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MERG - Model Electronics Railway Group

I've become a member of MERG, the Model Electronics Railway Group. A group that focuses on the use of electronics and related fields in model railways.

I’ve been to a local face-to-face meeting as well as virtual meetings on some of the special interest groups including the Raspberry Pi and 3D printing groups. I won’t be able to attend all the meetings, especially as some of them clash with other volunteering or home activities, but I’m hoping to make the most of my membership and meet others interested in electronics and model railways.DCC Digital Command and Control for Model Railways with Raspberry Pi

I've been looking at implementing computer controlled DCC myself. Looking at using an Arduino or Raspberry Pi Pico, connectected to a Raspberry Pi computer. This sounds fairly straight forward in theory, effectively encoding signals as PWM signals which are switched as part of the track power. However as with many protocols it’s the nuances of supporting different things that makes it into a larger job, so it was great to see that MERG had already done much of the heavy lifting in creating a DCC based system that I can interface with a computer. .

MERG DCC command control module and handheld CAB2 controller

This video explains about the DCC model railway controller kit. In the video I look at three kits, including a DCC command station, handset controller and a RJ22 connector kit. This provides a way of controlling model railway DCC locomotives and accessories, using CBUS and a home made controller. Generally the kits are fairly straight forward, but the hand-held controller is significantly more challenging to solder. I’m fairly proficient with a soldering iron and I found some of it difficult, although it shouldn’t be beyond the abilities of most.There is an alternative if you are interested in computer control.

See the following link to understand more about rotary encoders.

More Information

Find out more about MERG or about my other model railway projects.

Future Plans

I've implemented two of the kits so far and I'll be adding more in the near future. I also hope to look at interfacing these with the Raspberry Pi. I'll be posted updates of the project on my PenguinTutor YouTube Channel

Related projects

Also see:

Future projects

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