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Model Coach Lighting Decoder

Märklin compatible & programmable with a magnet!

Model Coach Lighting Decoder
One area that many model train enthusiasts have never been totally happy with is the lighting of coaches. Until now. The lighting controller described in this article is a combination of an SMD LED strip and a PIC12F683 for compatibility with the Märklin system. The LEDs allow easy adaptation to different colours while three different lengths of the board enable the project to fit all common coach types. The controller can be assigned an address without removing it from the coach.
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Gerber file

CAM/CAD data for the PCB referred to in this article is available as a Gerber file. Elektor Members can exclusively download these files for free as part of their Membership. Gerber files allow a PCB to be produced on an appropriate device available locally, or through an online PCB manufacturing service. Elektor recommends its business partner Eurocircuits as the company of choice for its own prototypes and volume production in selected cases.

Extra info, Update
Quick project specs
- Märklin compatible
- PIC12F683 microcontroller
- Free software
- PWM light intensity control
- 3 board sizes available for 4, 8 or 10 LEDs
- Adaptable to various colours
- ‘Live’ changing of decoder address

(all SMD 0805 except R8)
R1,R2 = 1kO
R3 = 2kO2
R4 =270kO
R5 = 47kO
R6,R7,R9 = 10kO
R8 = 0O (wire link) (SMD 1206)

C1,C2,C4 = 100nF (SMD 0805)
C3 = 22µF 35V tantalum (in D or X case)

D1,D3,D4,D5 = BAS16
D2 = 27V 500mW zener diode in SOD-80C case, e.g. BZV55C27
D6-D14 = white or yellow SMD LED, min. 100mcd, min. 110 degrees (see text)
T1,T2 = PMBF170 (or equivalent for BS170 in SOT-23 case)
IC1 = 78L05 (SOT-89-3 case, e.g. L78L05ABUTR)
IC2 = PIC12F683-E/SN or –I/SN, programmed, Elektor Shop # 080689-41
IC3 = TLE4913 (Hall sensor)

PCB, long version (l = 230mm), Elektor Shop # 080689-1*
PCB, medium version (l = 190mm), Elektor Shop # 080689-2*
PCB, short version (l = 110mm), Elektor Shop # 080689-3*
* select length to fit coach size.

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