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Hey guys, I don't think that many of you visit Reddit, and I saw something of interest. u/Property404 has developed a way to control Lionchief engines with Bluetooth. They seem to be using an iPad to generate the Bluetooth signal and control the train.

Here is the link to the post on Reddit.

Here is the link to the Github repository that they linked in the comments of the video.

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Oh this is cool! Thanks for resurrecting this, I missed it when it was posted originally. This would allow you to script your own sequence of events, analogous to the "Record Action" feature of Legacy/Cab2.

@bigboy25 posted:

I'm glad to hear of your success! I was a bit surprised that this post didn't take off more as I had expected more people would be interested in potentially creating their own controller, but I guess there already a lot of control systems and people don't need another.

I think the answer to why it didn't take off is it's rather technical to implement yourself. Even though the functions were abstracted into a class, you still have to be familiar with python and github.

@bigboy25 posted:

Hey guys, I don't think that many of you visit Reddit, and I saw something of interest. u/Property404 has developed a way to control Lionchief engines with Bluetooth. They seem to be using an iPad to generate the Bluetooth signal and control the train.

Here is the link to the post on Reddit.

Here is the link to the Github repository that they linked in the comments of the video.

NICE CATCH!   THANK YOU!

Hi Folks,

So I wanted an easy way to do computer controlled automation and the Raspberry Pi has many GPIO pins.  But I found that although the Pi is a wonderful little single board computer at about $40 when I bought it, Python runs more slowly than Arduino code and there would sometimes be a delay in Python in acknowledging an input for precise, predictable operation.  Only half a second delay at times, but not good enough for some operations.  For what I worked out so far in Python for LionChief: https://www.josephrampolla.com/Python.html

So I also hacked the LionChief's remote with a 10 k digital pot, MCP4131-103, with Arduino code on an Uno clone (which I am still working on).

I am new to LionChief and love it.  Although I like the Lionel Android app for touch screen for certain things, nothing is like having that knob on the remote and keeping eyes on the train.  But I want automation, a show, where I sit back and watch.  Hacking the remote is easier that building your own Bluetooth throttle.  And easier than the using Python in Thonny.

Take care, Joe.

Hi Folks,

I made a little vid of my progress with Python Lionchief code.

Got my Python GPIO code working smoothly.  This is just a demo as I debug.  I have finished a mod of a LionChief remote with a digital potentiometer and Arduino code.  Will have a vid of that as time permits.  The loco in this vid was built on a Thomas LionChief chassis, the least costly Thomas.  Hoping Lionel has some LionChief boards in their parts sale soon, but doubt it.

Take care, Joe

Last edited by Joe Rampolla

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