upgrading steppers

Re: upgrading steppers

Postby powair7s » Sun Nov 05, 2017 3:52 am

ok I think something went completely over my head. I thought the power for the arduino was coming from the power supply (like pibot) but it actually comes from the usb? That makes a lot more sense now. So all I need to find is an easy method of running 4 motors with an arduino or something comparable.
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Re: upgrading steppers

Postby martin54 » Sun Nov 05, 2017 4:27 am

Still lots of people using parallel port from the control computer although there are things you need to watch if you go down that road, computers haven't come with a parallel port connection for quite some time now although some motherboards still have the header so you can plug in a ribbon cable & you could also fit a PCi parallel port, when I first rebuilt my machine I had a parallel port connection to a 4 axis breakout board. Probably not what I would suggest if someone were to ask me how to connect to a control computer but it is a method that seems to still get used :lol:

Things have moved on & now there are a lot more people connecting via either USB or Ethernet, both work very well, prices have come down a lot from a few years ago but it is still a more expensive way to connect.
When I upgraded from the old parallel port connection I opted for Ethernet, just personal choice really for my machine & what I do either would have done me just fine.
I have a UC400ETH motion controller which is connected to a gigabyte (I think) PCI express network card in the control computer :lol: :lol:
The UC400 is connected to a basic breakout board, can't honestly remember the make. 4 axis of which I just use X,Y & Z. Gantry on my machine is very low so a 4th axis is not an option without some major surgery. The BOB has 2 relay outputs, one is used for the spindle the other is just spare at the moment.
5 inputs on the BOB but they aren't all used, one for emergency stop, one for the X, Y & Z homing switches which are wired in series & one for the touch plate although that isn't working just now, think I have a break in the wire somewhere. Just haven't got round to fixing it yet.
As I said in previous post I have 3 AM882 drivers for the stepper motors. X & Y axis are a single Nema34 & Z is a nema23. The original slo-syn steppers were past their sell by date when I got the machine, I had some nema23 motors that I was going to use but that would have meant making new mounts plus a lot of messing about cutting holes as the original motors sat in quite a tight space & the nema23's body was longer. So I just bought a couple of nema34's that fitted straight in :lol: :lol:

The machine originally ran on about 30V DC but you have to remember that this machine is over 30 years old & things have changed a lot since then, the original transformer is about the size of a garden shed :lol: :lol: :lol: OK exaggerating a bit there but you get the idea :lol: :lol:
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Re: upgrading steppers

Postby powair7s » Sun Nov 05, 2017 5:20 am

THanks for all the great information guys.

One last question... What is the best way to run my dual y axis? Should I run the signal from the arduino to two stepper drivers or wire two steppers to one driver? I think the later would cut my current in half but I know the stepper drivers allow you to change the current so I could up the current for two motors. Is there a 3rd option?
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Re: upgrading steppers

Postby PaulRowntree » Sun Nov 05, 2017 5:44 am

powair7s wrote:THanks for all the great information guys.

One last question... What is the best way to run my dual y axis? Should I run the signal from the arduino to two stepper drivers or wire two steppers to one driver? I think the later would cut my current in half but I know the stepper drivers allow you to change the current so I could up the current for two motors. Is there a 3rd option?

Two drivers gives you a flexible way to square up the gantry by moving the two independently.
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Re: upgrading steppers

Postby ger21 » Sun Nov 05, 2017 12:55 pm

PaulRowntree wrote:
powair7s wrote:THanks for all the great information guys.

One last question... What is the best way to run my dual y axis? Should I run the signal from the arduino to two stepper drivers or wire two steppers to one driver? I think the later would cut my current in half but I know the stepper drivers allow you to change the current so I could up the current for two motors. Is there a 3rd option?

Two drivers gives you a flexible way to square up the gantry by moving the two independently.


Ideally, a separate drive for each motor.
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Re: upgrading steppers

Postby powair7s » Sun Nov 05, 2017 3:39 pm

Thanks fellas.

Can I split the signal coming out of a common arduino port to two different steppers without any issues?
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Re: upgrading steppers

Postby PaulRowntree » Sun Nov 05, 2017 5:59 pm

powair7s wrote:Thanks fellas.

Can I split the signal coming out of a common arduino port to two different steppers without any issues?

A fan-out of 2 should work easily, but if you have trouble with not enough current source/sink in the arduino you can easily add a hex buffer chip to drive the fanout.
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Re: upgrading steppers

Postby powair7s » Sun Nov 05, 2017 7:16 pm

sweet. thanks paul and everyone else who took the time...it's about to be Christmas early :)
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Re: upgrading steppers

Postby powair7s » Tue Nov 07, 2017 3:28 am

ok here are my motors:

3x https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00PN ... UTF8&psc=1
1x https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00VA ... UTF8&psc=1

here are the upgrades I am planning on using for drivers, BOB and power supply.

4x https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00DF ... X4XC&psc=1
1x https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01IO ... A5QS&psc=1
1x https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008G ... USVZ&psc=1

If anyone wants to look to make sure I am not doing anything wildly stupid I would appreciate it.

Ben
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