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I learnt so much in the home brew CNC workshop and I am very aware that if I don’t do something with my new found knowledge soon then I will forget most of it. I am a collector of broken junk and in my collection I have an A3 scanner and an A4 scanner. I have decided to turn these deserted and tired old pieces of equipment into a homebrew plotter / engraver (if all goes well.) The first step was to take the Grbl ready Arduino from a previous post and make it control a stepper motor. I have been leant 3 stepper motor drivers to experiment with, the documentation for the drivers can be found here. The A4983 stepper motor driver is a very compact driver perfect for smaller CNC projects. The documentation for the A4983 is very good so it was very easy to connect it up to the Arduino and the stepper motor. The pictures below evidence my setup with the driver running full steps. I have not experimented with micro steps yet but the results are very promising.

The wiring:

mac to arduino - arduino to a stepper motor



  1. We worked with the grbl project to develop a 3 axis stepper controller that runs on top of a grbl/arduino. Grgle Synthetos grblshield


    • I have seen the board it looks like an awesome one stop solution, the only reason I did not go with that was because I was given these stepper drivers. I have already informed the design center at UCF about the grbl shield so hopefully we will be getting some in. Cheers for the comment I have been very impressed with whole grbl project.

  2. any chance to run grbl on arduino Diecimila …

  3. hi any chance to run grbl on arduino Diecimila … ?

  4. hi I followed your instructions from a previous article for loading grbl onto the arduino. it says it uploaded, but i cannot get coolterm to show anything. the RX LED on the arduino flashes when i type the “$” command but returns nothing in coolterm. any ideas on whats going on?

    • Hi Erik,

      Sorry it took so long for the reply I have been quite slack on here recently.

      Have you tried going into the settings of coolterm and ticking the ‘terminate “send string” data’ option?

      Hope this helps

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