LCC Documents Ready for Public Review

A complete set of Layout Command Control® (LCC) (was NMRAnet) protocol documents in the Final Draft stage are now available for public review on the Standards & Technical Notes page

If you’d like to make any Suggestions or Discuss any aspect of the development and adoption process you’re welcome to Join the Layout Command Control Yahoo Group.

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Volunteers Needed!!!

Hi Model Railroaders,

The OpenLCB Group have been hard at work for several years designing and developing hardware and software to create the OpenLCB protocols and specification documents. We’ve written 12 documents so-far with only about 3 more to go to reach the milestone of having a set of specification documents that describe a complete system. We need to complete this work ready for adoption at the NMRA’s Board of Directors meeting in February 2015.

We could really do with some help in the following areas:

  1. We need people to proof-read and validate the Specification and Technical Notes documents. Are they complete? Are they easy enough to read? Are there any typos or grammar that could be improved? Do they contain enough information to develop MRR products – just from the information in the documents?
  2. We need a technical writer/publicist to work with the OpenLCB and NMRAnet Groups (there is some overlap between them) to develop promotional materials (articles and posters) targeted at end-users (modellers) that describe the overall system and how it can be used on layouts to do new and cool things? These materials would feature on this website and also in the various NMRA publications. The team can provide technical support and help but we need someone who is really good at presenting this type of information as engineering type people tend not to be so good at this…
  3. Similarly to 2. above we also need to develop promotional materials targeted at manufacturers as their needs are subtly different.
  4. We’d love to gather a group of modellers who are involved with modular clubs, who would really like to further develop some technologies to address the challenges specific to modular clubs. Being able to show up at a location and assemble the modules and have them automatically discover their arrangement and “just work” in a plug-n-play way. This would include having signalling systems automatically reconfigure to adapt and work correctly. Not only would that be cool – it’s possible, but needs some module specific conventions to be developed.

If you’re keen to help you can contact us via the Contact Form or join the NMRAnet Yahoo Group. We’d love to have you aboard.

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Documents Ready for Adoption

A number of documents in the Final Draft Documents category have been moved into the Submitted Documents category, ready for the NMRA BoD to adopt as NMRAnet documents.

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Documents Ready for Public Review

A number of previously In-Progress OpenLCB Documents have been received and processed by the NMRAnet Working Group and are now Final Draft Documents – Submitted to the NMRAnet Working Group for Public Review.
You’re encouraged to review them and make comments on the NMRAnet or OpenLCB Yahoo Groups.

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Additional Documents in Final Stages

A number of new documents have been added to the In-Progress OpenLCB Documents list on our standards page and you’re encouraged to review them and make comments on the NMRAnet or OpenLCB Yahoo Groups.

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NMRAnet Demonstration and Clinic Videos from GR2012

Several videos are now available from the recent 2012 NMRA Convention on the Videos page that:

  • show some NMRAnet modules from RailStars in operation
  • show the slides and audio from the two OpenLCB / NMRAnet clinics

More OpenLCB YouTube videos can be found here.

More YouTube videos from Don Goodman-Wilson can be found here.

More Vimeo videos from Don Goodman-Wilson can be found here.

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S-9.7.1 & TN-9.7.1 Adopted

The NMRA BoD has formally adopted the first OpenLCB Standard and Technical Note documents as NMRAnet documents during the NMRA National Convention at  Grand Rails 2012.

The adopted ocuments are now available on the Standards and Technical Notes page.

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OpenLCB/NMRAnet Clinics at Grand Rapids 2012

There are two OpenLCB/NMRAnet clinics at the Grand Rapids 2012 Convention:

Clinic 1 – An introduction to OpenLCB / NMRAnet S-9.7

In this clinic, we provide a beginner’s view of how the new NMRAnet S-9.7 works, and how it can be deployed on your layout. We will offer a demonstration of the capabilities of NMRAnet hardware, and how to use it.

Time: 7/31/12 9:00a – 10:00a Room: Pearl

Clinic 2 OpenLCB/NMRAnet S-9.7 for Developers and DIY

Interested in learning about the nuts and bolts of OpenLCB / NMRAnet? Thinking about making your own hardware? In this clinic, we explore the workings of OpenLCB / NMRAnet at a low level, providing the foundation for designing your own hardware and software. Topics include: the OpenLCB stack; using CAN for transport; basic OpenLCB messages and protocols; designing higher- level protocols; best practices for hardware and software design.

Time: 8/1/12 1:00p – 2:00p Room: Pearl

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OpenLCB/NMRAnet DevKit Available

Model Railroad product vendors, developers and early adopters who are interested in the developing NMRAnet standards and developing NMRAnet products, may be interested in the OpenLCB/NMRAnet Developer and Early Adopter Kit.

The kit includes:

The DevKit comes with the following documentation:

  • The DevKit QuickStart guide.
  • The DevKit Tips describes the various connectors and interfacing options available.
  • The Understanding DevKit Ios describes the special Demo-Mode Events that these Ios come pre-configured with and how they can be reset back to normal Events mode.

The Dev Kit is available to interested parties for $US 50 (plus shipping) and you can apply by describing your interest and plans for it in an email to David Harris at It is expected that you will install the nodes onto a real layout, wire up a bunch of sensors and output devices to provide a typical environment for exercise the hardware and provide feedback on the NMRAnet Yahoo Group and/or the OpenLCB Yahoo Group.

As OpenLCB specifications are still being designed, these prototypes are under active development and new firmware updates may need to be loaded and tested periodically. Instructions are provided, but you need to be comfortable with doing these types of operations.

Other commercial products that are available include:

  • The RailstarsIo:duino, an Arduino clone with a AT90CAN128 and native CAN on-board.
  • Silicon Railways LEDuino, an Arduino-clone with a ATMEGA328 and MCP2515 CAN on-board.
  • Three TCH Technology nodes, including a CAN/USB adapter, 32-Consumer, 32-Producer, and 24-Consumer/16-Producer nodes.
  • RR-CirKits is working on a Control Point node.

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First Final Draft Documents Available

At long last we have processed the first-of-many OpenLCB documents through to the point of Final Drafts. Once adopted they will form the basis of the new NMRAnet Standards and Technical Notes. These documents are now available here.

These have been a long time in the making as this whole process is new and is being worked out by volunteers who have demanding full-time jobs and other commitments and are spread across several time-zones. Now that we have the initial documents through the process, we hope to have the next set of OpenLCB documents processed through to NMRAnet Drafts stage much sooner.

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