Stepper Shield Kits

As you know, we have the buildlog.net stepper shield from Reactive Substance.  We want to sell complete kits too.  We ordered good quality electronic components, but the connectors were a little more difficult to find at reasonable prices.

Arduino Headers

We have everything now except the stacking Arduino connectors (they’re still on their way).   I’m thinking of offering the kits with ordinary male headers (the ones on the right in the image) for now; they work fine, but the proper Arduino shield stacking connectors (left) have the advantage that you can use the sockets to make additional connections (e.g. limit switches), using wires like the one in the image.Male-Male Jumper Wire

Funny story: each board needs four four-way screw terminals (for the motors) and one two-way screw terminal (for the power supply).  In the quantities we ordered, the price breaks worked so that the two-way terminals ended up costing a little more each than the four-way terminals (those were four times as many).  4-Way Screw TerminalsImagine my surprise when I noticed that the four-way terminals were simply two two-way terminals mated together.

2 thoughts on “Stepper Shield Kits

    • The buildlog.net shield has four drivers rather than three, and the drivers are the easily swappable (and relatively cheap) Pololu A4988 driver carrier boards. You can easily use two drivers for dual Y drive, which can mean increased performance compared to running both motors from a single driver. The A4988 is capable of 16x microstepping, rather than 8x for the DRV8811 on the grblShield; while that doesn’t give you significant extra precision, it makes operation smoother and less noisy. If you later choose to convert to, say, RAMPS (for a 3D printer), you can unplug the drivers and reuse them. The total price of the two solutions (buildlog.net shield plus drivers, vs. grblShield with the drivers included) is about the same. For Inventables’ full kit, my guess is that the grblShield was more convenient as it was a single, ready-to-use item rather than a modular solution with parts coming from two different vendors.

      What I would really like to try, and, if satisfied, offer for sale, is the TinyG.

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