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Re: DCC Developments & Experimentation

Postby dkightley » Sat Feb 17, 2018 12:51 am

With no English version of the data sheet for the decoder....just the German one..., I've today spent a few hours working my way through the sheet on a free pdf editor, using Google translate to create an English version.

I have to admit that Google translate does a very good job of translating technical terms, etc. I had very few grammar and other changes to make so that the text made sense.

Attached to this post is the datasheet for the DCX65....in English!

EDIT......see the post two below this for an official English version of the document.
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DCX65.pdf
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Re: DCC Developments & Experimentation

Postby rail450 » Sat Feb 17, 2018 10:07 am

Hi all,

I just ordered some DCX65 - they are on the way to Germany.

I´ll translate the data sheet into English and will publish my version for revision

BR,

Siegfried
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Re: DCC Developments & Experimentation

Postby dkightley » Mon Feb 19, 2018 11:54 pm

Today, I received ......direct from CT Elektronik ..... a copy of the data sheet for the DCX65 in English.

This official English translation is attached..

My thanks go to Cuong Tran for emailing me the document without having to ask.....
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DCX65_English.pdf
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Re: DCC Developments & Experimentation

Postby dkightley » Tue Feb 20, 2018 12:23 am

Aside from all the excitement of my recent decision to upgrade The Bridge to DCC, I have been progressing with my DCC development in general....

As the DCC decoders I'm going to be using are not only a bit pricey but are likely to be a little delicate, I've created a DCC decoder test and setup rig so I can check out and do some set up work on the decoder settings before I tyre-lever them into a chassis. Here's a photo of the rig with a decoder wired up for testing:
IMG_3400_red.JPG
IMG_3400_red.JPG (88.22 KiB) Viewed 686 times

The green and blue twisted wires are the DCC connection. Off the photo, the wires have a plug on that goes straight into the main DCC box. The wires on the decoder have simply been soldered to pins on the back of a socket that plugs into header pins on the piece of veroboard. There's a greed LED to indicate the DCC is live, a red and green pair of LEDs to indicate forward and backward motor drive, a red and white pair of LEDS to indicate lights, and a yellow LED for an auxiliary output from the decoder. The big white component is a high wattage resistor that is simulating the motor load....and it gets warm!!!

Building this board has allowed me ...in one test....to establish that the DCC is actually working, to check out the first decoder, and to set up and test that I can drive a loco from either my PC (or laptop), my mobile phone, and a tablet!! Pretty cool!!
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Re: DCC Developments & Experimentation

Postby dkightley » Fri Mar 02, 2018 9:37 pm

A few weeks on....and decisions and progress made.

Firstly the decision.....as stated on the Bridges at Saltash thread, I've decided to upgrade The Bridge to DCC control and automated operation using the JMRI train control software. To facilitate this, I'm going to be using some of the control boxes I've already built; the main control box, and two of the track detector interface boxes. I'm also going to need a new control box to drive the LEDS for the seven signals...twelve LEDS in total. For this, I'm using a MERG control board designed to drive LEDs on a control panel...which will be built into its own box with a ribbon cable connecting to the existing signal cabling on the layout.

Using the JMRI PanelPro software, I've created a layout panel that will show on the laptop that will sit behind the scenes on the layout. The block signalling has been set up within the PanelPro software to detect block occupancy and operate the advance and home signals...all of which are two aspect. Here's a screenshot of the track layout panel...which still needs some details adding onto it to make it look reasonable:
Capture.JPG
Capture.JPG (97.7 KiB) Viewed 611 times


Using the scrit language in PanelPro, which is a version of Jython, a derivative of Python, which is similar to Java. It's sort of like Basic, C, JavaScript and Java all mixed up together!!, I've started putting together the first of three controls for running a train around the dog-bone style track....either stopping at one or more of the stations, or running through....and obeying the block signalling as it goes. This will allow me to run any permutation of up to three trains at once....and I've worked out that it will automatically hold up trains if I'm in the middle of either putting a new train on, or sorting out a train already on the track! No more messing around resetting the system...hopefully!!!
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Re: DCC Developments & Experimentation

Postby dkightley » Sun Mar 04, 2018 9:22 pm

Moved on a little with the software for The Bridge.

Here's what I believe the final layout panel will look like:
JMRIPanelWindow.JPG
JMRIPanelWindow.JPG (56.77 KiB) Viewed 583 times

The track colour represents whether a section is occupied; blue is vacant and red is occupied. The red or grey "lights" are the track sensors that indicate specific locations.

I've got the train operation script to a point where I'm ready to test it with a DCC controlled train on a track. The script generates a window from which parameters can be set up and the automated control started and stopped:
ScriptWindow.JPG
ScriptWindow.JPG (62.54 KiB) Viewed 583 times

The log window shows what's happening....and I think should help show where the train is. The script...and window....can be run multiple times so as to allow up to three trains to be controlled independantly....but interact with each other under the block signalling logic!

I have to admit to being slightly excited about trying this out!!!!!

Electonics-wise....I have today built and connected up a small PCB in the main control box that has one simple task to perform.....to flash a LED on and off every time there is a command signal transmitted on the control bus. This will help check things are working...and help to make setup easier. I'm also building the PCB for the extra control box that will be driving the signals....and one of the next jobs will be to design and print a box to put it in.
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