Hacked Gadgets Forum

April 10, 2009

Stepper Motor Controller from used Computer Equipment

at 12:14 pm. Filed under DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks

 

We all need some inspiration from time to time. Andrew is a 13 year old from Canada who is doing some electronic experimenting. He built this stepper motor controller and single axis CNC machine from recycled parts from old computer equipment. Looks like he loves hot glue as much as I do. :) All he needs now is a few more scanners to make his single axis CNC machine into a 3 axis unit. Just for safety I might suggest using a metal case for housing the electronics just incase something overheats. An old AT power supply housing looks like it could work well and already has lots of vent holes and a fan that could be left in place.

"I am 13 I have always wanted to build a cnc machine but because inexpensive parts are hard to find in Canada I have had trouble trying to build a decent cnc controller. The purpose if this Instructable is to show that anyone can build a cnc controller using an old scanner. The scanner I used was an old OpticPro scanner. I had previously extracted the stepper motor and experimented with it but not considered it for a cnc controller. All of the controllers on the Internet had a large number of expensive transistors or were ridiculously complex. I finally stumbled across this controller and realized I could build it. By reusing the parts from the old scanner and making the case from recycled cardboard, I am cutting back on my impact on the planet."


 

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9 Responses to “Stepper Motor Controller from used Computer Equipment”

  1. The voice in your head Says:

    It’s always neat to see electronics made with wood.

  2. Alan Parekh Says:

    No worries about anything shorting out. :)

  3. Josh Says:

    And wood (and his cardboard case) is a lot easier to cut with a hobby knife.
    I like this. If only scanners were this readily available when I was 13!

  4. Calentando motores Says:

    […] paso a paso con el puerto paralelo cuando me encuentro con que se me han adelantado. Hackaday y Hackedgadgets se las han arreglado para reseñar el mismo día este instructable sobre como controlar los […]

  5. zul Says:

    hello.. can u email me all the information to do this things. i really like to make it one.. :-) hope u can help me from A to Z by the info.

  6. Alan Parekh Says:

    Hi Zul,

    There is a link in the article that should help.

  7. zul Says:

    i have 4 stepper motor, but none of then have 5 wire like the example.. mine have 4 and 7 wire.. how do i can connect them?

  8. Alan Parekh Says:

    Step 4 shows how to hook it up. The 4 wire stepper is a bipolar one and will not be able to be used with that drive circuit.

  9. ElectroNick Says:

    You actually can hookup a 4-wire stepper to a ULN2003 (or better yet ULN2803 – it has 8 arrays instead of 7) but you can only use 1/2 of the motor supply voltage ’cause that’s the only way to create the negative voltage needed to drive the bipolar steppers without the common point in the windings. I did a write-up about this here http://elabz.com/driving-a-bipolar-stepper-motor-with-arduino-and-uln2803ag . You can see the circuit used on that page. Note that the sequencing comes from an extra MCU (Arduino), not a PC and it’s a different sequence from what was used in the instructable which was based on a unipolar (5+ wires) stepper.

    In any case, in principal, yes, you can drive a bipolar 4-wire stepper with a ULN2803 or ULN2003.

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