Electronics help...

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by RonP, Jan 7, 2008.

  1. RonP

    RonP Member of the WMRC

    Each scratch build i start i think about how i can make it awesome with animation. does anybody here dabble in such things ?
  2. rogerw

    rogerw Active Member

  3. Dansco

    Dansco Member

    RonP, Im an Idea guy. I have lots of ideas, sadly few make it past the keyboard. Lol.. anyway, Id like to throw out some ideas if you have a particular starting point, say what action you'd like to see, I'm sure we can come up with a way to do it.

    To get things rolling, Iv been toying with a couple of ideas of late. I want to make my own PC joystick operated log loading and unloading cranes using RC servos and a PIC based micro-controller. Specifically, id use the OOPIC-R that I have from an non-train related hobby project.

  4. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    One of the guys in our modular club (www.hotrak.ca) has done a lot of animation using lights based on the various LEDs that are now available - he's done headlights, flashing emergency vehicles, streetlights, traffic lights, chasers on theatre marquees, and so on. He has also experimented with "neon" lights, as well as done some secondary lights on the emerg vehicles with fibre optics.

  5. RonP

    RonP Member of the WMRC

    sawmill action is one i'd like to do.

    a crane running a sequence is another.
  6. Dansco

    Dansco Member

    When you say sequence, do you mean you just want to see it moving on its own? Me, Id want to actual run it!

    Coincidentally, I was just looking at the Cornerstone Series Log Unloader. This should be a great base for a functional animated log unloader/loader for a modern sawmill. Bash in some screw type actuators for XY movement. Rigging the Z axis (up/down) and grapple open/close will be the tricky part.

    Blue Sky Thinking: I can picture a little station on my layout, a joy stick with a throttle and a couple of buttons. Use the joy stick to position the XY of the overhead trolley, the throttle would be the Z position and "trigger" to open the grapple.. fun

    This would be smallish version of the Heljan HO Scale Operating Container Crane thing that cost over $700! (Curious, if I made something like this, I wonder how much could I sell it for! )

    Pull the train of loaded log cars into the log unload area, position each car to be unloaded under the crane. Jump over to the Log Unloader station and unload the logs... lather rinse repeat. ...

    NOW that Iv got the logs OFF the cars.. how did they get on there in the first place...

    Now that was a fun ideation session... lol


    Attached Files:

  7. Dansco

    Dansco Member

    OK, this thread has become my brain storming external storage.. lol..

    I think Ill simplify the electronics, initially I had considered using mini servos and a Microcontoler as a PC joystick interface, but I see now that just adds complexity, just straight DC motors and swichtes might be better...

    look at these little guys.. 25:1 gear head... sweet..

    GM15 Gear Motor (pic attached)

    Attached Files:

  8. RonP

    RonP Member of the WMRC

    K.I.S.S works for me i originally meant by sequence was

    Run Timer Off Trigger 2
    Run Timer Off Trigger 3
    Back to 1
  9. Dansco

    Dansco Member

    neat, what would you use to control the sequence?

    Anyone know where I can find some good pictures/info of a prototype claw like this. I have a design worked out from the little pick, but Id like to see some options..
  10. RonP

    RonP Member of the WMRC

    i am gonna ask my brother there are ways to do it with relays in an analog way. but i believe there are controller units like this somewhere. Factory
    pro logic controllers do this digitally.
  11. Dansco

    Dansco Member

    interesting update; So, I'm heads down into designing a overhead log unloader, when my wife and I go "shopping" at the goodwill outlet (tons of junk, sold by the pound) what do I find while digging.. a miniature version of those arcade "Claw" games where you move the claw around to pick up some toy.. not only that, I found two! Brought em home, quickly tore one apart and now have mostly functioning technicals bits. Regular DC motors, switch polarity to reverse, already wired and reusable rack (rack and pinion gearing) I have XY and Z axis working, but need a better open close function additionally, the claw is pretty strange looking, but who knows, attack with the dremel and see what happens! Ill try to post some pics tonight..

  12. RonP

    RonP Member of the WMRC

    Sounds like a very kool find

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