You will often need to know the exact Product Number and Manufacturing Code (Mfg Code) of a station component to order the correct spare part or to assess compatibility of old and new parts. The Product Number and Mfg Code are two quite separate identifiers and you will often need to know both – the Product Number is a part number while the Mfg Code is a serial number, which helps to determine the age and version of the part.
Both Product Number and Mfg Code will be found on the label attached to every Davis main component. The weather station components are broadly of three types:
- Sensor transmitters
- Display console units
- Weatherlink data loggers
Every Davis station has an ISS (Integrated Sensor Suite) as its main sensor transmitter, but some stations will have additional transmitters such as anemometer and soil moisture transmitters. Labels for the sensor transmitters will be found in one of two places:
- For Vue ISS units the label is on the underside of the ISS;
- For all other sensor transmitters the label will be found on the internal transmitter board cover, which should be obvious once the transmitter’s outer door is open. For VP2 ISS units the outer cover needs to be slid up to reveal the label. All other supplementary transmitters will have a hinged door and again the label can be seen once the door is open.
The label for consoles is simply on the back of the console (or on its underside for the Envoy console).
The label for loggers is on the side of the logger that faces into the console when installed.If you need to read a logger label then the logger must be removed from the console (the console must be powered fully off when doing so and also when reinstalling the logger). (Note that the Mfg Code label for WeatherlinkIP loggers is not the label with DID and Key details attached to the network connector.)
The product number is the main Davis catalogue reference number, eg 6152UK for a wireless VP2 station or 6250UK for the Vue or 6332 for the anemometer transmitter. There are two important points to note on the product number:
First, the same ISS and console units may show as two different product numbers depending on whether they were bought as part of a complete station or as a separate item. The product number will show as the complete station number (eg 6152UK or 6250UK) on both ISS and console if originally bought as such. If bought as separate items then the console and ISS will show as, for example (but obviously depending on the exact part), 6312UK and 6322OV respectively. There is no functional difference between eg a 6152UK console and a 6312UK console, the label is simply indicating whether the part was originally part of a complete station or not.
Second, it is important that the complete product number (including letters at the end) is noted. A 6312 console is different from a 6312UK console and the two cannot necessarily substitute for one another.
Note: Only main components have a label showing a product number. Smaller sensor parts and sub-assemblies will all have Davis numbers, but the spare parts list is needed to identify these. It’s often the case that a part built around a small PCB board will be seen to have part and version numbers on the board, but these are typically the part numbers of the bare unpopulated PCB board itself and are of no use in identifying the part as a whole. Don’t be misled by these PCB numbers.
The Manufacturing Code (or Mfg Code) is a unique identifier for each main component of the weather station and is essentially the same as a serial number for that unit. The Mfg code contains the date of manufacture of each unit together with some additional information that denotes, for example, the version of that particular part. (Davis models are typically produced over a period of several years, but individual parts are often released in a new improved version and for compatibility and replacement purposes it can be important to know the version currently installed.)
Two different formats for the Mfg Code have been used over the years (‘A’ denotes a letter, ‘d’ a date digit and ‘x’ a digit):
- Older format is AddddddAxx (eg E130710F89)
- Current format is AAddddddxxx (eg MC130311013)
But the meaning of the fields is essentially identical, despite the slight change in order:
- The first letter is the major revision level
- The second letter is nowadays the minor revision level (perhaps other uses in past years)
- The next sequence of 5 or 6 digits encodes the date of manufacture as YYMMDD – 6 digits is the standard now but prior to 2011, 5 digits was used as in YMMDD.
- The final digits simply indicate which number within the production batch was allocated to that unit, eg 013 might indicate unit 13 out of a batch of eg 200 (or whatever the batch size was on that day)
Thus unit E130710F89 was major revision E, minor revision F, manufactured on 10th July 2013 and unit 89 in the batch.
NB In general, ISS and console in a complete station will tend to have identical Mfg Codes. But occasionally this rule is broken during production and for 100% accuracy it’s a good idea to check codes for both ISS and console. (Of course, if the transmitter board or console have ever been replaced at any time then the numbers can be completely different.)