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Inexpensive BT serial adapter for Sky Safari

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#101 FebStars

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 12:38 PM

BTW, this is the one I have. 

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/291863543270



#102 StarmanDan

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 04:02 PM

Did your's not come with a battery?  If not it can be powered by the mini USB connector on the side.


Edited by StarmanDan, 20 October 2017 - 04:05 PM.


#103 FebStars

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 04:09 PM

I got that, Dan. Not a problem. it's powered just fine. Can you tell me about the blue light? Maybe you didn't see my post above it. Did yours light up right away with both a red power light and a blue bt light? In your original reply you only mentioned a light.

 

Thank you for continuing the dialogue with me.

 

Tom



#104 StarmanDan

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Posted 21 October 2017 - 07:52 AM

So I haven't used mine in quite some time since buying a Shoestring BT adapter but I seem to recall that once the adapter is powered, the power led comes on, and, depending on what mode the adapter is in, the blue led will blink if in slave mode and turn solid when it connects to your phone, pc, etc. In master I believe the blue led stays solid regardless of any connection made. Use slave mode for your setup.

#105 FebStars

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Posted 21 October 2017 - 08:04 AM

Thank you, Dan! I have 3 of these now where ( directly from China) and none of them show the blue light upon a power connect. I thought it was me. lol.gif

No I know not to bother with it anymore.

 

Thanks again.

 

Tom



#106 Barke

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Posted 27 November 2017 - 05:01 AM

Has anyone had a problem with sky safari pro 5 disconnecting after about 2-3 minutes? Everything about it works, except it keeps disconnecting.
I had to set AT+ENABLEIND to '2' because setting it to 0 would still cause messages to print out to the screen.

Here are the last few messages from sky safari:

Received ASCII at 2017/11/27 02:06:37 with error 0:
4BB8F700,F85EC600#
Sent ASCII at 2017/11/27 02:06:37 with error 0:
e
Received ASCII at 2017/11/27 02:06:37 with error 0:
4BB8F800,F85EC500#
Sent ASCII at 2017/11/27 02:07:56 with error 0:
e
Received ASCII at 2017/11/27 02:07:56 with error -9:
Sent ASCII at 2017/11/27 02:07:57 with error 0:
e
Received ASCII at 2017/11/27 02:07:57 with error -9:
Sent ASCII at 2017/11/27 02:07:57 with error 0:
e
Received ASCII at 2017/11/27 02:07:57 with error -9:
  

 
Thanks in advance


Edited by Barke, 27 November 2017 - 05:06 AM.


#107 FebStars

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Posted 27 November 2017 - 01:13 PM

@ Barke- Sorry I can't answer your question, but I am hoping you can confirm something for me. I have 3 of these units and none of them will show a blue light when powered, only red. Does your unit show a blue light with a power connection only and emit a BT signal?

 

Again, sorry I cannot answer your question, and hope you don't think me too forward in advancing my own.  Outside of the kindness of Starman Dan, I haven't been able to get much of a response.

 

TomH



#108 Barke

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Posted 27 November 2017 - 08:04 PM

No need to apologise, maybe I can help get yours working and then you can tell me if yours disconnects :) when in slave mode the blue light does blink slowly. If I power the Bluetooth module while connected to my telescope only the red light turns on until I unplug the serial adapter.

When the switch is in the middle no blue light, when it is far forward (in master mode, twords the serial adapter) the blue light blinks rapidly

#109 FebStars

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Posted 28 November 2017 - 11:11 AM

Thank you, Barke, I believe you have confirmed that I have three non-working units. I get no blue lights no matter what position the switch, ( I did on my first one, briefly, before it went out.lol.gif )

 

I do hope someone else sees your post and can answer your question.

 

Hey! Anybody reading this- Look at Barke's post because he needs an answer to his question! lol.gif

 

Thanks again,

 

TomH


Edited by FebStars, 28 November 2017 - 11:11 AM.


#110 drewbo

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Posted 11 December 2017 - 09:00 AM

Thank you, Barke, I believe you have confirmed that I have three non-working units. I get no blue lights no matter what position the switch, ( I did on my first one, briefly, before it went out.lol.gif )

 

I do hope someone else sees your post and can answer your question.

 

Hey! Anybody reading this- Look at Barke's post because he needs an answer to his question! lol.gif

 

Thanks again,

 

TomH

I got one of these from Epay. I found out that the bluetooth only works with the battery. The USB will not power the unit up, it is to charge the battery only. I suspect that your units are fine. If you hook a 3.3v battery to the little battery socket and put it in Master mode the blue light will start flashing. With mine you need to first switch on Master mode to power it up, then you can switch it to slave. I also found out that the USB data lines are connected to the Bluetooth but do not seem to be enabled. So programming can only be done from the serial connection.

 

The blue light is on the bluetooth board and will only light up (power on) with battery power. The red light is on the main board and indicates usb power for charging is available only.

 

The blue light only goes solid when a program such as SkySafari makes a good connection with the Bluetooth. It will blink until then. All of my connection issues were swapped recv/trans pins. Once the connections were right pairing and connecting were easy.



#111 FebStars

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Posted 11 December 2017 - 01:14 PM

Wow! Drewbo, thank you for the info. I will try and get hold of one of these batteries and try it out. Do you know where to get these batteries?

 

Thanks again, this is very encouraging!  smile.gif

 

TomH



#112 drewbo

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 09:57 AM

Wow! Drewbo, thank you for the info. I will try and get hold of one of these batteries and try it out. Do you know where to get these batteries?

 

Thanks again, this is very encouraging!  smile.gif

 

TomH

Yes, you can get them anywhere. Ebay, Amazon, your local Walmart. The correct jack is the key. It is a common jack. What you want is a lithium polymer battery. They vary in power and size. This is not that important here since the power consumption is so low. The one I am using is 2000ma, which is overkill. It has the number 103450 which refers to the size in mm. All fit nicely in a small project box.

 

A couple of corrections to my last post. The blue led is close to the "clear" button, not on the bluetooth module. You do not need to switch on Master first, it is that the slave mode just starts a little slower. My battery is marked 3.7V not 3.3V. Either would work.

 

Drew


Edited by drewbo, 12 December 2017 - 09:58 AM.


#113 FebStars

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 12:55 PM

Thanks again, Drew.

 

Tom



#114 airscottdenning

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Posted 14 December 2017 - 12:30 PM

Can these controllers completely replace serial cables for controlling any mount via any software?  Or just for SkySafari?

 

For example, if I buy one can I just skip the RS232 and run all-night imaging sessions on a CGE Pro via ASCOM through SequenceGenrator Pro or TheSkyX or MaximDL?



#115 FebStars

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Posted 15 December 2017 - 03:33 PM

@ Drew-

 

Just taking a chance you might be still looking at this thread.....I did get a battery, but the jack seems to be just a tad too big. Is there some way to identify the jack needed for the BT unit? 

Is there a name for it? Size? Do you know if yours is available anywhere?

 

Sorry to be such a pain. I feel so close to solving this and feel like I'm just a jack away. lol.gif

 

Tom



#116 drewbo

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Posted 15 December 2017 - 08:02 PM

@ Drew-

 

Just taking a chance you might be still looking at this thread.....I did get a battery, but the jack seems to be just a tad too big. Is there some way to identify the jack needed for the BT unit? 

Is there a name for it? Size? Do you know if yours is available anywhere?

 

Sorry to be such a pain. I feel so close to solving this and feel like I'm just a jack away. lol.gif

 

Tom

No problem. First, make sure you have it oriented correctly, it will seem big if you try to plug it in backwards. If you have some soldering skills you could permanently solder it in. I did that with one of my units. I already had a spare jack from another project for my other one (I bought two). Otherwise just take to store and try it with the various batteries. I am not sure of the size nomenclature.

 

For the other poster: These are a universal RS232 replacement and can work with many software packages. I have used it for Cartes du Ceil, C2A, Worldwide telescope and Stellarium for starters,=.


Edited by drewbo, 15 December 2017 - 08:09 PM.


#117 FebStars

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Posted 15 December 2017 - 10:07 PM

Thanks, Drew!



#118 cahudson42

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Posted 31 December 2017 - 03:49 PM

Tom,
I had the same problem with the 3.7v battery white connector being too big. Turns out my battery - one of a pack of 6 for a drone of some sort - likely has the same connector. It is a molex with 'wings' on the side. The thickness is ok, it's the width that's the problem. I used an Exacto knife to shave the sides - down to the metal pins. It now fits the bolutek socket perfectly. Make sure you orient the battery so the red wire is going to the + side of the socket - shaving has eliminated any indexing so the plug will now also fit reversed.

You can use a USB cable now to charge the battery. When charging, the red LED will be on. Fully charged, it goes off.

Put the switch in Slave mode (when charging, or not) and the blue LED should blink. Pair with your tablet or phone. Enter 1234. Pairing should complete.

You can now connect with SkySafari Plus or higher, or whatever controller software you use.

I have a Meade 497 with my ETX125 and it works perfectly with SkySafari.

Goodbye 1990's AudioStar Command Lines!
Chris

Note: My setup also includes a null modem, the genuine Meade serial cable

Edited by cahudson42, 31 December 2017 - 04:51 PM.


#119 FebStars

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Posted 01 January 2018 - 12:37 AM

Thanks, Chris!



#120 deSitter

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Posted 25 March 2018 - 01:11 PM

Bumping this - I need a battery, can someone suggest? TIA

 

-drl



#121 AradoSKy

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Posted 06 April 2018 - 10:58 AM

Hello,

 

Yes. A battery to use is available from Amazon. The problem I have with this device is that any iOS version running 11.3 claims the device is not supported. The battery is a Be Oneself 3.7V 500m AH Lithium Polymer mini rechargeable battery 4725490 Li-ion Li-Po for #11&#18 Keychain Camera. ON= X00109N83R. 



#122 Barke

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Posted 24 May 2018 - 08:53 PM

Just wanted to come back and give an update - when I connect a single cell battery (3.7 v) it then will work great without disconnecting!

#123 Chote

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Posted 10 November 2018 - 10:52 PM

Hi, I've been using this dongle for quite sometime. It has builtin rechargeable battery or can operate with 5v power source. 12cfaaf1fe86d8924eab962ac9a1357d.jpgcc0f860c719d58cc9a29a0162db8f0dc.jpg

Sent from my POCOPHONE F1 using Tapatalk

#124 ccs_hello

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Posted 11 November 2018 - 09:21 AM

iOS fundamentally wants control for multiple reasons.

Bluetooth SPP (serial profile) is one of them under the radar screen, thus there is the MFI program and few YMMV-style "work around".

 

It appears that BLE seems to have a way to co-exist with the tight control approach from "A".



#125 Revtec

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Posted 21 November 2018 - 12:14 PM

Hello,

 

Yes. A battery to use is available from Amazon. The problem I have with this device is that any iOS version running 11.3 claims the device is not supported. The battery is a Be Oneself 3.7V 500m AH Lithium Polymer mini rechargeable battery 4725490 Li-ion Li-Po for #11&#18 Keychain Camera. ON= X00109N83R. 

Does anyone know if the battery connector for this battery actually fits the on board connector?  I'm having trouble finding a connector that will plug into the jack on the board.




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