Hello, this is Tom in Kyiv
Hello everyone, I am very happy to join in.
I am interested in microcontrol with Arduinos, model railroading including Digital Command Control with JMRI, and 3D printing.
My main project is my model railway - the "Haythornthwaite and Westby Tea Railway" set in India in the early 20th century. It is in '009' - that is 1:76 scale (the same as 'OO' and similar to 'HO') but uses 9mm gauge track which means it is representing 2'6" narrow gauge track.
I am using Arduinos linked by I2C to drive stepper motors operating two railway turntables, a transfer table, and a train lift. At least, that is the goal....
I am Canadian, but was born in Manchester UK and now live in Kyiv, Ukraine.
I have a lot to learn, but perhaps I will also think of something I can contribute.
Hi Tom and welcome to the forum. And my apologies, I didn't notice that your post was awaiting moderation so I just fixed that
My main project is my model railway - the "Haythornthwaite and Westby Tea Railway" set in India in the early 20th century.
I was curious so I Googled "Haythornthwaite and Westby Tea Railway", as my father was born and raised in India so I was interested to find out a bit more information. All I could come up with was an old Blogspot blog written by someone named "Tom"- would that be you?
I used to be into model railways myself, a bunch of Triang HO stuff, but haven't touched it for over 25 years. Back then I automated it with a 6502 microprocessor and a bunch of hall-effect switches salvaged from an old keyboard. I wish I had the space (and time) now to revisit to, as with modern microcontrollers you could really do a great job of automating everything.
Again welcome to the forum!
"Never trust a computer you can’t throw out a window." — Steve Wozniak
Welcome Tom! You might want to think of use servos for turnouts and current sensors for block detection with Arduino control.
@sj_h1 Thank you! How quickly you proved that this is a great community with valuable contributions coming in from every direction.
I think if I were starting absolutely from scratch, with the knowledge I have recently gathered, I might use servos and current sensors the way you suggest. But I am already committed by investment and learning to the Digitrax and Loconet 'ecosystem' for railway control and Peco point (turnout) motors with Digitrax stationary decoders. A big part of this is my exploitation of transponding for not only block detection but positive locomotive identification which depends on Digitrax proprietary hardware.
However my transfer table and train lift and two turntables will be more home-made and that had led to my question about sensors. A remaining problem is Arduinos listening to Loconet for commands ... that will be a fun challenge....
Thank you again! I'm excited to be here!
Yes, that old blog was mine and I am now startled to see how many years have passed since then with still hardly any trains moving. But I will make progress soon! Migrating my railway from Leicestershire in England to Kyiv in Ukraine has posed challenges (and opportunities).
Where in India was your father from? What was his profession? I have been to India seven times and to 71 other countries and my general observation is that India is the most colourful. I am sure you don't need to be told how impressive Indian railways are but they are so underrepresented in modelling. I'm attaching a trick photo of a train on the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway I took last year - as I expect you can guess, both locos are the same loco.
What did you do with your 6502 processor and the hall-effect switches (which you have just taught me are used in keyboards)?
You enunciate splendidly.