Thursday, 10 September 2009

It's alive!

My mad genius neurons are all a-twitter with excitement! My creation moves! It's alive! (For very small values of alive.)

I've hooked up the new power supply and both of the mounted motors to the stepper drivers, and the Arduino to a solar powered (!) USB power supply. Pins 4 and 5 drive one stepper and 6 and 7 drive another, with the standard test program that merely moves back and forth. And the Y stage moves! Happily, happily back and forth. The X stage, not so lucky, the tubing is not tight enough to move the weight that's on there, so I'm currently glueing it on. Should be ready to run tomorrow evening.

Issue 1: The wiring is flimsy at best. I need some jacks that fit the Arduino, and maybe a little board that I can mount the various things on so they're less random. Just mounting the drivers next to the motors would help.

Issue 2: After 10-30 seconds of power, the stepper drivers start to stutter audibly, whether actually moving anything or not. I suspect the power transistor is getting too hot and starting to flake out. It certainly gets hot. I thought my heat sinks would be enough, but maybe not. Must go to Aarhus Radio Lager and get better.

Issue 3: As I mentioned, the X stage coupling is not tight enough. Not sure what the best way to make it be tight and stay tight is. Maybe just tie a lot of string really tightly. Or tie some string that will shrink when wet.

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