Arduino and steppers - using N2003A microchip
There seem to be a concern about interfacing stepper motors with Arduino.
I know it is possible: I did interface steppers to atmega microcontrollers in the past. What I used was a high current darlington transistor array, namely the N2003A - some call it a stepper controller.
Looking quickly on the net, I found out some people do the same to interface with Arduino, so there are codes and even premade boards available, if that could help anyone out. here's what I found:
Re: Arduino and steppers - using N2003A microchip
More about steppers.
Darlington arrays like in the previous post are nice, but only for unipolar stepper.
In unipolar stepper motor, there are a number of magnets, each having their own wire to address them, and a common wire at the center. So, you apply current to each electromagnet coils separatly.
There are also bipolar stepper, where you control each ends of the coils in pairs. instead of having say 4 magnet wires and a common wire for a total of 5, you could have two pairs of wires, that you need to power in one direction or in another direction. To achieve this, you can use an H-Bridge.
There are quite a few out there, and they all have various caracteristics. To go with different caracteristics stepper.
You can easily get a nifty L293D stepper driver. They sell those for 3D printer. Those drivers support up to 600 miliamps per channel, or 0.6A - this might be insuffisent for some motors. The L293 (without the D) variant goes up to 1A.
But if you are looking for rather strong motors, above 1A, you'd need to look into something where you can add heat sinks, such as an L298.
here's some info about bipolar steppers