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Controlling several 12V dc motors by wire

Tautvydas

New Member
Hey everyone, newcomer to the world of electronics here.

Here's the situation. I intend to build a scale crawler crane (such as this
, but with tracks) that would be controlled either remotely or by a controller directly connected with wires. I have all the mechanical bits figured out, but I have no experience with electronics, so that's what I need help with.

The crane would be powered by six 12V brushed DC motors commonly found on ebay. My question is what's the most affordable way to control these motors? 4 of them need direction and speed control (2 four way joysticks would be best) and 2 of them can be just direction control (2 two way joysticks would be best).

There is the traditional RC solution to this task - a Transmitter paired with a receiver, a Li-Po battery, and 6 ESC's for all the motors. The problem is the cost - all those bits add up to more than what I'm looking for.

To possibly reduce the cost, I'm willing to sacrifice the "remote" aspect of control, the controller can be directly connected with wires to the crane.

Soo.... how would I make such controller? What components do I need and how should they be connected together? Ideas?
 

rjenkinsgb

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
A few of these?

That has speed control on the pot and the switch for reversing.
The direct reversing switch could be replaced by a different style or by a relay, controlled by another type of switch.

Another type with built-in reversing relays, so one button for each direction by the look of it:

Forward and reverse within a joystyick makes it rather more complex; definitely possible but it will then involve either fairly complex built-up electronics or a microcontroller plus slightly less complex electronics.
 

Tautvydas

New Member
Thanks for the speedy response and suggestions! Now that I have an idea of what to look for, I'm thinking of using something like this:

Since both the switch and speed control are on wires, it would be easier for me to mount them in the controller I intend to build. I'm also thinking to replace the switch with a three position toggle, that returns to the neutral position by itself (if that's a thing).
 

Pommie

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
Depending on power requirements, model servos may be the way to go.

Mike.
 

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