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Re: Wireless Control for T Gauge

Postby Kupzinger » Sun Aug 21, 2016 12:59 pm

Hi Rich,

yes, indeed. Regarding the power consumption, I would say 10...20 mA is what I have seen so far. I would be happy to get 2-3 hours out of a battery set. That should actually work as you have estimated it.

The switching on and off is indeed an issue. I witnissed some professional research in wireless sensor networks, where the same issue exists and very low power consumption is requried. From the experience in that field, my take would be:

- the controller is normally in sleep mode. In this mode, also the IR detector curcuit is off.
- Once in a while (e.g. 30sec), the controller wakes up, switches on the IR detector and sniffs for a signal. If nothing is there, it goes into sleep mode again. If it gets an IR signal, it turns on the signal decoder and starts wirking normally.
- After fife minutes of no signal, it turns off and the story begins again.

Alternatively, maybe "wake by IR" is possible, but this requires a very low power IR decoder.

You are right, if battery exchange is rather simple (what it should be ideally) we can just remove the battery.

All right, I would say we should keep the momentum, keep on thinking and potentially build a prototype (together/in parallel) using this thread to exchange information?

Cheers from Vienna
Kupzinger
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Re: Wireless Control for T Gauge

Postby Switcher102 » Tue Aug 23, 2016 9:47 am

Kupzinger - Gosh, Vienna, how lovely, the main home of Mozart I believe. I'm in the UK, Wales. Oh yes, keep the momentum, I agree, I am really glad you are having a go at this, but realise I will be working on my T gauge as a representation of 5 inch gauge within O gauge so I will be flitting between my thread on that subject and this one. Also, I will be using radio control because that is what I am familiar with at the moment (and have a transmitter for) but I will be VERY interested in your work with IR because although I model in O gauge I want to try and make everything move on my layout (even people) so I feel sure that for my future projects (and my present ones) the knowledge of IR will be of use to me. I have no knowledge at the moment of using IR control so treat me as a novice in that field. I am keen to learn about it.

That's interesting that a conversion to IR battery control would take up less space than DCC. I believe the hearing aid batteries are about 1.4 or 1.5 volts. I presume that means you will need two, or even three if there's room.

Kupzinger wrote:- the controller is normally in sleep mode. In this mode, also the IR detector curcuit is off.

When referring to the controller here you are not referring to the controller in your hand are you, at the transmitter end? Is this a controller at the receiver end? It is the battery consumption at the receiver end that is the issue isn't it?

My T gauge order was dispatched yesterday so it will arrive here either today or tomorrow. I must get on and start asking questions about the radio receiver now.

Keep up the good work Kupzinger, if you can pull this off for T gauge (when used as standard gauge) I feel sure there will be much interest in it.

Rich
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Re: Wireless Control for T Gauge

Postby Kupzinger » Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:57 pm

Hi Rich,

Well, Wales is also not too bad :) I have to express things a bit more clear maybe. I did not mean that IR needs less space, I just meant less components. Which is also nice... And yes, I meant the microcontroller on the receiver side when writing "controller".

So, if you go for radio control: thanks for the idea. I will definitely try it and report here :)

Cheers
Kupzinger
Kupzinger
 
Posts: 78
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Location: Vienna, Austria

Re: Wireless Control for T Gauge

Postby Kupzinger » Sun Sep 18, 2016 9:36 pm

Hi there,

finally I managed to start an experiment.

Image

I used an ATtiny85 microcontroller and connected one of the port pins with the T motor. The whole thing was planned for two "type 10" hearing aid batteries. I programmed a simple PWM sweep, i.e. power up from 0% to 100% in about 6 sec and then power down again. A small green LED is driven accordingly.

The experimental result: the motor is not taking up any speed, even when the wheels rotate freely as shown in the image. The situation does not improve when using three of the 1.4V rated batteries.

I think I was a bit naive to believe that connecting the motor directly to the controller pins would work. I think a driver circuit is required. I will send an update once I have tested that.

Cheers
Kupzinger
Kupzinger
 
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Re: Wireless Control for T Gauge

Postby Switcher102 » Mon Sep 19, 2016 9:56 am

Great to see you're getting around to having a go at this Kupzinger. I think I see what you've done but I'm not electronic minded enough to understand why it did not work. With the radio receiver I will buy for my project the Electronic Speed Control (ESC) is incorporated inside the receiver. Is it the case that with IR receivers this is not the case and you are trying to create a small enough ESC to fit?

Rich
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Re: Wireless Control for T Gauge

Postby Kupzinger » Mon Sep 19, 2016 6:20 pm

Hi Rich, yes, I think that is the case. I am on the other hand not into commercial remote controls, so cannot really say what ESC is. I plan to use a shunt resistor to measure the motor current and add some forward control or load compensation based on this. I guess that is what ESC relates to.

Cheers
Kupzinger
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