Prototype to PCB Question

Thread Starter

Kovlop

Joined Apr 7, 2020
2
Hey guys, great forum, thanks for all the info

I am currently working through a breadboard/ arduino prototype of a system that includes 2 stepper motors, 2 stepper drivers, 2 buttons that change the detected state on the arduino mega and a potentiometer (also read into the arduino). The steppers run off 24V 2A each (max). This is all powered by a 6A 24V power supply unit. The end goal with this system is a manufactured and saleable product (dimensions and weight do not matter currently).

Question: When I have the prototype working, what is the standard route to manufacture RE custom PCB so that we don't need an arduino & off the shelf motor driver in every unit sold? Create a custom PCB that will eliminate the need for the arduino and stepper drivers and have the software uploaded during manufacture? I don't have any experience with electronic design for manufacture (I have designed and ordered custom PCBs before) so I would be very appreciative of any comments received. Thank you!
 

Janis59

Joined Aug 21, 2017
1,179
Hope make it cheaper than Chineeses do for 5$ a 5-axis complect??? I would better to save energy for things we cannot buy for few coins. Only excuse if the weight and size is hard limited, then You have a great market, for example for drones.
 

Thread Starter

Kovlop

Joined Apr 7, 2020
2
Hope make it cheaper than Chineeses do for 5$ a 5-axis complect??? I would better to save energy for things we cannot buy for few coins. Only excuse if the weight and size is hard limited, then You have a great market, for example for drones.
I'm not sure I understand. Are you saying it's standard to use a pre existing motor driver board and arduino in every device sold instead of creating your own single PCB with everything on it?
 

MaxHeadRoom

Joined Jul 18, 2013
20,695
You would need a schematic capture (Free Kicad?) and then convert the design to PCB layout, send Gerber files to PCB manuf.
Either populate yourself or get the boards assembled at the same factory.
Max.
 

Janis59

Joined Aug 21, 2017
1,179
RE: Kovlop
Of course. If it would cost a 100$ there would be thinking to do DIY or buy readymade. But not here. For heavy power steppers must be used separate "driver" after "controller", but lightweight steppers may be driven straight from controller. Examples (please note such model variety are hundreds): https://www.ebay.com/itm/CNC-Router-Single-1-Axis-Controller-Stepper-Motor-Drivers-TB6560-3A-driver-board/251982024768?hash=item3aab4c9040:g:nEAAAOSw3xJVbtZQ
https://www.ebay.com/itm/GRBL-Laser-controller-board-CNC-USB-3-Axis-Stepper-Motor-Driver-Controller-Board/143213085428?hash=item21582a42f4:g:V1UAAOSwd5FejEZH
https://www.ebay.com/itm/3PCS-CNC-Single-Axis-4A-TB6600-Stepper-Motor-Drivers-Controller-42-57-86/153436064995?hash=item23b9808ce3:g:-BYAAOSw3qVcocto
and many many more
 

panic mode

Joined Oct 10, 2011
1,831
make a working prototype then to make a working version you need to get aquainted with some EDA that can produce designs in required size and configuration.

that means capturing schematics, making PCB design, ordering boards (either barebone or assembled).

then order few boards, assemble one or two yourself and test your production design. chances are something will be missed and will need modification unless you are experienced and really careful.... the point is you don't want to order 500 units with assembly only to find out you missed some detail.

here is a good example of what to consider when making own design.
 
Sometimes there's "proof of concept" designs first which it looks like what your doing.
Design for manufacturer is another probem altogether.
Case and power supply end up costing a bunch.

You have to watch out for obsolescence too.
You want the cheapest CPU that will get the job done.

Even though you have chosen an Arduino, you can get the same functionality.
 

nsaspook

Joined Aug 27, 2009
7,294
A simple "proof of concept' design for a MODBUS interface. A vector board for the needed functionality on a existing design for base PIC18F1320 controller.


Test module for software design and interface testing.

Operation validation.

First spin MODBUS PCB testing with better RS485 transceiver. Checking for proper interface levels and timing. I have a tray full of the DIP controllers so that won't change.


PCB redesign for additional SMD parts, added functionality and testing pads.



Final PCB in enclosures.
 
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