Thursday, 27 November 2014

Playing with my dongle, and extending the length

Oh dear, your mind has gone into overdrive.  It’s certainly not THAT!  I’d better change the subject and allow you to recover.

Tonight Jan cooked a casserole containing NZ lamb and kidney.  She had purchased it from Tesco in two small sealed plastic bags.  I must digress and mention the casserole and meat was delicious.  Back to the subject; you might think the meat is packed in these small plastic bags back in NZ.  But I doubt it! My first trip to the UK was with my parents in 1957 when my father was transfered to London.  At that time you could purchase small blocks of NZ cheese and butter in the the UK which were wrapped in greaseproof paper.  We travelled to the UK by sea.  Air travel was expensive in the 50’s.  I remember looking over the side of our cargo/passenger ship when we were docked in Panama.  Some cargo was being transhipped and very large blocks of NZ butter had been lifted from the refrigerated hold onto the wharf.  It certainly wasn’t in small greaseproof blocks.  I can vividly recall some of the local dogs wandering up to the blocks of butter and cocking their legs.  I guess it added to the flavour!  My assumption is nearly all this produce is shipped in bulk and repackaged in the UK before being distributed.  So now you know why your foreign butter has that special tang.

Today I extracted the can bus dongle out of the cupboard and connected it to the laptop.

The dongle lives behind the switchboard

It plugs into the laptop usb port

I can then load the software and analyse or change the boat 12v systems.

Today I wanted to change a switch allocation in the bedroom.  Rather than operate the floor lights I wanted the switch to control the ceiling lights.  In a conventional system I’d have to physically change the wiring.  But with the can bus system it only requires the software to be changed and then sent to the boat.  It will probably be the last change to the system because the switch labels should be available tomorrow.

Now for the length matter.  You may recall an earlier post where I mentioned Jan had to stand in the rear right corner of the boat for the TV to pick up a signal.  We’ve winded the boat which meant the problem solution was now on my side.  I (correctly) guessed the TV antenna didn’t have sufficient height.  When the boat listed it pointed the antenna further skyward which is why we received a clear signal.   The solution was to extend the mast height.  But the coaxial cable wasn’t long enough.  Today I made up a new length of coaxial cable twice as long as the original.  After fitting the new cable and extending the pole we now have a good signal without me having to stand at the back of the boat with one arm in the air.

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