Motorola Minitor Pager USB Conversion

I recently ran into a pair of Motorola Minitor programmers who’s interface had failed. The cost of one of these on top  of the timeline to get some pagers programmed didn’t make ordering a new one a very good option.

In a quick pinch I used a break out serial adapter and some pin outs that I found on

With this information in hand I was able to program the pagers, that however is not the end of the story.
It was decided that these should be converted to USB to make things easier in the future.
Grabbed some serial UART adapters from Amazon and got to work on the simple conversion.

I had first removed the RJ11 jack that had gone to the old Motorola interface and moved a capacitor to the back of the board to make room for my new UART board so that I didn’t need to drill any new holes.

I didn’t have any decent wire to use for this quick conversion so no color code here. I just tapped three wires on to the ground, rx and tx pins on the board that had originally run out to the RJ11 jack (use a multi-meter to check if needed) You can also see the moved capacitor in the first photo.

I then proceeded the same modification on the other pager programming base.

It was a quick, simple and easy mod that was well worth the time to complete. Keep in mind when using the programming software for these that if you do perform this modification yourself be sure to set the time out to 5 seconds (3 is the default) as without this you may be able to read, but not write a pager.

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About the Author: Sarah Rose KR0SIV

Avid Amateur Radio Operator and Experimenter.