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Snitzl's Controller Development.




Continues with the development of an analog Pentroller type.


This blog brings to an end the development of an analog Pentroller type controller with a couple of versions that have turned out rather well. The blog also includes a shuttle circuit that is designed to be used in combination with the controller in a future fun type layout with  automatic trains, automated chimney sweep brushes, people waving, light flashing and whatever  else that springs to mind. So, while browsing the rmweb DCC section of the forums, I discovered  Arduino, the fact that I've only just discoverd Arduino when its been around for donkeys years,  shows that I've lived in blissful ignorance.



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Hi Regularity, These controller's were developments of Stuart Hines original Pentroller, I've substituted and added extra components. Built 7 or 8  of these and given a few away, but they've never been made commercially, if you think there's a market, then please feel free to use them.

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It was more a case of needing one in a hurry, to replace a somewhat bulky ECM compspeed on a wander lead.

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Hi , The PICtroller is the modern version of Pentroller, instead of analog  components, the PICtroller is micro processor controlled with auto detection on the motor types, both designs were initiated by Pendon for controlling both standard motors and more importantly for Pendon , coreless motors. After reading your link 'some reports', I'm not so sure, but I believe that Pendon use the PICtroller.

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It looks like you've done some amazing work here @snitzl . There are many people out there who swear by the Pentroller, and would love a way to get hold of a replacement. 


If you're happy for others to make use of your design, I wonder if it would be worth giving your design a formal status (like Creative Commons, used by the Arduino circuit design, amongst others) to give an official recognition of the work that's gone into it, while letting others either produce boards themselves, or get some produced commercially.


I'm already wondering about converting the design into something that could be uploaded to one of the online PCB prototyping sites that will ship you a fully assembled PCB (or dozen) within a week or two?

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Hi justin1985, I would suggest you look at all three blogs on Controller's, the first is an investgation into Stuart Hines original Pentroller, the second and third blogs take the original Pentroller design and use a few more common components to acheive the same end result. The blogs will explain all, Please use whatever you find usefull.

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Posted (edited)

Hello Snitzl,


I saw Pendon as a lad on a Youth Hostel tour and thought the control was good then, fair play to you for all the work you've done on Stewart's design.


I had often wondered about the Pentroller having used Brian Tilbury's 3 transistor pulse/feedback design for many years and now Jonathan Scotts MK3 pulse/feedback Gaugemaster styleGaugemasterStyle-FollowerTypeController-Circuit.png.e236d5c5e7a39a388b19fd3d0f4d7e24.png

They are both noisy this is the JS3 and an extreme example I know but even with no load the noise is quite loud. The motor is a 6 pole Chinese one.


I wondered if the one you designed would be any quieter or if you have a video of a loco working with it.


Cheers - Jim

Edited by JimRead
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