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Big Stepper Motors with Arduino  

DroneBot Workshop
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Joined: 2 years ago
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Today I’ll be working with a BIG stepper motor. I'll show you how to use a microstep driver module and an Arduino to drive a NEMA 23 size motor.

Article with code:

Today we will work with a bigger motor than the ones used in the original stepper motor video. This motor is a NEMA 23 size beast that takes up to 4.2 amperes per coil, more than we can drive using the drivers and H-Bridges we used earlier.

To drive this motor I'll be using a microstep module, a common device available on eBay, at Amazon, and at your local electronic and electrical supply store. The module I used is a model MA860H but the wiring and coding will work for any one of these modules.

In order to select a module suitable for your stepper motor you will need to know how to read and interpret some of the stepper motor specifications, so I’ll cover that. One spec that fools a lot of people is the voltage rating, I'll explain why the number in the spec sheets can be ignored!

I’ll show you how to hook the microstep module up to an Arduino and how to code for it, using a simple sketch and also the AccelStepper library.

Here is what you will find in today's video:

00:00 - Introduction
02:18 - Reading Stepper Motors Specifications
08:49 - Selecting a Microstep Driver
12:33 - Arduino Hookup and Demo
22:44 - Using AccelStepper

If you’d like the sketch or want additional information you can find it all in the article on the DroneBot Workshop website at

"Never trust a computer you can’t throw out a window." — Steve Wozniak

Eminent Member
Joined: 1 month ago
Posts: 20

My local salvage yard offered up this monster stepper motor, for only a couple bucks. So I had to duplicate Bill's experiment. The stepper driver was about eight bucks on eBay. It was a very rewarding experiment. I am thinking of using this motor to drive the steering of a 3-wheel trike robot/electric vehicle project I have been thinking about. This motor would also make a nice force-feedback for my flight sim yoke, Cessna 172 cockpit project.



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