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Train Horn, Two-tone Train Horn

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http://www.sentex.ca/~mec1995/gadgets/trnhorn.htm

Parts List for 556 version


R1
R2
R3,R6
R4,R5
S1
Re
IC1
D1,D2

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=
=
=
=
=
=
=

330K
390K
68K
33K
on/off switch
Reed Relay (glass tube)
NE556 (or use two 555's)
1N4001

C1
C2
C3
C4
C5
LS

=
=
=
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4.7uF/16volt, electrolytic
2.2uF/16volt, electrolytic
100nF, ceramic
100uF/16volt, electrolytic
47nF, ceramic
8 Ohm, 0.25-2watt. Others may work too.
(I used a 2"/2W type)

With this circuit you can electronically simulate the noise of a diesel-train horn. The sound is triggered
automatically as the train reaches a desired place on the track so you can produce the sound as the train
approaches stations, level crossings, etc.
The circuit can be built simply by using one 556 or two 555 timers. The rest of the parts are readily available
and not critical. The output power from the two-Tone train horn is adequate to drive a miniature loudspeaker
directly so all that is required is a single 9V alkaline battery or a 9VDC wall-adaptor.
How it Works:
For the explanation, we use the second schematic diagram with the two 555's. The sound generating part of
this circuit is formed by IC2, a 555 connected as an astable multivibrator. The frequency of the sound varies
with the overall charge and discharge times of capacitor C4. So, when the junction of D1 and 2 is high, the
frequency of oscillation is set by the current through R4 plus that through R5, charging the capacitor.
Similarly, when the junction of D1, 2 is low the frequency is set by the current through R5, (no current can
flow through R4). When the charge current is less, therefore, the frequency is lower.
Integrated Circuit IC1, another 555, forms a monostable multivibrator with an 'on' time of about 2 seconds.
The multivibrator output (pin 3) is connected directly to the junction of D1/D2, and hence when the
monostable is 'on' the frequency is higher than when it is 'off'.
A reed switch under the track is operated by a magnet attached to the train as it passes and this triggers IC1.

28/01/2016 14:47

Train Horn, Two-tone Train Horn

2 de 3

http://www.sentex.ca/~mec1995/gadgets/trnhorn.htm

Click here-==> to listen.

Parts List for 555 version


R1
R2
R3,R5
R4,R6
S1
Re
IC1,IC2
D1,D2

=
=
=
=
=
=
=
=

330K
390K
68K
33K
on/off switch
Reed Relay (glass tube)
NE555
1N4001

C1
C2
C3
C4
C5
LS

=
=
=
=
=
=

100nF, ceramic
2.2uF/16volt, electrolytic
4.7uF/16volt, electrolytic
47nF, ceramic
100uF/16volt, electrolytic
8 Ohm, 0.25-2watt. Others may work too.
2 Watts or more is required for better
sound. (prototype used a 3"(76mm), 2W type)

The 555 version is available as a KIT: [Train Horn].


Construction:
Veroboard construction (perf-board) on a standard sized 10 strip by 24 hole board means that this project is
quite easy to build.
The usual procedures and precautions should be followed but you will find that very few of the components
are critical. In fact you may like to experiment with different values to get other sounds.
Make your track breaks first with either the purpose-made tool or simply a hand-held 1/8" drill bit. Next,
insert all links and IC sockets, followed by resistors, capacitors and finally semiconductors.
Figure 2 shows connection details of the project along with overlay and underside-board views and you
should follow it carefully.

28/01/2016 14:47

Train Horn, Two-tone Train Horn

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http://www.sentex.ca/~mec1995/gadgets/trnhorn.htm

To generate the two-tone sound automatically, mount a reed switch under the track at whatever location you
require. A magnet attached to the bottom of the train will operate the reed switch as it passes. You can
connect as many reed switches as you wish, in parallel, to trigger the sound at various places around the track.
Maker sure that the contacts of the reed switch are facing upwards or it will not work. When the reed switch
is inside a reed-relay it doesn't matter which side is up since the magnetic field surrounds the reed. With a
single magnet however, the contacts must be facing 'up'.
Final Notes:
Each timer produces a high and a low tone. If you don't want to fiddle with the reed relay that is fine too; use
a momentary 'on' pushbutton switch insteed. The reed relay may required a strong magnet (experiment with
it). Make sure the reed relay is positioned in such a way that the magnet is able to close the contacts, and the
reed relay contacts are facing upwards. With the correct loudspeaker (I used an oval 2-watt, 8 ohm type
which I salvaged out of an old computer sound system), the sound is very realistic! The larger loudspeakers
can get very low audio.
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Copyright 1996, Tony van Roon

28/01/2016 14:47