Ham radio operator
ON4AKH
OS4S
Copyright 2015 on4akh.be. All Rights Reserved.
For some time I have had problems with the controller box of my Yaesu antenna rotator.
The rubber band used internally to drive the mechanisme did not last very long. To fix that
problem you need to take almost the whole mechanisme appart and is thus very troublesome.
So time to build a new controller box myself.
Let's start by showing the end result.

The rotator controller is build around a Microchip PIC controller 18F2550. It uses an H-bridge to turn the motor. The see the current heading, it makes use of the linear potmeter that is inside the rotator.
So if you would decide to build this control box, only go ahead when your rotator uses a DC motor and has a potmeter inside to measure the heading of the antenna.

Features of the controller box:

1. Point and shoot. Set the position of the heading you want to reach with the dial, press set  and the the antenna will turn to that heading
2. Change the turning speed of the antenna bewteen 10 and 100%, in 10% increments.
3. The controller has 8 memory channels. Set the heading and name of the direction.
4. Connect to your computer through an USB port and control your antenna with software    like Ham Radio Deluxe.
Schematic of the controller box (click on it to see full picture)

The  schematic is designed using Eagle. Here you can find a ZIP file with both the schematic and circuit board layout as PDF.
This PDF gives detailed instructions on how to build the controller.
Also a ZIP file is available with the HEX to program the 18F2550 and the driver for Windows.
If any questions on this project or you need a programmed 18F2550, please contact me
through the contact page.