Developing on NVIDIA® Jetson™ for AI on the Edge

Install VESC 6 Plus on RACECAR/J

Installing the VESC 6 Plus on the platform consists of several steps. First, remove the protective wrap on the platform. The VESC 6 Plus will be mounted to the bottom of the platform. Using the 4 supplied M5 screws, attach the VESC to the left side of the car.

VESC 6 Plus attached to platform

The 3 motor control wires should face the rear of the vehicle. These will be attached to the Traxxas motor. The power from the battery should come from the front of the vehicle as shown below. The VESC 6 Plus is a XT-90 connector and requires a XT-90 to Traxxas plug adapter (which is included in the kit).

VESC 6 Plus PPM installed

The wires to control the Steering Servo connect to the VESC 6 Plus using a 3 pin JST-PH connector. The plug on the VESC is labeled ‘PPM‘. Connect the other end of the cable from the VESC to the Steering Servo lead through the Futaba J male connector. The Steering Servo lead from the Traxxas terminates in a Futaba J style female connector. There is a protective sleeve that fits over the Futaba connectors.

VESC 6 Plus USB installed

The VESC is controlled from the Jetson using a USB cable. The VESC side connector is labelled ‘USB‘. A right angle USB cable is provided which should help with cable management. Plug the right angle side into the VESC, the other end goes into the USB hub.

The three motor cables are labelled ‘A‘, ‘B‘ and ‘C‘. While the wiring isn’t very strict (if the motor spins in the opposite direction desired, switch any two wires), the wiring that seems to work is:

  • A output -> White motor connector
  • B output -> Yellow motor connector
  • C output -> Blue motor connector

The VESC motor wires terminate in 4.0mm female bullet connectors. The Traxxas is a 3.5mm male connector. Therefore a converter connector (supplied) is required. Of course, you can replace the bullet connectors as desired to eliminate this issue.

Make sure to secure the wires to the platform, you can use the supplied zip ties. It is important to make sure that the wires stay clear of the rotating assemblies. There is an exposed driveshaft which runs the length of the chassis. Of course, you also want to make sure that the wires do not make contact with the wheels.


10 Responses

  1. Hi, I heard that the vesc6+ has a IMU inside, do you know how to use it in ros? it should be some “tuning” inside the vesc_driver no?

    1. I do not know if any of the VESC drivers have exposed the IMU data under ROS. The IMU is certainly there, but the driver needs to be modified to publish the data. Thanks for reading!

  2. All of the RACECAR/J products currently support the VESC 6 Mk III, which have the IMU built in. However, I do not know if anyone has exposed the IMU data in the VESC ROS driver.

  3. hi, i dont have lidar installed yet i have logitech 710, vesc 6 mark III i just purchased. when i launch teleop i get errors it cannot find lidar- i know because i havent purchased one yet.

    but how can i disable the lidar when i launch teleop so i know the vesc can be controlled by the logitech F710?

    1. You will need to modify the launch file if you do not want to use the lidar. Or you could just ignore the warning about the lidar. Thanks for reading!

  4. hello. I got the single fsesc 6.6. Any major changes I need to make to build a similar system on the traxxas slash? Besides, do we ever use the CAN and UART ports or the presented connections sufficient for the motor speed controls? All we need to do is send the commands via jetson? I wanna take this step by step given its my first attempt. Thank you very much for the article.

    1. You will need to change the firmware on the FSESC to support servo out. The interface can be controlled by the Jetson with USB, though I suppose you could support CAN or UART if you want. You should check out if you are looking for more information. Thanks for reading!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Some links here are affiliate links. If you purchase through these links I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Books, Ideas & Other Curiosities