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 Connecting a Mac with Silver Plus to a Dobby Loom

Most dobbies were designed around the classic RS232 serial port that was common in the 1980's and 1990s. Current Macs have USB, but no RS232 serial port, so a USB-serial converter is needed which can connect from a USB port on the Mac to the serial input of the dobby.  Some newer dobbies have the USB device built-in, and can connect with a normal USB cable. Otherwise, an in-cable adapter is needed which links from a USB socket on the Mac to a 9-pin or 25-pin serial socket on the dobby. 

In either case, the USB device requires driver software so that Mac OS X can recognize the device. Driver software is provided by the manufacturer of the device and can be downloaded from the manufacturer's website. It is important to install a driver that matches the version of OS X on the Mac.

After installing driver software, you should shut down and restart your Mac.                                                , .

Dobby with built-in USB: AVL Compu-Dobby IV, 4.5 and Little Weaver
Louet Megado, Octado and Magic Dobby with USB and without 9-pin serial socket (manufactured 2014 or later).
ES series Toika

These dobbies contain a chip manufactured by FTDI and require the VCP driver available from their website:
driver for OS X versions 10.5-10.8 (Leopard, Snow Leopard, Lion, Mountain Lion)

driver for
OS X versions 10.9-10.11 (Mavericks, Yosemite, El Capitan)

For macOS 10.12 Sierra, the driver is built into the operating system, and no download is needed.  This may also be true for some releases of El Capitan.
Dobby with built-in USB as well as 9-pin serial sockets

Louet Megado, Octado, Magic Dobby manufactured prior to 2014
newer Leclerc Weavebird and Diana

To use the built-in USB, download and install the VCP driver from
www.silabs.com/Support%20Documents/Software/Mac_OSX_VCP_Driver.zip

The status for macOS 10.12 Sierra is not known at this time, but it is likely that the driver for OS X 10.9-10.11 may be used.

Dobby with 9-pin or 25-pin serial socket only
AVL Compu-Dobbies I, II, III
Older Louet Megado, Magic Dobby
Older Leclerc Diana and Weavebird
Macomber, Dobbytron, Noble, ARM, older Toika

These looms require a USB serial adapter in the cable. If you need a new adapter, we recommend one of the following:
www.usconverters.com/usb-serial-adapter-xs880
www.usconverters.com/usb-rs232-adapter-xs8801
www.startech.com/ca/Cards-Adapters/Serial-Cards-Adapters/1-Port-USB-Serial-RS232-Adapter-Cable~ICUSB2321F

Download and install the driver for the above adapters from these links:
driver for OS X versions 10.5-10.8 (Leopard, Snow Leopard, Lion, Mountain Lion)

driver for
OS X versions 10.9-10.11 (Mavericks, Yosemite, El Capitan)

For macOS 10.12 Sierra, the driver is built into the operating system, and no download is needed.  This may also be true for some releases of El Capitan.

The Keyspan USB serial adapter is also recommended:
www.tripplite.com/keyspan-high-speed-usb-to-serial-adapter~USA19HS/
Download the driver from the following link:
www.tripplite.com/support/model/mid/USA-19HS#drivers-firmware

USB-serial adapters may also be available at your local Staples or Office depot.  These generic or store-brand adapters are manufactured by Prolific Technologies, and the driver can be downloaded here:
driver for OS X versions 10.5 -10.8 (Leopard, Snow Leopard, Lion, Mountain Lion)

driver for OS X versions 10.9-10.11 (Mavericks, Yosemite, El Capitan)

The status for macOS 10.12 Sierra is not known at this time, but it is likely that the driver for OS X 10.9-10.11 may be used.

Note that Prolific adapters do not work with the AVL Compu-Dobby I.

The adapters listed above have a 9-pin serial connector.  If your dobby has a 25-pin serial socket, you will also need a 25-pin female to 9-pin male RS232 adapter, available from StarTech or Amazon or your local computer store.




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This page updated - Jan 2 2016