Permobil Dongle Issues

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Permobil Dongle Issues

Postby Rye » 19 Feb 2021, 02:53

I recently tried to program one of my PeeMobils and I plugged it in like always and it would show connected then immediately drop. I can unplug and reattach and it shows connected then drops. I tried all my chairs and its the same deal. PC updated recently. Anyone else having an issue? Any common problems with these things?
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Re: Permobil Dongle Issues

Postby Burgerman » 19 Feb 2021, 08:14

Not here. I made changes to 2 chairs yesterday in my laptop. Everything as normal. Although I am on the super stable LTSC version. So may not be relevant.


So.Tested just now out of interest on an old abandoned laptop. Updated windows 10 pro first, and it connected to the chair next to my bed, and stays that way. So you maybe have a serial port ID issue. Go to the DEVICE DAMAGER. Top bar, SHOW HIDDEN DEVICES. You can open each group in the tree and see reserved stuff -- its all greyed out. You can uninstal or remove/delete all those that are unused. Pay particular attention to USB related devices, busses etc. And esp unused serial comm port/usb stuff. Then reboot, and test. My bet is it will work...
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Re: Permobil Dongle Issues

Postby Rye » 28 Feb 2021, 00:54

It's still having the same issue. Maybe it's the usb type-b port on the dongle. I can wiggle it and it reconnects, but won't stay connected no matter how I hold the cord. I bought a new cord with the same issue. Anyone got any advice on desoldering the female port and where I can find the part? Could I just solder the usb wires direct?
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Re: Permobil Dongle Issues

Postby rover220 » 28 Feb 2021, 08:07

I have had one rnet dongle with a faulty solder joint from the type b port to the board. Exactly same symptoms you describe.
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Re: Permobil Dongle Issues

Postby ex-Gooserider » 02 Mar 2021, 02:32

Taking the port off of a board and hardwiring a USB cable to the board in place of it is not electrically a problem, and can be a simpler fix than trying to find the exact replacement port to go onto the footprint of the board.... If attention is paid to strain relief, it can also have the advantage of avoiding putting strain on the board itself...


It can be a somewhat finicky job to get the old port off w/o damaging the board, and / or to wire the cable on, but that is mostly a question of soldering skills.

It is also essential to get the wires in the right place (obviously)

If the port isn't obviously damaged, it can also be a case of a bad solder joint (as Rover mentioned) in that case you can try 'recooking" the joint (when doing this I find using flux and adding a little bit of LEAD solder will help (I hate that RoHS lead free garbage....)

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Re: Permobil Dongle Issues

Postby Rye » 02 Mar 2021, 13:55

I haven't been able to find a replacement port because there is no number only TYCO brand. It appears as though the joints are under the port and the port has 2 legs soldered to the board. I can't provide a pic right now, but does that sound normal? The components aren't through the board either.
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Re: Permobil Dongle Issues

Postby ex-Gooserider » 09 Mar 2021, 03:17

Rye wrote:I haven't been able to find a replacement port because there is no number only TYCO brand. It appears as though the joints are under the port and the port has 2 legs soldered to the board. I can't provide a pic right now, but does that sound normal? The components aren't through the board either.


That sounds pretty typical... Most modern electronics things use Surface Mount Device (SMD) construction rather than the older Through Hole method... SMD parts are smaller and cheaper, and work better for robotic assembly. It is possible to do SMD stuff by hand, but it's more painful, especially so the smaller "pitch" or size parts that are being used...

An SMD board just puts the connection pads on the outer layer of the board and the parts are soldered to the pads - works fine electrically and offers many advantages in terms of board design, but the mechanical connection is only as good as the strength of the glue bonding the copper traces to the actual board. So for parts that take strain like connectors, it is very common to have pins or legs that go through the board and solder to the back side just to handle the stress loads.... Often they either aren't connected to anything or only to the "ground" circuitry....

Typical USB connectors will have a metal shell with these "load bearing" legs and the actual electrically active pins under or just out the back of the connector as SMD pads... It is likely that if you can get exact measurements of the shell and those support legs that you can match them w/ comparable connectors from any manufacturer... The contact points in the connector that go to the USB plug are almost certain to go straight to the pads on the board just because that's the easiest way to do it....

Removal is going to be a bit tricky, but basically you want to desolder the support legs and get them free first, and then carefully heat the connector / board just enough to get the contacts to release from the pad. If the contacts are under the connector this can be hard just in terms of reaching them.... I would often suggest carefully destroying the existing connector in order to expose the contact pads.... If this isn't something you have had practice doing, I'd suggest finding someone that does... Many of the independent places that fix cell phones will have the right tools and skills....

I would also be inclined to replace the connector with a strain relieved "pigtail" rather than trying to solder on a new connector... Every time you heat a pad on a PC board you weaken the bond between it and the board.... Putting on a pigtail solves the problem of finding the right replacement connector, and will involve less heating of the board.

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