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Electrical / Mechanical engineer question...


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I'm looking to find a cheap stepper motor controller that interfaces with a PC (serial, parallel, etc).

I'm also looking to find some cheap stepper motors.

It's a small project for physically turning control knobs on equipment via the pc, so the motors don't need to be hefty.

I have basic electronic/soldering skills, but I've never put together a pc board before.

Can anyone point me in the right direction? Anyone know of a cheap controller that is already assembled?

The equipment has alot of knobs (like 6 to 10 knobs) so it would be really cool to find a stepper controller that could run like 10 motors.


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Here's a source for what looks like really cheap stepper motors:


Note that I've now read up on the difference between a stepper motor and a servo motor...I definately want to be able to finely control the turning of the knobs, so I believe at this point servos won't work and I need to use stepper motors.

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This page looks promising...


" Some drivers might also come with a frequency generator / timer that is used to control a rotation speed (LM555 / NE555) and digital IC such as 74LS194 that will use pulses to generate a stepping mode.

In this project, on the other hand we will use computer and a program to perform that functionality. "

It uses a 16pin ULN2003 IC that costs around 64 cents.

Looking for the IC online, I see all these parts that are "ULN2003.." but they have letter designations after them.

Anyone know what those mean?

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Having a nice conversation with yourself to boost post count???? :smilelol:lol:smilelol:lol

J/K :yesnod

I thought it was just me :leaving

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Well kinda.

I started getting all setup last night. I unsoldered the gain control from my guitar amp and ran wires out to a bread board.

I measured the pot to get the value for it.

I then hooked the pot up to the bread board to double check that I hadn't broken anything.

For some reason though I could barely get any volume out of it.

I'm wondering if I have some crazy high resistance in the wire or breadboard.

The gain pot also had the body grounded to a pad on the circuit board so that may be it as well (I didn't stub that connection out, I just did the 3 wires for the pot).

I'm thinking for a quick test tonight I can just pull the wires from the breadboard and put them together to simulate having the control all the way up.

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