DIY ffb wheel, stepper motor driver?


I’m looking into building a direct-drive FFB wheel like the OSW , but on a budget. The OSW uses a servo motor and costs around € 1.000,- in total to build. So to keep the price down I’m looking at steppers, which are also used in the AccuForce direct-drive wheel, so in theory it should be possible.

I found a controller which translates the games ffb output through USB to a PWM signal here (in German though):

I’d like to use that controller to power a stepper motor like this:

The missing link here (apart from an encoder to send the wheel position to the PC) being a stepper driver, which I know nothing about. I’d like to know what to look for in a stepper driver apart from the right amp/voltage rating for the motor used. For example, the creator of the FFB controller told me that a stepper driver might need a “torque mode” for it to work (can’t find a lot of info about that either though).

In case you’re not familiar with FFB wheels; the game used determines a torque output based on what happens in the game and your steering wheel position, basicly simulating what you would feel through the steering wheel in a real car.

I hope this is the right forum category to post this and that the links are ok.

I suspect you need a forum other than Fritzing. You look to need more engineering help on stepper motors than how to make a circuit in Fritzing. A stepper motor likely doesn’t need the encoder, the number of steps gives you the same information that the encoder would. You do need to convert the PWM signal to the number of steps the stepper needs to take to achieve the position indicated by the PWM signal. Then assess the speed and torque provided by the stepper you choose is sufficient (I believe steppers are usually slower than a servo) and then select a suitable motor driver for for the stepper. None of these relate to Fritzing but need to be done first. Once that is done then we can tell you if there are Fritzing parts for the components you need or not, the high end stepper driver may be a problem, there are a number of low current ones available in Fritzing.


As a newbie here and with Arduino can I suggest you visit the Arduino forum. I have recently been messing about with an Arduino board and stepper motor and have been learning as I go. I find YouTube useful too. If you need smooth operation then look for micro stepping drivers - again, use Google, there’s loads of info out there.