July 6th, 2021—
All too often, those who are new to Arduino struggle with creating large projects due to a lack of experience and components. This can be frustrating, but Instructables user MAKE_IT WITH_ME decided to tackle this issue by designing a super cheap way to automate home circuitry from just a single Starter Kit. His build uses a single Arduino Uno, although it can easily be swapped with something like a Nano or Mega, along with a stepper motor/driver, servo motor, threaded rod, and an IR receiver + remote combo.
The main portion of the home automation setup is the stepper motor assembly, and it is responsible for moving the servo motor back and forth across the bank of switches. Due to the stepper motor not knowing its initial position relative to the device, it must be “homed” or set to its zero position by moving right until the edge hits the limit switch. When a request to turn a switch on or off is received from the IR remote, the Arduino board decodes the instruction and converts the command into the number of steps the stepper motor must take to reach the desired location. After the servo moves and flips the switch on or off, the entire thing returns to where it started from.
To read more about the process of how this device was constructed and how it was programmed, you can check out its Instructables write-up here.