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Author Previous Topic: Sound Topic Next Topic: What happened to battery Powered Radio Controlled
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Bernd
Fireman



Posted - 11/09/2017 :  10:23:46 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bernd's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Dear Admin. Could we have the forum name changed from "Dead Rail" to "Battery Power - Radio Control" Forum. Sounds much better than Dead Rail. Thank you.

I started with R/C when I first heard about it on the Freerails forum in 2012. I got to know David Theunissen, owner and founder of Deltang, and purchased his first offerings for model railroaders. I did two projects using his Receivers he had produced at the time.

I'll continue with more of my experience in the next several posts. I do not know it all about this subject, especially when it gets down to the nitty-gritty of how it all works and compatibility with other systems. I'm just going to post on my experience's. Hopefully other's will join in that have a better understanding of the software and programing of these devices.

Regards,
Bernd
A PESSIMIST sees a dark tunnel
An OPTIMIST sees light at the end of the tunnel
A REALIST sees a freight train
The LOCOMOTIVE ENGINEER sees three idiots standing on the tracks

Country: USA | Posts: 2632

Bernd
Fireman



Posted - 11/09/2017 :  3:32:25 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bernd's Homepage  Reply with Quote
My experience with R/C started with an article in MRH e-zine. Geoff Bunza wrote an article on animating an Atheran 200 ton wreck crane. The article inspired me to do something similar, but not use DCC for control. Several months later, October of 2012, I came across a thread on another forum that David Theunissen had posted about a receiver he had developed for R/C control of trains. David was a into micro model airplanes, the ones that are very tiny and are flown indoors. These are the winged type, not the quad-copters now on the market. Link to David’s airplane sight: http://www.flyelectric.org.uk/index.htm

Here’s a picture of my first project using a Deltang Receiver – the Rx43d-4-v5.



My second experience with the Deltang system of R/C was when I installed 3 receivers in three IHC 2-6-0 Moguls.



I had to install 6 volt motors since the receiver and ESC (electronic speed control) would only handle up to 6 volts. David now has 12 volt receivers that can handle higher current also.

Since these projects were done back four to five years ago much has changed since then. David has numerous products that can be purchased for trains, cars, boats and planes. Unfortunately David is a one person business. The latest news is that many of David’s seller’s have back orders for David’s product. A Canadian distributor, Diigiit Robotics, selling the Deltang product line seems to be severing ties with Deltang. A UK forum, RMWeb, has a post asking “What’s wrong with Deltang”, ( http://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/topic/127519-whats-going-on-with-deltang/ . Time will tell as to what will transpire with Deltang. I’m hopeful that it will continue as I think they provide a wonderful product for the model railroader.

Bernd


A PESSIMIST sees a dark tunnel
An OPTIMIST sees light at the end of the tunnel
A REALIST sees a freight train
The LOCOMOTIVE ENGINEER sees three idiots standing on the tracks

Country: USA | Posts: 2632 Go to Top of Page

tloc
Fireman

Premium Member


Posted - 11/09/2017 :  6:11:09 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I know this forum has been very quiet. I am running battery powered locos using RailPro and CVP micro air units. I also have Railpro units using track power and can run regular DC units by flipping a toggle.

Brend’s idea of renaming makes sense IMO as there is some push to get rid of the Dead Rail name on other forums, but mainly at MRH. The name, Battery Power and Radio Control may bring some others to the table.

Brend, I always enjoy your work no matter what forum I find you on. Thanks for sharing your work and ideas.




Country: USA | Posts: 2154 Go to Top of Page

Rickie
New Hire

Posted - 11/09/2017 :  9:24:32 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The designation, Battery Power and Radio Control suits this system of operation well imo


Country: Canada | Posts: 35 Go to Top of Page

Rickie
New Hire

Posted - 11/11/2017 :  12:59:12 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The grassroots growth of this method of model train control has morphed in different directions during the past six or seven years and this fact in my view has served to confuse the playing field for those modellers hoping to use these battery powered and radio controlled solutions to control trains on their own layouts.

In my opinion, from a realism perspective the concept of locomotives operating under their own power seems unparalleled and any arguments to the alternative are difficult to digest.

In the short term, I believe “Battery Powered – Radio Controlled” hardware will improve dramatically in the short term and as it does, the marketing of the product will be absorbed and spearheaded by professionals. Protocols will develop and branding will be established. Then modellers will be purchasing off the shelf in the same way they buy their DCC units now.

The majority of modellers these days are probably heavily invested in DCC. For them, they can simply choose to add or not to add “battery powered-radio controlled” locomotives to their current operation. Either way there are no losers.

It would certainly be beneficial for me to be able to augment my somewhat newbie and limited understanding of how “Battery Powered – Radio Controlled” model trains function. In the next post, I will attempt to describe how I believe these electronics are schemed. Bernd will no doubt be able to shed some light where my thoughts and reality diverge.




Country: Canada | Posts: 35 Go to Top of Page

Bernd
Fireman



Posted - 11/11/2017 :  2:21:28 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bernd's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Rickie

The grassroots growth of this method of model train control has morphed in different directions during the past six or seven years and this fact in my view has served to confuse the playing field for those modellers hoping to use these battery powered and radio controlled solutions to control trains on their own layouts.


I think that has happened because a majority have DCC already installed and are looking a ways to use Radio Control to operate their DCC decoder locomotives.

quote:
In the short term, I believe “Battery Powered – Radio Controlled” hardware will improve dramatically in the short term and as it does, the marketing of the product will be absorbed and spearheaded by professionals. Protocols will develop and branding will be established. Then modellers will be purchasing off the shelf in the same way they buy their DCC units now.


My opinion on the above is that it's already well developed. The model airplane hobbyist have that system already well established. The 2.4GHz Spread Spectrum radios are the perfect use for model railroad engines. Little to no interference from outside sources such as wireless phones, WiFi routers, micro wave ovens ( yes they can interfere). David of Deltang developed the ideal transmitter's and receiver's for model engine use. He used his knowledge of flying Micro Planes that need very tiny receivers, motors and batteries and applied them to model railroad engines. Unfortunately he is a one man company. He has brought out many products for the model railroader and also for the model car enthusiast. At present it is tough to get any of his product due to back orders. I hope that clears up at some point.

quote:
The majority of modellers these days are probably heavily invested in DCC. For them, they can simply choose to add or not to add “battery powered-radio controlled” locomotives to their current operation. Either way there are no losers.


My feeling exactly. Nobody is forcing the DCC user to change systems. I think the biggest fear here maybe that a plug and play with sound and other functions (lights, other sounds, etc.) may get popular and that those heavily invested in DCC may lose their DCC manufacturers.

quote:
Bernd will no doubt be able to shed some light where my thoughts and reality diverge.


I don't think our thought's are that far apart. I plan on experimenting with what's available on the market at present and present it to the modeler.

Bernd


A PESSIMIST sees a dark tunnel
An OPTIMIST sees light at the end of the tunnel
A REALIST sees a freight train
The LOCOMOTIVE ENGINEER sees three idiots standing on the tracks

Country: USA | Posts: 2632 Go to Top of Page

Rickie
New Hire

Posted - 11/11/2017 :  9:31:36 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Bernd – I’m hoping that when you mentioned ............ “I plan on experimenting with what's available on the market at present and present it to the modeller.” ....................... that your thoughts were that there may indeed be a way to extract the same battery powered – radio controlled technology required for model train operations from the current market of radio controlled planes and that this would also allow for ease of obtaining the necessary products. Sure hope so, Bernd.



Country: Canada | Posts: 35 Go to Top of Page

Rickie
New Hire

Posted - 11/11/2017 :  9:36:48 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Personally, because of my lack of experience I would like to ask some questions that will no doubt expose me for the electronic newbie that I am. One helpful point is that my next door neighbour is sitting beside me at the moment, also a model railroader and admitting to the fact that he is just as dumb as me.

So, what would happen for instance, if I connected a 3 cell LiPo battery directly to a DC powered locomotive’s motor? My answer is that it would immediately begin running at full speed. Is this true?

Next, we assume that the term Receiver refers to an integrated circuit board that is capable of “receiving” radio transmissions among other things. Our answer is that we had thought (up until today) that this integrated circuit was called a Receiver simply because it received power from the battery. Duhhhhh..... so maybe we figured something out correctly.... true or false?

Next, the battery has one positive and one negative wire extending from it (usually with a double wire connector encapsulating both wires. This connector is joined to another double wire connector which in turn is connected to two wires that have been soldered to the two correct “battery solder points” on the Radio Receiver. Correct?

The battery voltage “fires up” the integrated circuit board and the 12 volt power is summarily routed through the board to complete certain important tasks, also one of which is to power the locomotive’s electric motor via two additional wires exiting the Receiver from two solder points marked “output to motor” and extending onward to the motor and soldered at the correct points.
Would this be correct?

There are additional wire solder points located on the Receiver. These points have wires soldered to them that extend to the already onboard DCC integrated Circuit Board in the locomotive. Correct?

There is technology built-into the circuit board that via an antenna (also built-in) it may receive radio signals from a remote (usually handheld) “Transmitter”... Correct?

The Transmitter is sometimes called the Throttle..... Correct?

The Transmitter “transmits” radio signals that themselves are controlled by various knobs (for speed control) and switches (for direction control) and buttons (for whatever).....Correct?

Thanks in advance Bernd.......... did we pass?........... or are we worse than we thought.

Cheers

Rick







Country: Canada | Posts: 35 Go to Top of Page

Tyson Rayles
Moderator

Premium Member


Posted - 11/12/2017 :  08:32:25 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I like the the "Dead Rail" name, totally accurate and easier to say than "Battery Power - Radio Control". However I don't see it ever being practical in the Normal scale so don't guess I have a dog in this fight. . That said in my travels I have heard it referred to as the "Dead Rail Society" constantly so the name may be here to stay.

Mike

Country: USA | Posts: 12724 Go to Top of Page

Bernd
Fireman



Posted - 11/12/2017 :  2:20:05 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bernd's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Tyson Rayles

I like the the "Dead Rail" name, totally accurate and easier to say than "Battery Power - Radio Control". However I don't see it ever being practical in the Normal scale so don't guess I have a dog in this fight. . That said in my travels I have heard it referred to as the "Dead Rail Society" constantly so the name may be here to stay.



Tyson,

Ok, that's fine then.

Bernd


A PESSIMIST sees a dark tunnel
An OPTIMIST sees light at the end of the tunnel
A REALIST sees a freight train
The LOCOMOTIVE ENGINEER sees three idiots standing on the tracks

Country: USA | Posts: 2632 Go to Top of Page

Bernd
Fireman



Posted - 11/12/2017 :  4:15:52 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bernd's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Personally, because of my lack of experience I would like to ask some questions that will no doubt expose me for the electronic newbie that I am. One helpful point is that my next door neighbor is sitting beside me at the moment, also a model railroader and admitting to the fact that he is just as dumb as me.


I wouldn’t call it dumb. I call it a lack of knowledge due to not having an interest in the subject until now.

quote:
So, what would happen for instance, if I connected a 3 cell LiPo battery directly to a DC powered locomotive’s motor? My answer is that it would immediately begin running at full speed. Is this true?


Yes, true unless you had a dead battery.

quote:
Next, we assume that the term Receiver refers to an integrated circuit board that is capable of “receiving” radio transmissions among other things. Our answer is that we had thought (up until today) that this integrated circuit was called a Receiver simply because it received power from the battery. Duhhhhh..... so maybe we figured something out correctly.... true or false?


True, the receiver (Rx for short) receives the signal sent out by the transmitter (Tx for short).
quote:
Next, the battery has one positive and one negative wire extending from it (usually with a double wire connector encapsulating both wires. This connector is joined to another double wire connector which in turn is connected to two wires that have been soldered to the two correct “battery solder points” on the Radio Receiver. Correct?

Correct. The Tx has the same set up to provide power.

quote:
The battery voltage “fires up” the integrated circuit board and the 12 volt power is summarily routed through the board to complete certain important tasks, also one of which is to power the locomotive’s electric motor via two additional wires exiting the Receiver from two solder points marked “output to motor” and extending onward to the motor and soldered at the correct points.
Would this be correct?


You have the routing correct. The voltage varies on the Rx. The Rx I have operates on 4 to 6.5 volts. The Deltang on the crane needs 5 volts. Same for 3 the steam engines. Detang receivers work any were from 3 to 18 volts. It depends on what type of battery you use. Whether you use a NiCad, Nickel/Metal Hydride or LiPo’s. I’m sure this getting confusing.

quote:
There are additional wire solder points located on the Receiver. These points have wires soldered to them that extend to the already onboard DCC integrated Circuit Board in the locomotive. Correct?


Wrong. Deltang does not interface with DCC. There is still much confusion on that subject of DCC and R/C control.

quote:
There is technology built-into the circuit board that via an antenna (also built-in) it may receive radio signals from a remote (usually handheld) “Transmitter”... Correct?


Yes. The receivers decodes the signals that is sent to it from the transmitter on a carrier wave at a set frequency such as 2.4GHz. The receiver extract’s the information from the carrier signals and sends the command to the motor drive circuit and tells it what voltage to output to the motor and what direction. This is the simplified answer to that question.

quote:
The Transmitter is sometimes called the Throttle..... Correct?


No. The transmitter sends the signal you set on your throttle. In the case of the two stick transmitter in the picture above the throttle is the right stick. Pushing if forward/up speeds the engine up, pulling it back/down slows the engine. The left stick tells the engine to go forward, or backward.

quote:
The Transmitter “transmits” radio signals that themselves are controlled by various knobs (for speed control) and switches (for direction control) and buttons (for whatever).....Correct?


Yes, correct.

quote:
Thanks in advance Bernd.......... did we pass?........... or are we worse than we thought.

Cheers

Rick


Not bad for novices. I learned about radio back over 50 years ago when I assembled an AM radio in shop class. I learned all about radio waves and how a radio works. Your AM/FM radio is no different than what we are using today to control model airplanes, model race cars or model boats. I’ve flown model airplanes and my Dad and I assembled our own transmitters, receivers, and servo’s that were put out by Heathkit back in the 70’s and 80’s. I also learned a lot about electronics on my own, but just enough to be dangerous.

Bernd


A PESSIMIST sees a dark tunnel
An OPTIMIST sees light at the end of the tunnel
A REALIST sees a freight train
The LOCOMOTIVE ENGINEER sees three idiots standing on the tracks

Country: USA | Posts: 2632 Go to Top of Page

Rickie
New Hire

Posted - 11/12/2017 :  6:24:00 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Bernd,

Thank you for your reply. As usual.

We were quite surprised to learn that Deltang Receivers (Tx) don’t connect directly to the DCC boards that are installed in DCC capable locomotives. Would this mean that the Deltang Receivers are themselves a “control centre” very similar to DCC circuitry and therefore that Deltang Receivers are wired directly from the Deltang Receiver to the DC motor?

If so, does that mean that using Deltang technology brings all those older DC only locomotives up to DCC style operation?

Secondly, in regard to throttles and transmitters being separate units, we’re wondering if a handheld throttle also has a transmitter built into it’s case.......... in other words two appliances inside one container?

Thanks for your help.

Cheers,

Rick



Country: Canada | Posts: 35 Go to Top of Page

Bernd
Fireman



Posted - 11/12/2017 :  9:09:18 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bernd's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Rickie

We were quite surprised to learn that Deltang Receivers (Tx) don’t connect directly to the DCC boards that are installed in DCC capable locomotives. Would this mean that the Deltang Receivers are themselves a “control centre” very similar to DCC circuitry and therefore that Deltang Receivers are wired directly from the Deltang Receiver to the DC motor?


The Deltang receiver has all the necessary circuitry to control a motor. You can also turn on/off lights.

quote:
If so, does that mean that using Deltang technology brings all those older DC only locomotives up to DCC style operation?


Deltang is not DCC as in the systems used today by NCE & Digitrax.

quote:
Secondly, in regard to throttles and transmitters being separate units, we’re wondering if a handheld throttle also has a transmitter built into it’s case.......... in other words two appliances inside one container?


A picture is worth one thousand words. This is an airplane transmitter. All circuitry is inside. The two levers are used to control the engine. Reversing lever on the left, throttle lever on the right. No separate units unlike DCC, which needs a base station.



This is all you need to run an engine or any motor, A transmitter and a receiver, and of course a battery.



quote:
Thanks for your help.

Cheers,

Rick



You're very welcome. I hope I'm not confusing you to much.

Bernd


A PESSIMIST sees a dark tunnel
An OPTIMIST sees light at the end of the tunnel
A REALIST sees a freight train
The LOCOMOTIVE ENGINEER sees three idiots standing on the tracks

Country: USA | Posts: 2632 Go to Top of Page

Rickie
New Hire

Posted - 11/12/2017 :  11:29:04 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Dear Bernd,

Well, you’ve been very helpful, Bernd that's for sure. No confusion at our end, exactly the opposite. You've been very detailed and to the point.

No matter how much data a person reads, it’s a one way street for the reader - with no chance to ask specific questions. You’ve provided answers to our questions.

My emails to suppliers and installers have largely gone unanswered. Despite having been around for a while, the so called Deadrail market is still a new business model where no one provider has been able to bootstrap a sophisticated sales and customer service initiative.

But, I’m still at a point where I'm determined to give this technology every possible chance of working for me. It looks like it would be nice to score a dozen Deltang receivers and transmitters but that’s not going to happen as they aren’t available to the marketplace.

Bernd, hopefully you’ll be able to extract a working combination of electronics from the radio controlled airplane industry that will apply to model trains. I hope you do. It would be great.

Trying to make a decision as to how to purchase a winning product from one of the current manufacturers/resellers that will solve my needs is pretty tough.

No matter what I buy, I will still end up needing tear-down/installation skills. As in “Some Assembly Required.” These are issues in my view that will intimidate the majority of buyers – new and experienced alike. The advertised installers are unable to handle business in a timely manner and from what I can see, there are no advertising budgets developed that will allow for a marketing campaign in Model Railroader and similar magazines.

So where to go if I want to get up and running in a timely manner is the big question. There are no answers at this point unfortunately, but I sure am going to hate having to hook up that Digitrax System I bought over a year ago. :) So, I'm going to keep working on a purchase solution as you are for a developmental solution.

Cheers for now,

Rick



Country: Canada | Posts: 35 Go to Top of Page

Corsair
New Hire

Posted - 11/16/2017 :  3:38:25 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Really great to see activity in this forum. I joined a local club, so I finally have some rails to run on and I'm motivated to get something put together.

So with Deltang dropping out of the US market, is it unwise to pursue the route of non-DCC radio control? Being a modern era modeler, it would be nice to use 12V motors given the decent price of old Kato based DC drives. I like the simpler non-decoder system as it leaves more space available for power management.



Country: | Posts: 18 Go to Top of Page

Bernd
Fireman



Posted - 11/16/2017 :  7:31:18 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bernd's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Corsair

Really great to see activity in this forum. I joined a local club, so I finally have some rails to run on and I'm motivated to get something put together.


I was hoping that it would start picking up interest by posting some info on what is going on as far as I'm interested in it.

quote:
So with Deltang dropping out of the US market, is it unwise to pursue the route of non-DCC radio control?


I wouldn't say they dropped the US market. The three US seller's are still here. I think getting hold of product is harder probably due to high demand. David is just a one man show in the UK. Here's the link to the vendors.

http://www.deltang.co.uk/buy.htm

quote:
Being a modern era modeler, it would be nice to use 12V motors given the decent price of old Kato based DC drives. I like the simpler non-decoder system as it leaves more space available for power management.


With todays tech in small motors coupled to proper gearing would give you prototype speed with enough torque to pull long trains. I don't believe the 12 volt motors get run at 12 volts most of the time. I would think at 12 volts you'd be running much faster than the prototype does.

12 volt motors came into being way back when, when smaller voltage motors weren't available so the 12 volt motor became the norm. I'm working on a project using an Athearn F7-A & B unit with two 6 volt motors to drive the A unit with the B unit carring the batteries, receiver and ESC (electronic speed control).

The B unit with battery, receiver & ESC



The transmitter and the rest of the electronic parts.



I've tested a 6 volt motor with electronic parts. Motor control isn't quite as smooth as I'd like it to be. So in the drive unit I'll be using a eddy current transmission. Info on the eddy current drive can be found on my web site.

http://www.kingstonemodelworks.com/ECDtb.html

Probably more than what some modelers will want to do. This is the part of the hobby I enjoy the most.

Bernd


A PESSIMIST sees a dark tunnel
An OPTIMIST sees light at the end of the tunnel
A REALIST sees a freight train
The LOCOMOTIVE ENGINEER sees three idiots standing on the tracks

Country: USA | Posts: 2632 Go to Top of Page
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