Favero FA-07 Extension Lights

Discussion in 'Armory - Q&A' started by TomBrien, Mar 26, 2016.

  1. TomBrien

    TomBrien Rookie

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    Hi all,

    I was wondering if anyone had experience in interfacing to Favero's FA-07 to drive custom-made extension lights. I know that it is possibly to use the serial data outputs (as described here). However, I was wondering if anyone had looked at using the 6-pin sockets that are dedicated for the tower extension lights (one socket per side). Does anyone know if these are also a serial protocol or if they are simply energising particular pins for each light? I quick look with a multimeter hasn't revealed any clear signals one way or another.

    Cheers
     
  2. twisterfencing

    twisterfencing Podium

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    Here is a link to the manual to the Fav Arm 07
    Link: http://www.favero.com/get_file.php?id=161
    It is a PDF download from Favero
    They use a simple RJ12/RJ11 phone line to hook up to the "repeaters" Plug and Play, left side, right side on the back of the box. Pretty Simple. Look at page 14/16 to see the back of the machine.
     
  3. atouchortwo

    atouchortwo Made the Cut

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    Only two of the wires carry the signal (those are connected to the collector and emitter of the phototransistor in FA machine). It is 10-byte-sequence serial data, carrying all machine state data, including clock, score, and which light is currently on or off. The microcontroller in the repeater light unit deciphers the stream to get which light to turn on or off. We power our mask lights unit from this connector (delta fencing equipment dot com). Syching with this data stream requires a little wizardry, since the start byte and lights byte are occasionally the same :)
     
  4. mtwieg2

    mtwieg2 DE Bracket

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    I close look at the PCB, and a couple simple multimeter measurements, would probably be enough to tell what sort of drive the 6-pin connector provides. Got any pictures?

    It's possible that the outputs could be optocouplers with no bias, which would explain why your multimeter doesn't show anything when probing the pins.
     
  5. brtech

    brtech Podium

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    It's a serial data stream, not a pin-per-light drive. It's a very simple serial data stream, that any $2 microprocessor can handle, but you need something you can program. I understand the sync issue, atouchortwo. Mine just tracked the rest state. If you happened to connect to it when it was sending, it wouldn't decode at all until the output quieted down, but thereafter it was pretty easy to maintain the link state.
     
  6. JS Hart

    JS Hart DE Bracket

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    You can tap the internal LED lights and directly drive additional LEDs if you stay within the capability of the driver chip. I know this because I just did it with a FA-01. I haven't tried an FA-07. But the FA-01 uses a Darlington Array ULN2803a to drive the internal LEDs, and a few measurements indicated that another set of LEDs was not a problem. I ran the appx. 12 vdc out over a 60' cat5 cable, no problem.
     
  7. James Seigel

    James Seigel Rookie

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    Any chance of you sharing more details on how to read this signal?

    Thanks!
     
  8. brtech

    brtech Podium

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    I helped Mergs do a variation of the same idea JS Hart used. He connected to the ULN2803as. However, we used a board:
    http://www.mpja.com/12V-Quad-Relay-Board-for-Arduino/productinfo/33330+MP

    We connected the ULN2803a to the input of the board and the extension light to the output of the board. The LEDs used 12V, so the whole thing worked on a single (beefy) 12V supply. The relay is good for 10A, which is a heck of a lot of LEDs.
     
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  9. Mergs

    Mergs Podium

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    The tricky part was figuring out what pins drove which lights on the driver chip. I started to do a similar hack for the FA05, but have run into the issue of discovering which chip actually drives the lights.
     
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  10. atouchortwo

    atouchortwo Made the Cut

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    Sure. PM me or we can chat at Jan NAC - I'll be there all four days.
     
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  11. Paul Edridge

    Paul Edridge Rookie

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    Hi, we had the same issue. We solved it by buying 4 relays with a photoresistor to toggle the relay (search for xh-m131) on a very large Chinese site. The photoresistors are glued on/next to the leds on a Favero FA-07 machine. When the led on the favero comes on it toggles a relay which lets a led strip light up. De led strips, 2 white, 1 red 1 green each sit in a 7 meter long aluminium profile for led strips with a frosted covering. You need an extra power supply to power the led strips though.

    Total price of everything was about 100 euro’s-130 US. All parts were bought from the same Chinese website.

    The led strips come on with the lights on the favero. When the lights on the favero turn off there is a slight delay of about 1/10 of a second before the led strips turn off. This is caused by a latency which is normal in photoresistors.

    It looks very cool.
     
  12. Mergs

    Mergs Podium

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    Pictures?
     
  13. dcchew

    dcchew Podium

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    Nothing like dry relay contacts to get something simple to work! Love it. :)
     
  14. Paul Edridge

    Paul Edridge Rookie

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    I’ll post some pictures on Tuesday
     
  15. Paul Edridge

    Paul Edridge Rookie

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    Here they are. The leds are so bright they show up as white in the photo. The green you see is the light from the led strips reflected on grey PVC piping.
    image3.jpeg
    The leds are so bright they show up as white in the photo. The green you see is the light from the led strips reflected on grey PVC piping.

    image2.jpg
    You can see the photoresistor glued next/over to the led on the favero.

    image1.jpeg
    This is the box which houses the relays. 4 connectors go to the photo resistors, 4 connectors for the led strips an two connectors at the top for 12v power.
     
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