Me-Stepper Driver Test Project


#1

Here is our second New product test project. We have finished the design of Me-Stepper Driver. You can see more information about this module here.

Now we need the feedback and suggestions from our customers. So we make this test project.
Here is the conditions of apply for this project:

  1. You should write a feedback report of these two products and post it in our forum or just make a discuss here in this topic.
  2. We will provide a library of the encoder motor driver soon this week. And the person who take part in this test project should help us to test this library and to improve it.
  3. After the testing, we will make a wiki page of this module. If you can help us to write this wiki page. It will be great.
  4. We just have 5 packages of this test project kit, including one Me-Stepper Driver. So just 5 people can get our testing package.
  5. You will get this testing parts for free but you should pay us the shipping fee. If you have made some orders from Makeblock these days and we can put the testing parts into your package so that you don’t have to pay the additional shipping fee.

The apply of this project will end at this Sunday. And we will select 5 people to send them the package next week. And will post the status of these packages here in this topic.

So if you want to help us to test these new products and don’t mind to pay a shipping fee for it. Just write here or send me an email at: eric@makeblock.cc


#2

Mail sent :smile:

Check that the text in this post is the same that encoder test project and not steppers : 4… including two encoder and one encoder motor driver. If you don’t have our DC motors, you can ask us to send you one for testing. So just 5 people can get our testing package.


#3

I would love to test these as well ofcourse :slight_smile:


#4

Thank you Marcos. I have corrected the mistake. Maybe your order will be delay if you want to add the test parts in it. Is it OK to send them next week?


#5

Hi Stijn,
We will add this into your order and send it to you next week. Is it OK?


#6

@Eric

Yes, delay the order for next week, I have no hurry, just ordered the stepper motor and bracket to try the new driver :slight_smile: so send them together

Thanks !!


#7

OK, that’s great. We will send them to you together.


#8

Yes, perfect!


#9

Hi guys, any news about the shipping of these testing parts ?

Cheers


#10

My test-kit just arrived!

I do need some extra information on a few things though:

for encoder+motor, leds and stepper:

  • What code is currently written to flash on the boards? (sourcecode available?)
  • What connections are on the board (testpoints or serial debug output? flashing points? ISP/serial things?)
    For the stepper board in particular:
  • What is the order of the stepper motor pinout? It accepts a neat plug, but I dont have a motor with that plug.

#11

Nevermind about the stepper-wiring - I can just look at the picture :slight_smile:


#12

I found the stepper-library and the led-library on github! (and the firmwares :slight_smile: )

first findings so far:

  • the led strip “indicator” sample seems to have red and blue reversed
  • the led strip is very high-level, a fast way to just send colors for individual pixels without any additional blinking/management would be nice
  • a nice convenience function would be to also accept HSV for this function instead of just RGB - this makes it easier to develop color themes.

#13

Hi Stijn,

"- What code is currently written to flash on the boards? (sourcecode available?)"
I think you have found firmwares in our github.

"- What connections are on the board (testpoints or serial debug output? flashing points? ISP/serial things?)"
There are two breakout connections on board, the four pin connector is the breakout of the signal pins of the 6pin connector from Me-Baseshield.
The six pin connector on the other side is the FTDI downlaod connector.

"- What is the order of the stepper motor pinout? It accepts a neat plug, but I dont have a motor with that plug. "
About the pinout of the stepper motor, we have offered a 4pin plug for that. Didn’t you receive that with the stepper motor driver board?


#14

@Eric - I found 2 libraries and firmwares (for Ledstrip and Stepper) - but not the motor/encoder board firmware - is that one available too?

I shall try and find an ftdi board in the basement - I think I still have one somewhere :slight_smile:

I did not receive a 4pin-plug - if you give me the type-number I can order a few from Farnell.


#15

Some observations about the stepper driver:

  • it is based on the accelstepper library, which makes it unhandy to just run it at a constant speed. Perfect constant speed is quite useful - I might try adding this
  • the example starts out with a HUGE speed - might be nicer for people to start out with more sensible values.

stepperDriver.setMicroStep(STP_EIGHTH); // set micro step. STP_FULL, STP_HALF, STP_QUARTER, STP_EIGHTH, STP_SIXTEENTH
stepperDriver.setMaxSpeed(2008); // set max speed. 1-10000
stepperDriver.setAcceleration(1000
8); // set acceleration. 1-200000

gave me nice movements on the new turntable

  • The new stepper driver seems less powerful than the old one. I take it the tiny potentiometer is the amperage-adjust control? What is the range of the value?
  • Uploading new firmware went fine - I used the http://arduino.cc/en/Main/USBSerial usb2serial with the arduino-mini 168 as target.
  • I am still quite curious as to how well synchronized movement with 2+ stepper drivers will go, did you do any tests with this? Can I somehow extend the ME_BaseShield to allow for more than 2 stepperdrivers?
  • It runs quite hot - maybe “idle mode” can be detected in which the power is pulsed (like the idle-mode on the old drivers, this also makes the motors themselves run less hot)

Overall I am very happy with this little board so far, makes it very handy to add steppers :slight_smile:

Great work!


#16

@Eric Another question: does Makeblock plan to sell a powersupply? In the current setup every board needs its own powersupply - this gets a bit unhandy with larger setups. Maybe a single supply with a lot of output plugs?


#17

Hi Stijn,

The firmware of the motor/encoder board will be release soon.

The 4pin-plug may be like this.

I don’t really know what is the exact name of it and search on Farnell find one.
http://nl.farnell.com/phoenix-contact/fk-mcp-1-5-4-st-3-81/plug-free-spring-3-81mm-4way/dp/1792841

We will offer the power supply soon.

Best Regards,
Eric