Laptop hangs.

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Richard Davidson
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2009 12:31 pm
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa

Laptop hangs.

Post by Richard Davidson »

Hi all,
I am new to this.
My car, a MGB GT has being running with an EDIS with TPS for some time now. When I run the engine with the laptop connected, after a short while (can be from 10 seconds to a couple of minuets during a test/set-up ride) the program hangs up.
To date I have only being able to guess, configure and write the program with the engine switched on, but not running. It has taken a lot of experimenting to get the engine to “feel right”.
I have run the VRS cable on the opposite of the engine to the coli and HT leads. Double earthed connections and put a condenser on the +ve leading to the coil and to the EDIS.
I have noticed a small movement/spike on the Rev counter every time an electrical switch (including the brakelight) is put on or off. Could this be a spike causing the program to hang?
What am I missing? Please help solving the cause.

brentp
Site Admin
Posts: 5986
Joined: Wed Jan 24, 2007 6:36 am

Post by brentp »

Richard-

Are you using a usb-serial adapter? If so, the usb-serial adapter itself may be receiving interference from the ignition system. You may also try a laptop with a built-in serial port. You can also try physically distancing the usb-serial adapter from the engine with an extra serial cable.

Also check your plug wires for age and wear- if they seem marginal, try replacing them.

Finally, observe the timing using a timing light while the engine is running- does the timing remain stable as you vary the engine's RPM?

(FYI- I removed the duplicate topic you created- please avoid cross-posting on the same subject. Thanks!)

Let us know what you find out-

Regards,
Brent Picasso
CEO and Founder, Autosport Labs
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Richard Davidson
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2009 12:31 pm
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa

Post by Richard Davidson »

Hi Brent,

I am using a serial to USB cable I purchased for the unit. I have suspected it as an option for the hang-up cause but not sure of a remedy for it. The module is housed together with the controller and is temporally located in the “map book holder pocket” next to the passenger’s feet. The housing is earthed to the dashboard. The serial/ USB cable connects to the laptop resting on the passenger seat.
I need to locate a laptop with a serial port for the serial cable test. I will try an extra serial cable, earthing the serial/USB cable & also resting the laptop on the back seat.
The plug wires are new “Bogie cords” fitted when the EDIS was installed. The coil pack is mounted to the engine block, below the plugs, and behind the alternator.
The engine feels and sounds very smooth, but I will do the timing light check.

(Thanks for fixing my duplicate cross-posting error on the same subject)

Thanks for your prompt assistance. I will get back to you with the results.

Richard Davidson
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2009 12:31 pm
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa

Post by Richard Davidson »

Hi Brent,

Just reporting back. Initially I was using a serial to USB cable. I then tried a "superior" USB cable with a serial adapter which I connected to a serial cable. In both cases the USB cable is the cause. I borrowed a laptop that has a serial port and used the same serial cable to connect it to the laptop. The laptop did not hang up after starting the engine. I can now ride the car around, changing settings without the laptop hanging.

Now to find a serial to USB cable that works in my "modern" laptop

Many thanks for your advice and recommendations.

Regards,
Richard.

david jenkins
Posts: 204
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2006 2:14 pm
Contact:

Post by david jenkins »

You could try a PCMCIA - RS232 card - but they are hard to find, and can be expensive. This assumes that you have a PCMCIA slot! :D

UK example...

http://www.amazon.co.uk/LINDY-RS-232-Ca ... 289&sr=1-3

David

Spockie-Tech
Posts: 152
Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2008 12:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Post by Spockie-Tech »

Try to find a USB-Serial that uses the "FTDI" chipset. - Future Technology Devices International - http://www.ftdichip.com/

They seem the be the one specified by everyone who is using a serial port to control some form of external hardware. Microchip programmers, Fuel Injection units etc etc. I tried 3 different USB Serial Adapters of different brands and a PCMCIA card slot on all with no success trying to hook up to a Autronic Fuel Injection computer. Got an FTDI based one, and iff it went no problem. There must be a reason all the chip programmer guys like Arduinos and Pics sell them on their websites..

A quick google turned up this example, try googling "usb serial ftdi" for one near you.

http://www.liquidware.com/shop/show/FTD ... pter+cable

regards

Brett

Richard Davidson
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2009 12:31 pm
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa

Post by Richard Davidson »

Hi David & S-T,

After Brents reply and finding S-T's similar feedback, I did Google for a FTDI chipset cable as well as a PCMICA card. The card was not an economical option. The FTDI chipset cable I ordered turned out to be a Mercer brand with a fancy flashing led and did not work.
On the way home yesterday, I found a simple HL brand serial to USB cable that "looked right". I later discovered that it is similar to the one shown in the MJL USB article. I tried it last night & it worked beautifully. If the HL cable fails, I'll get the recommended FTDI chipset one.

Many thanks for your help.

Richard.

brentp
Site Admin
Posts: 5986
Joined: Wed Jan 24, 2007 6:36 am

Post by brentp »

Thank you for persevering- and thanks too for sharing your ignition map. If you have time, we'd love a photo and writeup in our "Powered By" gallery!
Brent Picasso
CEO and Founder, Autosport Labs
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