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Author Topic: I think i bricked my Axon II  (Read 1521 times)

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Offline VaulBTopic starter

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I think i bricked my Axon II
« on: February 06, 2010, 04:00:50 AM »
OK, i just took it out of the box and followed the instructions. All went well until the bootloader. I set the right com port, baud and everything and the bootloader was waiting for me to turn the power on for the axon. I did that and i got some kind of error message that said something about I/O and system error  :-[ I forgot to write it down. After that the bootloader didn't find anything at the com port anymore. I rebooted my computer, but no luck. I don't see the CP210x driver in the device manager anymore. I reinstalled the driver, but no luck. Never had this kind of problems with PICs. So if i really did brick it, how can i get it working again? I don't see the crystal on this board.

Offline madsci1016

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2010, 09:05:40 AM »
Did you restart your computer? What windows version do you have? Try a different cable?

If anything, the USB chip is having issues (unlikely) and the rest of the Axon is fine. If that's the case, you can always flash it with a programmer like this. http://www.pololu.com/catalog/product/1300

Offline VaulBTopic starter

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2010, 09:43:28 AM »
Yes I restarted my computer and even degraded my windows xp back to sp2. I think the problem started when I disconnected the power during programming. I read that with sp3 the programming could take 45 seconds. I didn't know it when I disconnected it, so the  programmed data is probably corrupted. I guess I'm going to have to make myself a programmer for the ISP header. I didn't understand what is the point of removing the crystal for reprogramming  :-\

Here are the instructions for bricked Axon one:

1. Unsolder the silver-colored crystal and the two small capacitors right under it.
2. Apply a square wave to XTAL1 (say 125KHz, 250KHz, etc). Ground to ground.
3. Using a hardware programmer, change the fuse settings back to a 16MHz crystal.
4. Lastly, solder the crystal and caps back on.

I wonder if it's possible to unsolder\resolder the Axon II's crystal without damaging it, not to mention the capacitors. They are extremely small..

Offline madsci1016

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2010, 09:57:29 AM »
Woah, before you go soldering the crystal off, I'd try hardware programming it first. If you don't want to spend the $19 on the programmer, there is a way to bit bang a FDTI serial chip to program. Do you have any arduino's (or arduino programmers) laying around?

Offline VaulBTopic starter

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2010, 10:04:48 AM »
I have a PIC microcontroller. How exactly can I do the programming with bitbanging? Which pins do I have to connect from Axon to PIC? I have a serial port and a parallel port on my computer, and I have a max232 too .
« Last Edit: February 06, 2010, 10:08:39 AM by VaulB »

Offline madsci1016

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2010, 10:13:12 AM »
The only bit bang I am aware of requires a FTDI serial chip. There's a tool floating around for it. I am not aware of the actual pin communications, or how to use another chip.

I'd wait for the Admin to come on. He created the Axon's and would have better instructions how how to diagnosis your problem.

With the USB pluged into the Axon and nothing else, measure voltage at the 3.3V output pins, make sure you get 3.3V. Have you tried another computer?

Offline VaulBTopic starter

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #6 on: February 06, 2010, 12:42:05 PM »
Oh god...I just realized that I did something far more worse. I connected the battery to 3.3V pins  :-X I just looked the plus and minus signs at the end of the line. On the old Axon this is where the battery is, and i kind of assumed it would still go there. In other words, epic fail. I guess there is nothing to be done. Not very cheap to order this stuff to europe  ;D

Offline madsci1016

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #7 on: February 06, 2010, 12:45:07 PM »
It happens. More then likely the USb <-> Uart chip is fried. The AVR should be fine and you can flash with a hardware programmer.

Offline madsci1016

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #8 on: February 06, 2010, 12:59:33 PM »
My Axon 1 USB chip died randomly a while ago. I cut the traces between it and the AVR, and added my own header. It took a lot of patience and all of my soldering skill though.



It's messy, but it got the job down, and I have usable 4 hardware Uarts now.

Offline VaulBTopic starter

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #9 on: February 06, 2010, 01:09:43 PM »
It's good to know that there is still some hope. I was going to try the hardware way anyways.

Offline Admin

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #10 on: February 06, 2010, 10:47:18 PM »
I recommend checking to make sure nothing got internally shorted when the USB chip fried. I also recommend unsoldering the 3-pin black diode IC to the left of the USB chip just to make sure.

Otherwise, the rest of your Axon should be fine and undamaged. Tons more pins still remaining to fry :P

Offline VaulBTopic starter

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #11 on: February 07, 2010, 03:30:15 AM »
Alright, thanks for the advice. In case anyone is interested what am I going to do with this Axon  :)
This is how far I got with a PIC 16F690. It lacks a hardware multiplier, which limited the programming a lot...

Poking the robot again

Offline VaulBTopic starter

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #12 on: February 11, 2010, 11:21:23 AM »
I built this DIY ponyprog programmer.

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_zqABT3suzXE/SL5wPme6iGI/AAAAAAAAAHA/zb65eUz8NCU/s1600-h/atprog.gif

The probing test said OK, but it can't verify the axon nor can it write to it. It just fails. So is this the last nail to my Axon's coffin  :'(

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Re: I think i bricked my Axon II
« Reply #13 on: February 11, 2010, 10:07:11 PM »
We can't help you if we have no information :P

You need to get out a multimeter and start taking measurements.

Also, the PonyProg website says the ATmega640 support is untested.

Are you using a USB to serial adapter?

 


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