Communication with a Red Lion HMI - Crimson Software

Has anyone here tried to talk to a Red Lion HMI? I’m trying to speak directly to a Red Lion Graphite series HMI at one of our sites, and I’m having some issues with the setup. I was wondering if anyone else had already done this? I’ve talked with Ignition, and everything looks good on this end, so I thought maybe someone here would have some experience with some hidden, random setting within Crimson so that the two are able to communicate. Any help would be appreciated! Thanks so much! :slight_smile:

how are you trying to communicate to it? thru modbus or opc?

Modbus and it is over a cellular connection via a modem

can you poll it using something like modbus poll or modscan?

Haven’t tried that yet, but that’s a good idea. The thing is, I’m not too familiar with either of the programs you mentioned, and while I’m decently comfortable with the Crimson software, I’ve never tried talking to one over a cellular network via Ignition. So at this point, I’m not even 100% sure my Red Lion Communications are set up correctly. I’ll be calling them again today for some help, so hopefully, I’ll get some answers or clarification as to whether or not this is possible.

well, first you need to figure out a few things. are you going over ethernet or serial to access the red lion. you would then have to make sure your modem is setup correctly, and that your polling driver is using the right protocol. if you can give some more specifics on how all of this is setup, I can give you some pointers.

if you are going to be fooling with modbus you definitely need one of those programs. thats the first thing I do when connecting to a new device, make sure I can connect and figure out how I need to order my data in my host software.

So the line of data flow would be:
Red Lion HMI >> Ethernet Cable >> Switch >> Ethernet Cable >> Modem >> Cellular Network >> Database >> Ignition

We’re talking Ethernet and not Serial, I know that for sure. Essentially, I’m trying to use the I/O input modules on the HMI, so that we do not have to use excessive amounts of I/O modules separate from the HMI. Red Lion claims that they can talk remotely to their screens, so I am in the process of trying to figure that out as well to see if I am able to speak remotely to it at all. If I can get the web server working, then at least I will know if I am able to talk remotely to it or not.

yeah so you need to make sure that the red lion is using modbus tcp and also verify the port, which is usually 502. you would need to forward that port from the wan side of the modem to the lan ip address of the modem. In this scenario, I would start trying to poll it locally using something like modbus poll to make sure that I have the red lion configured correctly. then move on to trying to poll thru the modem. then after you can do both of those try to poll thru ignition.

Yeah, so the HMI is already talking Modbus to the other drives and devices on site, so I know that the HMI is working pretty well and communicating effectively locally. I just haven’t tried communicating over the cellular network before. I’m currently not on site, and trying to understand the line of communication as much as possible before i head out into the field, so I don’t have to keep driving out there (There’s not a wifi connection out there)

if I remember right, its been a while since I setup something like this in a red lion, you would need to add like a modbus slave driver to the red lion and then setup a gateway block move or whatever they call it to move the data coming from your other devices to the tags that you create on your new slave driver. It can be a little confusing but they have a decent writeup in their manual on how to do it.

Ok, well atleast I’m on the right track. I have a slave protocol set up and I also have a gateway block to move data set up. At this point, I’m sure it’s a little checkbox somewhere or some option that I need to change that I’m not aware of.

Just so everyone knows, I got it talking! And it seems that the issue that I was having is that I was not putting in the gateway address on the Crimson side of things. Everything on my ignition side was set up correctly, I just needed to put in the gateway address on the crimson side of things. It is working and talking now and everything is good! Just wanted to post a little followup! :thumb_right: