Toto's Traversers

Discussion in 'Workshop Benches' started by paul_l, May 6, 2017.

  1. Toto

    Toto Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    It was an easy fit Gary. I'm going to do the same with my Bachmann 4-6-2. May have that chipped in time for Dundee as well.

    Toto
     
  2. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Started making the keys for the track alignment on and off the traverser

    upload_2018-10-2_0-17-23.png

    12mm ply for the track base, the nearer piece is screwed to the ply base, then a 5mm clearance hole drilled through the ply using the center hole. A 5mm screw passed through the ply and key then the rear piece is used as a clamp from the underside using a wing nut and washer (piccies will follow when complete). The ply with the guide slot is 18mm thick, the key and clamp piece are 6mm thick.


    Paul
     
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  3. redpiperbob

    redpiperbob Full Member

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    Hi Paul in your post 362 you mention that the photon produces solid models that is true but you can hollow them out with Blender


    saves a lot of resin.
    Also if you have a feed failure with the filament 3D printer you can often restart the gcode from the appopriate line and continue the print (ask me how I know)
    I am hoping ti get to Elgin this year. I dont have a car so its all done by bus or train.
    Be seeing you
    Bob
     
  4. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Hi Bob

    The photon software unlike other slicers gets it speed (I think) from printing sections in solid rather than using % infill in a honeycomb effect like the filament printers do.

    I can see some sense in this apart from speed to complete the slicing operation, if you make a solid, and seal the model, then you could have uncured resin trapped inside, not pleasant stuff to have leaking out in the future.

    I will just make my models thin walled when needed.

    I've yet to try Blender - I downloaded it many years ago when they first went open source, but never found a use for it at the time.

    Paul
     
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  5. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    I've completed the controller card this evening.

    upload_2018-10-4_23-26-46.png

    I marked out the insulation gaps - remember it needs flipping to get the breaks in the correct place.


    The gaps were made using a 3mm wood drill bit, the point fits nicely in the holes, I'd suggest using the drill bit in a pin vice, as it gets sore on the fingers after a few holes.

    For the resistor on the DCC input I used a smd 1206-1K on the underside, which nicely bridges the 3mm gap.

    Everything else is as per the above diagram


    Testing can wait until tomorrow.

    Paul
     
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  6. Toto

    Toto Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    Good job bat man. All that cursing as well. :facepalm: nothing too it. :avatar:
     
  7. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Well some progress and a couple of sep backs.

    The bad bit first, for some reason, initial power up worked, then it decided not to play, swapped out motor, controller card and arduino, and no apparent faults /shorts on the circuit board. Wasted most of yesterday looking for the error, so decided to park that for the moment, and progress on other bits. :headbanger: :facepalm:
    Second, with the offset track center, and using a single screw with the motor inline, there isn't enough travel for 4 roads to line up :facepalm: :facepalm:

    So for the other progress, the dowels and bolt holes were done for both ends, and most of the track laid on the traverser and successfully connected to the scenic board




    Tonight's tasks, complete the track laying, wire the track feeds and apply the first coat of satin varnish to the traverser front.

    Paul
     
  8. Toto

    Toto Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    And the nail biting latest is .......
     
  9. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Surprising how a mix of adrenaline, extra strong caffine and a dead line (now I know how a student feels) focuses the mind.


    Cabling below board almost complete just need the connection to the traverser table connecting.

    The hole in the middle gives access to the lead screw.


    And the controller installed.


    Other modifications, adjustments to the outer frame and leadscrew nut mount has allowed 4 tracks to be used, and traced part of the problem with the motor to the Microstepping setup, The version of the circuit diagram was designed to have the microsteps controlled in software, where as the program was written with the microstepping hardwired. I've gone back to hard wired. By gapping the outputs from D10, D11 & D12 to the MS3, MS2 & MS1 pins respectively

    [​IMG]

    And connecting the pins direct to ground - this sets full steps. Now goes like a bat out of hell, and overshot the traverser.
    Speeds and values cut and tried again. Getting close just need to find out why its not recognising DCC commands, But will work on a manual solution just in case.

    Back to the grindstone

    Paul
     
  10. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Friday night / sat morning - drilled a hole in the rear frame, and swapped out the 500mm lead screw for a 600mm one. Then 3D printed a handle.

    Worked well enough for day 1, hopefully it will survive day 2.

    Paul
     
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  11. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Well we managed to complete day two, and everything is back home.

    As mentioned before here is a piccy of the kludge


    Lessons learned

    The other traverser was pretty reliable - it did need the occasional re-homing, especially when the hall temperature raised, but a simple move to position 1 and press the reset button and all was right with the world again.

    Having to keep going to the rear of the layout to change the track position was a pain, but did let us appreciate the auto moving.

    When both traversers are working correctly, two people will be able to operate the layout easily - 1 driving & controlling the traversers, the other managing the stock on both traversers - having the DMU, Autocoach and Light engine, eased the work of the stock manager, giving us time to shuffle the remaing loco's etc in the pack.

    And I still don't like 3 link couplings :whatever:

    Paul
     
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  12. Toto

    Toto Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    It would have been a dream with the second traverse running. A bit of a bummer but I feel that it was one of the best exhibitions yet. Traverser one served us admirably. Well done maestro and thanks to York Paul and Scotty stitch for providing their much valued support over the weekend. Always a pleasure to have the company and support of others.

    Toto
     
  13. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Today spent setting Morag's Win10 laptop up for Arduino - of which it decided was the optimum time to carry out an OS upgrade - 2 hours worth :facepalm:

    All tracks aligned for the Luib Bridge end of the layout (it had been setup up for Another Bridge). Just a wee adjustment on rail height to be done and it's all good to go.

    Next up the other traverser :scratchchin:

    Paul
     
  14. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Bit more progress

    The other end of the MK4 traverser was profiled, and the adapter plate made up, track laid and wired (note to self - still needs connecting into the track bus)


    A Peco Brass Track pin has been used at each end of the rail to stop the rail moving, and track height is adjusted by adding packing under the adjustable entry track.



    Working on the electronics - the Mk2 is running a lot smoother, checked the stepping mode, and it is set to quarter stepping

    [​IMG]

    MS1 & MS3 connected to gnd, and MS2 connected to VCC (+5V or high), the Mk4 is set to full steps (MS1, 2 & 3 connected to gnd).

    I've changed the wiring on the board to suit, now runs quieter, however, still getting pulsing on the homing routine, and may be due to over heating - this is the first time I've used the more powerful steppers, so may be nearing the current limit at slow speeds. It's ok during the moves, but the pulsing during the homing sequence is giving inconsistent homing position. I will try adjusting the current limiter, but also try fitting one of the lower power rated steppers. To do this I have had to make a new cut down motor mount, which is currently printing.

    Another busy day ahead :whatever:

    Paul
     
  15. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Success so far - it was the current , it appears to have been set too high :hammer:, now running smooooooooth.
    Now just need to get it move to the correct positions.

    Paul
     
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  16. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Glad to hear you cracked the issues, this traverser is a great bit of engineering... certainly not something I could achieve electrically.:tophat:
     
  17. Toto

    Toto Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    Well done maestro. I see you've been listening to all I've been telling you ..... carry on ........
     
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  18. Colin_W

    Colin_W Full Member

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    Finally back into the shed for a few hours. I now have my traverser up and running. First test seems to be ok. I used 6 (recycled Merg units) Totis from a previous battle ground to give indications of occupied tracks. A small panel holds push buttons and 6 x 8mm Green/Red bi coloured Leds. These change from Green to Red when the track is occupied. The push buttons select the required track via the Arduino Mega and this drives the Easy Driver board which is piggy backed onto a shield. The outputs from the Toti boards are also fed into the Arduino as inputs so that later on if I need to I can update the Arduino sketch to take control if a wrong track is selected and move to the nearest clear line holding the train at the entrance..... maybe.:scratchchin: I haven't added the DCC decoder file to the Arduino sketch yet either :(. Hopefully there may be a short video below.
    Col
     
  19. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Very effective Col.

    Any chance of emailing me your sketch, it's always good to see how others have skinned the cat so to say, that and I may need to go the non-dcc route for the elgin exhibition, if I don't manage to solve my issues with the intermittant DCC reads.

    Cheers

    Paul
     
  20. Colin_W

    Colin_W Full Member

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    No Problem Paul I'll send it now email.
    Bit clunky but works, no homing key yet. :giggle:
    Col
     

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