Dumb Guy Circuit question

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steve7100
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Dumb Guy Circuit question

Post by steve7100 »

Love the game but I just can't grasp circuit controls.
Is there an easy way to control an inserter arm based on time ?
I'd like to have an inserter arm only put one item on a belt from a requester chest say every 30 seconds or 1 minute to control production.
Thanks for any help.
Last edited by steve7100 on Tue Mar 30, 2021 9:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

boran_blok
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Re: Dumb Guy Circuit question

Post by boran_blok »

The wiki has a section on clocks and directly under that is the section on pulse generators which is what you want.

SoShootMe
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Re: Dumb Guy Circuit question

Post by SoShootMe »

There is no need for a pulse generator in this case. The basic clock (a constant combinator and a decider combinator) described in the wiki is sufficient, with the inserter enabled when the decider combinator output signal is zero.

Use one colour of wire to connect the constant combinator, decider combinator input and decider combinator output together, and the other colour to connect the decider combinator output to the inserter.

steve7100
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Re: Dumb Guy Circuit question

Post by steve7100 »

Thanks I looked at that but it still doesn't make any sense to me.
I'll just keep pushing buttons like a monkey until something happens or blows up, lol

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Re: Dumb Guy Circuit question

Post by mmmPI »

steve7100 wrote:
Tue Mar 30, 2021 8:10 pm
Is there an easy way to control an inserter arm based on time ?
Yes, you can power the inserter with a solar panel, it will only function during daytime :lol:
steve7100 wrote:
Tue Mar 30, 2021 8:10 pm
I'd like to have an inserter arm only put one item on a belt from a requester chest say every 30 seconds or 1 minute to control production.
the pulse generator from the wiki can be used to trigger the inserter arm every 30 second or 60.

to control production there may be other ways that are intermediate difficulty between the two examples.


You can start testing without combinators to get an easier time figuring it out, just wiring a belt and an inserter together can help understanding circuit, the pulse in particular.

The inserter and the belt both has the option [] enable/disable and [] read content.

One simple thing from here is to [read content] on the belt, and [enable/disable] the inserter.

then you have an option on how you want the content to be read []hold or []pulse. (what makes it clear imo)

if you choose [hold] the belt will send into the wire the number of things that is on the belt during the entire time it is present on the belt.
if you choose [pulse] the belt will send into the wire the number of things that enter the belt only 1 time, at the exact moment when the belt register that things entered the belt.

This allows you to "easily" do things such as taking from a belt with an inserter only when the belt is full, or enable/disable one belt if another belt is empty.

It doesn't depend on time, and doesn't involve pulse and combinators but isn't as precise. may not be what you want :)

[edit : if you connect a power pole to any of those setups, and you put your mouse over it, it will show which values are carried by the wire, so for the pulse you'd see the quick flash when an item enter the belt that read content, and for the hold value you'd see the icon of the item and the quantity could fluctuate ].

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Re: Dumb Guy Circuit question

Post by SoShootMe »

steve7100 wrote:
Tue Mar 30, 2021 9:42 pm
Thanks I looked at that but it still doesn't make any sense to me.
I'll just keep pushing buttons like a monkey until something happens or blows up, lol
I think all the information to understand how the circuit network works is in the wiki, but it is spread over a number of pages and there are many pieces that fit together. Perhaps you missed something, and everything will start to fall into place if that is uncovered, or maybe you would find videos helpful. Also remember that the circuit network is among the "Expert" game concepts in the wiki and you shouldn't expect it to make sense straight away.

Experimenting is almost guaranteed to be beneficial. I think mmmPI has given some good advice here (I find connecting wire to a power pole, then hovering the pointer over it to observe values on the circuit network, especially useful). As it hasn't been mentioned, I'll add that it can be useful to use the console to slow down time, or access the map editor where you can freeze and single-step time. (To repeat the warning in the wiki: these console commands will disable achievements for the save game.)

steve7100
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Re: Dumb Guy Circuit question

Post by steve7100 »

Thanks for trying, but I guess I'm still to frickin' stupid to figure the damn things out.
Anyone know a youtube video that shows EXACTLY step by step how to do this ??
I watched a few about circuits but they still lost me.

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Re: Dumb Guy Circuit question

Post by DaveMcW »

Here is a premade one. You will have to figure out how to use blueprints though.



60-second-inserter.jpg
60-second-inserter.jpg (80.52 KiB) Viewed 437 times

steve7100
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Re: Dumb Guy Circuit question

Post by steve7100 »

Thank you so much !!! I think I have blueprints figured out.

edit: after looking at how that blueprint was set up there is no way I would have figured that out. What values would you change if you wanted it to run every 30 seconds instead of a minute ??

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disentius
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Re: Dumb Guy Circuit question

Post by disentius »

I 'll try to explain how it works.

Combinators update every "tick" in factorio, a tick is 1/60 of a second in factorio time. (the famous UPS -> Updates Per Second)

So, what happens here:
tick 1 -> Constant combinator sends T=1 to the decider combinator input
tick 2 -> Decider combinator sends T = 1 to its output, and since it is wired to its own input, it sends T=1 to itself
-> Constant combinator still sends T=1 to the decider combinator input. So The total input is now T=2
tick 3 -> decider combinator sends T=2 to its output and sends T=2 to its own input
-> Constant combinator still sends T=1 to the decider combinator input. So The total input is now T=3
tick 4 -> continues from tick 2
This keeps incrementing the T value until the value of T =3600. Now the decider combinator will stop outputting its T value, so its input goes back to T= 1

3600 ticks -> 600 seconds
Now you have a counter loop from 0 to 3599 ticks. The inserter activates when the tick value T=2. this happens every 3600 ticks.
If you want another wait time between activation, you have to adjust the value at the right side in the decider combinator, the one that is 3600 now.

steve7100
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Re: Dumb Guy Circuit question

Post by steve7100 »

Disentius, thanks for trying but they clearly didn't intend people like me to use circuits in the game.
They need to come up with Circuits Lite for dumb folks like me ..... like an inserter arm with a built in timer ??
Thanks again to all who tried to help.

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Re: Dumb Guy Circuit question

Post by Zanthra »

A few key points about circuit networks that might be misunderstood:

* Circuit networks are continuous wires of one color.
* Circuit networks don't store values, only pass values from outputs to inputs.
* You can watch the circuit network values by wiring it to a power pole.
* Combinators have separate output and input connectors.
* The output of a combinator can be wired back to it's own input.
* Combinators wait until the next game tick before their output changes due to an input change.
* Clocks can be created by having the output of a combinator feed back into itself directly, or through other combinators.

A circuit network is a single color of continuous wire, all outputs writing to a circuit network adds it's value to all the other outputs to produce the value of the circuit. Circuit networks never store values, they only pass values that are output onto that network. As soon as the source stops outputting a value, the circuit network will immediately lose the value. You can watch the values of any circuit network by wiring it to a power pole, then mouse over the power pole. All the available signals are present on each network, but only values that do not equal 0 are displayed. This is a live view of the sum of the current outputs onto that network, and is the values that any connected inputs will see if connected to that network.

Combinators can read from circuit networks, and write to circuit networks, but they don't join circuit networks. A decider or arithmetic combinator has 2 input connectors, one for a red network and one for a green network (the red network is added to the green network as the input to that combinator, but won't pass the values of the red network to the green network), and 2 output connectors, one for red and one for green (the same value is output to each). You can connect a combinator's output back to it's input using a red or a green wire.

Combinators output is based on the input value of the previous tick. This is where I think a lot of the trouble comes in, but it provides a bunch of useful capabilities.

If you wire arithmetic combinator's output back to it's input, and then to a power pole. If you set it to output A + 1, if you mouse over the power pole you will see the value of A start to rise very quickly.

If the value output by the combinator is A: 2 for example, the combinator will calculate the output of A: 3, but it won't stop outputting A: 2 immediately, the output changes to A: 3 synchronously with the game tick, along with other entity updates in the game. Once the tick changes, the output of the combinator will be A: 3, and it will calculate A: 4, and wait for the tick.

If instead of wiring the arithmetic combinator to itself, you instead wire the output to the input of a decider, then the output of that decider to the input of the arithmetic with two separate circuit networks, you can set the decider to only pass the value of A if A < 1800. When you wire the output from the Arithmetic combinator to a power pole, you will see the value of A rise until it reaches 1800, since the decider combinator will pass any value less than 1800 back to the input of the arithmetic combinator. Once it reaches 1800, the next tick the decider will output A: 0 back to the arithmetic combinator, and recall that circuit networks don't store values, they only pass them along, so the input to the arithmetic combinator will be A: 0, and the next tick it will output A: 1.

You can then use that signal of A equals a number between 1 and 1800 to time your circuit.

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