1. Do not share user accounts! Any account that is shared by another person will be blocked and closed. This means: we will close not only the account that is shared, but also the main account of the user who uses another person's account. We have the ability to detect account sharing, so please do not try to cheat the system. This action will take place on 04/18/2023. Read all forum rules.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. For downloading SimTools plugins you need a Download Package. Get it with virtual coins that you receive for forum activity or Buy Download Package - We have a zero Spam tolerance so read our forum rules first.

    Buy Now a Download Plan!
  3. Do not try to cheat our system and do not post an unnecessary amount of useless posts only to earn credits here. We have a zero spam tolerance policy and this will cause a ban of your user account. Otherwise we wish you a pleasant stay here! Read the forum rules
  4. We have a few rules which you need to read and accept before posting anything here! Following these rules will keep the forum clean and your stay pleasant. Do not follow these rules can lead to permanent exclusion from this website: Read the forum rules.
    Are you a company? Read our company rules

Question Alternatives to SMC3

Discussion in 'DIY Motion Simulator Building Q&A / FAQ' started by PhillyNJ, Jun 20, 2024.

  1. PhillyNJ

    PhillyNJ New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2024
    Messages:
    26
    Balance:
    111Coins
    Ratings:
    +7 / 0 / -0
    My Motion Simulator:
    2DOF, DC motor, Arduino
    Hi,

    I am currently using SMC3 to control my 2DoF rig with 2 IBT-2 controllers. The author did a great job with the SMC3 firmware and SMC3 Utilities. However, I have to ask; can the firmware be simplified? For me, it was a pain to configure the PWM, not because there is an issue with the firmware, but because PWM is a bit over my head. If you google Arduino IBT-2 example code, there are some basic examples, which in my option simplify controlling the motors. For examples, see blog post. They provided a very simple but effective example on how to control the speed and direction with a Potentiometer. Adding a Hall effect sensor for each motor would be simple with setting the "home" position and help limit the motors range. Also, maybe using the pots to control the speed.

    Am I under-simplifying it or am I missing something important? Like I said, the author did a great job with SMC3 and it seems to be the popular choice.

    I am interested and anyones opinion on this.

    Thanks.
  2. noorbeast

    noorbeast VR Tassie Devil Staff Member Moderator Race Director

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2014
    Messages:
    20,742
    Occupation:
    Innovative tech specialist for NGOs
    Location:
    St Helens, Tasmania, Australia
    Balance:
    146,304Coins
    Ratings:
    +10,813 / 52 / -2
    My Motion Simulator:
    3DOF, DC motor, JRK
    I think you are under-simplifying a bit, as when it comes to motion rigs it is not just about making something move, it is about tuning to optimise response for what can be diverse hardware used.

    SMC3 takes that a bit further, in that it is meant to be generic for a diverse range of controllers, not just motors, so there is an additional learning curve and configuration to have that range of flexibility in one tool, done in a way that also includes visualisation of setting responses.

    So yes it is possible to simplify beyond SMC3, if it is narrowed to particular controller and motors, but even then there will be a degree of tuning required to get the best out even a known combination, as there is a degree of hardware differences in manufacturing even the same hardware.
  3. dryas123

    dryas123 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2023
    Messages:
    12
    Balance:
    - 132Coins
    Ratings:
    +11 / 0 / -0
    My Motion Simulator:
    2DOF
    So in your linked blog post they simply turn the motor in to one direction or another and they modify the speed in a very simple way via PWM (analogWrite()). However, with motion you need to compare the motor position with the desired position that you got by Sim Tools, FlyPT Mover or other software. If the distance is far away you need to move faster, if it's near slower and all of this in a dynamic way. For this a PID controller is used (and I guess that's what you are talking about as you normally don't have to configure PWM with SMC3) which needs to get tuned. There is not really a good alternative to this approach available and in most cases you only need to tune P and not I or D.

    However, I'm currently working on a modern alternative to SMC3 based on a 32 bit Microcontroller for 6 motors at once. As I'm rewriting the full firmware and management tools from scratch it would be great to get some input how this could be done more user friendly.

    Best,

    Ben
  4. PhillyNJ

    PhillyNJ New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2024
    Messages:
    26
    Balance:
    111Coins
    Ratings:
    +7 / 0 / -0
    My Motion Simulator:
    2DOF, DC motor, Arduino
    I am interested to how you are coming along. Also, I am a programmer by day and maker by night, so I am not afraid to at least try to develop a simpler version, even if I fail.

    Thanks both of you for the input.