Kyle of Lochalsh

Discussion in 'Members Personal Layouts' started by redpiperbob, Sep 8, 2016.

  1. redpiperbob

    redpiperbob Full Member

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    Hi All
    I have been wondering what I was going to use to power the points and signals on my new layout.
    I wanted to be able to operate them both from DCC decoders and from a indicator board.
    I have decied to go with megapoints and servos to power my points and signals on the new loft layout. I wanted to get a feel for these elecronics so I built a test track. I have yet to work out the signal to point interlocking but the system seems to work well. ( After a couple of my own stupid mistakes.) I have put a link to a very poor video( my first) below. If you would like me go though the setup process I would be happy to. But Dave Fenton , owner of Megapoints Hhas some great videos on his web site http://megapointscontrollers.com/megapoints/

    Any coments would be appreicated as this is the first time I am using any sort of semi automatic system. (I Hope this link works)
    Thanks for looking
    Bob
     
  2. Toto

    Toto I'm best ignored Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    I have not heard of the system before but it seemed to work seamlessly in your video. I use Cobalts slow action motors which end are switched directly from my NCE Cab. I have to use a switch 8 which is basically an 8 port decoder which as the name suggests can control up to 8 turnouts.

    My Cobalts are analogue which is why I need the switch 8 to digitise them.:avatar: you can however buy the Cobalts with the decoders built in which is what I'll do in the future.

    Looks like we achieve the same result.

    The sound loco sounded ok as well. :thumbs:

    Cheers

    Toto
     
  3. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Very effective Bob

    Different again, I use seep point motors operated by MERG DCC decoders.
    I can switch them directly by the handset, or via PanelPro part of JMRI software package either from the computer screen (trackplan or turnout table) or use the Wifi option and use a mobile phone or tablet. Both the NCE and JMRI allows me to setup routes (Macro's on the NCE, and Route Tables on Panel Pro)

    Turnout Table

    [​IMG]

    By combining turnouts you can create routes

    [​IMG]

    By clicking on the Set button JMRI tells the command station which points to throw, you can also program a delay between each point throw to allow a Capacitor discharge unit to recharge.

    Because the megapoints works as a standard accessory decoder, you can use JMRI to control your points etc, and make a mimic panel, so by clicking on a point you can change its setting.

    Paul
     
  4. redpiperbob

    redpiperbob Full Member

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    Hi all
    Thanks for the replies. I am using a Z21 (Black) for my command station so this allows me to use an IPad or Android or PC with a programme. So I can move all the accessories I have on the screen or by an indicator panel. I am just laying out full size the track plan for Kyle this will include 3 parallel tracks to the left of the station an 5 on the right I will be including the 60 foot turntable and 120 foot long engine shed and the two wagon turntables at the end of the piers. More or less how it was in the 50’s and 60’s.
    I made my own servo brackets on my 3D printer. I made these with slots to hold micro switches for frog polarity switching. Then Mr Fenton (Megapoints owner) went and released a relay driver board so I will be using this to change polarity using opto coupled relay boards. I am about to make the wagon turntables today on my CNC OX and will be using P H Designs turntable etches for the rails.

    http://www.phd-design-etchings.co.uk/index.php?route=product/product&path=25_28_66&product_id=138

    I will post some photos when I have made these.
    Be seeing you
    Bob
     
  5. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    aaaaah a gadget man after my own heart.

    Just got a 3d printer myself, so I will be picking your brains for hints and tips.

    For the wagon turntables, I'd be tempted to use a servo, probably of the S003 type, bit larger than the S90G normally used for points

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/High-Speed-Torque-Standard-Servo-for-S3003-RC-Car-Plane-Helicopter-Airplane-Boat-/301822102407?hash=item4645ffcb87:g:n1oAAOSwUuFW1TCb

    If the installation will make it difficult to remove the servo, then may be better getting the slightly dearer metal geared versions.

    Control of the servos can easily achieved with an arduino, which can be operated by either normal analog inputs (switches etc) or DCC.
    My own traverser uses an arduino nano + stepper motor controller and takes DCC accessory commands to set each route.

    Back to the gadgets, looked at the OX and I'm jealous

    http://www.openbuilds.com/builds/openbuilds-ox-cnc-machine.341/

    When I get time to play with the 3d printer, couple of projects on the wish list are a cnc m/c and using my sons expertise (PhD in photonics) a laser cutter / engraver ........ goto finish Viccy Road first.

    Paul
     
  6. redpiperbob

    redpiperbob Full Member

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    Hi Paul
    Yes the 3D printer is great Just design something in Sketch up and convert to STL then make the Gcode with Repetier.
    The 3D printer uses the mechanics of the Prusa (bought of EBay) and a Ramps board.
    As for the Ox I just bought the mechanical kit and made my own electronics. At the moment it works through Mach 3. But I am building a unit with a CNC XPro board to use GRBL. If I can help with either the 3D or Ox then let me know. If you are wanting stepper motors let me know I get nema 17 and 23’s from my work of old photocopiers I have used them for many things I build. IE the 3d Printer, the Ox, the Laser cutter I am building, and the laser engraver I built. I also used them to CNC my Myford. anyway back to the wagon turntables just finished CNCing them.
    Here's a couple of Pics

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    and a link to my build

    http://www.openbuilds.com/builds/my-ox.1821/

    Be seeing you
    Bob
    .
     
  7. redpiperbob

    redpiperbob Full Member

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    Hi Paul
    I forgot I am using an Arduino for the wagon turntables but I am using a stepper motor for the drive though DCC.
    Be seeing you
    Bob
     
  8. Toto

    Toto I'm best ignored Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    Thats the ba burst now. two techy heads with 3D printers and cutters. I'm hiding now before my head pops.:avatar:
     
  9. ed

    ed Full Member

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    redpiperbob wrote:
    Sorry Bob, can't see the video as Photobucket won't add support for Linux [​IMG]

    Ed
     
  10. redpiperbob

    redpiperbob Full Member

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    Hi Toto
    :avatar: :avatar:

    Hi Ed
    sorry about the video. It is only 37K so I could email it to you. Though it is not much to see.

    here's a couple of photos after soldering up

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Be seeing you
    Bob
     
  11. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Hi Bob

    Are you using Nema 17's for the wagon turntables, I have these, which have a 64:1 reduction gearbox built in.

    https://www.modmypi.com/electronics/motors-and-robotics/stepper-motor-small-reduction-5-wire-512-step/?search=stepper%20motors

    For my traverser I used a nema 17 plus a BigEasyDriver stepper controller, and only 4 connections to the driver board from the arduino. The board also provides a regulated 5V supply to the arduino.

    Paul
     
  12. redpiperbob

    redpiperbob Full Member

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    Hi Paul
    Thats the same one that I am using . I got 4 of them including the driver boards for £4 delivered from China.
    Just waiting for the thin ply for the planking on the top of the wagon turntables.
    Be seeing you
    Bob
     
  13. Toto

    Toto I'm best ignored Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    Good old China. There are building our nuclear power reactors over here for us as well. :scratchchin: I trust them .......:facepalm:

    Wish they'd stick to Arduinos or whatever.
     
  14. redpiperbob

    redpiperbob Full Member

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    Good one Toto:avatar::avatar:
    Be seeing you
    Bob
     
  15. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    What do you think they're using - arduinos rule ok :thumbs:

    Paul
     
  16. redpiperbob

    redpiperbob Full Member

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    Hi All
    And so Golspie is no more. I have spent a weekend demolishing My Golspie layout and it is all packed away ready for its resurrection.
    I have started on Board One of the Kyle of Lochalsh layout. I have included a few pictures of the board in the stages of construction.

    First the overall track plan I am hoping to achieve.
    [​IMG]

    I usuallly wire up my points first as below.
    [​IMG]

    I have brought the board down from the loft to work on it (might as well be comfy).

    [​IMG]

    then the work starts. I drill the holes in the board in the correct positions for the droppers and the frog wire. Tehn fit the track. As the layout is in the loft I leave a millimeter or so in between the joints of the rails. (saves the track buckling later on)
    [​IMG]

    Most of the track laid .
    You may notice the verticle cork at the far right hand eng of the board. This is for the wagon turn table transfer.

    [​IMG]

    A sraight on veiw of board One

    I will post more as I go on

    Be seeing you
    Bob
     
  17. ianvolvo46

    ianvolvo46 Staff Member Moderator

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    Very impresive job Bob .. you must have a big loft opening

    Ian
     
  18. redpiperbob

    redpiperbob Full Member

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    Hi Ian
    Thanks
    I made the hole 1 metere long so no problems getting the boards up there.

    Be seeing you
    Bob
     
  19. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    I know where i'm sending my next layouts boards for first fixing :avatar:

    Looking good Bob.

    Paul
     
  20. redpiperbob

    redpiperbob Full Member

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    Hi Paul
    thanks for the complement. here is the backside of the board.
    The curcuit board at the top Right is the switching board and is only there to set up the system. This board will be in the mimic panel when I have finished the layout.

    [​IMG]

    Overall view. You will notice I did not use the 3D printed servo brackets I mentioned earlier. I saw the idea of the aluminium channel on the web and thought that it was a beautifully simple idea. So used them instead as the frogs are switched with the relay boards. This also give me the chance to be able to switch other things on the layout at the same time and the relay boards are opto isolated, so more safe.

    [​IMG]

    Close up of one of the relay boards. these are operated by the middle green board in the previous picture above.

    [​IMG]

    Closeup of the boards.

    There are two servo controller boards here and the relay driver board in-between.
    The two servo boards share the same address on the Megapoints network so that with the press of a single button or the sending of one DCC accessory command they will change two points at once.

    If anyone wants me to go into more detail about the Megapoints system I will be happy to share what I know (some say not a lot).
    [​IMG]

    Almost finished.http://www.click
    I havent wired in the relay boards to the driver board yet.

    Be seeing you
    Bob
     

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