so I've set out to create the cheapest possible desktop cnc out of materials available to just about anybody with the same cursory knowledge I have--basic digital electronics, some shop skills. One of the first products of this ongoing project is a set of stepper controller cards that can drive unipolar steppers, 3A/coil, up to 50V. The cards drive a single motor each, and consist of a PIC with a few lines of c code and a couple darlington arrays, and can be made for about $2.50 apiece. $1.00 if you get the PICs free via Microchip's sampling system. I've tested them with manual control (no computer interface just yet) and they do the job perfectly.
the goal I have in mind is something that satisfies the requirements of the average joe: affordability, small size and versatility over speed, huge working area and extremely high precision. Yet I haven't been able to find several components of such a system, chiefly cheap no-frills controller cards. Is there such a thing, or have i done something completely new?
I haven't been able to find several components of such a system, chiefly cheap no-frills controller cards. Is there such a thing, or have i done something completely new?
Nope! Your the first one. Thousands of us are dumber than rocks and are smacking our collective foreheads saying "Wow, I should'a thought of that".