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Re: SL-137 Manual Request

A "capture board" came with the SL-137. It is an "OFS WeatherFAX" ISA 
card with one audio input. It originally came with software, but that 
did not accompany the board. I'm not too concerned about either of 
these; I can happily decode an audio signal if I can find one coming out 
of the SL-137. I have often used WxSat or JVComm32 or WxToIMG and other 
software for this purpose.

Weirdly, the hardware came with two cables, a DB9-to-DB9 and a 
low-density DB15 to 3 mono audio plugs. Neither of these gives me any 
clues as to the pinouts, power requirements or command functions of the 

Someone suggested in email that the box probably takes 12V somewhere on 
the DB9, scans for satellites (with no command input) and, upon lock, 
puts out a 1V RMS audio signal, probably on pin 3 or pin 4. I was also 
warned that there may be a 5V pre-amp supply on the VHF port. 
Unfortunately, there is a "To PC" label above the DB9 that confuses the 
issue. Neither RS232 nor RS422 standards include 12V power. If the DB9 
is not standard RS232, then all bets are off on the rest of the pins, too.

Looking at the board, it looks like power may be on pins 8-9. Pins 
1,2,3,6,7 are also in use. The RS232 standard  reserves 2 & 3 for Tx and 
Rx, 1 & 7 for shield and signal ground. 6 is DCE ready, so it looks like 
this unit is fully equipped for serial communications.

I didn't know about any impending demise of 137 MHz APT. NOAA-18 has 
fairly recently gone on-line, and I thought there were upcoming launches 
in the NOAA-N series that would keep the system on-line until 2011 or 
something. Since I'm setting up a museum display, I can just change the 
sign from "Live Satellite Weather" to "Historical Satellite Hardware" 

Thanks very much all!

Sent via amsat-bb@amsat.org. Opinions expressed are those of the author.
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