At $3 a bit the laser cutter is about 1200 drill bits.
The PIC uses the white trigger wire coming from the DZ-2500C switch machines. I think the PIC will not work with Lionel switch machines that do not have a trigger wire. Since I have only "Ross-Ready" Ross-Curtis switches with DZ machines and no newer Lionel switches I am not really familiar with their electrical operation.
Being a former SE/CE I feel our loss. Who'd of thought a transistor or IC or mosfet would be so important in our futures!