Stepper Motor - which drvier?

Support for Arduino in combination with Air Manager and Air Player

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PilotOlivier
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Stepper Motor - which drvier?

#1 Post by PilotOlivier »

Hi everyone

I read a lot of topics on this forum to improve my knowledge before starting the construction of my new home simulator.

I still have Air manager.... magic software !!

I understand that stepper motor can be control by Vid66-06 driver or ULN2003 based. Some people is strong supporter of Vid66-06 driver !

Could you explain pros & cons of each solution?


Thank you for your support

Olivier

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jph
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Re: Stepper Motor - which drvier?

#2 Post by jph »

99% of all stepper stepper motor controllers of any kind can be controlled by AM.
the vid066 is a controller for X27 type steppers, but the commands also enable the use of ANY stepper driver that supports the industry standard two pin 'step' and 'direction' control. You could therefore use any stepper driver and hence any stepper motor. You could even use giant stepper motors to control force loading if you require.
Consider the 'VID066' in AM as a generic stepper driver command.

First I would suggest that you research stepper motors and look at what people use or have used. You may find that you find a nice stepper motor that will work for what you want, that is the first thing. Then select your driver board, there are MANY to chose from. You can use the older type DRV8825 or the A4988 but these are really obsolete now as they have been superseded by the TMC22xx series of quiet drivers which are amazing. You can also use the DM5xx and DM8xx and any other type of driver.

chose what you want to use for your design first and then you will almost certainly find that AM supports it. The 28BY steppers are cheap and work, the X27 are the type used in automotive gauges then you have the standard sizes of Nema 17, 23 34, 42 etc. It is entirely up to you. Many people use the BY28 steppers because they are cheap and fairly small and already reduction geared. The 'driver' is not really of concern as AM supports them all.
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PilotOlivier
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Re: Stepper Motor - which drvier?

#3 Post by PilotOlivier »

Thank you for your explanations @jph , really appreciated

marcel_felde
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Re: Stepper Motor - which drvier?

#4 Post by marcel_felde »

jph wrote: Tue Aug 16, 2022 7:33 am as they have been superseded by the TMC22xx series of quiet drivers which are amazing. You can also use the DM5xx and DM8xx and any other type of driver.
Hello, long time no hear :)

Beside being quite, do they have additional advantages for the operation of x27 steppers, for example a smoother movement?

I have the following possible scenarios:

1) ArdsimX - controls most steppers in my cockpit. But they don't run very smooth and conflicts with Air Manager sometimes so I have to reconnect USB cables to make it work again.
Also I have to start Air Manager after ArdsimX, otherwise the gauges won't work at all.

2) Successor of ArdsimX - smooth operation of the needles. But only one Arduino UNO board for steppers possible - by far not enough I/Os for may many gauges.

3) Air Manager direct control of steppers. Not yet tested the smoothness.

4) TMC22xx series. Not yet used.

5) Vid6606 (STI6606) 4x Stepper Driver from Propwash Simulations. Works fine with ArdsimX but I have no idea how to get it work with Air Manager.

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Ralph
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Re: Stepper Motor - which drvier?

#5 Post by Ralph »

If you use version 4 then there cannot be any conflict with other software.

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jph
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Re: Stepper Motor - which drvier?

#6 Post by jph »

Hi,
if your primary interest is the X27 type stepper than you really must use the VID066 driver itself. The X27 type is a very specific unit. The other drivers, although they 'can' work are definitely not to be recommended for this use only.
You can get Vid6606 clones (which are perfect) really cheaply so you could make your own driver boards, or you could use the propwash board if you really want to. You could build around 10 or 15 boards for the price of one propwash one ;) ..... that's a lot of steppers..

see this thread for a cheap way to make a vid6606 driver using sop to dip adapters.
https://siminnovations.com/forums/viewt ... 082#p36082

the 6606 units are about 70 cents each, the pcb is a few cents, all you need is a small electrolytic cap and you have a 'propwash' board for about 2 dollars

In the same thread you will also see (earlier) a dual concentric X27 unit which is neat.
An X27 stepper is around 1.5 to 2 euros bought from china direct - or go to the local car scrap yard if you like wading and rip out a few instrument panels and rob them :lol:

To sum up - the X27 stepper unit is a special case and really DOES need it's own dedicated driver.

Oh, and its easy top open up an X27 and remove the stops, but you then need to calibrate it by some other means apart from the standard - ram it to the end stops method.
If considering multiturn units though I would probably be looking at a small nema 17 and a TM driver. Although it is total overkill it has plenty of torque to turn a calibration pointer or card and also to drive gearing and not expensive - (again, from China)
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marcel_felde
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Re: Stepper Motor - which drvier?

#7 Post by marcel_felde »

Hello @jph ,

I have already about 200 X27 steppers here and several Propwashboards. So no need to switch to an alternative. I am just (not yet) clever enough how to drive the Propwashboards with Air Manager. ;)
I have also modified X27 steppers to run 360° and use optical elements for calibration. ;)

Interesting is, how the developer of ArdsimX did get that smooth movement with his successor software. ;)

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Re: Stepper Motor - which drvier?

#8 Post by marcel_felde »

Ralph wrote: Sun Aug 21, 2022 10:47 am If you use version 4 then there cannot be any conflict with other software.
Thanks Ralph, interesting to know! But I still would prefer to have it all running on one solution.
Otherwise you have to maintain and configure both software/hardware solutions. ;)

No, I have quite a few Air Manager Devices so I did not yet switch to v4. ;)

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jph
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Re: Stepper Motor - which drvier?

#9 Post by jph »

marcel_felde wrote: Sun Aug 21, 2022 5:00 pm Hello @jph ,

I have already about 200 X27 steppers here and several Propwashboards. So no need to switch to an alternative. I am just (not yet) clever enough how to drive the Propwashboards with Air Manager. ;)
I have also modified X27 steppers to run 360° and use optical elements for calibration. ;)

Interesting is, how the developer of ArdsimX did get that smooth movement with his successor software. ;)
I have never had any issue with #smooth movement# at all - what do you normally use ? it will be the software, not the stepper or driver that is causing an issue.
The propwash boards are absolutely simple to drive, (at that price they damn well should be :lol: ) they need a common gnd from the AM micro in use to the board and then STEP pins are on the J3 connector and DIR control is on J5.
I have never heard of ardsimx ? - dunno anything about that.
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jph
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Re: Stepper Motor - which drvier?

#10 Post by jph »

marcel_felde wrote: Sun Aug 21, 2022 5:00 pm
I have also modified X27 steppers to run 360° and use optical elements for calibration. ;)
I would be interested in seeing any info you have on your optical calibration. Do you have one built you can take an image of please ?
“Everything in moderation, including moderation.”
“Experience is merely the name men gave to their mistakes.”
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