APRS: Making UI-View and Weatherlink Cooperate

temperature

Here's the current temp at my location. Click on the image for more weather info.

At 19°F outside today, inside was the place to be. So I dug into a problem that’s been frustrating me for a long time: getting my home APRS station to work properly with my weather station.

Here’s the deal: I, like many others, use the very old, unmaintained UI-View software on an old computer, in my case a Compaq Armada 1573DM laptop. The software is connected via RS-232 to my AEA (now Timewave) DSP-232 TNC, which in turn is connected to an Icom IC-2100 2-meter FM radio, operating on the usual APRS frequency of 144.39 MHz.

And…I also use the laptop to run Davis Weatherlink software to run my Davis Vantage Pro 2 weather station (see here for near-real time weather and here for the reasons for switching away from VWS). The problem is that the UI-View software would love to add the weather to my APRS beacon. I’ve crawled through the Weatherlink documentation and dug through the files, but it simply does not generate the required file—a simple one-line text file. I know it creates the string, because it shows up in the log file.

Fortunately, after several hours of research today, I found a very cool “expansion module” for the Weatherlink software written by Brad, VE3BSM. The software is available here and includes both the expansion module and a text file with installation instructions. What it does is simple. It resides inside Weatherlink and every minute writes the one-line file to disk. UI-View picks it up and transmits it to any ham who is interested. Another ham, using UI-View on the same frequency, can see at a glance what the near-real-time weather is at this location, or see it on the Internet here (it’s relayed via a ham radio-to-Internet link).

My special thanks to Brad for creating this additional capability. I put this post here in the hope that others with the same problem can hook their APRS base stations to their Davis weather stations.

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3 Responses to APRS: Making UI-View and Weatherlink Cooperate

  1. Carl West, KN6SB says:

    My solution was to leave the main APRS station alone! I purchased (some expense involved but worth it) from Byonics the Micro-Trak RTG NA (TinyPack). This 12v dc powered unit takes the output from the serial version of the Streaming Data Logger and adds the location information to the APRS data. It includes a TNC and a fixed frequency 2-meter transmitter and a SMA antenna output connector. It avoid the need for a separate computer and TNC. It also can be “off-the-grid” running from a gel cell and solar recharger anywhere that a APRS IGate can “hear” the signal and upload to the Internet.

  2. Peter says:

    Hi Dave,

    beautiful website – congratulations.

    Thanks for your comments how to connect Davis vantage pro 2 weather station with UI-view .
    I use Brad´s software and it works great on aprs (both 144.800 MHz here in Europe and via Internet).

    73 de Peter DL4LAM / K4RI

  3. Phillip Spargo says:

    I have the same problem that you HAD!
    I’m using UI-View 32 with the Dallas “1 wire” (that generated the text file) and NOW I up-graded to weatherlink and a Vantage Vue. No text file. I bought the USB logger in stead of the APRS logger, hoping that the Weatherlink will generate the 1 line text file..

    Anyway, Thank You!! I’m going to try that module!

    Phil

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