Black Lives Matter - Action and Equality.
0

Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly
Moderators: adafruit_support_bill, adafruit

Please be positive and constructive with your questions and comments.

Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by Daniel2010 on Fri Aug 06, 2010 9:48 am

Hi Community,

Im writing here because Im searching for someone who can write me a sketch for the Arduino. Im a complete newbie when it comes to programming. I wanted to ask if someone has already done such a project sketch for the Arduino or if someone could help me with that. I've built myself a camera dolly skater and want it to be motion controlled by 1 little stepper motor. I will only drive one wheel of the skater thats is sufficient. I will be using a Microstep EasyDriver v4 and the Arduino Duemilanove.

I've done already the basic LED blinking tutorial with the Arduino but it will take ages until I have the experience to write such a program. Im just not into programming.

I want to make some sort of remote control with pushbuttons for "rotating LEFT / RIGHT", a potentiometer for "max Speed" and one for "Speed Ramp". Also a great feature would be one button for saving current position and another one for driving back to this position. Or saving two positions and driving back and forth between these positions.
Such a program could be used for many projects like Dolly TimeLapse photography, Pan & Tilt Heads...


Here is my concept that I would like to implement:

Image
Image



And here are some pics of my DIY camera dolly skater:

Image
Image
Image

If someone is willing to help me out, please contact me.

Big thanks
Daniel
Daniel2010
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Aug 06, 2010 9:11 am

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by Daniel2010 on Mon Aug 09, 2010 3:38 pm

Anybody?
Daniel2010
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Aug 06, 2010 9:11 am

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by adafruit_support_bill on Mon Aug 09, 2010 4:20 pm

That is some nice work you have done on the mechanical end. Do you have a CNC router? I might be interested in swapping some software engineering time for some machining.

adafruit_support_bill
 
Posts: 77434
Joined: Sat Feb 07, 2009 10:11 am

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by Daniel2010 on Mon Aug 09, 2010 4:30 pm

Thanks!
Yes I have a small cnc-router in my garage. Sure, why not? What do you need?

best regards
Daniel
Daniel2010
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Aug 06, 2010 9:11 am

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by adafruit_support_bill on Mon Aug 09, 2010 4:55 pm

I don't have a specific machining project at the moment, but they do come up regularly. I've often thought about getting a CNC router, but I'd need to sell off some other machines to make space.

What size camera do you plan to mount on this thing? Have you verified that the stepper you will be using is going to have sufficient torque for the job?

The remote looks straightforward enough. For the "Linear Ramp" are you looking for a linear increase in speed, or a constant acceleration rate?

adafruit_support_bill
 
Posts: 77434
Joined: Sat Feb 07, 2009 10:11 am

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by Daniel2010 on Mon Aug 09, 2010 5:09 pm

I will use a small Canon HDSLR that weights max. 3 Kg including lens. I have different stepper motors at home so that will not be the problem. A small one 42x42mm with 0.50 Nm should do the trick.

Yes a cnc-router is really a great tool. If you have future projects coming up let me know in advance the details (pics, drawings (Autocad 12 DXF preferred) and I will see what I can do for you.

The speed should be adjustable from very low (5mm/Minute to 500mm/Minute if possible) because Im going to use this thing also for timelapse photography. I think I can adjust the numbers to my needs if I have the basic sketch. I don't know how the explain the ramp. It should be something like a damping ramp to get smooth motion during video shooting (ease in / ease out in the motion).
Daniel2010
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Aug 06, 2010 9:11 am

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by adafruit on Mon Aug 09, 2010 5:54 pm

you'll find that people are more likely to help you if you are willing to do a lot of the work and just need advice, instead of hoping someone will come along and do it for free :)

adafruit
 
Posts: 12151
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 4:21 pm
Location: nyc

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by Daniel2010 on Mon Aug 09, 2010 6:24 pm

Hi Adafruit,

Im sorry, I didn't want to sound like I want it completely for free but I thought there where already similar projects here because there are usually basic stepper motor controls nothing too fancy (maybe the save and goto function are complicated don't know). Of course Im also willing to pay something for it if someone has the time to do it. Just name your price or like arduwino swapping software engineering time with cnc machining, why not. Im willing to negotiate.

It's just that I don't want to learn programming (Im getting scary if I hear the words integer, void loop, ... :-) I want to keep going and finish my skater to do some video shooting.
Im much more better at different things like mechanics, photography and shooting video. Im sure here are lots of great guys who can write such a program in 3 hours. (I've seen guys controlling stepper motors in such a way to play the title song of MacGyver. That's awesome!

Maybe I should have written from the beginning that Im also willing to cnc or pay for your time but I didn't want to go like a bull at a gate.

best regards
Daniel
Daniel2010
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Aug 06, 2010 9:11 am

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by adafruit_support_bill on Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:40 am

I think you probably want constant acceleration for smooth transitions. High-speed railroad curve transitions are designed for constant lateral acceleration so you don't get thrown to the side as you enter the curve. I imagine that the visual effect is similar to the physical effect.

What do you use for an intervalometer? I've been tempted to try some time-lapse with my 7D.

adafruit_support_bill
 
Posts: 77434
Joined: Sat Feb 07, 2009 10:11 am

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by Daniel2010 on Tue Aug 10, 2010 7:25 am

I've bought the Canon TC80N3 a couple of years ago for my 20D and Im still using it also with the newer cameras. But nowadays there are much cheaper intervalometers on ebay for around USD 30,-
You should really try to do some time-lapse clips you can get amazing results.

In case you didn't see it already take a look at these two night time-lapses here, they're fantastic: http://www.timescapes.org/
Daniel2010
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Aug 06, 2010 9:11 am

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by Daniel2010 on Wed Aug 11, 2010 9:14 am

I've just found a great library that has already some functions integrated that I will need for my project.

AccelStepper (supports acceleration, deceleration and very slow speeds...)
http://www.open.com.au/mikem/arduino/AccelStepper/

Will take a closer look maybe I will figure it out on my own how to control the stepper motor without any programming experience.
But if someone knows how to do it correctly let me know. I don't want to reinvent the wheel :-)
Daniel2010
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Aug 06, 2010 9:11 am

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by adafruit_support_bill on Wed Aug 11, 2010 10:00 am

Looks like a good start!

adafruit_support_bill
 
Posts: 77434
Joined: Sat Feb 07, 2009 10:11 am

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by bmxguitarsbmx on Tue Aug 31, 2010 5:29 pm

Daniel2010,

The AccelStepper library is totally cool. But, it will not work with the easydriver board. The AccelStepper library supports 2 wire or four wire control. The easydriver board uses Step and Direction inputs... Which is different than 2 wire control.

If anyone has information to the contrary, I would like to know.

Since you only have one stepper involved you could probably spare four pins. Skip the easydriver board and use transistors of suitable current rating to drive the coils.

The good news is: Your program is very simple if implemented with the AccelStepper library!
Peace,
Ethan
bmxguitarsbmx
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Aug 31, 2010 5:14 pm

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by nkostop on Wed Oct 06, 2010 6:17 pm

Ok this is great!
I am making a wireless follow focus and i am very interested on what you are doing. I would like to help you and get some informations from you about your work too. Please email me at nkostop@yahoo.com
I am using a stepper motor too for my ff and i have found some interesting informations
Thanks
Nick Kostopoulos
Greece
nkostop
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Oct 06, 2010 6:13 pm

Re: Motion Controlled Camera Skater Dolly

by yoshco on Fri Nov 19, 2010 6:29 pm

@bmxguitarsbmx -
just to clarify, accelStepper does support the easydriver (and any other STEP and DIR driver)
see constructor deceleration in the manpage.

this is the top search result on google for accelStepper+easydriver so this is for the common good :)

yoshco
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Sat May 10, 2008 4:00 am
Location: tlv

Please be positive and constructive with your questions and comments.