Control Your Model Train Layout With Your KEYBOARD!

About: I am an electronics and model railway hobbyist.

In one of my previous Instructable, I showed you how you can control your model train with your TV remote. In this Instructable, I will show you how to control a model train layout with a keyboard through a computer using Processing. So, let's get started!

Step 1: Get All the Stuff!

So, before starting with the build, make sure you have all of these;

Any Arduino board compatible with Adafruit motor driver shield

An Adafruit motor driver shield

A crosshead screwdriver

3 pairs of male to male jumper wires(2 pairs for the turnouts and the third one for the power feeder track)

A power feeder track

2 turnout tracks(you can add as many as you want by modifying the Arduino and processing codes)

A 12 volt DC power supply

A suitable USB cable to connect your Arduino board to a computer

An external keyboard (Optional)

Step 2: Get the Arduino Code and Upload It to Your Board

Make sure you have the Adafruit motor shield library installed in your computer.

Step 3: Plug on the Motor Driver Shield to Your Board

Step 4: Connect the Jumper Wires to the Motor Driver Shield

Step 5: Set Up Your Train Layout

Get your tracks and set up your model railway layout.

Step 6: Set Up Your PC

Step 7: Connect the Power Feeder Track and the Turnout Switches to the Motor Driver Shield

Step 8: Set Up the Locomotive and Rolling Stock on the Tracks

Step 9: Connect the Arduino Board to Power

Wait! before powering up your setup make sure there are no loose connections, faulty components and derailed rolling stock or locomotive(s).

Step 10: Connect the Arduino Board to the PC Via USB

Step 11: Launch the Processing 3 IDE and Open the Code

Download the Processing IDE from here. Download the given code and open it in the IDE.

Step 12: Test Your Layout

Feel free to add more features to this layout by altering the codes, adding more turnouts and motor drivers. It's all up to you. I hope you will enjoy making this project. All the best for your build!

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