CAT control to the Kenwood TS850 and other rigctl experiences

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Last seen: 4 days 17 hours ago
Joined: 2010/02/12 - 22:22
CAT control to the Kenwood TS850 and other rigctl experiences

Hello dr OMs,

When I try to use the CAT control on my Kenwood TS850, all my rigctl commands are either refused or replied to with error.
This is using a PCI-serial board, serial cable and a level-converter cable.
I observed that all DTR DSR RTS CTS signals are active as long as the rigctl command was running, so interface-wise, all looks fine.
After trying out all possible rigctl param values (write_delay ..) and handshake options (Hardware, none, ..) I still could not make the CAT interface to work.

I then installed a serial port splitter (from Eltima - trial version) and defined a pair with a virtual port and a physical hardware port.
As soon as the pair was configured, all RS 232 signals came up on the rig serial port and the link was both electronically stable
(meaning the level converter cable was fully powered up) and all spurious async characters were flushed.

I then connected WSPR to the virtual port and bingo, all CAT commands worked right away.

Although I do not want to override previous postings in this forum, describing other tips on how to handle problems with external powered RS 232 converter cables,
I thought this tip could be of interest as a way to determine once and for all if CAT problems are due to hardware problems or software misconfiguration.

Note that the root cause of my problem are the spurious characters that appear on the line after rigctl initialises the port.
A workaround could be that WSPR starts rigctl at program startup, flushes the line, and then sends the CAT commands as needed. But that I leave to the master ...

Seasons greetings from Belgium and happy whispering.