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USB Motor Controller For Electric Wheelchair

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  • USB Motor Controller For Electric Wheelchair

    Hi everyone, I am new and have an unusual question.

    I would like to build an electric wheelchair. Hopefully controlling the drive motors using a car PC, a USB joystick and a USB motor controller to control 2 electric motors (one for each wheel).

    Could anyone please tell me if this is possible?

    Thanks

  • #2
    Anything is possible, but there's a lot of time and thought and most likely, $, that will have to go into a project of this scope. Were you planning to DIY?

    Comment


    • #3
      I'd question why you want a PC... do you want to introduce bugs and kill someone?

      Why not use direct joystick control?
      There are numerous kits - eg, electric scooter kits.

      The only problem may be sync'ing the left & right wheels if that is an issue....

      Comment


      • #4
        I'm in South Australia

        I didn't think direct joystick will work because i use a headrest joystick which only moves in 3 of the 4 directions, i need to change between forward and reverse with a micro switch. The 1 switch also controls various actuators by clicking between modes.

        i found maxon motors have motors with encoders and USB motor controllers. I'm now worried about reliability. the controller needs a 32bit operating system.

        Comment


        • #5
          i really think that adding a pc and usb devices really is going to add too many potential problems.

          after a quick search:
          http://www.usatechguide.org/blog/dom...l-wheelchairs/
          My OLD 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT:
          "The Project That Never Ended, until it did"


          next project? subaru brz
          carpc undecided

          Comment


          • #6
            Again I question WHY a digital system?

            Maybe look at Oatley for ideas - eg: Speed Controllers and Throttles & K271 26" 24V 200W Electric Bike Conversion Kit.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by mobrod View Post
              Hi everyone, I am new and have an unusual question.

              I would like to build an electric wheelchair. Hopefully controlling the drive motors using a car PC, a USB joystick and a USB motor controller to control 2 electric motors (one for each wheel).

              Could anyone please tell me if this is possible?

              Thanks
              do you have more information on the motors and how they are controlled (pwm, simple on/off?) that may help you get more help on here.

              this may help you in your search though:
              http://www.phidgets.com/products.php?category=10
              New System in progress:
              M10k
              Phaze TD1500 ~> Dynaudio MD130
              Phaze TD1500 ~> Seas g18rnx/p
              Zapco Ref 500.1 ~ 12" tc-9
              Behringer DCX2496 ~ Envision Electronics psu
              Transflective Xenarc

              My Car Pc Install
              My Boat Pc worklog

              Comment


              • #8
                My main concern would be that while the chair isn't in motion, the computer would still be running, draining the battery of the chair. Now this is assuming that it isn't hibernating, but when the controller wakes the machine, there's still going to be lag in movement after coming out of hibernation.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I haven't chosen any of electronics yet. Until now I have been researching the chassis construction and suspension.

                  Still learning a lot about electronics and trying to find something that meets the essentials. The most important thing is the chair needs to be controlled by one joystick and one momentary button (holding for a few seconds changes between on and standby) clicking the bottom to select different options (single or multiple clicks) and using the stick to drive the chair and navigate through menus. If this can be achieved using analog instead of digital I am open to any recommendations.

                  The people I've been speaking with maxon recommended the following setup, which needs to be controlled by an industrial PC.

                  136209 EC 45 48V 250W + 110503 GP 62A 35:1 Planetary Gearhead + 137959 Encoder HEDL 9140 500 CPT 3 Channels with line driver. Epos 2 50/5 Positioning Control Unit.

                  They can also build the same system using 24V motors, but it would be less efficient. The 24V system doesn't need a PC, the control unit has a PLC.

                  Power consumption shouldn't be a problem. I'm planning on using lithium battery packs.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by whats77inaname View Post
                    My main concern would be that while the chair isn't in motion, the computer would still be running, draining the battery of the chair. Now this is assuming that it isn't hibernating, but when the controller wakes the machine, there's still going to be lag in movement after coming out of hibernation.
                    this is a great point--the least power hungry standard pc hardware are Atom-based boards-- those consume about 15watts of power-- all the time.. which is a pretty big parasitic load..

                    custom-built hardware solutions would consume less power when not in use, preventing parasitic loads from killing the battery too fast.
                    My OLD 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT:
                    "The Project That Never Ended, until it did"


                    next project? subaru brz
                    carpc undecided

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      An igep only consumes about 6watts at idle or less. It would be an ideal application for this system since it is OMAP based - no moving parts.
                      Originally posted by ghettocruzer
                      I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
                      Want to:
                      -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
                      -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

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                      • #12
                        This is really a job for a microcontroller, not a PC.
                        Fusion Brain Version 6 Released!
                        1.9in x 2.9in -- 47mm x 73mm
                        30 Digital Outputs -- Directly drive a relay
                        15 Analogue Inputs -- Read sensors like temperature, light, distance, acceleration, and more
                        Buy now in the MP3Car.com Store

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