On 1/31/11 12:44 AM, Jari Jussila wrote:
> I have a rotatable tower some 40m away from my ham shack. The old,
> faithful tower rotator was hit in lighting and the potentiometer
> telling the direction of my antennas was burned. The rotator being an
> old, industrial model, the factory told me that there's no such
> potentiometers available any more .......
> Now ....
> Does anybody know, if there are (commercial), potentiometerless
> wireless (tower) direction indicators available in the market?
I don't know that you actually need potentiometer-less.. if it's all in
a box, then it will be pretty lightning immune.
I'd look at wireless wind direction indicators. they're fairly
in-expensive, because they're aimed at a consumer market, and you can
probably retrofit the "windvane" part somehow. Not totally turn-key,
but pretty close.
You might also be able to modify a wireless thermometer, but you'd need
to figure out how to turn angular position into a signal that matches
the temperature sensor's output (typically a voltage on a semiconductor
sensor or a resistance on a thermistor).
Totally off the shelf, there are a variety of factory control and
monitoring type systems available. I'd start by looking at the Omega
Engineering catalog. they're mostly temperature sensing, but they've
probably got something like what you're looking for, although I don't
recall angular position or magnetic field. http://www.omega.com/
there are, of course, electronic compass modules with serial and analog
outputs, but they're not an off-the-shelf turnkey system. Look at what
people are using for model airplanes and boats, for instance.
For a more durable, and pricey, alternative, there are wireless
compasses for boats.
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