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Programming the CL57Y / CL86Y Closed Loop Stepper Driver via "USB" and Software


I'm doing a CNC conversion on a milling machine and got some steppers ( from stepperonline that have an encoder. They are meant be used in a closed loop setup. The motors were bundled with a CL57Y driver that is meant for closed loop operation which I don't want to use that function since I have a LinuxCNC setup with a Mesa 5i25 that handles the encoder and PID. From the shop I used I couldn't get the motors with the open loop driver that I need for my application, so I went for it, assuming the driver could be used as open loop. I've seen some similar ones that could be configured like that with a DIP switch.

Well, with the CL57Y that is not the case. So I wanted to use the "USB" interface and the manufacturer software ( to configure the driver to the open loop operation that I need. However, the device can't be recognized by Windows/Linux. After playing around with many Windows drivers I still had no luck.

Then I finally found a video on YouTube where someone purchased the "Handheld Intelligent Setting Unit for Closed Loop Driver" which I thought was only used for older drivers with RS232 interface. There was the final clue: They use a USB-B plug but it is still standard RS232  serial connected to it!!! Correct me if I'm wrong but to me that electronics design is an absolute no go!
You obviusly don't need a special "Handheld Intelligent Setting Unit" to connect the driver to a PC. I used the CH340 on my Arduino. Just Connect Reset to GND to keep the 328P from interfering and cut open a USB-B cable. Green (pin 3) -> TX, White (pin 2) -> RX and black (pin 4) -> GND. Now the COM port can be selected in the software and the driver connects. I set the "Run Mode" to 1 (open loop) --> Write --> Save EEPROM. Also, for some reason the DIP switch 3 "Servo Mode" has to be ON (Track Mode). Power cycle and it works perfectly.

I really want to get this information out there for the next one having problem connecting the driver. I'm guessing that the CL86Y and many other clones are very similar.

Now to the product itself: The stepper motors as well as the provided cables and plugs seem to be of good quality. The encoder are 1000 cpr quadrature encoders. So on (e.g. in LinuxCNC) that gives you 4000 counts per revolution which for most appliications is plenty.
The drivers are actually kind of cool as well. They have an input voltage range from 20 - 50 VDC and an output current of up to 5 A. That comes in a fooprint of only about 120 mm x 75 mm x 25 mm. There are lots of configurable parameters, but most are only accessible via the software. If you were to use the driver for closed loop operation, as problably most people will, there is no auto-tuning. You will probably have the use the software to change parameters.

Overall I'm still happy with the product, especially for that price!

Hi hrsx,

I have exactly the same issue.  I am trying to connect via USB cable to the software to program the stepper driver.  Were you able to connect to their supplied software?  Do you rewire a USB cable?  I think as I read your post you connected to Arduino but I would like to use their software.  Do you have any advice on how I can rewire a USB cable?

Many thanks.

Vielen dank von Kanada!



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