User avatar
davewill
Posts: 4542
Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2011 6:04 pm
Location: San Diego, CA, US

Re: Mods for the Blink EVSE ! (was Fix)

Fri Dec 09, 2011 11:20 am

DarkStar wrote:Awesome, great to hear! Now we just need to work on understanding the software a bit better. I've looked at my SD card and it seems to be just a basic scripting language, so maybe we can figure this out...
Whoami did a whole working firmware (just read up-thread). Has anybody heard from him recently?
2014 Rav4 EV, Blizzard Pearl White
2011 LEAF SL w/QC, Blue Ocean, returned at end of lease

DarkStar
Posts: 2065
Joined: Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:06 am
Delivery Date: 25 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 568
Location: Hillsboro, Oregon, USA
Contact: Website

Re: Mods for the Blink EVSE ! (was Fix)

Fri Dec 09, 2011 12:52 pm

davewill wrote:
DarkStar wrote:Awesome, great to hear! Now we just need to work on understanding the software a bit better. I've looked at my SD card and it seems to be just a basic scripting language, so maybe we can figure this out...
Whoami did a whole working firmware (just read up-thread). Has anybody heard from him recently?

I haven't heard anything new, my guess is that there aren't enough "rouge" Blink's out there yet that people are willing to "modify". :D
Mikiko (2011 Nissan LEAF ETEC) Status:
Reserved: 04/20/10 | Ordered: 10/01/10 | EV Project Blink Installed: 03/22/11 | Delivered: 03/25/11 | VIN: 568

Oregon Electric Vehicle Association | Electric Auto Association

User avatar
gbarry42
Posts: 869
Joined: Mon Jan 10, 2011 5:48 pm
Delivery Date: 06 May 2011
Location: Moonlight Beach

Re: Mods for the Blink EVSE ! (was Fix)

Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:43 pm

I'm expecting an upsurge in interest, in about 50 weeks from now... :D
And there goes the first capacity bar! At 24,000 mi on 9/9/2013.
Second bar at 30,500 mi on 2/7/2015.

jackal
Posts: 204
Joined: Tue Dec 07, 2010 12:25 pm
Delivery Date: 11 Jun 2011
Leaf Number: 001904
Location: San Francisco

Re: Mods for the Blink EVSE ! (was Fix)

Tue Aug 28, 2012 3:39 pm

After 1 year of error free operations, I keep getting a 'Pink Screen' of death now. I will reset it by unplugging but the error will return after a day. Finally gave up and called Blink. They sent an electrician and basically all he did was to cut and reconnect 2 sets of wires. Somehow the new software is very sensitive and generating errors that it was previously ignoring.

Whatever it is, after Dec 31 2012, I will be 'dumbifying' the unit. The EVSE shouldn't be this prone to fail because of software updates. Hopefully, whoami can provide his software to help in this cause. :)
Silver SL with QC
reserved 7/13/10, ordered 1/31/11, delivered 5/26/11
Blink installed 6/14/11
2kW PV w Enphase microinverters
2001 Prius

User avatar
gbarry42
Posts: 869
Joined: Mon Jan 10, 2011 5:48 pm
Delivery Date: 06 May 2011
Location: Moonlight Beach

Re: Mods for the Blink EVSE ! (was Fix)

Thu Dec 27, 2012 8:16 pm

gbarry42 wrote:I'm expecting an upsurge in interest, in about 50 weeks from now... :D

And...I was wrong. And everyone's signed up for another year of happy cooperation. Well, at least I get to support the project. I should just go build an openEVSE if I want to play. And buy a Raspberry Pi if I want a multimedia box.
And there goes the first capacity bar! At 24,000 mi on 9/9/2013.
Second bar at 30,500 mi on 2/7/2015.

RickS
Posts: 162
Joined: Wed Sep 01, 2010 6:04 pm
Delivery Date: 11 Jun 2013
Location: Tempe, AZ

Re: Mods for the Blink EVSE ! (was Fix)

Sun Jan 13, 2013 7:55 pm

Regarding the "pink screen of death" it's a simple fix you could do yourself outside of warranty if needed. Basically there are smaller wires going in to a crimp connection going in to larger wires from the GFI loop to the board. These create a poor connection, as they are not meant to mate two different size wires, which can cause a false GFCI trip or the pink screen. Mine did this and they sent someone out as others have had. All they do is use a proper connector between the set of wires and heat shrink them, problem goes away after this. If a guy were to just remove the connectors and solder the wires together this would probably do the trick also.

Also, if you haven't already had it done yet slide the GFI loop as far left as it will go near the junction where the incoming wires connect to the internal wires.

I let me contract expire despite Blink's better attempts to get me to hit "I agree" every time I login to their web site. Has anyone had any luck copying their SD card so they have a backup? I've done a disk image of it, I figure this is the best way to go about keeping a backup.
leafbatteriescanttaketheheat.com/

ka9q
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2013 8:40 pm
Delivery Date: 10 Jul 2011

Re: Mods for the Blink EVSE ! (was Fix)

Mon Apr 22, 2013 8:57 pm

I was very careful not to accept their magnanimous offer of an extended warranty, and I even explained why in great detail when they called me to express their "concern" that I hadn't yet accepted. Basically, the only reason I've ever had to call for service for my on-the-Blink EVSE is to fix problems caused entirely by their buggy control computer. My contract has now expired, so the unit is completely mine. In fact it stopped calling home back in mid-January, before my contract was even over.

I am a Linux and networking geek. With just a little effort I could probably reverse engineer the whole thing -- but why? I simply can't think of a single useful thing to do with it. Fer chrissakes, an EVSE is just a glorified extension cord. Why do I need it to run Linux when all I want is a reliable way to charge my car, and its only real function is to inhibit that charging?

The next time I get a pink screen of death or have any other problem charging, I'm going in there and disconnecting Hal's higher brain circuits. (I see I'm not the only one to have devised that metaphor.) Maybe it would be worth hacking the thing just so it can sing "Daisy" in a slower and slower voice as I disconnect the Linux board's control and power lines. That should make a good Youtube video.

I really like Linux, but there are appropriate and inappropiate uses of any technology, and this was one of the inappropriate ones.

Here are some of my Livejournal blog entries saying what I think of Ecotality and their technology:
http://ka9q.livejournal.com/7340.html
http://ka9q.livejournal.com/7961.html

ka9q
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2013 8:40 pm
Delivery Date: 10 Jul 2011

Re: Mods for the Blink EVSE ! (was Fix)

Mon Apr 22, 2013 9:18 pm

RickS wrote:Regarding the "pink screen of death" it's a simple fix you could do yourself outside of warranty if needed. Basically there are smaller wires going in to a crimp connection going in to larger wires from the GFI loop to the board. These create a poor connection, as they are not meant to mate two different size wires, which can cause a false GFCI trip or the pink screen.

I see the wires you're talking about, and I will take your advice.

But I see four wires between the ground fault current transformer and the EVSE controller. Two apparently come from a winding inside the transformer (it appears to be a purpose-made GFI sense coil) and two more from a separate winding around the outside of the transformer. Why two sets of coils? Isn't one enough? Is the second there for redundancy? Maybe it's there to tickle the first as part of a self-test to ensure that the GFI is working?

ka9q
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2013 8:40 pm
Delivery Date: 10 Jul 2011

Re: Mods for the Blink EVSE ! (was Fix)

Fri Apr 26, 2013 1:46 am

Well, it's happened and it only took a couple of days. Wednesday night I got home after midnight (ready for bed) to encounter a Pink Screen of Death on my post-contract on-the-Blink EVSE. A "critical error" had occurred, but naturally it wouldn't tell me what it was. (We can't confuse the poor dumb customer with useful information, now can we?) I was simply instructed to cycle my circuit breaker. I did, and the pink screen reappeared. Nothing useful on the webserver either.

Muttering profusely, I hauled out the Level 1 EVSE and my heavy home-made #10 extension cord and dragged the footstool outside so I could reach the outlet. It finished normally, 12 hours later.

This afternoon I went out and performed my threatened lobotomy on Hal. The only hard part was finding a sufficiently long ice pick to reach the Blink's frontal lobes through the hole I drilled in the side of the cabinet...

Seriously, it only took a couple of minutes to pop the covers off, find and remove the 10-pin control cable and 3-pin power cable between the J1772 board and the Hydrogen controller board. I didn't bother removing the 3-pin RS-232 control cable between the two.

I buttoned it all back up, restored power, plugged it into my Leaf and promptly heard that familiar musical rhythm: beep... whirr... beep beep... KLUNK. Worked beautifully, though of course the screen remained dark. I didn't even have to wait the usual 5 minutes for the control computer to reboot.

What a piece of garbage Ecotality has created. I'm still angry about all my wasted tax money.

User avatar
TomT
Posts: 9868
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2010 12:09 pm
Delivery Date: 01 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 000360
Location: Foothills of Granada Hills, CA
Contact: Website

Re: Mods for the Blink EVSE ! (was Fix)

Fri Apr 26, 2013 9:21 am

When Ecotality came out last month to replace my J1772 cord, they also redid those connections properly at the same time since it is a known failure point and they wanted to be proactive about it...
I, for one, am glad I took the extension... They were also nice enough to give me a spare SD card just in case for the future.

ka9q wrote:
RickS wrote:Regarding the "pink screen of death" it's a simple fix you could do yourself outside of warranty if needed. Basically there are smaller wires going in to a crimp connection going in to larger wires from the GFI loop to the board. These create a poor connection, as they are not meant to mate two different size wires, which can cause a false GFCI trip or the pink screen.
I see the wires you're talking about, and I will take your advice.
Red SL-e with 59,983 miles/8 bars/187 Gids/43.47 AHr/66% SOH/45.19% Hx as of 13Mar15. Ordered 9Sep10 (Fontana Nissan).

59,991 miles/12 bars/289 Gids/68.54 AHr/101% SOH/101.64% Hx as of 7May15 with new Lizard battery.

Return to “Blink”