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New toy

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Created by LooseChange Tuesday, 14 May 2019
LooseChange
NSW, 1923 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 1:29PM
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I took a 17" screen from a dead laptop and connected my Raspberry Pi to it, then loaded OpenCPN onto the PI, connected a USB stick with the charts on it plus a dAISy AIS receiver. All four USB ports are populated now, one for keyboard/mouse, one or Sirf4 GPS puck, 1 USB stick for charts and lastly the dAISy receiver.
Everything works but due to being too far inland and not having a tall enough antenna mast I am not picking up any traffic, but the little green LED on the dAISy does blink. As this is totally portable I might throw it in the car and test it further, closer to the water, probably Penguin Head at Culburra.
The screen is mounted to a bit of plywood but is so light it could be hung from a bulkhead with Velcro and mount the ribbon cables below that.
If I get the ping I may make it all look a bit prettier than what it is now.
The basic setup

The dAISy AIS receiver

Wireless receiver for keyboard and mouse

Screen menu buttons plus power LED

The back of the contraption

The Pi plus four USB ports

The interface board between the PI and the screen

Ribbon cables are for the screen menu buttons and the feed from the Pi to the screen

Wireless receiver just jammed in place

My position (Red Cross Hairs) as reported by OpenCPN via the Sirf 4 GPS

scaramouche
VIC, 148 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 2:05PM
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Brilliant

Kankama
NSW, 197 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 2:41PM
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Looks good. We used the Daisy on our Tassie trip and really liked having it. At first we couldn't get much in the way of AIS targets but there was something in the computer we had to reset. My wife got it working after talking to my son. So if it doesn't get targets, it is probably something in some settings menu. I had to load some program to update something....... can you tell I am not that good on computers. get back to me if it doesn't work and I will find out what my wife did.

cheers

Phil

tired
10 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 1:18PM
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Have not got a clue what any of that means...

oldboyracer
NSW, 217 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 3:48PM
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Timely topic , I just got a nuc to do the same thing . Was thinking if it works ok will get raspberry pi3 and spend some time getting that to work as my boat PC. Would have started with the pi3 but am not that computer savvy .....yet . ?? Thanks for posting

shaggybaxter
QLD, 1565 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 4:07PM
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Very cool Loosechange, thx for sharing!
Love the screen menu buttons!

Lazzz
NSW, 415 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 4:53PM
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Good stuff - never thought of using an old lappy screen :)

LooseChange
NSW, 1923 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 6:07PM
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shaggybaxter said..
Very cool Loosechange, thx for sharing!
Love the screen menu buttons!






Tarted them up just for you Shaggy. Bling

LooseChange
NSW, 1923 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 6:09PM
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Lazzz said..
Good stuff - never thought of using an old lappy screen :)


If you pick the right screen, like I did, you end up with 1080P x 1920 Full High Definition and who wouldn't want that

madmission
VIC, 206 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 6:16PM
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Good job , I have just ordered the Daisy 2 along with a bluetooth and wifi module , loaded open cpn and my charts on the android phone which load and work just fine and plan to use it as a low power / wireless option for infrequent use when coastal cruising my Boomerang 20
I am considering the pros and cons of VHF splitter or separate antennas for the daisy and radio.
Considering the daisy is RX only i am thinking the antenna could be fairly basic , previously i used a uhf / vhf scanner with the ais frequencies tapped (www.discriminator.nl/ubc72xlt/index-en.html) and opencpn with excellent results with adequate range with the whip antenna on the scanner. Photo below shows range 10 - 15 nm .
Loose , Which way are you headed in the antenna department ?




Lazzz
NSW, 415 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 6:36PM
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LooseChange said..

If you pick the right screen, like I did, you end up with 1080P x 1920 Full High Definition and who wouldn't want that


I have one I just pulled out of hiding, I'm a hoarder, ready to dismantle as soon as I get through all/most of the other "things to do"!!

LooseChange
NSW, 1923 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 9:53PM
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madmission said..
Loose , Which way are you headed in the antenna department ?





Having the ability to wind aerials for any frequency I have wound one specifically for the AIS frequency. but as most marine vhf aerials are fairly broadband in nature you should have no problems with using your radio aerial on your AIS.

LooseChange
NSW, 1923 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 9:58PM
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Lazzz said..

I have one I just pulled out of hiding, I'm a hoarder, ready to dismantle as soon as I get through all/most of the other "things to do"!!


Ahh yes, that "things to do" list. When you pull it apart see if you can reuse the lid as a housing, that is screw the screen back in after taking the cables out (should only be two, ribbon to the screen itself and the web cam). On the back of the screen will be a model number and you will need to get the correct interface board to suit that model number.

Karsten
NSW, 267 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 10:30PM
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As scaramouche says - Brilliant.

The Pi has an HDMI output, and the dismantled laptop screen is unlikely to have an HDMI input port.
So the question is: how did you go from HDMI to the ribbon cable, or whatever cables were dangling off the laptop screen ?

I also have a defunct laptop or two lying around.

You mention an "interface board" - it sounds like that converts the HDMI signal to ribbon cable signal, with the right connectors already available on the board. If you followed detailed instructions from some web site, could you share which web site ? I'd like to have a stab because laptop screens are likely be low power consumers.

LooseChange
NSW, 1923 posts
Tuesday , 14 May 2019 11:08PM
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Karsten said..
As scaramouche says - Brilliant.

The Pi has an HDMI output, and the dismantled laptop screen is unlikely to have an HDMI input port.
So the question is: how did you go from HDMI to the ribbon cable, or whatever cables were dangling off the laptop screen ?

I also have a defunct laptop or two lying around.

You mention an "interface board" - it sounds like that converts the HDMI signal to ribbon cable signal, with the right connectors already available on the board. If you followed detailed instructions from some web site, could you share which web site ? I'd like to have a stab because laptop screens are likely be low power consumers.



Hi Karsten, the Pi has as you say a HDMI output and that plugs into the HDMI on the interface board, the interface board also has the ribbon cable that connects to your screen, again, make sure you buy the interface board that corresponds to the model number on the back of your screen they are available on ebay or Aliexpress for about $30, I bought mine from this bloke .........
www.ebay.com.au/str/xiongchun2013?_trksid=p2047675.l2563

The Pi uses 5v via a USB plug and the interface board uses 12v @ about 2.5A via a barrel plug so you will need two power sources

Karsten
NSW, 267 posts
Tuesday , 15 May 2019 12:40AM
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Thanks Loose, your seller even has a good rating. This weekend I'll see if I can get a laptop screen out without breaking it.

Those little buttons that adjust screen brightness & contrast could be a hassle to re-mount, and takes up space. If I skip them, what's the chances of using a Linux screen driver to make those adjustments via software (like Windows screen properties) ? Don't know Linux too well.

LooseChange
NSW, 1923 posts
Wednesday , 15 May 2019 9:02AM
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Karsten said..
Thanks Loose, your seller even has a good rating. This weekend I'll see if I can get a laptop screen out without breaking it.

Those little buttons that adjust screen brightness & contrast could be a hassle to re-mount, and takes up space. If I skip them, what's the chances of using a Linux screen driver to make those adjustments via software (like Windows screen properties) ? Don't know Linux too well.


Nah, the little buttons were easy as for the other option you mention, I don't know as I didn't need to go down that route.
The screen is only held in by four tiny screws, to access them just hook your fingernails under the screen bezel and pull it away.

wongaga
252 posts
Wednesday , 15 May 2019 7:37AM
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+1 for the dAISy 2. You can make a DIY 1/4 wave vhf antenna for it that works very well, for next to nothing (pvc conduit, coax, silicone, stainless bracket). Mine is mounted about 3m above the water on the solar support, which gives up to 12nm range. If I connect it to the vhf mast head antenna, it gets up to 23nm range. It's a great little product.

Cheers, Graeme

madmission
VIC, 206 posts
Wednesday , 15 May 2019 10:24AM
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wongaga said..
You can make a DIY 1/4 wave vhf antenna for it that works very well, for next to nothing (pvc conduit, coax, silicone, stainless bracket).


Thanks Graeme thats just what i was looking for .
Can you direct me to a plan for such ? One description i found did not mention lengths and talked about ground planes ...black art to me.
I have coax cutter / stripper and crimping tools .

wongaga
252 posts
Wednesday , 15 May 2019 9:36AM
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Whoops sorry, my bad: mine is not 1/4 but a 1/2 wavelength dipole (which gives more gain).

Here's the main link that inspired me:


The video is pretty close to how I made mine, the main difference being that I worked the braid down over the insulation rather than just tape it as he did but otherwise it's pretty close.

And here's a wavelength calculator: www.66pacific.com/calculators/dipole-antenna-length-calculator.aspx
There are all sorts of arguments about length optimisation, but if you base it on channel 16 (156.8 Mhz) as I did, you'll be fine , and will have given it the best chance of saving you should you need it for a mayday or pan-pan when your mast comes down! Or you could use the AIS frequencies (161.975 and 162.025 Mhz). Mine works pretty well for the radio (obviously I mounted the dAISy next to the radio for just this reason).

So there you go, some cable (which I already had), a bit of 12mm PVC pipe and top cap, some silicone, a stainless L bracket from Bunnings, and a couple of SS jubilee clips - all up about $20.

Cheers, Graeme the tight-arse pensioner sailor

madmission
VIC, 206 posts
Wednesday , 15 May 2019 2:10PM
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Thanks Graeme , boat dollars always in demand so saving a few on this helps out somewhere else not to mention the experience of learning of how these things work.

wongaga
252 posts
Wednesday , 15 May 2019 12:47PM
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And now back to the OP with apologies for the hijack!

shaggybaxter
QLD, 1565 posts
Wednesday , 15 May 2019 3:07PM
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wongaga said..
And now back to the OP with apologies for the hijack!


I personally love thread drifts, adds a normalcy to the conversation, we're like babbling chooks on the boat.
Or those mike mike mike mike mike mike seagulls off Finding Nemo

EC31
NSW, 395 posts
Wednesday , 15 May 2019 4:32PM
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Love the thread drift, you learn lots, especially with all the gurus hanging around here.
LooseChange, where did you get the East Coast map for OpenCPN?
I played with putting a Pi2 on board a few years ago, but getting a map was the issue. I decided to stay with a Windows laptop running QuickCharts and the Daisy.
I have a spare laptop to pull apart, so it would be fun to have another go if the maps are easily (and legally) available.

LooseChange
NSW, 1923 posts
Wednesday , 15 May 2019 7:47PM
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EC31 said..
Love the thread drift, you learn lots, especially with all the gurus hanging around here.
LooseChange, where did you get the East Coast map for OpenCPN?
I played with putting a Pi2 on board a few years ago, but getting a map was the issue. I decided to stay with a Windows laptop running QuickCharts and the Daisy.
I have a spare laptop to pull apart, so it would be fun to have another go if the maps are easily (and legally) available.


Here ya go, this may satisfy your curiosity regarding ease and legality ....
o-charts.org/shop/index.php?id_product=33&controller=product&id_lang=4

SandS
VIC, 5517 posts
Wednesday , 15 May 2019 9:36PM
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i really struggle to understand all this stuff about free/cheap electronic charts . I have no idea how it works . i have tried to figure it out by reading stuff like this ,but no still no ! to ****ing hard !!!
i bought a chart plotter about 10 years ago , might get a hand held chart plotter as a back up if i ever go cruising that will do me . so much easier !! i would rather sail the boat !! than build my own chart plotter

Karsten
NSW, 267 posts
Wednesday , 16 May 2019 12:29AM
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Ok, Loose motivated me and I managed to remove my laptop screen from it's frame in 10 minutes, by breaking off the plastic surround sleeves in order to get to the small mounting screws. So far so good. At first glance not clear how/where the ribbon cable will unplug, but before that I guess I have to go find out if a HDMI interface board even exists for this Japanese Hitachi screen.







crewloose
NSW, 15 posts
Thursday , 16 May 2019 11:39AM
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I'm not seeing a coinbox or a joystick.

LooseChange
NSW, 1923 posts
Thursday , 16 May 2019 1:17PM
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Karsten said..
Ok, Loose motivated me and I managed to remove my laptop screen from it's frame in 10 minutes, by breaking off the plastic surround sleeves in order to get to the small mounting screws. So far so good. At first glance not clear how/where the ribbon cable will unplug, but before that I guess I have to go find out if a HDMI interface board even exists for this Japanese Hitachi screen.





Hell! I didn't think that Hitachi was a thing any more. I was intrigued if a board exists for this screen and lo and behold it does, albeit at a crappy resolution of 1024 X 768 which is only VGA but I guess if you were happy with the lappy at that resolution you can probably live with it now too.

www.ebay.ca/itm/LCD-Lvds-Driver-Board-2270-Monitor-Controller-Kit-Converter-for-TX36D81VC1CAA/123523728566?hash=item1cc29684b6:g:glsAAOxyhodRymg5

Check and confirm everything for yourself to make sure that this is the board you need, additionally this board requires a 12V @ 4A power supply so I suspect that this is quite an old screen as the newer ones only pull about 2 - 2.5A.

Good luck with it if you decide to go ahead with it.
I'm not responsible for anything, including my own stuff ups.

Karsten
NSW, 267 posts
Thursday , 16 May 2019 9:52PM
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Thanks Loose - appreciate the info, including about the 4A current draw.

I'm really just looking to make a light, portable HDMI screen. Can be used for any electronics that outputs HDMI, including rasp PI.

For some difficult-to-fathom reason, no tablet manufacturer (Android, Windows or Apple) will provide a HDMI INPUT port on any tablet. Would be very useful if they did. They only provide HDMI output ports.

So by using this laptop screen per LooseChange's method, I could build my own. A regular desktop PC screen can take HDMI, but is typically 10x heavier and 5x as thick as this laptop screen, so not really portable.

LooseChange
NSW, 1923 posts
Thursday , 16 May 2019 10:22PM
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Karsten said..

Thanks Loose - appreciate the info, including about the 4A current draw.

I'm really just looking to make a light, portable HDMI screen. Can be used for any electronics that outputs HDMI, including rasp PI.

For some difficult-to-fathom reason, no tablet manufacturer (Android, Windows or Apple) will provide a HDMI INPUT port on any tablet. Would be very useful if they did. They only provide HDMI output ports.

So by using this laptop screen per LooseChange's method, I could build my own. A regular desktop PC screen can take HDMI, but is typically 10x heavier and 5x as thick as this laptop screen, so not really portable.


VGA only, no HDMI, if you look at the board there is no HDMI port. Personally I would look at getting a more recent screen from a computer wrecker rather than trying to turn a pigs ear into a silk purse, you shouldn't have to pay very much for it. My 17" HP screen was $20 and is full HD 1080P X1920.



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"New toy" started by LooseChange