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  • SAE J1939 Starter Kit And Network Simulator
  • SAE J1939 Starter Kit And Network Simulator

SAE J1939 Starter Kit And Network Simulator

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New Hardware Variant

Like many other businesses, we have to deal with the global shortage of electronic components. However, we have managed to port the firmware to the ESP32 processor, which is currently not affected by supply shortages. Consequently, we are using a new and more powerful design for our SAE J1939 gateways. The gateway functionality is 100% identical to the previous version, i.e., it works in combination with our Windows software.

Please excuse when the current documentation refers to the original hardware. We are still working on updating the documentation.

General Functionality

In general, yes, our SAE J1939 starter kit allows you to monitor, simulate, and record any PGN as defined in the SAE J1939-71 Standard but also including diagnostic messages according to SAE J1939-73. Many users ask us whether or not we can process specific parameters such as fuel consumption, vehicle speed, vehicle position, etc., and the answer is always yes. However, you need to understand that the starter kit was not designed for specific engine parameters, i.e., you need to know which PGN represents the desired data. Also, the starter kit was not designed to simulate specific diesel engines, but if you enter all PGNs that are being used, you can design and simulate any diesel engine.

For further detailed information on this topic, see our post A Beginner's Guide to SAE J1939 Embedded Software Development. It is not only about programming but will answer all questions you may have about PGN design.

For a quick reference, see SAE J1939 Starter Kit & Network Simulator - A Practical Guide to Monitor, Record, Analyze, and Simulate SAE J1939 Data Traffic (PDF)...

JCOM1939 Monitor - SAE J1939 Software for WindowsOur SAE J1939 gateways and the SAE J1939 Starter Kit are designed to work seamlessly with our JCOM1939 Monitor Pro software for Windows, a free download. This combination is key to ensuring the optimal performance of your purchased product and your overall satisfaction. 

To enhance communication and provide you with the best support, we have meticulously crafted a dedicated website. This website houses all the documentation you might need, including a user manual, quick-start guide, troubleshooting guide, blog posts, and further resources, all in one convenient location.

By signing up for our newsletter, you will be the first to know about the latest developments of the JCOM1939 Monitor software and new additions to the website. As a registered user, you will also gain access to a technical support forum, where you can connect with other users and share your experiences.

We are working on additional features like time stamp data, developing PGN transmission scripts for data traffic simulation, recording and replaying data traffic, support for DBC files, and more. More Information...

Technical Functionality

Our JCOM.J1939 Starter Kit and Network Simulator is designed to allow the experienced engineer as well as the beginner to experiment with SAE J1939 data communication without the need of connecting to a real-world J1939 network, i.e. a diesel engine. It may sound obvious, but in order to establish a network, you need at least two nodes, and that fact applies especially to CAN/J1939 where the CAN Bus controller will basically shut down after transmitting data without receiving a response. For that reason, our JCOM.J1939 Starter Kit and Network Simulator consists of two J1939 nodes, namely our JCOM.J1939.USB, an SAE J1939 ECU Simulator Board with USB Port.

The jCOM.J1939.USB gateway board is a high-performance, low-latency vehicle network adapter for SAE J1939 applications. The board supports the full SAE J1939 protocol according to J1939/81 Network Management (Address Claiming) and J1939/21 Transport Protocol (TP).

Two Instances of the jCOM1939 Monitor Program

The idea behind the network simulator is to connect both nodes to the same PC (two PCs will do, too) and running two instances of our jCOM1939 Monitor Software after assigning the boards to their corresponding COM port.

SAE J1939 Literature

A Comprehensible Guide to J1939If you are a beginner to the J1939 technology, the J1939 Starter Kit is a great start to simulate and analyze J1939 data traffic.

However, SAE J1939 is more than just data transfer. SAE J1939 is a sophisticated and powerful serial protocol based on Controller Area Network (CAN Bus).

Its use goes well beyond exchanging PGNs (Parameter Group Numbers).

If you want to understand the node address claim procedure or how to request PGNs, please consider our book A Comprehensible Guide to J1939. It is available in print as well as a PDF download.

Board Components

JCOM1939.STK Board Components

The green LED combines two functions: It will blink at a one-second frequency to indicate that the module is operational (heartbeat). There will be an overlay flashing when the module receives J1939 data frames.

USB Driver Software

The USB driver software supports a variety of operating systems. Most operating systems, such as Windows (up to Windows 10 but not 11) or Linux, will recognize the USB port and install the appropriate driver automatically. However, should that not be the case, please download the driver for your operating system as indicated below:

Windows Software

jCOM1939 Monitor - SAE J1939 Monitor, Analyzer, And ECU SimulatorThe communication protocol between the gateway and the host system (PC, Embedded System, Android System, etc.) is well documented, and we provide C/C# source code to read and write CAN data frames.

In addition, the gateway is supported by our JCOM1939 Monitor, an SAE J1939 Monitoring, Analyzer and ECU Simulation software under Windows.

The JCOM1939 Monitor Software is the perfect tool to monitor, analyze, and simulate SAE J1939 data traffic. The system combines our jCOM.J1939.USB that functions as an SAE J1939 to USB (or UART) gateway. A comprehensive and easy-to-use, easy-to-understand Windows software displays not only SAE J1939 data traffic; it also allows to scan the network, simulate an ECU (incl. full node address negotiation features), and respond to data request messages.

jCOM.J1939.USB General Features:

  • Full SAE J1939 Protocol on chip
  • Virtually OS independent
  • Easily adaptable; just access the COM port
  • Works with PCs, Raspberry Pi, BeagleBone, Teensy, Arduino
  • Protocol is well documented
  • C source code available
  • Windows tool: jCOM1939 Monitor
  • Power applied through USB port
  • Operating Range: -40...+85 C
  • Power consumption 0.486W - 0.097A @ 5VDC
    (Average; Changes with CAN Bus load)
  • Board dimensions (W x L): 52 x 78 ; 2.05" x 3.07"

Supported SAE J1939 Features Include:

  • Hardware is fully SAE J1939/1x compliant
  • Switchable termination resistor
  • SAE J1939/21 - Data Link Layer
  • SAE J1939/81 - Network Management
  • Setup of Preferred Node Address
  • Adjustable Node Address Negotiation Range
  • Message Filters
  • Full Network Communication incl. Transport Protocol
  • Design Tx Messages Incl. Transmission Rate
  • Configuration of Request Responses
  • Configuration of Request Messages
  • Network Scanner (Creates a list of all nodes in the network)

Firmware Update

Current Version: V 1.33.00


SAE J1939 Insights 

A Comprehensible Guide to J1939

A Comprehensible Guide to J1939 by Wilfried Voss

SAE J1939 has become the accepted industry standard and the vehicle network technology of choice for off-highway machines in applications such as construction, material handling, and forestry machines. J1939 is a higher-layer protocol based on Controller Area Network (CAN). It provides serial data communications between microprocessor systems (also called Electronic Control Units - ECU) in any kind of heavy-duty vehicles.

The messages exchanged between these units can be data such as vehicle road speed, torque control message from the transmission to the engine, oil temperature, and many more.

The information in this book is based on two documents of the SAE J1939 Standards Collection: J1939/21 - Data Link Layer J1939/81 - Network Management. A Comprehensible Guide to J1939 is the first work on J1939 besides the SAE J1939 standards collection.

It provides profound information on the J1939 message format and network management combined with a high level of readability.


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