Yeah - I’ve thought a bit about this. Here are some random points:
The G-5500 uses 26 VAC motors, and 5 VDC logic for position reading. Another design difference from our rotator is that the end-stop switches are just that: they mechanically open the circuit providing power to the motor (as opposed to the SatNOGS rotor which takes the end stop feedback). These alone may make this a good idea to “keep separate” from the SatNOGS controller. (otherwise the need for the transformer and triacs would be on the board, unnecessarily for people who aren’t using a G-5500)
The K3NG controller code provides soo much more than what we are making use of today in combination with the arduino shield (and I’m hoping to exploit that in my design). However, we’re only able to use the base functionality with the 32k flash limitation of first gen arduino boards. So, I’m looking into other boards/chips that could be plugged in to this design (and the desire for 5v ADC logic is also limiting as many are going with 3.3v). The added space/pins will allow for display support, push-button controls, and possibly network connectivity (the ‘remote control’ and ethernet code are there, nothing for wifi yet but it could be added easily if we found the right board). Again, if the satnogs rotator controller is designed to be physically right at the rotor, these features may not make sense for it.
(if we were to merge the 2 into one controller, we would have to decide on either extending the satnogs controller code to meet the needs of other rotators, or get K3NG to work with the satnogs rotator. I would highly recommend the latter, as there is so much work already put into that project)
One way this could be solved is to have a main board with 2 daughterboards: 1 for the MCU, and another for a custom board suited to the rotator (SatNOGS steppers, SatNOGS DC, AC)… at this point it becomes so complex that we have to ask if it makes sense to try and do one board?
Left or right, if I continue working on this it will be an open hardware design and we can slap the LSF logo on it.