by Mindfab Aug 27, 2017
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Hello. Great project!
Is it possible to use this bot for a astrophotography? For star tracking?

thank you:) Well, I'm sorry, but I think it won't work for star tracking. I have never tried, but I think you will need a system that has a much higher accuracy, also the software can't calculate the required tracking positions (yet). For a daylight panorama, this is not a big deal because the shutter speed is high and you don't want to track.

Sir, thank you very much for the design. I just printed all the parts and am trying to assemble them. May I know where should the spacers go?

thank you, you're welcome :) The spacers are meant for the mount screws of the tilt mechanics. If you need any help just let me know.

Did anyone get the code to compile?

I have installed Atom - Platformio and Clang on W10

Inside atom I have the plugins for Command palette and Git(clone) enabled.
I am able to clone to project from git to my pc.

Once I am trying to compile I get an error.

However, nobody will be able to help you without any details about the problem... I would also prefer to track problems like these in github.


Hi, ofcourse :-)

But I have never worked with githubn nor atom nor platformio so getting to know that too will be a too complex situation at the moment. getting to know many things at the same time.

Can I get this to work in the Arduino IDE too?

Hi, sorry, although the Code itself is somehow Arduino like, I think it won't work in an Arduino IDE without any porting effort.

You can also send me a PM with a detailed log of the errors you get. Otherwise I won't be able to help you. Meanwhile, you don't have to compile on your own. I have precompiled HEX files in the github repository. These can be flashed directly (by following the flashing documentation).

Hi I still have some questions about the use of the panobot..
Since there is no feedback of encoders or endstops.. how to you "align" the panobot? do you manual hold the system in place and power it on.. so the steppers wild hold and use that as a start position?

And What use it the GPS for? is it supported in the latest firmware?

that's right - at the moment I haven't seen any advantage in using endstops, although encoders might be of use for ultra precision (star tracking).
I usually start balancing the head with the mounted camera while the system is powered off. Then I will align the camera to the desired zero position and power the bot on.

The GPS is still not part of the current firmware. It's use is for gathering the gps position while taking pictures. The problem is to get this data in a useful way to the jpeg/raw headers of the images.

Hello Mindfab, first of all thank you for sharing this nice design. What is the model of the small bearings you used for the new panobot-pan-bottom ?

EDIT : I ordered 624zz bearings, I hope these are the good ones...

thank you :) and yes - this is the correct bearing type!
Thx for pointing this out.

Enjoy the build...

Hello Mindfab. I would like to replicate this robot myself, but i do not have the pcb layout/schematic. Could you provide me with one?

you can find the layout and schematics in the github repository. This should be sufficient to create a pcb and use the current firmware to run the bot.


Hi Robert,
I'm trying to build one or two PanoBots and am interested in buying two PCBs. Do you still have some and if so how much do they cost? I'm in Berlin. uliwestphal@gmail.com
Thanks so much!

Hi Uli,
thx for your interest, I have recently created a batch of new PCBs. I have sent you a PM for more details.


I'm interested in getting a PCB, any further details on it?

Please write a pm so that I can come back to you as soon as I can send out the next batch.

Details can be found under the linked panobot github repository...


just an update/some notes:

  • there is now a pcb for the electronic part, just ask me
  • the housing for the electronic part has been added
  • always check the update section to see what has changed & updated

enjoy the build :)

Das ist ja mal ein Super Panoramakopf. Gibt es auch das Gehäuse als Druckdatei?
Bin gerade dabei die Teile zu drucken.

Viele Grüße aus Bayern

Im currently creating the real PCB, which has a smaller footprint then the first prototype pcb, that means the case will also change... Anyway, the old case has some drawbacks, I recommend to wait for the new case. If you still want to print it, let me know...


Hello, I would be interested in the board. I like the project very well

Printing it now, have ordered the motors...
Dreaming about adding a motorised vehicle for controlled movement (hyperlapse). Nema 17 on two wheels on something like this https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2316067

Danke und liebe Grüße aus dem Rheinland

Tripod Dolly with suspension

I recently thought about something similar. This Panobot coupled to a rail system 1-2m ... which can drive the bot. This could be an extension to the normal Panobot system. How would you control/ program a freely driven bot, as you suggested? Just place it and let it drive slowly, while its taking pictures? Mh... maybe this will be another future extension

I started with ideas about a rail befor i saw this Panbot. Then i thougt about a flexible rope system with a motor but may have problems with wind... and a 2m rail is not so easy to transport

I would fix two wheels to be paralel and each having a motor on it. For straight drive both motors have to spin the same amount of steps before each photo (then stand still for long exposure), for turning there would be a different amount of steps for each motor... similar like a tank

for long runs there is maybe the need for manual correction (like pressing a left or right button) or/and maybe a digital compas

aktuell vielleicht interessant: https://www.mydealz.de/deals/fertigung-von-10-pcb-platinen-max-10x10-cm-1086174

Nice Design. I am currently printing this.
Can you maybe provide some measures for the rods you used?

hi, i have added the measures to the description of the bot....

Happy building...

Hi, I'm thinking about ordering a batch of PCBs. Is there anybody interested in getting a PCB? What would you prefer, assembled, or just the board?

Any Feedback is welcome.

I probably would take a PCB, just the board, but it depends on the price and maybe the shipping cost (to Germany)

Hi, the smallest batch size was resulting in a price of around 15 EUR, excl. shipping (around 1 EUR in germany).

Ich hatte eine Nachricht geschickt, dass ich eine Platine mit Bauteilen haben möchte, es kam aber leider keine Reaktion darauf.

Hi, sorry, leider fehlen momentan ein paar Bauteile, deswegen die Verzögerungen...

Ich hätte auch Interesse an einer Platine.

wenn ich es richtig verstanden gabe, ist dann das gesamte Grundplatine darauf, oder?
Was würde sonst noch benötigt werden?

I would also be interested in a circuit board.

if I understood correctly, then the entire motherboard is on it, right?
What else would be needed?

Ja, korrekt, alles was momentan im Schema aufgezeichnet ist. Dies sind dann momentan die Treiberstufen für die Schrittmotoren, und dann die ganzen Verbinder für die Peripherie. Der Preis wäre nur für die Platine ohne Bestückung.

Solange die Platine fehlt, bekommt man den Bot mit etwas Löterfahrung zum funktionieren. Das heisst mit Lochraster und Schema die Platine nachbauen, und dann die Firmware auf den Mega2560 flashen und fertig.

Ich plane momentan ein paar Erweiterungen, deswegen geht es etwas schleppend voran. Freue mich aber über jedes Feedback, Fragen, lösbare Probleme (dazu gehören hoffentlich alle) und Anregungen...


Also ich hätte Interesse an der Platine ;)
Ich bin zwar noch ganz am Anfang mit der Druckerei, aber ich hoffe ich werds mit der Löterei für meinen ersten Prototypen hinbekommen. ;)

Auf die Erweiterungen bin ich ja schon gespannt. Ich melde mich sobald ich weiter gekommen bin.

Vielen Dank das du dir überhaupt die Mühe gemacht hast..... Ich hoffe man sieht sich bei nem Gigapano ;)

Je serais également intéressé par un PCB assemblé.

Ich wäre auch interessiert an einem Board

Would be OK for me and you can count on me

In deutsch: Ich würde bei Bestellung zuverlässig eines abnehmen wenn der Gesamtpreis unter 20 € bleibt. Die Rückmeldungen bis jetzt sind aber ziemlich spärlich, oder erscheint mir das nur so.

Thanks for this awesome work!
It would be nice if you added support for 1602 LCD.


which one do you have in mind? What type of controls does it have?


I have this keypad - https://goo.gl/rKQX3N but i think any 1602 or 2004 like this one - https://goo.gl/LbSmm7 will fit, with encoders or buttons :)
I want to ask for what purposes do you plan to use USB Host Shield 2.0?
Actually i want to do motion timelapse of the milky way... as far as I understand I need a slider with a motor and a second axis for the camera with a motor too. I was looking on thingiverse and find your project but its not exactly what i need, maybe you can help me?
I made a small drawing, did I understand everything correctly? :D

Hi, it depends ... if you just want your linear motion of the rail, than you would have to compensate the earth motion by using a parallax mount. I think you could use parts of the electronic if the point with the earth motion doesnt matter.

Regarding your other questions, my firmware works best if it is used with a full graphic lcd/led, because the underlying driver u8g2 requires it.

The Host Shield will be used to have full control over the camera, not just focus and trigger, what can be achieved with the remote release cable. The disadvantage of the USB connection is that its not supported by all cameras.

Hope that helps,


Hi, thanks for answers Robert. You mean something like these https://goo.gl/n4QtnA ? Its too expensive for me:(
I saw someone was using motor and moving platform to compensate the earth motion, I think its much cheaper than buy this parallax device...
Maybe i can use your firmware and for this purpose?

Hi, no, what I meant was sth like a telescope mount. However... there are some exposure time tables in the net that tell you ...
for example with 17mm objectiv with crop 1.6 can be exposed up to 15 seconds without having problems with the star motion...
So, if you stay below that time, a modified Panobot could help. You could mount it on a rail, and adapting the firmware would be no big deal.
Maybe you can post an example webpage/video that shows what you want to do in detail?


Maybe I misunderstood you, do you want to take videos?
I think with videos it should be possible. You would still see the stars and the rails motion, but maybe this is what you want ?

I have published the firmware... PCB is still missing, but will come soon :), Anyway, if you are in a hurry, I can assist you in creating my prototype PCB.

Where i can find the schematic and firmware ?

Hi, right now I dont have a schematic to release, because the electronic part was somehow hot wired... I'll post the link to the code/electronics on this site

We are watching for the schematics and code! Great job!

Great work!
What kind of power do you use for it?

right now its powered with a 3s 1300mAh Lipo