Projects and Partnerships

In addition to our core capabilities, Thorski continues to pursue innovation and development in other areas, including internal product developments and industry partnerships.

Arduino DCC Decoder

All work and no play makes for… well, you get the idea!

Thorski’s most recent R&D effort was the development of an Arduino-based DCC decoder for model railroad turnouts. The initial effort was motivated by the desire for a DCC decoder solution based on a standard and widely available microprocessor architecture. As the concept matured, it demanded significant efforts in mechanical, electrical, and software design, and brought all three together in a fun way. The end result was:

  • Three different controller versions for standard, long, and crossover turnouts
  • Approximately 3500 lines of new code in 12 class libraries
  • Three different electrical and PCB designs
  • Four enclosure designs and additional mechanical parts

For all the details, read the design description here.

Caravellair Roadable Aircraft

Thorski Design is an industry partner in the development of the Caravellair Roadable Aircraft, in development at Caravella Aerospace. In addition to providing engineering expertise in areas such as structural analysis, mechanism design, and vehicle dynamics, Thorski was a major contributor in the development of a high-fidelity 1/6th scale model of the vehicle. The model faithfully reproduced all of the key chassis and aerodynamic features of the prototype, including the front and rear suspension, foldable wing, collapsable tail boom, and flight control surfaces.

Model Train Layout Automation and Control

Code named BearTracks, Thorski has developed an automation and control system for model train layouts, consisting of a powerful software application and hardware interface. BearTracks redefines “Command Central” with features such as:

  • Graphical representation of layouts and accessories gives operators a commanding view of the layout and its configuration
  • Powerful scripting system allows instant control any number of physical devices – activate multiple turnouts or accessories with one touch
  • Pan, zoom, or rotate the layout to focus on specific areas – zoom in for yard operations, or view the whole layout for mainline control
  • Client/server architecture allows any number of users on multiple devices to control different parts of the layout simultaneously
  • Fully networked design allows connection via Ethernet, WiFi, and even remote control via the internet

BearTracks is currently in the prototype and testing phases of development.