After development what?

I have read a lot about the Arduino and have been experimenting with it. I have several projects that I think it will help me with, but what I was wondering is after I have things debugged and have it running the way I want, how do I put things in production.

If I need 10 or 12 of a specific thing, do I need to buy 10 or 12 Arduino's. I have read that at least some developers build their own microcontroller for their projects. Is that pretty much the way it's done? If so are there any threads on doing that?

Thanks

There are some of us who design boards for others for a fee, like me.
I do a lot of custom design work, taking a collection of parts and combining them with basically a stripped down Uno for example, resulting in a custom board that you can assemble with thru hole parts, or we can build with surface mount parts, or some combination of the two.
You can see some examples of my designs here
http://www.crossroadsfencing.com/BobuinoRev17/
Like this Atmega1284P board with SD socket, RTC, RS232 buffer, some prototype area, etc.

CrossRoads:
There are some of us who design boards for others for a fee, like me.
I do a lot of custom design work, taking a collection of parts and combining them with basically a stripped down Uno for example, resulting in a custom board that you can assemble with thru hole parts, or we can build with surface mount parts, or some combination of the two.
You can see some examples of my designs here
Cross Roads Electronics
Like this Atmega1284P board with SD socket, RTC, RS232 buffer, some prototype area, etc.

I appreciate your response. But all I want to do is control the speed and direction of a stepper motor and be able to program it to rotate to a position and stop. I do similiar things with dc motors just using switches and a simple pmw controller to control motor speed.

I would think that would be relatively simple starting with something like an ATTiny85.

I am really looking to learn a little about this whole area. It has always been somewhat of a mystery and has always fascinated me. But they learning to play the Guitar was always on my todo list too.

I haven't done anything with Attiny85 personally (or even as the base for a custom design). 6 IO pins total, 8 K flash, 0.5K SRAM/EEPROM, no Serial port, that's a bit too resource limited for me as a starting point for a project.

CrossRoads:
I haven't done anything with Attiny85 personally (or even as the base for a custom design). 6 IO pins total, 8 K flash, 0.5K SRAM/EEPROM, no Serial port, that's a bit too resource limited for me as a starting point for a project.

I can appreciate that. I'm a computer consultant by profession and an Aeronautical Engineer by Education. So my EE is limited to plugging in a Lamp. But at 71, I now have some time to explore areas that have always interested me. This is one of those areas. So the question would be where to start. This seemed a pretty simple thing to to. The Arduino does it just fine. I have the code already written and the Development project did exactly what I wanted. But at $24 per shot for an Arduino, building several of them becomes cost prohibitive. But by maybe building a simple microprocessor to handle the signals to the motor controller (which I can get for a few dollars) makes it cost efficient and an opportunity to maybe learn something, hence a win win situation.

Many thanks.

Install an ATTiny core (I recommend mine - json link in sig or on my github GitHub - SpenceKonde/ATTinyCore: Arduino core for ATtiny 1634, 828, x313, x4, x41, x5, x61, x7 and x8 )

Then, what you do is get a breakout board from someone for the ATTiny you want, or connect one up on a breadboard yourself, and make your project work there, with jumperwires and such.

Then, you think about maybe designing a custom circuit board to tie it all together if you need a bunch of them, or wire them up in a more tidy/permanent manner (ex, with prototyping board) if you only need a couple.

I happen to sell some circuit boards designed with this in mind - breakout boards for ATTinies (all the ones my core supports except for the common tiny84/85 - market is flooded with those - and the 4313 which is nearing obsolecense) both assembled and as bare boards. For the tiny85 and tiny84, I have project boards that combine prototyping space with an outline for the tiny and supporting components - plus of course general purpose prototyping board.

You can do a hell of a lot with 8k of flash. I have done more projects with the 841 than the '328p - I don't know what you guys manage to fill all that code space with. The tiny841 (and to lesser extent, 1634) are sometimes suitable for projects that you can't do on a 328p - they've both got two hardware serial ports, the 841 has 3 timers with remappable output compare pins, (8 bit, 2x16, compared to 8 bit, 16 bit, async 8bit on 328p - so the timers are better too), and a really badass ADC.
'

Oh - and check out ebay for arduino clones. They're way less than $24.

DrAzzy:
Install an ATTiny core (I recommend mine - json link in sig or on my github GitHub - SpenceKonde/ATTinyCore: Arduino core for ATtiny 1634, 828, x313, x4, x41, x5, x61, x7 and x8 )

Then, what you do is get a breakout board from someone for the ATTiny you want, or connect one up on a breadboard yourself, and make your project work there, with jumperwires and such.

Then, you think about maybe designing a custom circuit board to tie it all together if you need a bunch of them, or wire them up in a more tidy/permanent manner (ex, with prototyping board) if you only need a couple.

I happen to sell some circuit boards designed with this in mind - breakout boards for ATTinies (all the ones my core supports except for the common tiny84/85 - market is flooded with those - and the 4313 which is nearing obsolecense) both assembled and as bare boards. For the tiny85 and tiny84, I have project boards that combine prototyping space with an outline for the tiny and supporting components - plus of course general purpose prototyping board.

You can do a hell of a lot with 8k of flash. I have done more projects with the 841 than the '328p - I don't know what you guys manage to fill all that code space with. The tiny841 (and to lesser extent, 1634) are sometimes suitable for projects that you can't do on a 328p - they've both got two hardware serial ports, the 841 has 3 timers with remappable output compare pins, (8 bit, 2x16, compared to 8 bit, 16 bit, async 8bit on 328p - so the timers are better too), and a really badass ADC.
'

Oh - and check out ebay for arduino clones. They're way less than $24.

I will check ebay. Wow, a lot of information here. I appreciate the leads and ideas.

John

ov10fac:
I have read that at least some developers build their own microcontroller for their projects. Is that pretty much the way it's done?

You have your terminology wrong. A microcontroller is an IC or "chip", e.g. ATtiny85. Building your own microcontroller would cost millions of dollars. You would need quite the project to make it worthwhile to create a microcontroller for it rather than using an existing device.

pert:
You have your terminology wrong. A microcontroller is an IC or "chip", e.g. ATtiny85. Building your own microcontroller would cost millions of dollars. You would need quite the project to make it worthwhile to create a microcontroller for it rather than using an existing device.

Sorry, bad choice of words.

pert:
You have your terminology wrong. A microcontroller is an IC or "chip", e.g. ATtiny85. Building your own microcontroller would cost millions of dollars. You would need quite the project to make it worthwhile to create a microcontroller for it rather than using an existing device.

You can essentially design your own microcontroller with an FPGA.

Normally I design and implement my program using Arduino Uno and connects various components using jumper wires. Once I done with programming and if this is some thing that interact with lot more components and need to run long term, then I start design the system around a Standalone Arduino system. (https://www.arduino.cc/en/Main/Standalone).

I use Eagle software to design the schematic and board layouts. If it's a simple one sided board then I etch the PCB myself at home, if it's complicated then get the board manufactured by some one else.

You can also check Arudino Nano or Mini, which is less costly and can plug to your custom boards as well.

One of the standalone Arduino system is below, this controls my Aeroponic towers.

ov10fac:
I have read a lot about the Arduino and have been experimenting with it. I have several projects that I think it will help me with, but what I was wondering is after I have things debugged and have it running the way I want, how do I put things in production.

If I need 10 or 12 of a specific thing, do I need to buy 10 or 12 Arduino's. I have read that at least some developers build their own microcontroller for their projects. Is that pretty much the way it's done? If so are there any threads on doing that?

Thanks

Remember too there are also pin compatible chips with the 328. I generally use a 328 arduino board for development but depending on the memory requirement I may use an atmeg88 or atmega168 or even atmega8 they can be much cheaper. You can flash a bootloader and use them just like any other arduino.

There are many inexpensive board production services our there like seeedstudio, pcbway, elecrow, oshpark, dirtypcbs and others. They can do very inexpensive small batch runs of circuit boards. The can print the board and you do the assembly or they can source parts and assemble for you.

The next step is getting familiar with a program like eagle, altium or diptrace for pcb layout.

sarouje:
Normally I design and implement my program using Arduino Uno and connects various components using jumper wires. Once I done with programming and if this is some thing that interact with lot more components and need to run long term, then I start design the system around a Standalone Arduino system. (https://www.arduino.cc/en/Main/Standalone).

I use Eagle software to design the schematic and board layouts. If it's a simple one sided board then I etch the PCB myself at home, if it's complicated then get the board manufactured by some one else.

You can also check Arudino Nano or Mini, which is less costly and can plug to your custom boards as well.

Thank you. I have my work cut out for me. A lot to learn before I can even think about doing this kind of assemble, but then again, that's the fun in this kind of work.

Thank you again, I very much appreciate your information.

Note that there are several of us here (me and crossroads, for starters) who - for a nominal fee - would be happy to turn schematics into board layouts, if you don't want to go down that rabbit hole yourself :wink:

alka:
Remember too there are also pin compatible chips with the 328. I generally use a 328 arduino board for development but depending on the memory requirement I may use an atmeg88 or atmega168 or even atmega8 they can be much cheaper. You can flash a bootloader and use them just like any other arduino.

There are many inexpensive board production services our there like seeedstudio, pcbway, elecrow, oshpark, dirtypcbs and others. They can do very inexpensive small batch runs of circuit boards. The can print the board and you do the assembly or they can source parts and assemble for you.

The next step is getting familiar with a program like eagle, altium or diptrace for pcb layout.

I actually downloaded the free version of Eagle. It refused to run. Said it was missing a file. I did download PCB Artist. It too is free and seems to run fine. It has pretty much the same library as Eagle, so maybe it will do what I want. I also downloaded PCB Designer which seems to also work OK for my purposes.

When you say "pin compatible chips" what do you mean. I am not familiar with that term. I did find a tutorial on building an arduino type board, so that may be my first step after I get the development done. I guess my first question would be as follows. What part of the arduino do I need to run a stepper motor. I would guess at a high level the processor (microcontroller like the atmegaXXX). Then a power supply to provide power to the processor and the motor, so will need something to provide 24-40 volts for the motor, then something to drop that voltage down to 5 volts for the processor( I have researched voltage regulators and that seems to be the approach). Then the program to control and run the motor.

I know there are a lot of other things necessary, and I need to do a lot of reading, but I think this is possible for a noob.

Many thanks.

You might also want to check out the Big Easy Stepper Motor controller.

DrAzzy:
Note that there are several of us here (me and crossroads, for starters) who - for a nominal fee - would be happy to turn schematics into board layouts, if you don't want to go down that rabbit hole yourself :wink:

Yes I have found that out. Thanks, when I get to that point I will definitely give you a shout.

KeithRB:
You might also want to check out the Big Easy Stepper Motor controller.

I checked this out. But I have also read that you can control a stepper with a simple Darlington bridge 2004 is the one I have seen examples for. So what I would like to do is build something with a atmega and a 2004 on the same board to build a simple self contained stepper driver/controller all in one. If I can do that then I can get the circuit boards made and build a few for me and my friends. My goal is to build a fishing rod building lathe that I can control rotation speed with a computer controlled stepper motor. I want to be able to rotate the rod at speeds up to about 2-300 rpm

I also want to have the ability to rotate the rod to different angles, 0, 45, 90, 180, 270, 315. Basically rotate the rod in 45 degree increments with stops at each increment. I need to do this to help me with some of the wraps I use as design features on my fly rods.

I am thinking toggle switch to change modes (or a simple button would probably work too) from constant rotation to 45 degree steps, and another button to rotate the rod 45 degrees when pressed. Then a simple "dead mans" switch foot pedal to start and stop the rotation. The rotation speed will be controlled by a pot.
So the way it works, press the foot pedal and adjust the rotation speed with the pot. Then start the wrap manually and when ready press foot pedal to speed wrap.

The speed should not be a problem as most steppers I have researched seem to be able to spin up to 1000 RPM.

Probably a lot more information there than you wanted to know, but...

Thanks again.

John

ov10fac:
When you say "pin compatible chips" what do you mean. I am not familiar with that term.

I mean that the atmega328 pinout is the same as the pinout for those others.. That means if you had hardware designed for the atmega328 then an atmega168 or atmega88 would work in the same spot. The only real difference being the amount of memory they have.

If your program is less than 8kb then using an atmega88 might make more sense in a permanent setup than putting a processor in with more memory than will ever be used.

My vote is for diptrace! The free version is good for up to 300 pins 2 layers. Nice big library of parts.

You can also get the A4988 chip or an equivalent like the ST L6744. Makes software development a lot easier. Though you can't beat the price of the ULN2004.