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Assembly line Serial Port tester

Assembly line Serial Port tester

Assembly line Serial Port tester


I was requested to make a serial comms tester( RS232 spec) for a new product. This tester needs to be used on the production line to verify the hardware functionality. We just need it to basically read a packet of data in, then send a packet out at 9600 8N1. Nothing fancy at all. My first thought was just to use Hyperterm to do it, but that is apparently unacceptable. So I was looking at standard serial port test devices, and most seem too complicated for use by the assembly workers. The other option would be to get one of any number of development kits and create a new tester, but that is more effort than they want me to put into it

Does anyone know of an off the shelf unit capable of being preprogrammed to do a very simple RS232 port test at the push of a button? Preferably a complete module with housing, not just a PCB.


RE: Assembly line Serial Port tester

I don't recall ever seeing a box quite like that; sort of a step beyond a loopback connector.

How about an old laptop with a small custom program?
The first trick is finding a laptop that's old enough to have a serial port, and still working. Hint: You can probably still get $50 laptops, but do a virus scan before anything else.

Mike Halloran
Pembroke Pines, FL, USA

RE: Assembly line Serial Port tester

Thanks for the response. That is a great description of what it is, just a step above a loop back.

The laptop/ program or hyperterm was one of the ideas I tried to get the management here to approve. But no luck. They want it cheap, quick, and good. And even if they could get all 3, they'd still not be happy.

I've found what might work, I'm just waiting to hear from him if it has a case available:


RE: Assembly line Serial Port tester

Give the neighborhood kid an Arduino.. 20 minutes and done.

RE: Assembly line Serial Port tester

I'd go for the Basic Stamp on this one. Has the serial port and boot code ready to go, just write a 10-line BASIC program.

Dan - Owner

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