Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Emsingen Panel Updates

Yesterday I did some behind the scenes work to fix a long-standing problem with the panel. In fact, this problem has been there ever since I added the panel in 2012 (!) The buttons for the turnout into the Lokstation and the two lower buttons on the yard ladder were not connected to anything. This wasn't really much of an issue, the Lokstation turnout was used only a couple times during a session and could be actuated with a mouse click from JMRI.  The Yard ladder buttons are not strictly needed and operators just used the black buttons for the respective turnouts. The reason why they were not connected was that the Team Digital SRC16 stationary decoder driving this panel only has 16 inputs and I have 19 buttons.

Since I now added the button for the route to Untergroeningen (on the far left in the picture above, compare to the panel in the post from 2012), I decided to clean up the other buttons, too. I have a couple Digitrax DS64 stationary decoders installed nearby, which have 4 sensor inputs each. I made a 10 pin header to match the SRC16 sensor pinout and ran a cable for 8 inputs over to the two DS64 decoders. Now I have 3 spare inputs at this panel. Not sure what to do with them, but maybe I'll find a need in the next 8 years...

Since I need to add the new routes from Emsingen to Untergroeningen to JMRI, I decided to also convert Emsingen panel operation to require the operators to push origin and destination buttons at once. This is addressing another source of confusion that occasionally tripped up Emsingen operators. I wrote up how the panel logix works in a post from 2011. The change is very simple: Whenever a button is unpressed, I simply reset the respective internal sensor back to inactive. That way, operators can change their mind after pressing the first button, and there is no state in the panel button Logix when no buttons are pressed.

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