Brand new Gladiator NXT EVO Omni Throttle stopped working after a couple minutes

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WardenWolf
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Brand new Gladiator NXT EVO Omni Throttle stopped working after a couple minutes

Postby WardenWolf » Wed Jun 29, 2022 2:50

I received a new Gladiator NXT EVO Omni Throttle Left Premium kit from VKB NA this afternoon, and assembled it per the videos on the YouTube channel. At first everything seemed to be working fine: LEDs on both the base and "stick", so I downloaded and installed the VKB Device Config application in order to run calibration. I changed the deadzone setting slightly, as recommended on one of the videos, and then clicked Set (again, as shown in the video). Then I went to Tools to start the calibration and as soon as I started to move the stick the LED on the top of the stick turned off. In the calibration tool, I could see the X and Y axis movement but not the rotation, and none of the buttons on the stick were functioning. The base buttons still do, and the LEDs there were still illuminated. I went to the External Devices section and I do see the stick showing there, but when I click on it a Communication ErrorLevel window comes up with a solid red bar reporting 100% (sometimes dipping to 99%). It appears that something is broken with the communication between the stick and base, so I disassembled it and checked to make sure the three wire cable is properly connected in the base, and free to move without catching when the stick is moved and rotated. I then removed the stick, opened it up, and checked to make sure the other end of the cable is also attached - and I inspected as much of the wires as I am able to see. I also tried disconnecting and reconnecting both ends, but I still get the 100% error rate.

Does anyone have tips on what else I could try? I didn't see a spare 3-wire cable in the packaging (though there are lots of other spare bits, which is nice!)... is that something I could buy elsewhere to see if this cable has a failure? Open to almost anything at this point - really bummed that it seems to have broken so quickly :(

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fallout9
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Re: Brand new Gladiator NXT EVO Omni Throttle stopped working after a couple minutes

Postby fallout9 » Wed Jun 29, 2022 2:58

It does sound like the 3 wires cable connecting the grip to the base is damaged, try to check it again. Make sure it's also properly plugged into the base connector.
Do you have a right hand EVO too?

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Re: Brand new Gladiator NXT EVO Omni Throttle stopped working after a couple minutes

Postby WardenWolf » Wed Jun 29, 2022 3:13

Unfortunately I only have the one VKB stick, so I don't have extra parts I could try to swap in to test :(

I went ahead and disconnected the 3-wire cable at both ends and then pulled as much of it as possible out of stick both directions, to inspect the whole length - and I cannot see any visible wire breaks all the way out (after disconnecting it on both ends) and it doesn't appear damaged from the outside. I can post a picture if that would help.

I also thought to try a multimeter, and all three of the individual wires (red, yellow, and black) do pass a continuity test with that tool - so it certainly doesn't seem like the wire is a problem.

I'm at a loss as to what else it might be. Maybe one of the connectors (either in the base or stick) that the wires go into is bad? Or maybe something amiss with one of the circuit boards?

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Re: Brand new Gladiator NXT EVO Omni Throttle stopped working after a couple minutes

Postby WardenWolf » Wed Jun 29, 2022 3:26

While I have the multimeter out, I decided to connect the wires on both ends and test to see if I still get continuity past the plugs. It was a bit hard to hold the meter's leads in place, but I was able to get a test tone when touching the small metal part where each of the three wires connects into the PCB on both ends. So at this point I don't think it is the wires, nor the plugs they connect into. I did all of this testing with the USB cable disconnected, of course.

Here are some more observations I've made:

- When first plugging in the USB cable, I remember seeing a blue light at the top of the stick. Now when I plug USB in, I get a white light there for a few seconds - then it goes dark, and none of the sticks' LEDs come on again (unless I disconnect and reconnect the USB cable).

- Originally the base's LEDs were a slow blinking blue and a rare red blink... but now, when USB is connected, they turn on solid for a couple seconds and then start blinking in an alternating pattern (when blue is on, red is off - then when red is on, blue is off). Does this pattern indicate anything? The Device Config utility still registers button presses on the base, and base-related axis movement.

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Re: Brand new Gladiator NXT EVO Omni Throttle stopped working after a couple minutes

Postby WardenWolf » Wed Jun 29, 2022 3:37

Now I'm very confused. I clicked the Default button in the Device Config, and suddenly all the LEDs are back to what they were originally (even the ones on the stick!). The Communication Errorlevel also no longer shows red / 100%... it is 0% with a green line at the very bottom. However, none of the buttons (even on the base) would register in the Test tab.

Then I decided to restart the Device Config software (as I had done each time I reconnected USB, previously, while testing)... and NOW the buttons do show as working, and the rotation axis that was not working before. I am not sure what clicking "Default" did, or if when I try to calibrate it things will go sideways again - but at least the hardware itself doesn't seem completely dead (as I was beginning to fear).

Anyone have an idea of what might have happened? Could I have done something wrong during the initial calibration attempt that messed things up?

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Re: Brand new Gladiator NXT EVO Omni Throttle stopped working after a couple minutes

Postby WardenWolf » Wed Jun 29, 2022 3:50

Okay, I think I figured something out. When I tried to set the deadzone higher (from 3 up to 4 on the X axis, as demonstrated in the setup video) and click on "Set" (again, as shown in the video) then the joystick powers off briefly and when it comes back on the stick is non-functional. To get it back, I can click on "Default" and it seems to go back to functional factory settings.

Is this expected? Am I doing something incorrectly when changing the deadzone and clicking "Set"?

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Re: Brand new Gladiator NXT EVO Omni Throttle stopped working after a couple minutes

Postby fallout9 » Wed Jun 29, 2022 4:00

You'll have to follow all the steps from the quick guide - press Default button, press Find&AutoConfig button, calibrate.
Only after that you could start making changes to profile, like increasing deadzones, applying cures etc.

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Re: Brand new Gladiator NXT EVO Omni Throttle stopped working after a couple minutes

Postby WardenWolf » Wed Jun 29, 2022 4:05

AH! Calibrate first, then apply the deadzone... okay, that is the reverse of what was shown in this video:

https://youtu.be/8atpTEC-QYU?t=294

Maybe that video was assuming you were coming from a previously-calibrated stick that was modified to a throttle? Anyhow, I think that explains all of my problems and confusion. Thank you so much for your help!! :)

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Re: Brand new Gladiator NXT EVO Omni Throttle stopped working after a couple minutes

Postby fallout9 » Wed Jun 29, 2022 4:30

The video you linked is for installing an OTA on an existing NXT/EVO, which is supposed to be working fine at the moment of the upgrade, so there's no need to get reset to default and press the Find&AutoConfig button.
The video I linked is for all new EVOs, with or without OTA.

Glad the cable is fine and you're able to use it, have fun! :)


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