PL2303 & gui serial status display for /dev/ttyUSB(x)?

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Trying to get roadnav to talk to my elderly Garmin 12, and because I'm out 
of serial ports, the garmin 4 pin to db9 connector cable is plugged into  
the db9 end of a pl2303 serial to usb adaptor.  The pl2303 is recognized 
and assigned to /dev/ttyUSB0 according to dmesg.

I'm apparently getting zero data from the garmin and I suspect its the 
lack at least the 7 wire protocol at the garmin side of the pl2303.  I 
believe it may even be just a 2 wire & ground setup as the garmin 
connector is only a round 4 pin, probably with little or no flow control 
as the garmin apparently runs at 4800 baud only.

But, I'd like to ask here on this list:  Has anyone ever made a pl2303 
based adaptor actually work?

The only other time I seriously tried to use this $40 gizmo was as an 
interface translator with the rs-232 pack of a vintage coco on the other 
end.  At that time I was able to type back and forth using terminal 
programs on both, but a known good zmodem setup on the coco failed to 
move more than about 10 bytes of a 10k file when I had minicom attempt 
the transfer.  At the time I also suspected config/handshake problems and 
eventually gave up, but now I think the pl2303 may be busted or 
miss-configured, hence the request for a gui program to monitor 
individual wire status at the db9 connector, but do it 
using /dev/ttyUSB(x).

Is this latter idea even possible?

Thanks everybody.

Cheers, Gene
"There are four boxes to be used in defense of liberty:
 soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order."
-Ed Howdershelt (Author) and AOL/TW attorneys please note, additions to the above
message by Gene Heskett are:
Copyright 2006 by Maurice Eugene Heskett, all rights reserved.

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