Thank you for all the help and advice. But my original request remains. I am not sure how to reach the right person I.e the person who documented skid steering on a rover. The diagram provided in docs does not clearly indicate the pinouts for the motor controller to the pixhawk. Firstly it show three when there are in fact only two, and second it is not clear which goes where.
David, The docs show 6 wires but you are right there are only 4. so I assumed the other two were ground and maybe that was a mistake. Looking at the rover from the pin side with top as top I connected the ground to the top set of pins on 1 and 3 and then connected 7,11 to the next two down on 1 and 13,15 to the next two on 3. I think I will remove the ground for now and see if that helps. Is it possible that connecting the top pins on 1 and 3 to ground may have caused the power problem that burned out the pixhawk? Something caused the APM power module to draw excess power through the pixhawk.
01573-410522 The Shieling, Nether Huntlywood, Earlston, TD4 6BB Scotland http://www.ooftsauce.com Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ooft-Hot-Sauce/1380575552196814
@khancyr can you chip in here?
The key confusion seems to be pwm (3 wire plug) vs relay (2 wire plug) motor control setup, and I’ve provided the wiki link to that.
I can’t read the brushed motor controller where the wires go in. I don’t think this should be set up as a relay output. Doesn’t this motor controller take a PWM signal and translate it to voltage for the brushed motors
I read a data sheet on this thing.
This isn’t a “normal” esc. It’s just a H-bridge, so basically there’s 2 pins for each motor controlling direction (ie high-low for forward, low-high for reverse, or similar).
There’s a pwm for speed as well, but it isn’t normal range (0-255 not 1000-2000).
It should work as brushed-with-relay.
This youtube video tells it all.
Hi James the video explains a normal set up and there are in fact 3 pins (my mistake as using th pi I was only controlling direction not speed. I am trying to establish which pins go from this to which pins on 1 and 3 of the pixhawk? After that there are set ups to do as you say in mission planner
Ok based on all your feedback and my failure to spot I did not control speed on Rasp pi 0 I now see that there are in fact three connectors from the n298 bridge that need to go to the pixhawk. One cable is for speed that is the end pin on the bridge. The other two are direction. SO now coming back to the pixhawk, how to connect this?
Looks like Aux 5 and 6 are for the relay pins.
By default, yes, 5 & 6. You’ll need to assign 2 more pins to relay (two for each motor), plus the speed pins.
All 6 of those are connected to the signal row on the Pixhawk. You’ll need to add a ground wire too.
I don’t think they all go to the middle row. This may have been the problem. Signal is the bottom row I believe. I’ll take a look at one of my Pixhawks,
Crap. I shouldn’t answer this on the bus.
My bad. All 6 are signals. Bottom row.
Hi thanks but confused (of course) as the inline docs for Rover and Skid Steering say that they should go 3 and 3 to pins 1 and pins 3. Now we have established that it is three its just getting the right ones in the right pins? I guess the critical one is the speed pin as the other 2 if you get it wrong will just need reversing (if say the rover goes backwards instead of forwards).
If SERVO1_FUNCTION is 73 and SERVO3 is 74 then the speed pins would go to the signal pin on output 1 and 3. Looks like you can also assign more of the aux outputs with the RELAY_PINx parameter. I’ve never set up a brushed system so this is all marginal advice at best.
Maybe something like this would be easier. These come in different Amp capacity. Just throwing this out there.
I guess the advantage being that this comes with a preconfigured 3 pin connector that plugs right in to pixhawk pin set 1 or 3. so buy two of these to replace the existing h-bridge? I would have to find out which one suits the motors I guess or is as close to the existing h-bridge specs. I just wish the image in the ardupilot rover manual for connections to skid steering were a bit more precise or accompanied by detailed pinout descriptions as its not a problem connecting individual pins as long as your sure of where. Burning out the pixhawk was not a result I had expected as I thought the APM power module would ensure the pixhawk could not burn by only allowing 5 volts.
I found this at a decent price and it says works with tanks, cant find a dual motor on Amazon
The reason I thought to look for a dual motor is that would be an exact replacement for the bridge. The problem with two units might be powering them as right now I have power from a bank of AA rechargeable (8). I suppose with the individual motor controller route I would need lipos one for each controller/motor pair?
The motors are spec’d as * Rated Voltage: 6 V
- Operating Voltage Range 2~7.5V
- Gear reduction ratio: 45:1
- D output shaft diameter: 4 mm
- No-load speed: 133 RPM @ 6 v
- No-load current: 0.13 A
- Locked-rotor torque: 4.5 kg.cm
- Locked-rotor current: 2.3 A
Well if your motors are 7.5 volt max how are you using 8 rechargeable batteries with them. What you need, and your controller you gave the link to may work if you had 2, is probably just one 2s LiPo battery. The LiPo plugs into the pixhawk power module. it gives nice clean 5.3 volts to the pixhawk. The heavy wires coming out of the power module would go to the motor speed controllers. Well actually a 2s LiPo is 8.4 volts fully charged. And know it occurs to me that your 8 rechargeable batteries are probably wired in a combination of series and parallel. I seem to remember being told 4 or 5 years ago that the input voltage to the power module needed to be above 6 volts or it could cause problems.