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Battery powered/Radio controlled locos


StuartM
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  • 1 year later...

Giles has done a considerable amount of pretty ground-breaking r/c mainly using Deltang.

 

there are some bits and pieces here, which are relevant to r/c trains, and road vehicles

 

http://www.antenna-models.com/OOGAUGE.html

 

On 30/10/2010 at 11:55, Giles said:

Good news! (for me, anyway..)

 

The correct receiver has finally arrived (in fact - two of them - as I ordered a second whilst I was at it!)

 

IMG_6840-Copy.jpg

 

The little thing on the left is the Micro Tiny-S (for servo, as opposed to A for actuator), which is a 4 channel receiver and speed controller combined. This has all the functionality of the other kit in my hand - which is a miniature Cirrus 4 channel receiver (as receivers go, it IS small...), and a 'hacked' servo into a speed controller - effective, but still quite large. These two bits are identical to what is under the tarp on the truck at the moment. The Micro Tiny-S will very comfortably fit under the bonnet, leaving me with a clear load bed as planned!

 

Always assuming radio compatability or whatever.... (I don't understand these things, I assumed any radio transmitter would work with any receiver on the same frequency - but I suspect this may not always be the case....) Still, we'll see.

 

I'll be rebuilding the truck back to take this receiver, and build up the second truck likewise. The larger receiver with hacked servo will probably go into a Morris Minor van ..... it might just fit! :D

 

On 08/12/2014 at 11:24, TimC said:

This post is in reply to NRS91 query on wiring a Deltang Rx which was posted on the End of the Line thread.

 

There are a number of different versions of the Deltang Rx's that are suitable for driving a RC vehicle.  I have used a Rx41d, the Rx43d and Rx45 can also be used, the latter two have greater functionality if you want to fit lights and other features.  No doubt, there are probably others too.

 

Here is a basic wiring diagram of what I have done.

 

post-7686-0-46595900-1418036146_thumb.jpg

 

Whatever Rx is used the pin outs and specification can be found on the relevant instructions page on the Deltang website: 

 

http://www.deltang.co.uk/rx41d.htm

http://www.deltang.co.uk/rx43d.htm

http://www.deltang.co.uk/rx45-v5.htm

 

Needless to say, make sure you look at the correct page for your version of the Rx, it may not be one of the three I've linked above.  There is generally a power input +/- to the Rx, a motor output (normally 'H1' or 'ESC', to provide a reversible motor drive - on some Rxs the -ve maybe common to the motor drive too so check the instructions), and a servo control output - either called something like rudder/aileron/P1-8 (which provides the control signal for the servo).  There are mini wiring diagrams in the instructions so you should be able to see what is necessary.  The instructions also include a short video explaining how to bind a Rx to the Tx.

 

I did a lash up and bench tested the wiring first so I could work out what the best arrangement was for using the 4 channels on the Tx.  Most Rxs allow the drive and servo control to be assigned to different channels by 'programming'.  There is an explanatory video on the Deltang website and while it looks a bit complicated, its not too bad in practice.  You just need to work out exactly what you need to do first and then do it in a quiet moment so you don't loose your place or get distracted.  Saying that, my Rx41d is quite simple so its not as involved as the Rxs with more functions.

 

The Deltang Rxs are not protected from short circuits so ensure you understand what you are doing with the wiring before applying power.  The solder pads are quite small and easily shorted to its neighbour if too much solder is used so again be careful.  Once installed in a metal vehicle I suggest the receiver is protected with tape or sleeving. 

 

Good luck!

 

On 08/12/2014 at 12:46, NRS91 said:

Thanks Tim,

I have the RX45-5 and one that confuses me is the two 3-6v inputs?

post-24663-0-47687900-1418042772.jpg

 

On 07/10/2018 at 11:26, Giles said:

Next slightly mad minor project is hopefully a fully working steam crane in 0-14 (not actual steam, though...).

Not complete yet, but progressing....

 

The reason for this being that the radio control mobile crane, though remarkably successful, only has an endurance of around 5 1/2 hours, as I can only get a 650mAh battery in it, and it isn't swappable. This means that it has to retire three-quarters through the exhibition day. I do have a kit to build a duplicate, but I wanted to try something different. A rail crane, but it needed to be narrow gauge to be any use to me.

 

I had a Backwoods Miniatures face shovel which I thought would do for a basis, but as it happens, I've really only used the jib, the base-plate and the roof, and most of that simply because I had them. It would have been just as easy to scratch-build the lot (with the possible exception of the jib) as it happens.

 

I've had to scratch build a chassis in order to get a motor under the foot plate, and that is powered via a slip ring through the centre slew-ring. Battery and control being within the cab.

 

44902833502_e30b847514_c.jpg2018-09-27_05-15-16

by giles favell, on Flickr

 

31264844168_32b3e9ee50_c.jpg2018-10-06_06-05-24

by giles favell, on Flickr

 

enjoy!

Simon

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10 minutes ago, Simond said:

Giles has done a considerable amount of pretty ground-breaking r/c mainly using Deltang.

The question posed was specifically about BlueTooth, however.

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44 minutes ago, Simond said:

Giles has done a considerable amount of pretty ground-breaking r/c mainly using Deltang.

 

[...]

Absolutely true, totally true, but I can't anything about Bluetooth on the two threads I looked at, nor does there seem to be anything about Bluetooth control of BPRC on the internet. There is lots about Bluetooth control of DCC but I have to come to the conclusion that you can't, perhaps yet, control BPRC using this technology. Any links leading to a a different conclusion are most welcome.

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2 hours ago, PenrithBeacon said:

Absolutely true, totally true, but I can't anything about Bluetooth on the two threads I looked at, nor does there seem to be anything about Bluetooth control of BPRC on the internet. There is lots about Bluetooth control of DCC but I have to come to the conclusion that you can't, perhaps yet, control BPRC using this technology. Any links leading to a a different conclusion are most welcome.

BlueRail trains http://bluerailtrains.com/about-bluerail/ produced their original board to work without the need for an attached DCC decoder, I bought a couple for evaluation and they worked OK with a smart App. IMO too large for british outline stuff. what was intriguing was they used battery or rail power and would automatically switch between the two. If the battery and track voltage was the same this would be seamless. Their next offering was via TAM valley with the emphasis on attaching a DCC decoder. however the bare BlueRail board can operate the loco on its own. As these new boards are still large and I am not a fan of smart touchscreens, preferring knobs, buttons and switches I have not purchased one for evaluation. There are also products available that use WiFi rather than Bluetooth.

 

Have a browse of this site which has a lot of information http://www.freerails.com/view_forum.php?id=45

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8 hours ago, PenrithBeacon said:

I get the impression from reading the BlueRail pages that this is a very underdeveloped technology compared to the current Deltang products.

 

I share that view, and although there is probably an enormous amount of potential to be had with it, the transmitter end will either be dedicated - like radio control,  or app style, which will then need to migrate through a progression of devices. 

Deltang have achieved 16 channels within a teeny receiver, which is a high bar to improve on, and whilst the add-on of sound etc have been primative, such things take up space, and importantly power. The Deltang Tx22 transmitter has very nice inertia control and 12 loco capability.

 

Radio suits me best due to size, cost and reliability, but it's a matter of choice. It seems to me that the biggest hurdle is in fact that commercial models are motored for 12v nominal railways, and self powered locos are more suited to 3-5v to suit present battery technology. Yes, you can series batteries, or step up, but these are work-arounds to the mis-match problem. I scratchbuild my chassis with low voltage motors, and in consequence get much better performance and battery life from them than from simply putting a battery across a 12v motor.

 

Having said that, a one or two hour operating session really isn't  a problem for a conventional conversion. 

 

I apologise - I'll get off my soap box!

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8 hours ago, PenrithBeacon said:

I get the impression from reading the BlueRail pages that this is a very underdeveloped technology compared to the current Deltang products.

I tend not to agree, Deltang receivers have options that BlueRail don't but for many the important ones may be BEMF, consisting and good support for sound. Deltang are lacking in these areas but it is possible to program a single true consist per transmitter and of course permanently linked locos are easy. The BlueRail boards programming is excellent, blowing away DCC offerings.

 

LocoFi  https://www.wifimodelrailroad.com/ is another US based WiFi system

 

 

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34 minutes ago, Giles said:

 

.........   Having said that, a one or two hour operating session really isn't  a problem for a conventional conversion. ....

 

I agree, my operating sessions last up to about 3 hours. The loco rule of thumb is 30 minutes pulling a max load train at line speed and 2.5 hours sitting idle in the fiddle yard or stopped on the layout. My Deltang receivers use about 20mA when idle so need about 50mAh of battery capacity. My most 'thirsty' locos need about 400mA at full load so

 

0.5 hr full load = 200mAh

2.5 hr idle = 50mAh

Total = minimum 250mAh battery

 

I find actual running time is nearer 15-20 minutes than 30

 

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51 minutes ago, wasdavetheroad said:

I tend not to agree, Deltang receivers have options that BlueRail don't but for many the important ones may be BEMF, consisting and good support for sound. Deltang are lacking in these areas but it is possible to program a single true consist per transmitter and of course permanently linked locos are easy. The BlueRail boards programming is excellent, blowing away DCC offerings.

 

LocoFi  https://www.wifimodelrailroad.com/ is another US based WiFi system

 

 

Aren't WiFi and Bluetooth different technologies? This implementation of WiFi seems to have more potential than Bluetooth but the pcb is much too big. There wouldn't be the slightest chance if fitting one of those in  British outline shunting engine!

If you were to take such a layout to a show wouldn't you need your own WiFi too or will it work off 4G? Most British show venues are mobile wireless unfriendly, it's quite often difficult to get a signal. 

I still prefer Deltang, sorry, but this does have potential if the functionality could be compressed into very much smaller hardware. 

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Yes, different technologies

 

I agree, size is the problem with the Bluetooth and WiFi boards, maybe because they are developed for the american market and it seems they have a lot more room in their locos.

 

I think the show environment may be a problem for any 2.4Ghz band system, Bluetooth, WiFi and even Deltangs Spektrum protocols. This is because of smart phones which can saturate the whole bandwidth with traffic in a large busy venue, especially with people streaming video!. I don't think it matters if you have your own Wifi hotspot, it still has to share the bandwidth. Moving to the 5Ghz band might help

 

there should be no problem for home use. my Wifi analyser shows a dozen or so local networks but they don't seem to make any difference to my several Deltang transmitters.

 

edit - off topic but I am intrigued by your user name, mainly because my layout station buildings are inspired by the ones at Penrith!.

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51 minutes ago, wasdavetheroad said:

Yes, different technologies

 

...

edit - off topic but I am intrigued by your user name, mainly because my layout station buildings are inspired by the ones at Penrith!.

It comes from the eponymous LNWR locomotives. When I started posting here I wanted a name that was synonymous with the north-west of England  that didn't reference any individual.  I looked through the list of LNW loco names and chose this one.

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  • 4 weeks later...

With a battery train & using 4 x 3.7 batteries am i better setting the batteries at 14.8 with a step down board to 12v or 3.7 & a step up board to 12v to get the best performance & longevity.  Or is/are? both the same? I realize that the 3.7 will give me more Ah, but wasn't sure.
Thanks

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The amount of energy available in the battery(s) is the total not just the single battery total. For my express locos I use a 9V voltage booster with 2 x 3.7V batteries connected in series, this has a conversion efficiency of over 90%. in other words 10% of the batteries capacity is used in the conversion process. If you use a 12V booster the efficiency drops to about 80%.

 

Your locos will have different power requirements, mine range from just over 100mA to one loco with 500mA.

 

A low power requirement loco can have a single battery giving a 9V boost at 80% or better efficiency for up to locos which need 300mA , if you want 12v the loco limit is 250mA.

 

If you don't mind the battery voltage declining as the batteries discharge you don't need a booster, 3X lipo batteries in series will provide 12.6V fully charged and 9V discharged, 9V is enough for an express 4-6-2 loco to pull a 12 coach train at a scale 60mph. My heavy freight locos use 2 batteries in series giving 8.4V down to 6V. Maximum speeds with a long train are over 30mph fully charged and over 25mph depleted, this OK as the unfitted train has a speed limit of 25mph.

 

If you are using Lipo batteries don't over discharge them!

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1 hour ago, wasdavetheroad said:

The amount of energy available in the battery(s) is the total not just the single battery total. For my express locos I use a 9V voltage booster with 2 x 3.7V batteries connected in series, this has a conversion efficiency of over 90%. in other words 10% of the batteries capacity is used in the conversion process. If you use a 12V booster the efficiency drops to about 80%.

 

Your locos will have different power requirements, mine range from just over 100mA to one loco with 500mA.

 

A low power requirement loco can have a single battery giving a 9V boost at 80% or better efficiency for up to locos which need 300mA , if you want 12v the loco limit is 250mA.

 

If you don't mind the battery voltage declining as the batteries discharge you don't need a booster, 3X lipo batteries in series will provide 12.6V fully charged and 9V discharged, 9V is enough for an express 4-6-2 loco to pull a 12 coach train at a scale 60mph. My heavy freight locos use 2 batteries in series giving 8.4V down to 6V. Maximum speeds with a long train are over 30mph fully charged and over 25mph depleted, this OK as the unfitted train has a speed limit of 25mph.

 

If you are using Lipo batteries don't over discharge them!

Hi, thanks for the info. Will be using Lithium ion 3.7v batteries & will charge onboard via a jack plug with a Li protection PC/board depending on the amount of batteries. I do have room for 4 batteries in a goods van on my on30 locos. Bit tight in a coal tender, so my steam loco may look a little odd.lol. Will have to have 2 voltage regulators, as i will need 1 @ 5v-8v for the RC receiver  & 1 @  ?v  for train. "Was aiming for 12v"
PS: Not getting any emails to say i had a reply. I checked the follow topic button. Any suggestions? 

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16 hours ago, wasdavetheroad said:

Which receiver are you going to use because in model planes etc you can fit a BEC which is a battery elimination circuit?. This provides a low voltage to power the receiver from the high voltage battery powering the motor.

 

I don't get any emails either

Looking to use a RCT-Rx65c for size & it has a built in ESC  LINK On the forum part, i know they have had a lot of software problems. Not sure why they dont just change to a PHPBB. I am sure it's transferable. 

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