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Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

This forum exists for the purposes for discussing service monitors (This includes but is not limited to Motorola, HP, Aeroflex, GD, etc). Additional topics allowed include test procedures, interpretation of test results, where to find information about specific tests, antenna VSWR, return loss testing, duplexer and filter alignment, etc.

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drb235
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby drb235 » Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:41 am

Hello and thanks for the reply, I have been trying heyperterminal and a program called termite and two other programs with no luck I think it may be my cable and I have two more on order. I have lost my options but my clock and everything else works great. Every thing passes self test just fine I would just like to have my options back. And any help is greatly appreciated, thanks, David

SmokChsr
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Com 120B Power Meter Reading Low

Postby SmokChsr » Sun Apr 01, 2018 11:02 am

Has any one experienced their Power meter all of a sudden reading around 50% of the actual power?

What scares me is I was working on a higher power transmitter, that should have had around 250W-350W capability. I had started it low but since it was only showing 150W on the IFR I kept cranking it up even with it showing 300 on the front panel.

I still kept it short, but still makes me nervous that I may have been hitting the RF in port with 150% of rated power.

I did a quick check the RF in post is reading right at 49.1 Ohms, not perfect but plenty good.

I Haven't gone inside yet to take a peek, but I would like to get it back to reading correctly. So looking for any thoughts on this as a problem.

JRayfield
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby JRayfield » Thu Apr 05, 2018 6:08 am

I have a Com120B which has lost the battery in the Real Time Clock. Getting that repaired won't be a big problem, but getting the options working again are a problem, as I never had the codes for those options.

I've seen that some people have come up with these option codes and so was wondering if anyone is around here that might be able to help me out.

John Rayfield, Jr.
Rayfield Communications
Rayfield Communications
Springfield, MO
www.rayfield.net

jry
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby jry » Thu Apr 05, 2018 8:18 am

PM sent

jry
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby jry » Thu Apr 05, 2018 8:32 am

On the COM-120B I would NEVER put that amount of power directly into any service monitor.

Always us a high power external attenuator. Those are cheap and easy to replace.

The power termination repair on any service monitor is extremely expensive and often the parts are NLA.

Did you verify that power on another wattmeter ?

The COM 120 takes the power reading directly off of the input attenuator and has three ranges .

Believe its like low -10dbm to 2W, 2W -20W and 20W to 200. That failure doesn't really align that well with how the metering typically works.

short version is anything is possible but you may want to verify with another device.

SmokChsr
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Com 120B Power Meter Reading Low

Postby SmokChsr » Thu Apr 05, 2018 6:37 pm

Well it's like this, I don't think you read between the lines, I never would have put that much power in, had I known it was that much power.

I'm going to check it again closely and see if the error follows all ranges.

I do have an Anritsu 2721 Analyzer which can be used to read power very accurately. So yes I can verify the readings with high accuracy.

I was reading that there have been some meter readings that became inaccurate due to cap leakage on the board. Although I didn't see the power meter mentioned, I'll be taking a look at that as well. I wish I had a service manual on this one but I don't, so I'll have to fly a bit blind.

Other suspect things in my mind is the diode became leaky, or damage to the load. But I'm really not thinking that usually when they get too stressed the resistance changes dramatically. With only seeing a slight decrease from 50, that typically happens as the carbon ages, and fuses better than it should be.

The load is rated for 200W so I've never been worried about a short run of 150W. I do like to keep everything there or below. I'm pretty sure there is a Temp alarm on that load as well that I've NEVER tripped.

drb235
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby drb235 » Sat Apr 07, 2018 4:44 pm

Hello, I finally was able to connect to my ifr com 120A via serial terminal and found no serial number or options. I used Wowbaggers post to replace my serial number and I went on to set the bandwidths on the if filters as his post but I get 102 syntax error every time. I was able to get the serial number back in the program. Can anyone help me with the right commands to set if filters bandwidth. Also would anyone have a maintenance manual for the ifr as I am in need of one. Thanks, David

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AdrianH
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby AdrianH » Sun Apr 08, 2018 5:56 am

Continuing to work on my 120B and to figure things out. As like many others the main concern in the RTC, so a while ago I ordered a couple of RTC's from Ebay and was wondering if one would really consider these being made in 2016?

Image

I have managed to read one as as some of the literature the battery is normally disconnected and the clock is not running. The next part is something I am dreading and that is removing the old 1995 and trying to read it so I could program the new one with the same information, if possible.

Anyone done this, how difficult is it to remove the old RTC in one piece?

Adrian

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AdrianH
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby AdrianH » Sun Apr 08, 2018 3:12 pm

Hello David;

I can verify the same problem when trying to set the ifbw0 ifbw1 etc.

I was hoping to get my RTC out, put a socket in and then refit, but either the heat of un soldering or what have you has meant I also lost the battery in the RTC.

I had been getting the odd error that I had put down to possibly the battery or the front panel processor, so took the gamble and lost.

I replaced the RTC with one I just got from Ebay, I managed to re-enter the serial number and it reports that correctly, my run time has gone into the thousands of hours from the 670 that were on the machine, but that was one of the issues I was having, correct then not.

I hope there is someone out there that can help us, I do have saved details from before listing serial number and options.

So if anyone can help it would be appreciated very much

Cheers

Adrian

LZ1IM
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby LZ1IM » Tue Apr 10, 2018 2:21 am

Hi, AdrianH,
At which step You lost the options and S/N? Just after desoldering and put RTC in soldered socket, or after trying to read RTC RAM with some kind of programmer?
Sorry if I doubled my post, but THAT checking! and make decision to show EVERY! post, make me nervous. Seems we are in strategical research center!
LZ1IM

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AdrianH
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby AdrianH » Tue Apr 10, 2018 10:15 am

Long post sorry, maybe of interest to some!

I believe it went after de-soldering, I did read the chip and found the /esoc bit was high as I found in the new chips I bought.
The original plan was to de-solder, read and then replace the original chip, but when I read it and found erroneous times in there and bits set wrong I had a gut feeling it had failed.

I put the chip back in and verified the situation. I bought two RTC's and have had them for around 5 days, in that time I had been programming one of them setting bits, and the time, taking the chip out of the reader and coming back a day later to check it still had the correct time etc. programming high and low the user bits etc.

Last night with nothing to loose I started again and filled all locations from Hex 0E to 3F with Zero's (00). Re-fitted to the 120B, Set the serial number set the time and date, powered off, back on and checked all running. left running for a few minutes. (The zero'ing had got my run time down to zero hours from the high number so leaving the new chip as it comes was not an option.) So at a run time of 9 minutes I powered off, removed the RTC and again read it.

I can see where the serial number is stored, I can see where the run time is stored, but there are also what I would call check bits being set and without the rules can not determine how to work them out, so the idea of trying to program Options (locations unknow) in the chip seems to be a non starter, but I think the idea of reading one and saving the con-fig and blowing into a replacement chip could have been a good idea, unfortunately for me it was not, but there was no guarantee how long after 13 years the existing chip would have lasted.

If Wowbagger was still around or anyone else that could provide the passcodes to bring back the options it would not have been an issue, unfortunately for me I came late to the party as I only got the 120B test set this March, so never had the opportunity to ask the questions.

Also worth noting was that I was not trying to reverse engineer the options, just keep the set working as I got it. Caps have been replaced on the base band board as they had also leaked.

The strange thing is that two definite faults I used to have on start up have also cleared, at least temporarily.

1) I would get after a short power off of the test set a message saying 'REINITIALIZING CALS TO FRONT PANEL' then at the end get a Keyboard error which meant I had to power off and quickly power back on to get the set to work.

2) The second fault I got was an overload alarm saying I had to much RF on the input high temps etc type message. That has also at least for now gone.

I was planning on sending the front panel to a member from this group to replace the TMS370C256 processor, I may have to hold on that awaiting to see if the first fault does come back

There are other faults on the test set such as the battery does not seem to be charging as the voltage never seems to get above 12.6 Volts, but again as there are no circuits for the power sections it is a bit difficult to figure what is what.

Now and this may be helpful to others, I have the maintenance manual, I do not think it is a good manual in that there are no descriptions of how it works, just board layouts and some but not all circuits. (i.e the front panel circuits are not there it seems in any manuals?), It already seems to be a scanned copy.

But I am slowly going to start scanning the document in sections at a time and unless anyone can say why I should not, will make it available to anyone with a test set that asks. I would only ask a few things in return:

a) That when done and I send out a copy I do not then find it on the web with someone asking for money to pass it on.

b) Please consider helping me get my test set and any others members test sets up and running. I will say the same for any make model etc, these are not really commercially viable any longer, support has gone and they are generally held by radio amateurs and general radio engineers like me that constantly play but do not have the cash to buy newer boxes.

Cheers

Adrian
G8UGD

LZ1IM
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby LZ1IM » Thu Apr 12, 2018 4:52 am

Hi, Adrian,
Sorry for late responce. I try to "compile" all furum responces about COM120 /A,B or C/.

First of all, I think that loosing of options was at the moment of reading with your Programmer. It is interesting at what level was WE\ pin of DS1286 /or You left them float?/. At datasheet from Maxim/Dallas we see that there is another pin, RCLR\, which is not existed in EDIP socket /that is, with Internal Battery/, anyway it is exist on the crystal, and activated with '0' set all 50 bytes of RAM to 0xFF.

So, am I right or not, it's does'nt matter. You loose your options. Sad! Naw You have a couple of ways:

1. At the topic "Lovingly restored COM-120A" there is thing called "Option String", and as You Loose nothing, maybe with that Option String, and of course with S/N of the instrument of VK3GJM, You may activate some options /see topic/, but not all!
2. If You make procedure before loose the options, that is: *idn, *opt, maybe Wowbegger, or some other, maybe jry would help to retrieve your options.
3. I, personally, planned to make same procedure, as You, Extremally Carefully, but I also have not Your Instrument options, only couple of them.

Pavel
LZ1IM

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AdrianH
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby AdrianH » Thu Apr 12, 2018 10:41 am

Well one of the fixes was not to be!

I left the test set with no internal battery and no mains connected for 24 hours and on re-applying power and starting up I got the restoring cals to front panel message. So looks like the board will be getting sent off for a replacement processor after all.

Oh well :cry:

Adrian

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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby AdrianH » Thu Apr 12, 2018 10:36 pm

Hi Pavel;

It could be possible the problems was on my read, it is always possible.

I took another reading of the new RTC last night and have that saved with 2 hours plus run time, that is now saved on file.

Yes I could try the numbers from that post, it could be a start I guess. My own sets previous responses where:
!*idn?
IFR Americas Inc,COM-120B,1938,0415-0410-0412-0301
!*opt?
95220

To be honest for some reason in my mind I had it that the 120A and 120B being different processors would have different strings, so I had in my grey matter decided not to try, but nothing to loose, at the moment I have removed the front panel logic board as that is being sent off for the replacement processor.

So it will be a while before it comes back and I can plug it in.

Thanks for your thoughts

Adrian

SmokChsr
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby SmokChsr » Fri Apr 13, 2018 11:13 pm

AdrianH wrote:Continuing to work on my 120B and to figure things out. As like many others the main concern in the RTC, so a while ago I ordered a couple of RTC's from Ebay and was wondering if one would really consider these being made in 2016?


Is the DS 1286 the part that is the original RTC?

If so from the data sheet it looks like we can put an external 3V lithium between P25 and ground to protect the Memory.

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AdrianH
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby AdrianH » Sat Apr 14, 2018 7:48 am

Unfortunately on the DS1286 Pin 25 is not present, the device is basically the DS1284 with several pins bent up, such as pins 2 and 3 for a crystal and Pins 21 gnd and 25 bat + are not present as these are used for the battery. Another pin which on the 1284 that is not brought out is Pin 24 /RCLR as that is designed to clear the 50 bytes of user ram:-
'Active-Low RAM Clear. Used to clear (set to logic 1) all 50 bytes of user NV RAM, but does not affect the registers involved with time, alarm, and watchdog functions.
To clear the RAM, RCLR must be forced to an input logic 0 (-0.3V to +0.8V) during battery-backup mode when VCC is not applied.
The RCLR function is designed to be used via human interface (shorting to ground or by switch) and not be driven with external buffers. This pin is internally pulled up and should be left floating when not in use.

What my plan is at the very end is to replace the DS1286 with a DS1284, with pin24 cut off and the rest bent up so I can fit an external crystal and battery holder.

What some other have done, is to grind away at the resin it is all potted in to get to the pins and add an external battery. Not sure you would be doing that with the chip on the board, but it is a case sometimes of needs must.

Adrian

drb235
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby drb235 » Sun Apr 22, 2018 8:06 am

Hello, I have been working on my Ifr com 120A it has developed a bad noise when receiving a signal and the spectrum analyzer goes crazy. It passes all self test fine. I took it apart and inspected each board and found a ls412c chip that had spewed on the digital board so I ordered on and replaced it but it didn’t help my issue. Can anyone point me in the right direction to go next. Thanks, David

ablitz
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby ablitz » Sun Apr 22, 2018 8:58 pm

They are notorious for bad caps on the baseband tray. Check for leakage from capacitors

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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby jry » Mon Apr 23, 2018 6:59 am

the cap near the LM412 failed.

The cap failures need more than just replacement you often have to pull and clean the surrounding components as well.

There are a number of boards in the COM-120 that can have cap issues.

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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby jry » Mon Apr 23, 2018 6:59 am

the cap near the LM412 failed.

The cap failures need more than just replacement you often have to pull and clean the surrounding components as well.

There are a number of boards in the COM-120 that can have cap issues.

drb235
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby drb235 » Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:40 am

Hello, can someone please send a pictures of th caps that fail and the description of them so I can order them. Thanks, David

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AdrianH
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Re: Aeroflex (IFR) Questions

Postby AdrianH » Mon Apr 23, 2018 10:06 am

Image
Image
These are the sort of caps that go the small metal can electrolitics, there is a range of sizes and also there are some non polarized on boards as well generally the ones with out the negative black band. In the pictures as D1V, 10, 16V, I found there are several sizes on the broadband board shown in the picture, the non polarized may be hard to find I could use a typical Farnell here in the UK for the most of them then had to go to a specialist for the others.

Not sure where you would go across the water.

Adrian

Part number I got for the non polarized was:
647-UUP1C100MCL1GS from mouser
And from cpc.farnell.com I got these

Order Code Mftr. Part No Manufacturer / Description Qty Ordered Line Price
CA05528 ECEV0JA101SP PANASONIC ELECTRONIC COMPONENTS ECEV0JA101SP Capacitor, Case D 100uF 6.3V
CA07879 EEEFK1V470P PANASONIC ELECTRONIC COMPONENTS EEEFK1V470P Capacitor, Case D, 47uF, 35V
CA07894 EEEFK1E100R PANASONIC ELECTRONIC COMPONENTS EEEFK1E100R Capacitor, Case B, 10uF, 25V
CA05538 ECEV1HA010SR PANASONIC ELECTRONIC COMPONENTS ECEV1HA010SR Capacitor, Case B 1uF 50V


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