March 18, 2015

Power routing fun

The 3-way switch has turned out to be a real head scratcher sometimes, but thankfully, I've realized a bunch of the power routing can be done with the existing DPDT contacts on a Tortoise motor.

Here is a look at the various turnout routes and how each section of rail should be powered:

The top "gauntlets" are powered just like a normal switched frog in a conventional turnout. It is just that the left and right turnouts are stacked atop each other. The center frog is powered from either the "left" or "right" routes; and dead otherwise.

Locking out the illegal route is all that is really left to do— and that can be either accomplished by clever software or hardware interlocking.

March 8, 2015

Getting to the Point(s)

Worked on the 3-way turnout again today.  Took a few iterations to tune the points as the constraints are a bit fiddly.  Thankfully the opposite points help act as guardrails and pull the car down the correct path.

The points are "interesting" as they overlap and must be thrown in sequence to set the route:

Next up will be a mechanism to throw those points.