Turntable Air Motor (thanks, Chris!)

Chris Abbott stopped in yesterday for lunch ahead of an appointment in my area. Before we headed out to the pub (do I have to say “Harbord House“?), I gave him a quick tour of the layout, and demonstrated the ambient sound that I recently added.

That got us talking about other sounds I can add – always keeping in mind that I don’t want the layout to end up sounding like a calliope:

(Pleasant though it is…)

During our hand-waving exercise, Chris and I realized that if I changed out the single-pole switch that runs the Port Rowan turntable – replacing it with a double-pole switch – I could use the second set of contacts as a trigger for a looped air motor sound effect loaded into the Pricom Design Dream Player Pro I’m using for the meadow. The right channel speaker for this sound unit is located adjacent to the turntable, so panning the sound effect to the right when recording would put it in the perfect location, sonically speaking.

Here’s a video of the air motor at the CPR John Street Roundhouse in Toronto:

I was able to capture a short segment of sound from this, edit it to my desired volume and balance, then load it into the Dream Player Pro. Rewiring the turntable control and running wire for the trigger took about a half-hour.

I’m very happy with the result.

(This reminds me that I will have to take some more video of the layout to share the ambient sounds with readers. Stay tuned for that…)

UPDATE (May 16, 2013) – I’ve taken video and shared it in two subsequent posts. Click on the following links to find videos that include:
The sound of the turntable air motor
The sound of the cattle in the Lynn River

6 thoughts on “Turntable Air Motor (thanks, Chris!)

  1. Nothing wrong with Harbord House. A fine selection of beverages, good food, and great service. What more can one ask?

    Technology has advanced to the point of where “dream, plan, build” is truer than ever. We talked about the idea, you quickly found the necessary materials, and devised a workable solution in the space of a few hours. Can you imagine if you were still using audio tape and there were no sounds available outside of a public library or standing trackside?

    P.S. still working on the olfactory aspect.

    • Thanks again, Chris!

      As for scale odour, do we really want to go there? And don’t even think about (shudder) taste. Some senses are better left unexplored…

      I’m looking forward to our next get-together. Cheers!

    • Dear Chris,

      Don’t get me started…
      (nightmares of 9x cassette players, scattered around the floor of a quiet room, at varying distances from a central cassette recorder, “mixing” the ambient soundtrack for a HO logging show layout, circa 1995…)

      Happy Modelling,
      Aim to Improve,
      Prof Klyzlr

  2. Dear Trevor,

    Glad to see the DP Pro is getting a wider ROI, and is forfilling the sonic needs of Port Rowan. I trust you’ve explored the “Background track” function of the Pro? IE just because it has 4 “trigger inputs” effectively code-wired to 4 “tracks”, doesn’t mean it’s limited to 4 sounds. There is actually a “5th track” (actually “Track 0” in filename syntax) or “Background Track”, which can be configured to play as soon as the unit is powered-on. If one of the “triggerable” sounds is invoked:
    – the “background sound” (Track 0) fades out
    – the “triggered sound” occurs
    – and once done, the “background sound” restarts automatically

    Take a look at the “Config.TXT” file on the microSD card, it’s reasonably “human readable”/self-explanatory as-is, but the DP Pro manual fleshes out the behaviour if more info is required. Pricom also have YT videos which explain the concepts.
    (Background and Multi-random modes)
    (how to configure the Config.TXT file).

    Whatever the case, a beautiful ScaleSound deployment for a high-quality Scale Model layout, “…it’s just all kinds of fine, ain’t it…” 😉
    (Apologies to “The Whole Nine Yards” fans).

    Happy Modelling,
    Aim to Improve,
    Prof Klyzlr

    • Hi Professor:

      Yep – I read right through the manual, from beginning to end! That “Track 0” sure is handy…

      I didn’t go into great detail in my posting about things like config files, but I have been playing with the various settings to get the Dream Player to behave like I want it to.

      (If anybody is interested, the manual is available online. Click here for the PDF.)


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