A while ago, I started thinking about implementing the FallerCarSystem onto my layout. It was clear that I wanted the Digital version, because I want my cars to start/stop very smooth, and not like the standard FCS, which suddenly starts/stops the vehicles. (which surely shakes the drivers, lol) I did look at various systems, and I did found out very soon, that every system does have its disadvantages. One system uses extra wires (to the left and right of the giding-wire), to transmit data to the cars,which would be almost impossible to implement, when you need to put those wires into plaster casted street-elements. Another system uses lots and lots of infrared transmitting LEDs on the layout. You need to place these LEDs at strategical points, but at the same time, also take care that you don’t put them in plain sight !
The ideal system would be based on RF signals, completely wireless (radio)signals, like Wifi and bluetooth. So, one central command-station would be enough, to control all cars. Cars would receive the data, no matter where they are on the layout, just as long as they stay within the range of the command-station. (and this could even go up to about 50 meters !)
So, after some thinkering, *DIGICAR* was born 🙂
As a base, I use an Android device with network and Bluetooth capability. Via the network-connection, the Android device connects via SRCP to the PC which is running modelrailroad-controlsoftware. (RocRail/Koploper/Itrain …) It interprets the loc-commands, checks in its local database is a vehicle with the corresponding address is found, and if so, it will send out data to the DigiCar commandstation via Bluetooth. This commandstation does nothing more then converting this info, into RF signals for the vehicle-decoders itself. It’s also a 2-way communication for programming and reading CV-values to/from the vehicles. At this moment, the software is finished for 100%, and prototypes of the decoders and commandstation are already build …
It’s just a matter of implementing “the thing” 🙂