I want to make a single cell 3×2 Braille grid that has 6 up and down shafts each of which can be controlled by arduino using 6 stepper motors .

  • So will that work with 1 arduino uno and/or stepper driver?

  • How many drivers should I use or is there a better way for controlling those 6 up down shafts individually?

  • Can I use 16 channel servo shield for controlling those stepper motors?

  • Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. – VE7JRO Dec 24 '19 at 0:58

A servo is not the same type of motor as a stepper. A servo is controlled by a somewhat PWM signal (somewhat, because the servos position will come from the absolute pulse length, not the duty cycle). A stepper motor needs to get the different phases driven in the correct order. This is done by a driver circuit for stepper motors and you cannot use the servo shield for this purpose without any extra circuitry.

You should use drivers explicitly meant for your type of stepper motor. Most drivers will have 2 inputs: 1 direction input (HIGH level means driving the motor in one direction, LOW level in the other) and 1 pulse pin. Everytime a pulse (pin going to HIGH, stay there for a short time and going back to low; or sometimes vice versa) is reaching this pin, the stepper will do 1 step. So to let the motor spin at a certain speed, you need to provide a specific number of pulses in a specific amount of time.

Since you want to drive all steppers individually, you need 6 drivers (one for each motor) and 12 output pins on your Arduino.

  • 1
    Thanks chrisl . I think I will just use servo motors instead of stepper because I think that they'll have my job done. – kb1024bytes Jul 26 '19 at 15:05

See the Stepper.h library in the IDE. I used it to control 7 Stepper motors (28BYJ-48) each with a simple ULN2003 driver board ($4-5USD for the 'unit') and control them from a '1284P (add in to the Arduino IDE). youtube.com/watch?v=5-9pqTQP_SQ Later reading suggests these little motors might be controllable with just 2 pulses (vs 4), I haven't done any experiments to confirm that; I played for a while just to find motor speeds/settings that resulted in smooth movements. We designed and 3D printed the white discs ourselves. My plan eventually is to have 7 or 10 banks like this, make a kinetic sculpture kind of thing. enter image description here

  • Which comment above? I see three of them. If the information in the comment(s) is relevant to your answer, please add it to your answer then delete the comment(s). Some Arduino "forums" mix their user's comments and answers together like a dogs breakfast. Here on SE, we are a Q+A site, so we try not to force people to read every comment and every answer just to try and make sense of it. – VE7JRO Dec 23 '19 at 17:39

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