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Programming Procedure

By Don Bindner
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I've had a devil of a time programming a pair of TK-730 radios. For some reason they don't like to respond to the programming software, though I've rechecked my wiring and TTL converter and even dropped it on a logic analyzer.

Anyway, I didn't write to ask a question. I did actually get one of my radios to program successfully (though now I don't really know why it ever worked). And I discovered an alternative programming method that I haven't seen anyone write about. I thought it would be nice to include it on the repeater-builder site.

The settings for the TK-730 are stored in a pair of EEPROMs, one in the control head and one in the base. (If you have a dual head setup then both heads have the same information stored in their EEPROM.)

I noticed that when you save your frequency data from the kpg7d.exe programming software that the file is twice the size of the EEPROM. For example, my 32-channel radio has 512 byte EEPROMs, and the data file is 1024 bytes. The EEPROMs are socketed and easy to remove from the radio and control head.

I found that the first half of the file matches the data in the EEPROM in the base of the radio and the second half of the file matches the data in the control head(s) of the radio. So if you had a TK-730 radio that won't program for some reason, like I do, that might give you an alternate programming method.

My radio uses 4k EEPROMs; that is, 4-kilobit EEPROMs. Dividing by 8 bits per byte gives you 512 bytes of data in each EEPROM.

I simply used a Willem type EEPROM burner to read and record new EEPROM images for my radio base unit and remote control head and it worked like a charm to reprogram my radio.

Step-by-step, this is what I did:

  1. Remove the two EEPROMs from the radio.
  2. Read each one save its data into separate binary files.
  3. Merge these two files into one single file: base then control head.
  4. Read this single file with the programming software and make changes.
  5. Save the changes back to the disk file.
  6. Split the disk file into two EEPROM image files.
  7. Write this data back to the two EEPROMs.
  8. Reinsert the EEPROMs into the radio.

On my Linux system, I used common tools to split and reassemble the images. To combine the base EEPROM image and control head EEPROM image into a saved-data file:

$ cat base.bin head.bin > settings.f37

And to split it back apart (after you've modified it with kpg7d.exe):

$ dd bs=512 count=1 if=settings.f37 of=base-1.bin

$ dd bs=512 count=1 skip=1 if=settings.f37 of=head-1.bin

I used a block size of 512 bytes because that's the size of my EEPROMs. For different model radios, that might change. It should always be whatever is half the saved-file size, and it should match the number of bytes in the EEPROM. You can probably accomplish the same steps in Windows using most hex editors by cutting and pasting the data as needed.

Don Bindner

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This page originally posted on 24-Apr-2014.


Article text © Copyright 2014 by Don Bindner.
Converted to repeater-builder format by Robert Meister WA1MIK.

This web page, this web site, the information presented in and on its pages and in these modifications and conversions is © Copyrighted 1995 and (date of last update) by Kevin Custer W3KKC and multiple originating authors. All Rights Reserved, including that of paper and web publication elsewhere.