Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

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Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by marvkaye » Wed Aug 28, 2013 4:38 am

I've got a frustrating situation with my freshly modded Turnigy 9x and hope someone might point me in a direction. Here's the list of what I've done:

Replaced the 8xAA battery pack with a Turnigy 3S (11.1v) 2650mah 1C Lipo "transmitter pack".
Installed the HK backlight w/ the BS170 mosfet, gate driven by pin 17 of the processor, for backlight control via firmware.
Replaced the stock transmitter module w/ latest FrSky DIY DHT w/ telemetry mode switch. (how does that firmware update work, anyway?)
Installed a 10-pin ribbon connector with the 6 programming pins wired to the main board for firmware/memory updates via USBasp programmer.

With everything done I turned the 9x on, got a nicely backlit LCD screen and a glowing LED on the DHT's bind/status panel, but the 9x's LCD screen was blank... no menu, nada, zip, nothing... just a blank, backlit panel. I thought that perhaps I needed to do the firmware upgrade first in order to get the screen working again, so with the 9x turned off I plugged in the USBasp and low & behold, the LCD displayed the standard 9x screen. I used Companion9x to flash the latest version of Open9x (which completed successfully, BTW) and found that as long as I kept the USBasp programmer plugged in and the radio turned off I could navigate the (cool new Open9x) menus, see the trim indicators move, calibrate the sticks, etc. It seemed pretty obvious that the system was being powered by the USB port's 5v supply, but once it was removed the only things that seemed to power up from the transmitter's battery were the backlight and the DHT module. I found that I could turn on the 9x and get the DHT module to bind to a FrSky D8R-XP receiver, but there didn't appear to be any signal being transmitted, as a servo I had plugged in to one of the channels just sat there and didn't respond to any stick movements or other controllers. And speaking of binding, I find that if I move the DHT mode switch to the "1-way" position, hold down the bind button and power up the 9x I get the expected rapidly flashing red LED indicating that it's waiting to bind. With the switch in the "2-way" mode, however, when I do the bind routine instead of the rapidly flashing red LED I get a little bit slower alternating red/green LED and the DHT module beeps at a rate of about 1 hertz (no beeps in the 1-way mode)... is this normal?? This was what I had when I bound to the D8R-XP... are the bind routines and displays supposed to be different between 1-way and 2-way? (that's kind of an aside question... not nearly as important as figuring out why the transmitter appears DOA except for the backlight and DHT being sort of functional.)

My first thought is that for some reason the processor isn't getting power, even though the backlight and DHT module are... I just don't understand how that can be... I thought about leaving the USBasp plugged in (to get the processor working) and turning on the 9x to see what would happen, but the USBasp I purchased doesn't appear to have a jumper that lets you select USB or outboard power, so I thought that might not be a good idea so I haven't gone there. Any suggestions, thoughts, WAGs worth sharing?? I'm betting it's something simple, the finding of which I'm pretty sure will result in one of those "flat forehead" moments... anxiously awaiting a reply or two.

<marv>


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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by ShowMaster » Wed Aug 28, 2013 6:35 am

Whew! A lot going on. Good news is your correct, your 5 v regulator isn't getting battery voltage and the USBasp programmer is supplying the 5v
All the of your issues are also sounding simple so one thing at a time.
If you can follow single line schematics here is the voltage path.
ImageUploadedByTapatalk1377670871.417388.jpg
Tell more about your backlight mod. Did you use the HK connector board that comes on it? It passes the battery voltage to the 5v regulator via the main top connector on the board. It's posable that its not seated or a pin is bent over.

How are you with a volt meter? Reading schematics?

The DJT will light up because it gets voltage before the main board. The backlight if you used the HK connector lights up because it's swing battery voltage but may not be passing it through to the motherboard connector pin.
To bind the DJT to a telemetry D series receiver both dip switches must be down and the button held at power up. Right one up for none telemetry rec as I remember only red led lights.

One thing at a time, get your board powered first.
Maybe good pics of your board and mods done. It helps get us all one the same page as to the work and soldering done.

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by gohsthb » Wed Aug 28, 2013 10:59 am

Showmaster, He installed a DHT, so that is the internal module. No dip switches, he simply has a toggle switch. Your DHT is working fine. In 1-way mode, binding, the module doesn't beep. In 2-way mode it does beep, about once per second. You will also notice that at power on, non-binding, in 2-way mode it will give a beep. In 1-way mode it doesn't beep. Kind of an audio alert to remind you what mode the module is in.
If you can post pictures of the mods you have done. More eyes looking at a problem seems to make it easier to see.
-Gohst

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by MikeB » Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:32 am

Might just be as simple as the connectors to the main board are not quite plugged fully in. The RF power and the backlight power take different routes to the power to the 5V regulator.

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by ShowMaster » Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:40 pm

DHT, wow I missed that. No more 1 AM posting.
Yes, push on your connectors. The BL mod area if the HK connector was used is my guess.


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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by jhsa » Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:49 pm

as said before, remove the connectors and check there aren't any bent pins..


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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by marvkaye » Wed Aug 28, 2013 2:18 pm

Hey guys, thanx so much for the very speedy replies and suggestions. Thanx, especially, for the schematic... that should make things much easier. To answer your questions (in no particular order), yep, I'm comfy w/ schematics and have an electronics lab (meters, scopes, etc, etc) to support my other hobbies (synth DIY & related electronics projects)... As for the backlight mod, yes, I used the HK board, on which I cut the proper trace, installed the jumper and mosfet, ran the wire to pin 17 of the MCU, etc, so the original plug goes into the socket on the little backlight PCB, the plug from that PCB goes into the header socket on the motherboard. I'll recheck both of those plugs & sockets tonight, could be I managed to bend a pin, anything is possible.

I've had the main plug that connects the PCB in the back case to the motherboard in the front case in & out multiple times, have checked the pins there and they all look ok. The rest of the plugs appear to be seated properly, as I had them all out to remove the motherboard to make installing the backlight easier. It is possible that one of them has an issue, but I don't think so... but, I will recheck them all again tonight, as again, anything is possible. At least I know that the flat flex that connects the main board to the LCD is working since I do get menus & stuff when powered by the USBasp. I suspect that once I locate the (two?) 78L05's and can take some measurements that finding the root of the problem will be pretty simple. Rule one of troubleshooting is "Thou shalt verify voltages"... that power schematic should make that a bit easier.

Thanks for the clarification on the binding indications.. based upon your description and my results, it appears that the DHT installation is correct and working... once I get power from the battery to the MCU flowing again I bet I'll get some activity out of the servo as well. I wish the DHT documentation had been a little clearer about the binding indications... is that all written down somewhere accessible for us end users?? Info about the DHT firmware upgrade would be nice as well, although I'm in no hurry to further complicate things. Anyway, I'll take & post some photos of everything this evening. Thank you again for the help, it's much appreciated.

<M>

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by ShowMaster » Wed Aug 28, 2013 2:47 pm

Only worry about the 5 v regulator on the main board. It feeds the 3.3v reg and we know that's all working. With your battery removed you need to ha e continuity from the 5v pad and 5 v board regulator back to to the battery + with the switch on.
As a test you can also remove the inline HK BL connector and plug the original cable back in your board. This is in the path of the battery getting to the SMD 5 v regulator.
The other 5v reg in on the switchboard and does not power the main board so don't worry about it now.

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by Bill » Wed Aug 28, 2013 3:34 pm

Try removing the hobbyking backlight intermediate plug and socket and reconnect directly as per original and see if that makes any difference.
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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by marvkaye » Wed Aug 28, 2013 4:21 pm

Yeah, I agree.... bypassing the HK BL board seems like a great first step and likely the fastest path to isolating the issue. That'll be the first thing I do when I get home this evening. I'll let you know what happens, hopefully it will be a happy post. Thanks so much for all the input... you guys are great.

<M>

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by ShowMaster » Wed Aug 28, 2013 4:26 pm

Reversing the battery as some do is major, this is minor! I'm sure you'll find it right away.
There are more detailed schematics but try the connector and revisit all your mods and maybe take pictures if it persists.
We're all waiting for your success post tonight.

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by marvkaye » Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:09 am

Boy, you guys are not going to believe this one.... got home from work and went straight to the bench. Opened up the 9x, connected the plug that goes to the LCD back into the main board where it came from originally, thereby removing the backlight board from the circuit. Plugged in that main cable that connects the back case to the main board, put in the battery & powered up. Success!!! I got the Open9x splash screen, found I could push buttons and get from screen to screen, so it was obviously a problem with the backlight installation. Started doing continuity checks between the BL board's plug and the socket where the LCD plug goes and found the #4 wire (2nd red over from the ground wire) to be open. I guess when I installed the jumper from that pin up to the SMT resistor I managed to somehow cause that connection to come loose, as I discovered it was intermittent when I wiggled the wire. So now I knew what needed to be fixed, all I had to do was fix it. This is where things spun right out of control and went steadily downhill. First of all, when I installed the mosfet I put heat shrink over the two pins that had wires to them, then secured the FET and those wires with a pretty sizable glob of hot glue. With that done I installed a new piece of heat shrink over the entire board and went on with the actual modification. So now, here I am, needing to get at stuff under shrunk heat shrink AND a hot glue ball.... I cut away the heat shrink (which had fused to the hot glue during the shrinking process, of course) so I ever so carefully cut away what wasn't stuck, then applied a little heat to soften things up and remove the rest. BIG mistake! What I should have done was cut the three wires that were holding the BL board and cable assembly right down there next to the main board and all the harnesses that plugged into the main board sockets, gotten it OUT of the radio and onto the bench where I could work on it all by itself, without anything else close by. Why, you ask?? Because just the little bit of heat that it took to release the heat shrink from the hot glue blob seems to have been enough to soften the cheapo jello-like insulation on the wires that were all twisted together going to the plugs on the right hand side of the main board. It appears that when the insulation softened some of the wires must have worked their way THROUGH the insulation and shorted out. This is confirmed by attempting to repower the unit without going any further, only to find that nothing happens when I turn it on. It's officially a brick. [email protected]$#@!!! And I know better. So now what started out to be a relatively simple fix has turned into a complete XXXXXXXXX (insert your own expletive) and may result in a bookend that looks amazingly like an RC transmitter. Knowing what I know now, I should have just written off that BL board assembly, bought another backlight kit for $5, redone the mosfet & jumper mods on the new board and replaced the board that was encased in hot glue & heat shrink. I'd have been $$ and time ahead.

Actually, after I calm down a bit, have a bite to eat and think about it for awhile, I'll probably go back to it, start cutting things apart and see if I can locate the actual source(s) of the problem. If worse comes to worst I can probably figure out just what needs to be replaced, contact the factory and see about getting some replacement parts, harnesses, whatever. If it's just wires, though, I may just cut out the bad parts and reconnect things with new ones. My biggest concern is that I may have fried the processor chip in the process.... that would definitely not be good. Oh well, lesson learned... next time I'll be much smarter. Thanks for your help... I'll keep you advised if I actually make some progress and resurrect this thing. Sheesh! I feel like such a ditz.......

<M>

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by jhsa » Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:50 am

Forget about it for today.. Tomorrow when you're more calm it will look much better..
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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by ShowMaster » Thu Aug 29, 2013 2:06 am

It happens take jhsa's advice and try again later. It's only wire and circuit trace as a rule and that can be repaired. You did fix it for a "short" time, good for you. Hang in there.

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by marvkaye » Thu Aug 29, 2013 2:30 am

I just couldn't' leave it alone. Got it back up & running, but have a bit of work to do to feel good about what it's going to look like inside. Have several wires that need to be replaced and have ordered another backlight kit to replace the one with the problem. At least it's not a doorstop. Thanx again for the help.. <M>

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by jhsa » Thu Aug 29, 2013 2:53 am

good..

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by Bill » Thu Aug 29, 2013 10:26 am

What's with this thanking business I've been thanked at least three times but I still have a big fat zero in the stupid thanking column.
What's with that?
Not that I mind....sheesh....not that I'm insecure or anything...
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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by jhsa » Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:46 pm

I can give you some of mine.. It is not that important IMO.
It is more important that we help who needs and they get their system running ;)

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by gohsthb » Thu Aug 29, 2013 1:15 pm

As you are reading the posts, you will see a "thumbs up" pic next to the quote button. Clicking that is how you thank a person for the post. That is what gets counted towards you total.
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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by Bill » Thu Aug 29, 2013 5:02 pm

Result!!!
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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by marvkaye » Mon Oct 07, 2013 12:41 am

Hi guys, I just wanted to say thanx again for all the help and to let you know that I finally got the backlight issue sorted. Back when this happened I ordered another backlight module to use as a donor for the failed connector unit and waited and waited for it to be delivered, but it never showed up. I had a subsequent order at Hobby King that I also thought was taking a long time to show up so I emailed HK support about both of them... turns out the second order had shipped the day before my email but they had lost the order that contained the backlight module. Once I'd proven it to have been paid for they finally managed to get it shipped and I finally managed to get it installed. I now have a working backlight module in my 9X, almost everything seems to work as expected except for a new glitch that I'm having trouble tracking down. At power-up I get warnings for two switches... it says that both the THRottle and AILeron switches are actuated, but regardless of either of those switches positions the warnings do not go away. I've opened the radio up and checked the operation of both switches, and they both appear to be doing what they're supposed to. In the (THR) back and (AIL) up positions I get continuity between the wired sides of both of the switches and both circuits open appropriately when the switches are thrown to their actuated positions. I've tried pulling each of the 4 plugs around the main board to see if there's a short in one of their harnesses causing the problem, but the switch warnings remain regardless of whether those plugs are inserted or not, so for some reason the inputs for both of those switches are stuck hi and it's not coming from the wiring to the plugs. I'm wondering if someone has a schematic that shows where these switches have something in common, as that would sure make tracking down the problem easier. With one on each side of the radio it makes me question whether it's really a harness issue, as on the Model screen that shows the sticks, trims, and switches, the two switches that are "stuck" are at the tops of their respective columns. Or could it be that this is a software issue??? I'm running OpenTX, version opentx-r2688. Any other thoughts or suggestions out there?

<marv>

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by ShowMaster » Mon Oct 07, 2013 12:51 am

I don't run opentx on my 9x but it sure looks like you've loaded the wrong FW. If you haven't rerouted those 2 switches to pins 41 & 42 of your processor to run the Frsky telemetry version FW you need to load a opentx version for the stock 9x.
Look at all your FW options in C9X and pick the non Frsky version.
I'm not at a computer to be more factual.

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by ShowMaster » Mon Oct 07, 2013 1:01 am

I believe when you use C9X you would select opentx and select the options you want it to have and the server assembles it for you and downloads it to your computer. Make sure Frsky is not selected as an option. Then it'll make the 9x no Frsky FW for you that isn't looking for those switches on pins 41 and 42 assuming again that you didn't do that mod.

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by marvkaye » Mon Oct 07, 2013 1:27 am

Interesting... but I have the telemetry-capable FrSky DHT module installed in the radio. Is there something else in that maze of selections under "preferences" that would address this issue while still allowing me to setup the radio with the FrSky module? In the meantime I'll hop over to the Companion9X site to see if there's already a solution. It'd be nice to understand what all those options are for anyway.

I see in the document https://opentx.googlecode.com/files/9x_ ... ons_EN.pdf that there are two SMD resistors to remove from the mainboard whose pads need to be rerouted to a couple pins at the top of the processor to accommodate FrSky telemetry which I didn't do. I have yet to find further documentation of this mod, although I confess to just having started looking. This could be the problem, I'll bet.

<M>

awhile later..... I see that there are additional mods that need to be done, like tying the MISO and MOSI lines for the programmer mode into the FrSky DHT module, as well as rerouting those two resistors up to a couple unused digital pins on the main processor. Once I confirm all this I'll go ahead. Jeez, it's always something.
Last edited by marvkaye on Mon Oct 07, 2013 2:59 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by ShowMaster » Mon Oct 07, 2013 2:26 am

Yes, you must reroute those pins and do the 9x board mods and 1 of 3 choices to modify your Frsky module.
The telemetry from the DJT module data jack must get to the cpu pins 2 and 3. The switches normally go to these pins but pins 41 and 42 aren't normally used. So the code has been rewritten to look at pins 41 and 42 for the switches and pins 2 and 3 for the DHT telemetry data.
The easy way out of this if you want telemetry I understand is to buy the SmartieParts EZ boards. They basically screw in.
Until then flash the non Frsky opentx FW and you can go flying. The switch errors will stop.

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by Kilrah » Mon Oct 07, 2013 7:27 am

marvkaye wrote:Is there something else in that maze of selections under "preferences" that would address this issue while still allowing me to setup the radio with the FrSky module?
The frsky option is only if you did the mod to get telemetry on screen. If you don't do the mod you can use the frsky module without the FrSky option without issue.

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Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by ShowMaster » Mon Oct 07, 2013 7:43 am

You must do this as the solder option!
Notice the trace cuts on the trace isolating pins 2 and 3 from the MOSI and MISO pads.
You can also remove the 200 ohm SMD resistors and add ones with leads if it's easier for you to solder.
Then you will need some mods to connect the DJT module to pins 2 and 3. That's all in gone wiki but if you decide to do these mods it can be detailed farther.
There is no simple firmware flash that will make the Frsky telemetry read out on the LCD display.
There is the Smartiparts EZ screw in boards that will do all this without major soldering. Search the forum for Smartiparts or google Smartiparts 9x.
http://www.smartieparts.com/shop/index. ... cts_id=337

You can purchase the Frsky LCD display that plugs into the back of your DJT module for telemetry but it dies not use the 9x display or opentx options. It's a stand alone display system.
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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by Kilrah » Mon Oct 07, 2013 7:47 am

Just to make it clear: You do NOT need to do ANY mod to use your FrSky module for control.
You only would want to do it to get the telemetry data from it displayed on the radio's screen.

The OP never said he wanted telemetry.

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by marvkaye » Mon Oct 07, 2013 5:23 pm

I mentioned in the first post that the DHT module I installed included telemetry, but you're right, Kilrah, I never actually mentioned that I wanted to use it. Anyway, this is all making a bit more sense now, so this evening's project will include the mod shown above for the switches to work and then paralleling MOSI/MISO to the DHT for the telemetry signals... I expect that will just about do it. I'll let you know what happens in 6-7 hours or so.

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Re: Turnigy 9x comatose (not quite dead) after mods

Post by ShowMaster » Mon Oct 07, 2013 7:07 pm

marvkaye wrote:I mentioned in the first post that the DHT module I installed included telemetry, but you're right, Kilrah, I never actually mentioned that I wanted to use it. Anyway, this is all making a bit more sense now, so this evening's project will include the mod shown above for the switches to work and then paralleling MOSI/MISO to the DHT for the telemetry signals... I expect that will just about do it. I'll let you know what happens in 6-7 hours or so.
To be clear about telemetry display on your 9x, we all know you'll want it! Just thinking ahead for you. You have a telemetry capable DJT module and a D series receiver that's telemetry capable so I predict you'll want to enjoy that option as soon as your current issues are cleared up.
I bet I end up being right on this so now you're better informed as to the options available for using what you already own.
Anyone that's brought their 9x back form the grave wouldn't stop now, or would he?
They always blame the messenger. :lol:


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