wire up standard steppers as regular motors ?

This ought to be good for some laughs from a few of you, but I am serious in asking the question:
Is there a way to wire up standard stepper (4, 5, or 6 wire) motors so they can
be driven forward/backward like a "normal" DC motor without a stepper-specific driver ? My nebulous goal in asking this is to minimize the number of gizmos in my junk box for building bots: having one kind of motors that can be used 2 different ways - by upgrading the electronics to drive them later.
Thanks for any help ... and enjoy the chuckles ! :-) JCDeen
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On Apr 2, 5:02 pm, "pogo"

Noway...
You can wire them up as steppers with drivers, and have 2 inputs: 1-direction (0=fd, 1=bk) 2-on/off
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pogo wrote:

Not with DC. You can use a step clock source (like a 555) feeding a driver of some sort and wind up with something that does not require a processor to run, but the driver board is not optional with DC on a step motor.
You might and that is a definite maybe, get a step motor to run on AC with a transformer and a capacitor or two, but it would be fixed speed (slow), very quirky and probably take a good bit of fooling with.
With a DC motor, a processor, driver and a shaft position encoder, you can make them behave a little like a step motor, in that you can direct them to a specific position. Generally they are better than steppers for motion control.
Good Luck, Bob
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Yeah sounds like more trouble than its worth -- which is what I suspected. But still interesting to think about ...
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On Thu, 3 Apr 2008, pogo wrote:

Actually, during the sporge attack, I posted to Gordon's blog site about wanting to drive a hard drive BLDC spindle motor, a similar problem to what you propose if I'm not mistaken, and was actively encouraged to drop the idea, as being not worth the effort.
Still, I'd love to obtain a small and simple circuit which could spin those babies under s/w control 8-).
Cheers, Rob. ---- Posted via Pronews.com - Premium Corporate Usenet News Provider ---- http://www.pronews.com offers corporate packages that have access to 100,000+ newsgroups
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writes:

In a word, no. They require the coils to be energized in sequence. I don't really know, though, whether a brushless DC motor controller chip could be used to control a stepper...
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On Apr 2, 5:02 pm, "pogo"

Ok here's an idea... rotary switch attached to the output shaft of the motor... time the switch to turn on the correct coil depending on shaft rotation...
all the stepper motor is : stationary magnet(s) on rotor, electromagnets around stator.. wires come out of case for each coil, no timing done in case (need external driver circuit)
a standard DC motor is the same deal, except with stationary electromagnets and rotating permanent magnets..... it als has a switch inside it to time the ON/OFF sequence of the coils... on one side of the switch is the brushes, the other contact is the commutator on the rotor.
so put a rotary switch on it... I dunno if you'll be able to run at anything besides a constant speed... and it might be hard to find a (number of stepper coils) contact rotary switch... IE a 4 position rotary switch for 4 coil stepper
Rich
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Now that's using the wrong tool for the job. That might have been worth trying in, say, 1965. But now, there are these things called ICs...
There are little kits that have a stepper motor driver IC like a UCN5804, a timer to drive it, and a speed control knob.
                    John Nagle
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On Thu, 3 Apr 2008, John Nagle wrote:

John, Can you provide a link to one of those little kits????????
Cheers, Rob. ---- Posted via Pronews.com - Premium Corporate Usenet News Provider ---- http://www.pronews.com offers corporate packages that have access to 100,000+ newsgroups
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I was replying to this question:

so, it might be "wrong tool for the job" but it is a reply to someone who asked "how to do the job without the right tool"....
Rich
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On Apr 2, 8:02 pm, "pogo"

short answer: yes it can be done. no you don't want to.
rambling answer:
fundamentally stepper motors are the same as brushless dc motors: they both consist of a permag rotor in a rotating field generated by a multiphase stator coil. beyond that theoretical design, however, there are still a lot of design tradeoffs. steppers are designed for small step sizes, relatively low speed use, and high holding torque at low speeds. brushless dc motors are designed for high efficiency, minimal cogging, and high speeds.
so basically, you can use a stepper as a brushless dc motor without much trouble because in theoretical terms they're the same thing, but you'd be an idiot to try it, because absolutely every design parameter of the stepper has been optimized for the opposite application as what you're trying to do. it's like asking "why bother having both a barge and a sailboat when you can just attach a sail to the barge?"
-chris.
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