Note: If you are ordering encoder options as part of your robot kit please make sure to also select a motor with an encoder attached. Our standard gear motors do not come with an encoder.
There is a lot to know about using motors with encoders in your robot. This is an abbreviated explanation intended to help you select the correct encoder options for your robot. The encoder options will be different based on the motor controller you select.
We offer three types of motor controllers with our robot kits: Roboclaw, Sabertooth, and Roboteq. Both Roboclaw and Roboteq motor controllers are able to connect directly to the encoders, keep track of the number of pulses observed, and perform closed loop speed control on the motors using the encoder information. Sabertooth motor controllers are not able to directly connect with encoders. We address this by instead using an Encoder Buffer Board and a microcontroller together to read encoder pulses. We do not provide a closed loop speed control solution with Sabertooths.
If you are using encoders, we highly recommend going with a Roboteq motor controller as there is a plethora of built-in functionality and failsafe options in the software. We do, however, offer encoder options for each motor controller.
To add encoders to your robot kit, all you need to do is select a motor variant that says “with Encoder” and select the Encoder Hookup Kit that matches your motor controller. These are listed below. Note that there are three versions of Sabertooth Hookup Kit because they each come with a different version of the Encoder Buffer Board based on the number of wheels that need to be monitored. The Roboclaw and Roboteq kits will simply come in a set of 2 when three or four wheels are required.