WSB Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What do I need to do to update my controller version?
Controllers built in late 1996 or thereafter require just a chip replacement. Controllers built prior to mid 1996 require a replacement of the main circuit board and chip. In either case Maguire Products Inc. will not charge for updating the controller chip or main circuit board. If you find that your controller version is of an older version and you wish to use features that require the newer updates, Maguire Products recommends the following. If your controller requires only a chip replacement we will ship to you a new updated chip. Simple instructions will be sent with the chip explaining how to do the replacement. If your controller is of an earlier version and requires a circuit board replacement, Maguire Products recommends that you arrange with us to have the controller shipped back to us to do the replacement. If you require a loaner controller during the time your controller is being updated, Maguire Products will provide a loaner with only a shipping charge. Also see MLAN Command Introduction History for information on when MLAN commands were introduced. For further information please contact Maguire Products Inc.
What does the blender model number mean?
This is an excerpt from the Weigh Scale Blender Technical Information, Specification, Features manual available on download page.
MODELS: are designated "WSB", followed by three digits, and option designators. (except Micro Blender which is WSB-MB)
Example: Model WSB-242
1st digit: BATCH size in kilograms (1, 2, 4, 9, or 18),
2nd digit: NUMBER of DISPENSE valves and hopper compartments above blender, (1 to 6).
3rd digit: NUMBER of add-on AUGER FEEDERS (up to 8).
    On MB and 100 series: no feeders.
    On 200, and 400 series: 2 with standard frame, 4 with E frame.
    On 900 and 1800 series: up to 6.
Other custom configurations available.
Additional designations:
    E - Extender frame, allows 3 or 4 auger feeders to fit on 200 and 400 series.
    R - 2 REMOVABLE hopper compartments, replaces 2 fixed, available on 100, 200, and 400 series.
    S - 2 SMALLER removable hoppers, Micro Blender size, available on 100, 200, and 400 series.
    m1 to m4 - hoppers fitted with Micro Pulse valves, up to 4. (for dispenses below 1% only) available on MB, 100, 200, and 400 series,
    T - TWELVE component software, available on all models.
Note: If the full model number designation exceeds 8 digits, the WSB prefix is shorted to W. (Example W-140Rm2)
The weight I'm getting from my blenders is approximately +/- 5% than the real weight (tested in a calibrated electronic scale). How do I correct this?
The answer is to recalibrate the load cells. Instructions for recalibration of the load cells is located in your Weigh Scale Blender Operation and Maintenance Manual or you can read online instruction explaining how to recalibrate the load cells by following this link to recalibration instructions.
I would like to communicate with a Maguire Blender using our own custom software. How can I do this?
This is possible using the MLAN protocol. For more information read this information.
Next week we will have an ISO audit. How do we answer the question, "How do you know you are getting a 75/25 mix from our blender?"
The best way to demonstrate that the blender is doing what is requested is to hook up a printer to the printer port on the side of the controller, any parallel printer will work. Then set the PRT parameter to the number of minutes desired between printouts. Hourly is most common as it allows for enough data to be a good sample of the accuracy.

The report will show usage by hopper in pounds and percent. It shows both accumulated totals and current period.

See the blender manual for more information on the PRT parameter and also on monitoring system accuracy. Download manual.
Do you have a system that can blend in zinc stearate (very powdery) with my plastic pellets and regrind?
We do have a powder feeder that will handle Zinc Sterate. It can be either volumetric or added to our Weigh Scale Blender, the Blender must by Series 200 or larger. Blender Information.
We have a 3rd party controller that has an RS-232 port that I can use to communicate with the Maguire blenders, but my problem is that the controller can only use the Modbus Protocol for 232/485 communications.

Is there a Modbus adapter for your blenders available? Or is there another way to go about this? Do you have blender controllers with TCP/IP?
The blender controllers understand two protocols RS-232 and MLAN. RS-232 is NOT good for shop environments it should only be used in close, low-noise environments, such as a lab.

Therefore, MLAN should be used.

We offer a signal amp/converter box (part number: MLAN-SA) that converts the RS-232 to MLAN. Only one box is needed (at the PC). No box is needed at the blender since it already understands MLAN.

Also, the blenders don't understand TCP/IP; however our new g2 server does which can act as a middleman between your 3rd party controller and all of the blenders.
We are using Maguire weigh scale blenders and wanted to know whether it is normal that no alarm is given when the hopper with the color additive is empty. The other hoppers do give alarm when the material is getting low.
This is an uncommon situation, where a hopper runs out with no alarm. The color hopper should definitely alarm and stop the blender when it runs empty.

Possible causes are:
  1. The alarm parameter not set (00000= no alarm, 00004=alarm) The CAL alarm is responsible for this and should be set to 00004 which is the default setting. Only the regrind hopper has the alarm turned off (RAL=00000)
  2. 2-bad load cell that reads weight that is not there (very rare)
    If the alarm is set and does not activate, please call 610-459-4300 for further assistance.
How can we get the blender control unit to alarm when the max weight is exceeded?
*74 allows the setting of a flag for exactly this problem. With this flag set the unit will alarm whenever MAX weight is exceeded.
Why is 2400 baud the maximum baud rate for the Maguire blenders?
Here is an explanation as to why the baud rate of the Maguire blenders can't be increased above 2400. The processor in the blender doesn't listen to interrupts from the serial hardware. Instead, the processor probes the input buffer every 4 ms. The reason is because the main logic of the blender is time critical. The logic has to open and close dump values at very precise time intervals to be able to maintain accuracy (plus do a lot of other stuff). If the processor had to deal with a fast serial input it would consistently be interrupted and therefore would not be able to maintain the necessary accuracy.

The 2400 baud limit can be calculated as follows:

An input byte has 8 data bits; however there is also a start and stop bit (10 bits per char).

At 1200 baud it takes 10/1200 or 8.33 ms for a char to come in.

A 2400 baud it takes 10/2400 or 4.16 ms for a char to come in.

If we go faster than 2400 baud we would lose data.
Are there OPC drivers available for the blender?
Maguire Products does not directly supply any OPC drivers for the Maguire Weigh Scale blender, however, Digital Systems Inc. supplies a universal opc server, which may be used with the blender. For more information, see www.caro.net/dsi.

Example: Universal OPC Server to the blender

Digital Systems wrote what they call a "profile" for 12 software blenders. This profile is used in conjunction with their "Universal Serial Driver and their Universal OPC Server.

So, if someone wants to talk to the Weigh Scale Blender using an OPC server, they should buy a copy of Digital Systems' Universal OPC and download the profile from Digital Systems' website.

Keep in mind that this profile was written for 12-software. Digital Systems may need to be commissioned again for any chip modifications or for a 4-software version. The controller chip date that it was written for is Sep 3, 1997 and will probably work with the current 12 software chip. The original cost for the Profile development was $2000.00.
If you have a question that needs to be answered you can use our convenient question form. Also welcomed are any questions (and answers) that you may have asked in the past that you feel may be helpful if they were listed here on our FAQ page. Again just simply use our question form to make us aware of any area that you feel should be expanded upon. We here at Maguire Products believe that customer support is one of the most important aspects of doing business with you, the customer.