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Bluetooth Serial Adapter

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#51 Joe Lalumia

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Posted 01 February 2009 - 04:19 PM

Just an update--------
Kensington bluetooth --- connected (one time) !!! YEA!!

I can tell this is a much better bluetooth adapter than the one I had-- the blue light on the Aircable comes on for about 15 seconds when I try to connect-- but fails (timeout error)-- however it did connect on one occasion. So I must be getting close to making it work.

I have a feeling that my wifi router in the same room is interfering with bluetooth communications. Tonight I intend to go outside and try it -- away from the wifi radio. This installed very easy -- and the serial connections register almost instantly-- Com3 and Com4 -- looking better for bluetooth control.

Joe

#52 Edward E

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 10:44 AM

Glad to hear that the new USB Bluetooth device is working better for you Joe. I had the same problem when using the AirCable USB Bluetooth device. Sometimes it would connect and sometimes it would not. Some programs would work with it and some would not. The issue is with how the vendor implements the Bluetooth specifications. Let us know how it works away from your wifi system. I never thought about RF interference. Hmmm.

I took my Celestron 11 GPS to Starizona last Saturday to check out the PC Port on the base of the scope. We learned some interesting facts that day. For Celestron GPS owners using HC v1.6 and motor controller v1.0 & 2.X you cannot use HC v4.X; these modern versions will not communicate with the scope, also you cannot use the PC Port on the base of the scope to operate NexRemote without the HC. The only way to use NexRemote is through the HC. It would have been nice if Celestron had put that in fine print someplace. Looks likes I will be upgrading my MC this summer.

Dean was interested in my AirCable wireless serial device. He had not seen a setup like this before. He found it a very “High Tech” setup. That was quite a complement from Dean. I will have to take the complete setup to Starizona and demo it.

#53 Joe Lalumia

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 11:16 AM

What if I told you -- except for that one time -- it never connected again! --- I am now thinking the Aircable has a hardware failure of some kind-- I will try to return it to be tested and or replaced.

Spent over 2 hours trying to get a connection again. It never happened!

#54 Edward E

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 03:04 PM

I wonder if updating the basic code on the AirCable device would resolve the issue. Somehow my AirCable lost its basic code and would not boot up. Juergen sent me an updated code that I dragged and dropped into the AirCable folder. It seemed to work better after that. Let me look through my Emails and can send you a copy Joe. It may not help, but it will not hurt to try.

#55 Joe Lalumia

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 03:05 PM

Edward-- thanks much-- if you can find it I will try it out.

Joe

#56 Joe Lalumia

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Posted 16 February 2009 - 11:59 PM

Final update on my bluetooth SAGA! The new Blue Star bluetooth adapter arrived tonight. I put in two batteries connected it to the hand controller-- turned on the laptop and quickly paired it with my laptop dongle-- every planetarium program I tried worked perfect -- the first time. I even got Stellarium ver 10.0.1 to connect!

Absolutely the same laptop settings I have been trying for several months--- nothing new. As I suspected the AirCable must have had a hardware failure of some kind--??

Anyway the new Blue Star adapter is very small and fits very nicely on one of the fork arms of the LX90 using their supplied velcro strips. So I am off and running now with bluetooth telescope control that I will use at public observing events-- to eliminate the kids tripping over cables.
:)

#57 Edward E

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Posted 17 February 2009 - 11:11 AM

:woohoo: Great to hear that the BlueStar device works for you Joe. I agree with you Joe on the issues with the AirCable device. I believe the company needs to review thier quality control system. Too bad, AirCable has a nice product when it works. So everything works for you the way you were planning, right?

#58 Joe Lalumia

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Posted 17 February 2009 - 11:41 AM

Yes--- the Meade software, plus both versions of Cartes du Ciel, and even Stellarium 10.0.1 works-- instant connection on all of them. No dropouts--- and I continually closed and reopened different programs and it automatically re-connected. By the way I used the Kensington bluetooth dongle on the laptop-- as you recommended.

Guess I will be recommending the Blue Star device-- ! :) :jump:

#59 tjay

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Posted 17 February 2009 - 09:04 PM

Joe,

Glad you got everything working with the Bluestar. I was hoping for a different resolution though, as I was hoping to use an Aircable (or similar device) with my Celestron NexStar 8 GPS since it doesn't look like Celestron Bluestars are available anymore :(

#60 Joe Lalumia

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Posted 17 February 2009 - 09:55 PM

tjay-- thanks--- it works just fine. I still believe that my Aircable has some sort of hardware-circuit fault..... in other words it's BROKEN! :)

#61 Edward E

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Posted 18 February 2009 - 11:16 AM

tjay, here is a link to adorama which still sales the BlueStar for all Celestron GOTO telescopes. I have used adorama before. They are a good company to deal with. Hope this works for you and that the Bluestar is still in stock. Keep us informed.

#62 Joe Lalumia

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Posted 18 February 2009 - 02:33 PM

tjay-- do you already own an AirCable3 device? If not I will gladly mail you mine and you can experiment with it--

I would also send you a 12 volt cigarette adapter made for the AirCable and the small 9 volt battery cable I made --

If you get it to work --- send me $30 -- if it does not work send it back to me. If you want me to send it PM me with your complete mailing address --- don't send me any money unless you get it to work.

Joe Lalumia

#63 tjay

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Posted 18 February 2009 - 05:59 PM

tjay, here is a link to adorama which still sales the BlueStar for all Celestron GOTO telescopes. I have used adorama before. They are a good company to deal with. Hope this works for you and that the Bluestar is still in stock. Keep us informed.


Edward, thanks for the pointer. I'll try to get in touch with Adorama and see if they actually have them in stock.

#64 tjay

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Posted 18 February 2009 - 06:01 PM

tjay-- do you already own an AirCable3 device? If not I will gladly mail you mine and you can experiment with it--

I would also send you a 12 volt cigarette adapter made for the AirCable and the small 9 volt battery cable I made --

If you get it to work --- send me $30 -- if it does not work send it back to me. If you want me to send it PM me with your complete mailing address --- don't send me any money unless you get it to work.

Joe Lalumia


Joe,

This is an incredibly kind offer for you to make.

I'm going to try and get in touch with Adorama to see if they've got any Celestron Bluestars left in stock first, but I may take you up on the offer if they don't.

#65 Joe Lalumia

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Posted 18 February 2009 - 07:02 PM

No problem--- just let me know-- hope you can get the Blue Star--- in the past (when I was new on CN) several members sent me pieces of equipment to either try --- use for a short time-- or just flat out gave them to me.----------- just trying to carry on the tradition--

Joe

#66 tjay

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Posted 21 February 2009 - 10:24 AM

Has anybody made a cable to make a Meade Bluestar work with a Celestron telescope? I did some poking around on the Starry Nights support page, and found the pinouts for the Bluestar, and it looks like it should be possible. I'd prefer a Bluestar, as the batteries are contained in the unit.

#67 Edward E

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Posted 23 February 2009 - 10:34 AM

tjay, I made a cable (D-9 sub to 8P8C) for my celestron and Aircable Serial 3. It was not difficult once I had the good folks at my local electronics parts store explain how to use a D-sub pin tool.

I looked at the cable schematic for your Bluestar. It would not be hard, BUT, unless you already have a RJ crimping tool and the RJ14 - RJ25 jacks, then it would be more cost effective to just buy the cable. A good crimping tool (and you will want a good one for such a project) is expensive for just one project.

#68 Edward E

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Posted 23 February 2009 - 11:13 AM

Hi Joe, I purchased the Kensington Bluetooth mini dongle this weekend from Circut City (clearance sale of 60%) dongle It's setup was very different from the larger USB dongle and setting up the the Aircable was not as straight forward either (the software thought the Aircable was a cell phone). This issue was software related not hardware. Anyway, once set up, I found the connection to be rock solid. I was not dropping the connection each time celestron NexRemote or ASCOM POTH did not work (user errors here). I would attribute the stability too the TOSHIBA wireless Bluetooth software this mini dongle uses. My laptop is a TOSHIBA and I have never had issues with its wireless card making connections either. I love the small size and stability of the connection.

I had NexRemote, CDC3.16, C2A2.0, Stellarium 10.X and Astroplanner 2.0 beta all running at the same time using one connection to the Aircable device. What fun!

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#69 Joe Lalumia

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Posted 23 February 2009 - 12:17 PM

Edward-- yes that is the same one that I bought -- which is working with the Bluestar serial adapter-- the only software I have not been able to run is the free RTGUI -- since it does not recognize COM 9-- however it is being fixed right now in a new release which will be available shortly. CdC works (both versions) --- along with the Meade Autostar software, and Stellarium ver. 10.0.1 --

I did not install any device driver software -- just used the normal Windows bluetooth stack-- everything works fine now. I still believe that my AirCable 3 had a hardware issue-- of some kind...... as the Bluestar device connected the very first time, with the same Windows settings I had been using with the non-functional AirCable3.

Clear Skies!

#70 Edward E

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Posted 23 February 2009 - 12:22 PM

I agree with you about your Aircable device Joe. It is broke. I never had problems with mine like you experienced. I thought you had the larger USB device.

#71 Joe Lalumia

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Posted 23 February 2009 - 01:06 PM

I actually have TWO-- a no name $10 dongle which I have not recently used-- and the new micro-- Kensington brand -- which works. It should be noted that I have read several web site postings that say the Kensington DOES NOT work with the Bluestar-- but as you can see Ed and myself have not had any problems with it. I did notice that the Kensington seemed to CONNECT faster than my no name dongle-- almost instantly.

#72 tjay

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Posted 23 February 2009 - 11:49 PM

tjay, I made a cable (D-9 sub to 8P8C) for my celestron and Aircable Serial 3. It was not difficult once I had the good folks at my local electronics parts store explain how to use a D-sub pin tool.

I looked at the cable schematic for your Bluestar. It would not be hard, BUT, unless you already have a RJ crimping tool and the RJ14 - RJ25 jacks, then it would be more cost effective to just buy the cable. A good crimping tool (and you will want a good one for such a project) is expensive for just one project.


Edward, I can't seem to find anybody that's got the Celestron cable or the Celestron Bluestar in stock.

I've already got a crimper that handles all the plugs, so I think I'm okay on that front.

If I could find a Celestron Bluestar or cable in stock somewhere, I'd buy it. I've tried everywhere I can find online, and nobody seems to have them in stock.

I did, however, get a response from the Bluestar designer/manufacturer to my post in Starry Nights Yahoo group, and he is apparently located in Toronto somewhere. I'm going to try and get in touch with him over the next few days and see how he can help (he offered :) )

#73 Joe Lalumia

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 09:34 AM

tjay-- all the Bluestars are the same(or so I understand)-- it's just the cable that is different. I sent an email to OPT asking if they sold JUST the cable for an Intelliscope-- no answer back yet. Then I can use the Bluestar on the Orion 10 inch DOB..... if I can find the cable.

#74 Edward E

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 11:02 AM

Since you have the tools, I would say try it. You will need a RJ11 modular cable with jacks on both ends; cut off one end and crimp a 4P4C jack on, with the red, yellow & black wires on the correct connector. I see that the cables sale for as little as $1.09 for 7 feet. Just google "6P4C modular cable"

#75 tjay

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 06:29 PM

Since you have the tools, I would say try it. You will need a RJ11 modular cable with jacks on both ends; cut off one end and crimp a 4P4C jack on, with the red, yellow & black wires on the correct connector. I see that the cables sale for as little as $1.09 for 7 feet. Just google "6P4C modular cable"


That's what I'm going to do, unless the designer/manufacture can help me out.


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