Order Question
#1
Hello All - 

I was not sure where to post this, so I decided to put it here. I am very interested in this project. From what I can tell, it looks like there are only maybe 6 stations in my State (Wisconsin). My question is about the station setup. My plan is to order a system blue once they are in stock. My question is, what are the instructions like as far as putting the thing together? I am comfortable soldering, but I do not know if things need to be put in certain direction or not. Also, I don't fully understand what stuff comes with the kit and what stuff I need to order outside of the kit? I have read through the paperwork, but it is still not clear to me. I appreciate any help and completely understand that I am a noob to this.

Thanks in advance!
Jeff
Stations: 1591
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#2
Hello Jeff,

Basically everything is written in the "quick setup guide": http://de.blitzortung.org/Compendium/Doc...B_20_1.pdf
Some parts have polarity (or kind of) and need to placed in the right way. There are marks on the PCB.

For the parts everything is listed in http://de.blitzortung.org/Compendium/Ord...PCB_20.pdf

The basic set (1-18) is what you need to install a detector (you may only order the boards (1) and buy the rest to local vendors).*

The rest is in option:
19: ferrite antennas, but you can build your own loops (some info in the documentation)
20-21: filter option which is olny necessary when there is strong interferences
23-30: housing option, if you want the install the controller in a box.

* Note that you will need some extra parts: a GPS antenna with SMA connector, USB power supply (5V/1A), connection cable (Cat 5e for LAN and H-filed pre-amp, coax with F connectors for E-filed pre-amp).

This post is exactly what is written there: https://forum.blitzortung.org/showthread....7#pid11437
Clément
Stations: 252, 680, 733, 1440
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#3
(2016-05-31, 21:07)DelandeC Wrote: Hello Jeff,

Basically everything is written in the "quick setup guide": http://de.blitzortung.org/Compendium/Doc...B_20_1.pdf
Some parts have polarity (or kind of) and need to placed in the right way. There are marks on the PCB.

For the parts everything is listed in http://de.blitzortung.org/Compendium/Ord...PCB_20.pdf

The basic set (1-18) is what you need to install a detector (you may only order the boards (1) and buy the rest to local vendors).*

The rest is in option:
19: ferrite antennas, but you can build your own loops (some info in the documentation)
20-21: filter option which is olny necessary when there is strong interferences
23-30: housing option, if you want the install the controller in a box.

* Note that you will need some extra parts: a GPS antenna with SMA connector, USB power supply (5V/1A), connection cable (Cat 5e for LAN and H-filed pre-amp, coax with F connectors for E-filed pre-amp).

This post is exactly what is written there: //forum.blitzortung.org/showthread.php?tid=1656&pid=11437#pid11437
Thank you very much for the reply! That clears things up a bit for me, but I do have a few additional questions. You say 19 through 30 are optional. Do I not need an antenna? Does 1-18 have enough of an antenna to work at a basic level? From what I can tell everything else is there except some Cat 5e (which I have a box of) to put this together? I think I'm only worried about the actual building part. After that I'm not worried about working through the web interface, etc.

Again, thanks for your reply. I really appreciate it! I also appreciate that you didn't respond with a bunch of negativity. I have honestly held off on posting this for quite some time as I was worried I would receive a lot of negative replies.

Jeff
Stations: 1591
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#4
We are here to help each other
It is a common hobby that gets better the more people who participate Smile

You need an receiver antenna, but it is very easy - see https://forum.blitzortung.org/showthread.php?tid=1708

/Richo
Stations: 584, 585, 2017
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#5
(2016-05-31, 22:14)RichoAnd Wrote: We are here to help each other
It is a common hobby that gets better the more people who participate Smile

You need an receiver antenna, but it is very easy  - see   //forum.blitzortung.org/showthread.php?tid=1708

/Richo

That guide is perfect! My next question then is, I'm thinking about putting this in my unfinished attic. Would you not recommend this for any reason? Would one of those antennas work in an attic better than another?

Thank you!
Stations: 1591
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#6
Chevy,
Richo's recent post of the antenna mini guide will tell you a lot, if you've not read it.

I think the E field antenna (field probe, technically I guess) is exceptionally easy to make, considering winding your own ferrites, which is easy enough but takes time and is fiddling around, plus mounting them and all.  But they can be placed in an attic or such as long as the surrounding area is pretty electrically quiet (no blenders or neon lights going on and off, dimmers, etc.)  Yet there are early builders from years ago who searched their properties for the quietest spot. And the cable to the main board is best if short (correct me if I'm wrong, guys).

The E field antenna is a dream for me.  I have a little tripod tower I took out into my woods where I live.  A plastic pipe holds it up about 15' and the cable run back to the main controller can be ridiculously long, over 1000' was mentioned at one time.  And it is much less bothered by some of the electrical noise that plagued the H field guys (if they were unlucky enough to have noise). 

For me, I'm going to wind the ferrites since I have the stock on hand left over from RED, and it is sort of cool, I think.  Some people weave baskets or knit and croquet while watching TV, so I'm not all crazy.)

But the first antenna I'll have up for BLUE will be an E Field.  I was amazed at how much less fiddling I had to do with settings and all to get really good signals, especially when storms got closer.  The H field had put me into interference mode a couple hundred miles out, now today I had a strike I submitted and was used for calculation not much more than 10 miles away.

One last thought, I'd be quick to visit an accomplished local Ham Radio Operator if there is ANY concern about soldering the boards.  Even though some of the surface mount stuff supposedly is mounted (by experts) the other pieces are in close proximity if you look at the pictures and if you don't have the right iron, temperature, good solder, etc. it is easy to end up with solder bridges and correcting them if they bridge over to the tiny components won't be easy.

PLEASE don't be scared away, at all.  I was concerned at first when I started putting RED together but got the hang of it after being away from board assembly for a couple decades and am looking forward to my bright lights and wife's magnifying lens on a mounted arm to help me make sure.  I just couldn't be cavalier about it and shooshed the family out so there were no interruptions or distractions until I felt confident.

It just takes time, and I used a rule one of the other early builders told me.  Check, recheck, check under bright light and then insert the component into the board.  It saved me a couple of times, thinking I had the right part and correct orientation.  An ounce of prevention is worth a ton of cure when it comes to trying to get a part out and move it to where it should be or flip it around.
Stations: 976, 1505
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#7
Hi Dale,

I got your PM. I tried to reply, but couldn't. I can't even get to your user page for some reason. I live in Sun Prairie, just East of Madison.

I will definitely read over the antenna guide again. I'm glad I posted here as I was ready to give up even trying. After reading the responses, I think I will try and get an order put in once they have stuff in stock again. In the mean time, I'll continue researching the antennas and maybe try and get one built. Will also look for a good place to mount.

Thanks again! I'll be sure to post back with any new or further questions.

Jeff
Stations: 1591
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