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Stepper Motor Controller Card

This board is based on the Universal Controller Board.

Make it

First you need an assembled UniversalControllerBoard.

There is very little work needed to take a universal controller board with all the common components and to turn it into a stepper controller. All you need to do is to add the following components, which are to the right of A in the above picture:

Component Value
R10 4K7
R11 4K7

These form the synchronisation link between the stepper control boards.

You need three of these boards for the X, Y, and Z stepper motors respectively. Label them X, Y, and Z with a felt-tipped pen so you don't forget which will be which.

Program three PIC 16F628 chips with the files in ~your-id/workspace/firmware/build/16f628/stepmotor/stepmotor.hex (X axis), ~your-id/workspace/firmware/build/16f628/stepmotorb/stepmotorb.hex (Y axis), and ~your-id/workspace/firmware/build/16f628/stepmotorc/stepmotorc.hex (Z axis).

The programs in each are identical exept for one number - the address of the corresponding PIC in the token ring.

It's also convenient to label the PICs. I find that the best way to do this is to put a dab of typewriter correction fluid on each one, then to write X, Y, or Z on that when it's dry. (Mystery: there isn't a typewriter left on the planet; so how is it that everywhere still has typewriter correction fluid?)

Run It.

You will need a StepperMotor for to actually run now.

Attach the motor shaft to the object you are driving. If you are driving a threaded rod, use silicon tubing and clamps to create a solid yet somewhat flexible mounting solution.

Power off your RepRap machine. Connect your stepper motor to the stepper controller board. Then, power back on your RepRap machine.

Fire up the RepRap software and open the exercising program. If motor turns correctly, then congratulations you've made a working stepper motor controller, an essential step on your way to controlling your own manufacturing unit.

-- Main.ZachSmith - 11 Feb 2007