Wednesday 20 July 2016

Kobo Glo HD Install

The BlueFlyVario_TTL_GPS_v11 installed in a Kobo Glo HD is a great combination. This post has taken a while to put together as a little bug was worked out of XCSoar by the developers. Most of the install procedure is the same as with other Kobo models and earlier versions of the Bluefly. In this post you can read how to put it all together. You should also read earlier posts about the BlueFly and Kobo:

What you will need

Gather the following things:
  • BlueFlyVario_TTL_GPS_v11 module. You will not need the header, wires or Dupont connector that comes with it; but you will need the small piece of neoprene, and some of the heatshink. 
  • Some smaller wires. I think the wires from a small piece of 4 core telephone cable are just right. 
  • A Kobo Glo HD. 
  • A Bluefly Kobo Glo HD Simple Case, you can download this case from Thingverse. Find a friend with a 3d printer or order a copy from an online 3d printing service.
  • Some double sided tape and superglue.
  • A good soldering iron and some skill using it. 
  • A sharp knife. 
Step 1 - Set up XCSoar on the Kobo

This procedure starts pretty much the same as earlier installs. Get the Kobo, make sure it works as a standard eReader, then remove the back cover and back up the internal SD card. Note the back cover of the Glo HD pops off by running around the edge with your fingernail. After the SD Card is backed up install XCSoar as described on the XCSoar download page. When XCSoar is working power off the Kobo.

Note that you should make sure you install XCSoar version 6.8.5 or later. That version fixed a small bug which affected the performance of the display in earlier versions when there were rapid vario data updates. 

Step 2 - Solder the BlueFly module to the Kobo

Start by soldering the four thin wires to jumper J4 at the top right hand side of the circuit board. Do not be tempted to use one of the other ports; they do not work. Most people will not have much trouble soldering in Tx, Rx, and V, however you will probably find GND difficult as it needs more heat. Don't use too much or you will damage the board.

The wires are then routed out the side of the case. You should use a sharp knife to make the appropriate holes in the bezel and the back.

Attach the BlueFlyVario_TTL_GPS_v11 module to the wires. Make sure to solder V to V, GND to GND, KoboTx to BlueFlyRx and KoboRx to BlueFlyTx. The image below shows the BlueFly module attached with the wires so that there is about 2mm between the edge of the Kobo bezel and the BlueFly module. Ignore the hole in the top of the bezel; that is from earlier experiments. 

Step 3 - Install the  Case

The case file is printed as a single object. The image below shows the file printed in blue abs on a pretty rough 3d printer.

The part on the left breaks off and is the lid of the case. 

Add the neoprene to the pressure sensor:

Then secure it with a little of the heatshink.

The main part of case fits under the bezel and the BlueFly fits in it (this image was before I soldered the wires so I could get the length right)

Fix the case to the Kobo with a few bits of double sided tape underneath and along the side. If you are super confident you might want to glue it, but I found that the double sided tape was good enough. Also use some double sided tape between the bezel and the lid. To finish the install glue the lid to the case with superglue. In the image below I just fixed it with some tape.

Step 4 - BlueFly Configuration

Configure XCSoar by adding the BlueFly in the devices menu. Initially use the BlueFlyVario driver and make sure you set the baud rate at 57600. Check the monitor to see data streaming in from the BlueFly.

Next install this BlueFlyMenu.xci file using the procedure described in this earlier post. This file adds a few menu options. Use the LXMode button to send a few commands to the BlueFly to change the output mode and rate, then adjust the driver to the LXNav driver. Check out some of the other commands by inspecting the xci file in a text editor. Alter the file to adjust other hardware settings described in Annex A to the Hardware Settings Manual.

Using It

XCSoar is very powerful and has many options. Fly safe!