I have a number of LM2596 buck converters to allow for adjustment of DC voltage from a fixed DC voltage input source.LM2596 buck converter

I was planning on using them to regulate the brightness of some LED lit buildings. The power supply would be a  9V or 12V wall wart. 

1) Is this a common use for this DC voltage adjustment device?

2) When used to regulate the voltage (and thus the brightness) of an LED light, where do you suggest the LM2596 be installed? Options would be inside the building, or maybe have have an area panel that has one input DC voltage, and a number of buck converters to feed individual buildings in that area. This way the building light brightness can be easily changed without removing the building to access the converter.

Is there anything else I need to know to use this device?

3) could such a device also be used to regulate the operating speed of some Lionel operating accessories, such as the saw mill? The input voltage affects the speed of operation, and I would like to slow my saw mill down a little bit. (however I think the Lionel accessories run on AC power, not DC)

4) I have an Atlas Turntable, where the speed of the rotation is based on the input voltage. Could a buck converter be used to regulate the turntable speed?

5) are there any other uses for a buck converter on an O-gauge train layout?

thanks for any help or ideas.



Joe K


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Original Post

I use them to provide controlled current to DC operating accessories from constant source wall warts, much like your lighting idea

Yeap GRJ, so far I use a seperate feed from my xformer accessory connection for any AC voltages required in the 12-18VAC range.  Right now everything I have that takes AC operates in the 12-15VAC ranges.  I have found that 12VAC runs about everything I have in the AC requirements bucket.  As I add AC accessories if I find that I need significantly varying AC voltages, I'll address it then.

My goal is to figure out how to run/wire all my DC accessories to operate off a single ATX power supply.  The challenge of course is the 3VDC, 4.5VDC, 6VDC, 9VDC and 12VDC variations between lights, and animated accessories running into a fuse box then power distribution buss.  And then of course there's the AMP math.  Between house wiring, boat wiring and layout wiring, it seems I spend more time thinking about amps than anything else.

I expect that I will use buck modules on where I don't have a regulated feed from the ATX, things like 3.0, 4.5, 6 and 9VDC.  I'll need to draw from the 3.3 and 12VDC outputs respectively and dial it down.

As to fuses, I''m thinking that I'll put those in after the buck modules but before the load, - going to run a common ground back to the ATX P/S


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