Challenges along the way

Since starting to put together the electrical elements and the code for the Arduino, I have had numerous challenges that have held me back. Starting off with the Stepper motor:

I needed to use a stepper motor as I needed a 360 degree continuous rotation, rather than a servo motor which is not a continuous rotation. I also needed a stepper motor powerful enough to pull magnets with, so I went for the bi-polar 12V motor. The problem with this is that the Arduino can only handle 5V, so all my attempts to make the motor work through the Arduino were unsuccessful as there wasn’t enough power. So I tried adding more power using a 9V battery. I went back to basics and used an LED to test that the circuit I was using with the battery was working:

(Stupidly didn’t get the battery in shot but it was attached to the yellow and orange wires to the right of the shot.)

I then tried switching in the stepper motor instead of the LED, but I could not get the wiring right to power it, and it had not been documented anywhere online to help me. After a lot of research it was clear that most stepper motor examples used some sort of motor shield or driver. So I have ordered in a shield and a driver to try both of them out. I would say that one of my main difficulties has been trying to find help online, as I am a first-time user for Arduino I was hoping to find tutorials and simple diagrams for wiring, however for the electronics I was hoping to use there were not that many. I understand a lot of the code from my knowledge of the Processing language, but it is the wiring which I needed to understand. Because there are many different types of stepper motors, it is hard to find help specific to each motor. However I am hoping that once I get to use the motor shield, it will be basic to understand and follow instructions to get the motor spinning. I will then be able to progress with my idea and incorporate the input from the sensor.


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