Need Sparks for Wheelchair project in GA

Greetings from Team 6341, we are an FRC team partnered with Interact based in Woodstock, Ga and we started on a special project known currently as PowerWheels Mobility Project. This project focuses on giving a child a chance to have fun in a custom made offroad wheelchair. We customize it based on the childs needs and use legal FRC parts for most of the project. However, due to the motor controllers known as Sparks were discontinued from REV, we are depending on prior robots. We have other teams around us who donates these motor contollers to us so we would be able to continue the project. We are asking for sparks in decent condition (new or used) to be donated to us via mail or other manners. Our team website is up and running and I left a link on the bottom for it. I also left link giving more information about the wheelchair project.

Edit: Talking to my team, we are looking for motor controllers that uses PWM, not CAN

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Can you use a Victor 884 or Talon SR?
We’ve already donated our Sparks to another team that could use them.

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I think with the way our wheelchair project is setup, we are currently limited to using sparks. If you have any PWMs laying around, we would appreciate it. Thanks for the offer

If you know the max current draw of your motors (or are down for some clever code), you can use some off the shelf brushed motor driver - I’m sure Pololu would hear you guys out about donating one.

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Thanks for the suggestion! I will get some more specific info on the wheechair edited into the post and find out if our setup can use other motor controllers.

Is this limitation due to a space requirement? The Victor 88X series is incredibly common, and most older teams will has them floating around. They should be nearly interchangeable with Sparks (both are PWM control).

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From my knowledge of the project the last time I worked on it (I currently am out of the country), we have been using arduino to control the wheelchair. We found it easier to use Sparks but I will contact my team and see if these controllers would work. We are looking for motor controllers that use PWM, not CAN.

Just about all PWM controllers out there are going to use the same servo PWM communications protocol (pulses of 1-2 ms encoding throttle of -100% to 100%).

The Victor 884 and Talon SR accept essentially the same inputs / outputs. Same servo timing style, same connector, also screw terminals. I’m curious as to what design you have that wouldn’t work with one of those.

Also, all the FRC-legal CAN motor controllers I know of can fall back to PWM if needed.

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We will be testing with Victor SPs next week to see If it works. Any suggestions and/or advice will be appreciated.

You should consider using the Victor SPX instead since the Victor SP has been discontinued and is no long available for purchase. As @bobbysq mentioned, the Victor SPX and Talon SRX can be used with both CAN and PWM. The green CAN wire goes to PWM ground (usually the black wire) and the yellow CAN wire does to PWM signal (usually the white wire). The +5v line (usually the red wire) isn’t needed on the Victor SPX or Talon SRX since this comes from a 5vdc supply inside the controller.

The CAN wires on the Victor SPX actually come with PWM connectors. One twisted pair has a female PWM connector for use with devices like an Arduino, RaspberryPI or RoboRIO. The other set has a male PWM connector for use with devices like the VEX ARM® Cortex®-based Microcontroller.

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I know we have a bunch of sparks in our old inventory. We just moved to a new build space and we are still unpacking / sorting, so it may take me a little while to lay my hands on them. But we should be able to send some to you.

Thanks for your consideration of donating sparks and giving some advice for our wheelchair project. Any additional donations may send a direct message to me through CD. Thank you!!

UPDATED WEBSITE:


We made a new website due to a name change