Pololu Blog

Welcome to the Pololu Blog, where we provide updates about what we and our customers are doing and thinking about. This blog used to be Pololu president Jan Malášek’s Engage Your Brain blog; you can view just those posts here.

Popular tags: community projects new products raspberry pi arduino more…

Parallax Boe-Bot Robot Kit - USB

Posted by Ryan on 12 October 2017
Tags: new products

We are now carrying the Parallax Boe-Bot Robot Kit - USB, which incorporates a USB-to-serial adapter into the board, so it does not require a separate serial adapter.

The Boe-Bot Robot Kit is an educational kit complete with parts and a textbook for building and programming your own robot. No previous robotics, electronics, or programming experience is required; the kit does not require soldering.

Free Circuit Cellar magazine October 2017

Posted by Ben on 2 October 2017
Tags: new products

Get a FREE copy of Circuit Cellar magazine’s October 2017 issue issue with your order, while supplies last. To get your free issue, enter the coupon code CIRCUIT1017 to your shopping cart, or click the link. The magazine will add 6 ounces to your order weight when calculating your shipping options.

For back issues and more information, see our free Circuit Cellar magazine offers.

Aerial photography kite rig

Posted by Ryan on 29 September 2017

Pololu customer Yvon Hache made this 3D-printed aerial photography rig that he shared in a forum post. The rig, trailing 100 feet below the kite, automatically triggers a camera to take pictures at three tilt angles and sixteen pan angles. It incorporates an ARM Cortex-M4 microcontroller from Texas Instruments (32-bit, 80 MHz, TM4C123GH6PZ), an AltIMU-10 v5, Pololu voltage regulators, and a Zigbee module for wireless remote control. Yvon uses a pair of Pololu micro metal gearmotor extended brackets per motor—one mounts the motor to the frame and the other protects the encoder assembly.

More kite rig information and pictures can be found on Yvon’s website.

1″ (2.5 cm) and 2″ (5 cm) premium jumper wires and wires with pre-crimped terminals

Posted by Ben on 27 September 2017
Tags: new products

Premium Jumper Wire 60-Piece 6-Color Assortment M-F 2".

Wires with Pre-crimped Terminals 60-Piece 6-Color Assortment M-F 2".

Our popular premium jumper wires and wires with pre-crimped terminals are a convenient way to make quick, neat connections to 0.1″ (2.54 mm) connectors and solderless breadboards, and they are now available in shorter 1″ and 2″ lengths. Each new length is available in three gender combinations (female-female, male-female, and male-male) and seven color combinations:

  • black 10-pack
  • red 10-pack
  • yellow 10-pack
  • green 10-pack
  • blue 10-pack
  • white 10-pack
  • multi-color 60-pack (10 each of all six colors)

Our wires with pre-crimped terminals work with our 0.1″ crimp connector housings to make custom cables with the pin arrangement of your choosing. You can easily make cable harnesses or assemblies that branch from one connector on one side to multiple connectors on the other, and you can also cut off one pre-crimped end and solder the wires directly to components to make swapping connections easy:

The premium jumper wires are just wires with pre-crimped terminals that have 1×1 crimp connector housings already installed over the crimp pins.

You can use the following selection boxes to get to a specific pack of premium jumper wires:

Select options:

and you can use the following selection boxes to get to a specific pack of wires with pre-crimped terminals:

Select options:

New track sets and colorful Zumo sprockets

Posted by Ben on 22 September 2017
Tags: new products

Pololu 22T Track Set – Red.

We have replaced our original Pololu track sets with new versions featuring our newer style of spoked Zumo sprockets. The sprockets are available in three colors, and like our original sets, we have two different track lengths to choose from:

Each track is made of a single piece of flexible silicone, and the drive sprockets are designed to work with 3mm D-shafts, such as those on our micro metal gearmotors and most of our mini plastic gearmotors.

Dimensions of the Pololu 22T track set.

Dimensions of the Pololu 30T track set.

Additionally, we are offering sprockets by themselves (without tracks or fasteners) for use as replacements for the black sprockets included with our Zumo robots: you can use the red sprockets to add a splash of color, and you can use the white sprockets for painting (or just leave them white!).

Zumo 32U4 robot with red sprockets.

Zumo 32U4 robot with white sprockets.

High-altitude balloon for the solar eclipse

Posted by Patrick on 11 September 2017
High-altitude balloon for the solar eclipse

This summer, Jon and I participated in NASA’s nationwide Eclipse Ballooning Project with the University of Nevada. Specifically, we were members of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) section of Nevada’s team which also had a section from the University of Nevada Reno (UNR). Our goal was to make a payload to collect interesting video footage and scientific data, then fly that payload on a high-altitude balloon that would ascend to around 100,000 ft in the totality zone during the 2017 solar eclipse on August 21. Continued…

Labor Day weekend sale

Posted by Ben on 1 September 2017



We are having a Labor Day sale all weekend long with site-wide discounts of up to 25%! Check out the sale page for more information. Please note that we will be closed Monday, so orders placed after 2 PM Pacific Time today (Friday, September 1) will be shipped on Tuesday, September 5.

Introducing the Tic T825 USB Multi-Interface Stepper Motor Controller

Posted by David on 20 July 2017
Tags: new products

I am excited to announce our new product, the Tic T825 USB Multi-Interface Stepper Motor Controller. The Tic makes basic speed or position control of a stepper motor easy, with support for six high-level control interfaces:

  • USB for direct connection to a computer
  • TTL serial operating at 5 V for use with a microcontroller
  • I²C for use with a microcontroller
  • RC hobby servo pulses for use in an RC system
  • Analog voltage for use with a potentiometer or analog joystick
  • Quadrature encoder input for use with a rotary encoder dial, allowing full rotation without limits (not for position feedback)

You can select which of these interfaces you want to use and configure the other settings of the Tic over USB using our free software.

The Status tab of the Pololu Tic Control Center.

The Input and Motor Settings tab of the Pololu Tic Control Center.

The Tic T825 can operate from 8.5 V to 45 V and deliver up to approximately 1.5 A per phase continuously without a heat sink or forced air flow. With a digitally adjustable current limit that can be set over USB, serial, or I²C, you can save power while holding position or increase the motor’s torque while it is moving. The Tic offers six different step resolutions, from full step through 1/32-step (32 microsteps per full step). We designed the Tic’s firmware to be capable of taking up to 50,000 microsteps per second, which lets you use those finer microstepping modes while still keeping a high motor speed. The Tic also supports acceleration and deceleration limiting for smooth movements, and very slow speeds down to 1 step every 200 seconds (or 1 step every 1428 seconds with reduced resolution). The Tic T825 is based on the DRV8825 stepper motor driver IC from Texas Instruments (for which we also have a basic carrier board), and we plan to make other versions of the Tic that are based on different drivers with different performance characteristics.

Tic T825 USB Multi-Interface Stepper Motor Controller, bottom view with dimensions.

The Tic T825 is available with connectors soldered in or without connectors soldered in.

For RC/hobby servos, we have a similar family of products called the Maestro servo controllers. For brushed DC motors, we offer the Simple Motor Controllers and the Jrk Motor Controllers.

Independence Day weekend sale

Posted by Ben on 30 June 2017


In celebration of Independence Day (July 4th), we are discounting selected products by up to 25% and offering an upgrade to the next best price break for everything else in our store. Please note that we will be closed Tuesday, so orders placed after 2 PM Pacific Time on Monday, July 3 will be shipped on Wednesday, July 5.

For more information, including all the discount coupon codes, see the sale page.

Happy 4th of July!

Zumo 32U4 Robot for RoboFest's RoboHit competition

Posted by Ryan on 5 June 2017

We were excited to hear from the NCA Lights high school student robotics team about their recent entry in the RoboFest Michigan Championship 2017 RoboHit competition. RoboFest is a series of robotics events and competitions organized by Lawrenece Technological University. This year’s baseball-themed competition, “RoboHit”, involved hitting a ping pong ball off of a water bottle with a pencil and circling the outer edge of the arena (base running).

The NCA Lights used a Zumo 32U4 Robot Kit and two 50:1 Micro Metal Gearmotors HPCB 6V with Extended Motor Shaft as the base of their robot.

New Products

Replacement Sprocket Set for Zumo Chassis - White
Wires with Pre-Crimped Terminals 60-Piece 6-Color Assortment M-M 1"
Pololu 22T Track Set - White
Wires with Pre-Crimped Terminals 60-Piece 6-Color Assortment M-M 2"
Wires with Pre-Crimped Terminals 60-Piece 6-Color Assortment M-F 1"
488:1 Metal Gearmotor 20Dx46L mm 12V CB
250:1 Metal Gearmotor 20Dx46L mm 12V CB
Free Circuit Cellar magazine September 2017
63:1 Metal Gearmotor 20Dx43L mm 6V CB
Premium Jumper Wire 60-Piece 6-Color Assortment M-M 1"
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