Da Bench Homey — deal breaker

February 20, 2015 electronics ,

Yeah, I discovered the death knell of Da Bench Homey as it exists today. Seems that when a late-model Arduino is externally powered while also plugged in via USB to a computer it will no longer communicate serially over said USB connection. I needed Homey to power a couple of my MG996R servos (yes, I fixed the previous issue) while spouting back servo positions to the serial console. Except when I go to read that data my Win7 laptop no longer sees the Arduino’s COM port.

It also seems that the Servo library would bugger with the motor shield to boot. I didn’t dig into this very far, but the Seeed motor shield uses pins D8-D13, presumably relying on the PWM capabilities of 9 and 10 (or 10 and 11, whatever) for speed control. But the servo library uses that timer and clobbers PWM on 9 and 10. So, my big plan of having a sketch load Bitlash to command a 2 channel motor driver + 2 servos may not have worked out well anyway, since I can’t change the pins used by the motor shield. However, given the power/serial issue above this is now a non-issue anyway.

Guess I’ll give Homey a re-think. Maybe I’ll use up one of those Pro Mini knockoffs I have to be able to use different PWM pins. That’ll make it a bit smaller too, as well as being able to talk serial again.