Replacing Controller to electrical Car

Hi everyone,

Given the car below, is it possible to replace the controller with Arduino? I'd like to remove the car original controller and connect the components to Arduino. (check out the "Includes")

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__25286__Turnigy_Stadium_King_2wd_1_10_RTR_Truggy.html

In addition, will the build in motors work with Arduino? ( I understood that 2 phase is easier to program than 3 phase motor).

Thanks :)

Tamir.

Given that (according to your link) it uses a regular brushed-DC motor and ESC, it likely also uses a fairly standard RC hobby servo for the steering control, and likely a standard 2.4 GHz RC radio system.

In short - you should be able to control this with the Arduino, using the Servo library.

You could do this one of two ways:

1) Replace the RC receiver with the Arduino

2) Augment the RC receiver with the Arduino

The second option opens up a lot more possibilities than the first, but is more difficult to implement; basically, you take the outputs of the receiver, and input them into the Arduino - which, using software, interprets them, then outputs signals to the motor controller (ESC) and the steering servo.

This could be a simple "pass-thru" system (like the Arduino wasn't even there), or you could do such things as "macro controls" (replay back previous recorded "moves" - on command from the receiver), as well as take input from other sensors (like an ultrasonic distance sensor, for instance) and "takeover" or "augment" the input to the car (for instance - you direct the car toward an obstacle, and the car could auto-magically slow down, veer away, reverse, etc - to keep you from crashing the car).

While more difficult to implement (you basically need to come up with a non-blocking method to read the RC receiver PPM outputs while simultaneously sending those outputs to the servo and ESC) - as you can see, it opens up more possibilities than a straight replacement. Fortunately - if you do some digging, you can find various libraries and such which can help with the implementation and control.

@crosh Great answer!!!

I dont need the receiver in my project. So i will remove it anyway. I have wondered if replacing the controller with Arduino is possible.

so basically I just connect both the servos and motors to Arduino , write some code using the servo library and it should work?

Thank you!

What do you expect the Arduino to do, without any kind of remote control?

It is possible that to save money they used a DC motor and feedback potentiometer for steering and have electronics in the dedicated radio receiver to act as the rest of the steering servo. If that is the case you may need a little motor driver chip to drive that DC motor.

That particular model seems to be out of stock. Your next best bet seems to be this one: http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__73860__H_King_Sand_Storm_1_12_2WD_Desert_Buggy_RTR_.html Note that this one does not include the battery or a charger.

@ DrDiettrich, I will connect the Arduino to Resberry pi 2.

@johnwasser thanks, I have not noticed its out of stock.

johnwasser: It is possible that to save money they used a DC motor and feedback potentiometer for steering and have electronics in the dedicated radio receiver to act as the rest of the steering servo. If that is the case you may need a little motor driver chip to drive that DC motor.

It's possible, but not likely - given that it uses a replaceable and upgradeable (to brushless) ESC. That, and it has other additional parts available - this to me says it's an RTR but hobby-grade RC car, and the servo is likely standard. I did try to find an instruction manual to confirm, but was unable.

So - while not likely - it is certainly possible that they could've cut corners (why do it on the servo instead of the ESC - or both, though, doesn't make much sense).

Heh - didn't look close enough for the manual (darn HK is not a great site for intuitiveness) - found it; it actually uses a standard servo, as it shows on page 12 of the manual:

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/uploads/587859623X730999X42.pdf

...but yeah - it's out of stock - that other car would be the better option - it too uses a standard servo for steering.

@crOsh, Thank you for fast respond.

is this good enough? http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__73860__H_King_Sand_Storm_1_12_2WD_Desert_Buggy_RTR_.html

does this model have 2 or 3 phase motor???

tamirsagi: does this model have 2 or 3 phase motor???

All of the brushless DC hobby motors I have seen are 3-phase. It has an ESC (electronic speed control) to match so you don't need to worry about it.

I was told that coding with 3 phase is a hassle. is this true? it makes the entire process much more complicated.

You talk to the ESC just like you would talk to a servo. The ESC takes care of Brushed DC vs. 3-phase Brushless DC vs. 2-phase (whatever that is). They all look the same from the Arduino side.

@ johnwasser Perfect! Thanks a lot my friend! :)

Hi,
Before you remove anything from the car, take pictures of the wiring, motors, and other bits connected to the Rx.
Draw a diagram of the wiring in block form showing where the wires goto and from where.
This may sound silly, BUT you may need it if you need to debug how various bits of hardware work after parts have been removed.

Tom… :slight_smile:

@Tom, Thanks for the advice. I'll take it into account.

cheers :)