station: Maplin N96GY / Fine Offset 1081
Operating System: Windows 7 HP 64 bit
Location: Wetherby, UK
Contact:

Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby kingqueen » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:52 pm

That's what I wonder too Jim. Is there any way to tell what frequency the transmitter uses? Thank you.

Actually on checking the cardboard box has the Silver and Black N96FY on it. The receiving unit inside is all Black and has N96GY on it.

Googling the difference between the two is quite confusing. I wonder if the differences between the two models include the frequencies, and the transmitter is from N96FY.
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William Grimsley
Posts: 833
Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2011 5:22 pm
Weather Station: Davis Vantage Vue
Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Location: Latitude: 50.70189285 Longitude: -3.30849957
Contact:

Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby William Grimsley » Tue Feb 26, 2013 8:44 pm

kingqueen wrote:That's what I wonder too Jim. Is there any way to tell what frequency the transmitter uses? Thank you.

Actually on checking the cardboard box has the Silver and Black N96FY on it. The receiving unit inside is all Black and has N96GY on it.

Googling the difference between the two is quite confusing. I wonder if the differences between the two models include the frequencies, and the transmitter is from N96FY.


It sounds like you've got a faulty weather station! :(

User avatar
kingqueen
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2013 6:52 pm
Weather Station: Maplin N96GY / Fine Offset 1081
Operating System: Windows 7 HP 64 bit
Location: Wetherby, UK
Contact:

Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby kingqueen » Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:08 pm

I took the transmitter apart, out of interest and to see if I can ascertain what frequency it is using. It's glued together, not screwed or anything else. There's a lot of not very much in there. There's nothing that indicates what frequency it uses.

In case for some bizarre reason this proves useful to anybody:

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steve
Cumulus Author
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Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2008 6:49 pm
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Location: Vienne, France
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Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby steve » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:34 am

I wonder if it's possible to identify a chip (or something) on there which would tell you what frequency it transmits on? Someone here may know.

Beth says 'hi', by the way :)
Steve
-----
Hosting available for Cumulus web sites. See http://sandaysoft.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=11876

Please read the posts in the Announcements section about the current status of Cumulus development since I have retired from my day job

User avatar
kingqueen
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2013 6:52 pm
Weather Station: Maplin N96GY / Fine Offset 1081
Operating System: Windows 7 HP 64 bit
Location: Wetherby, UK
Contact:

Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby kingqueen » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:21 am

Oh hi! Didn't realise it was you!!

Elsewhere on the fora somebody had commented that the sensors for the F variant are a lighter color than those for the G variant. These are definitely the lighter colour, yet the receiving unit is G. I've ordered a new transmitter unit from Maplins and am keeping my fingers crossed.
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AllyCat
Posts: 1045
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Weather Station: Fine Offset 1080/1 & 3080
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Location: SE London

Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby AllyCat » Wed Feb 27, 2013 10:04 am

Hi,

AFAIK, ALL "Maplin" stations use 434 MHz, but it appears that the "wireless protocol" was changed a year or two ago (so buying a replacement transmitter or receiver is risky). If you have any electronics gear/expertise then I believe it may be possible to identify the "early" or "late" version of the transmitter by measuring the duration of the pulse of current taken from the battery when it transmits.

There have been several recent posts on the topic in this forum, and you may also find the sticky thread above on "Photos of the insides.." of interest. But to be honest, I suspect that either the transmitter and/or Console is faulty and cannot be repaired. Bear in mind that a brand new station often can be bought from a reputable seller/shop for £50 or less.

Cheers, Alan.

User avatar
kingqueen
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2013 6:52 pm
Weather Station: Maplin N96GY / Fine Offset 1081
Operating System: Windows 7 HP 64 bit
Location: Wetherby, UK
Contact:

Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby kingqueen » Wed Feb 27, 2013 10:49 am

Thanks for this.

My rain guage is of the newer spider / wind reducing variety, so I suspect the transmitter is of the newer variety. Perhaps therefore the receiving board isn't. Ho hum. If the replacement transmitter from Maplin doesn't work I'll send it back and buy a new weather station complete with DCF reception from Clas, keep the existing one for spares and put the whole thing down to experience!

Thanks
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mcrossley
Posts: 5194
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Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby mcrossley » Wed Feb 27, 2013 2:16 pm

kingqueen wrote:... and buy a new weather station complete with DCF reception from Clas,

Personally I would avoid the DCF units my self. I have one, it suspends sending data for about 5-10 minutes every hour on the hour during the morning as it searches for DCF signal. As far as I know, Cumulus doesn't use the internal clock on the Fine Offset, so its just another annoyance, and a bit more cheap circuitry to go wrong!

User avatar
kingqueen
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2013 6:52 pm
Weather Station: Maplin N96GY / Fine Offset 1081
Operating System: Windows 7 HP 64 bit
Location: Wetherby, UK
Contact:

Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby kingqueen » Wed Feb 27, 2013 2:20 pm

mcrossley wrote:
kingqueen wrote:... and buy a new weather station complete with DCF reception from Clas,

Personally I would avoid the DCF units my self. I have one, it suspends sending data for about 5-10 minutes every hour on the hour during the morning as it searches for DCF signal. As far as I know, Cumulus doesn't use the internal clock on the Fine Offset, so its just another annoyance, and a bit more cheap circuitry to go wrong!


Thanks! You've just saved me a problem, as Clas have gone out of stock online and at my local store.
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User avatar
kingqueen
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2013 6:52 pm
Weather Station: Maplin N96GY / Fine Offset 1081
Operating System: Windows 7 HP 64 bit
Location: Wetherby, UK
Contact:

Re: N96GY not communicating with sensor

Postby kingqueen » Fri Mar 01, 2013 10:25 am

Fantastic news: the new transmitter from Maplin worked first time with no hassle with my receiver. I now have a working system.

I therefore have a spare transmitter, presumably from the Older protocol, available free of charge to anybody it might be useful as a spare, contact me if you want it.

Thanks for the advice.
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