Adafruit Parts

It's what you've been waiting for, the Feather M4 Express featuring ATSAMD51. This Feather is fast like a swift, smart like an owl, strong like a ox-bird (it's half ox,...
$22.95
In Stock
This here is your standard A to micro-B USB cable, for USB 1.1 or 2.0. Perfect for connecting a PC to your Metro, Feather, Raspberry Pi or other dev-board or...
$2.95
In Stock
A stepper motor to satisfy all your robotics needs! This 4-wire bipolar stepper has 1.8° per step for smooth motion and a nice holding torque. The motor was specified to have a max...
$14.00
In Stock
You have a stepper motor, but you need to attach it to your CNC project, eh? Not so easy if you don't have a stepper motor mount just like this fine one here! This mount will...
$8.95
In Stock
This is a cute half-size breadboard with an assortment of small jumper wires, great for prototyping. The breadboard is 2.2" x 3.4" (5.5 cm x 8.5 cm) with a standard...
$9.95
In Stock
For bread-boarding with unusual non-header-friendly surfaces, these cables will be your best friends! No longer will you have long strands of alligator clips that are grabbing little...
Out of Stock
This is a beefy switching supply, for when you need a lot of power! It can supply 12V DC up to 5 Amps, running from 110V or 220V power (the plug it comes with is for US/Canada/Japan...
$24.95
In Stock

You don't need both 12V power supplies. One is good, I just linked both because one was out of stock at the time of writing.

This is a really nice power supply. It's a switching DC supply so it's small and light and efficient. It is thin so it fits in power strips without blocking other outlets. The...
$8.95
In Stock
Need a big battery for your project? This lithium-ion battery contains a 2200mAh and a protection circuit that provides over-voltage, under-voltage, and over-current protection. Yet,...
$9.95
In Stock

Non-Adafruit parts

  • Trinamic TMC2226-BOB. This is the breakout board version of Trinamic's super quiet TMC2226 stepper motor driver. You can use just about any stepper motor driver that can microstep, but this thing is seriously very good and makes the stepper motor perfectly quiet and super smooth.
  • Astromania polar alignment scope. Polar alignment scopes are used to make sure the axis of rotation of an equatorial-mount tracker is aligned with the astronomical polar axis of the Earth.
  • Counterweights. These weights were actually designed to go on a shoulder rig that uses 15mm rods. Luckily for us, the weights have 1/4" 20 threads, which make them a good option for counterweighting your camera.
  • ARCA Swiss plate. This 220mm plate allows you to balance the counterweight.
  • Worm gear. This helps keep the rotation smooth.
  • 60 tooth 2gt pulley. Used to get smoother motion and lessen vibration.
  • 100 tooth 2gt pulley. Uset to get smoother motion and lessen vibration.
  • 2gt belt set. Used to connect the two 2gt pulleys
  • 8mm pillow block bearings. You put the 8mm rods in here to give them something to hold on to and to keep the rods pointing straight ahead.
  • 5mm to 8mm coupler. This lets you use the worm gear since I wasn't able to find any worm gears for an 8mm shaft nor any pillow block bearings for a 5mm one.
  • 8mm x 100mm shaft. You attach the belt drive and camera mount to these.
  • 5mm x 100mm shaft. You attach the worm gear to this. Make sure to choose the 5mm diameter one. There are multiple diameters on the product listing and only the 5mm diameter one will work.
  • Double 3/8" bolt. This lets you attach the camera plate mount to the rest of the device.
  • 100uf 16V or 25V capacitor.
  • Tripod. This one is not necessary, but I'd personally recommend it. You can always prop the mount up to get the desired angle if you don't have a tripod, however, tripods do make this a heck of a lot easier; They allow you to get higher off the ground and have more precise control over where you're pointing along with being easy to set up and level in a wide variety of terrains. I used a pretty old and very heavy video tripod with a fluid ball head, which worked quite well since it didn't shake even in pretty high wind.

Hardware

  • 4 M4x50mm bolts
  • 4 M4x40mm bolts
  • 8 M4 nuts. Both nylon lock nuts and normal nuts work, I just tend to prefer the lock nuts.
  • 4 M4 washers
  • 1/4" 20 x 1" bolt
  • 1/4" washer
  • 3/8" 16 x 1" bolt
  • 3/8" washer

Tools

  • Metric hex wrenches
  • SAE hex wrenches
  • Screwdriver
  • Drill press or drill. Drill presses are preferred since you don't have to worry about if you're drilling in straight, but drills work as well.
  • Drill bit set.
  • 1" spade bit
  • Wrenches or ratchets. I'd recommend a full metric and SAE set, but two adjustable wrenches would also work alright.
  • Screwdriver
  • Soldering iron. This one isn't actually necessary, but it does help if you want to tin the tips of wires.
  • Jigsaw or hand saw. Really, you could use just about any saw like a table saw, circular saw, or miter saw. I have all 3, but I used a jigsaw since it is the easiest to maneuver and perfectly straight lines aren't necessary for this project. A hand saw would work, but sawing wood by hand is never very fun.
  • Protective equipment. Be safe. Wear gloves, goggles, and any other PPE you deem fit to keep yourself safe.

This guide was first published on Aug 06, 2020. It was last updated on Aug 06, 2020.

This page (Parts & Tools) was last updated on Oct 15, 2021.

Text editor powered by tinymce.