Mini Maestro 24 crash


I bought a MiniMaestro24 some weeks ago for my Robot project ,but I had an accident with a loose cable from the power supply and I broken the PIC18f4550 (all leds off and chip very hot). :frowning:

I bought one PIC18f4550 new and I replaced the broken chip for the new ,but donĀ“t work. (all components are ok, i have checked all and welds)

I try to reflash the firmware in Bootloader mode but my PC not detect nothing for USB.
The ā€œPololu Maestro Control Centerā€ does not recognized the device.

You think that would work if I reflash the update directly on the PIC with my programmer ???

Please, I need help.

Hello, Juan.

I think you recently emailed us a very similar question, but if the PIC on your Maestro is broken, simply replacing it with a different one will not work; the new PIC would need to have the bootloader, which we do not make available.


For one programming problem , your only solution is to buy a new Maestro?
I donĀ“t understand what the problem, and you donĀ“t say to me that you donĀ“t have the bootloader for solution my problem( I donĀ“t believe).
Only you think in sell and not technical support ???
If its true, I will never trust in Pololu for future buys.

Juan, in the unlikely case that the damage can be completely repaired by replacing the microprocessor with one that is properly programmed, should Pololu be required to do that for free? When I accidentally destroy a module (and I have done so several times), I accept the responsibility for the mistake and buy a new one.

Jim ,You are wrong.
I donā€™t claim warranty,sustitution,spare parts or work by part of Pololu staff.

I, like buyer of product from Pololu, only need technical support.

My Maestro24 was broken physically and I accept the responsibility ,and reparation is for my part. I am engineer and i have solder equipement. Now all hardware is ok.

My Maestro24 will never work if Pololu donĀ“t supplied support to me.

So what would happen if the firmware (including bootloader) are corrupt in some moment ???..It is the same situation.

The Only solution of technical support of Pololu is buy a new one??

In other words, you want Pololuā€™s intellectual property (the bootloader) for free.

In other words, you have a personal interest in that I buy new one
instead of I repairing my Maestro24?? you take commission??

Perhaps the Updates,firmwares,sofware,source codesā€¦ supplied by Pololu for your clients, are not intellectual property too??? and make only for work with Pololu products??

What is the problem?
I pololu client, why not for my tech support??.

It is clear,I will not buy a new one when my Maestro24 only need one reprogramation.

If you prefer buy other new every time that you things not workā€¦ is your problem, I prefer try fix first and not spend more money unnecessarily .

Maybe for you the cost of a Maestro24 not worth but you should know That the total cost of my Maestro24 was more of 100 $ (Maestro24 + fedex + customs taxes)

I have no connection with Pololu, but I do think you are being unreasonable on a public forum. Therefore, I am providing an alternative point of view.

Despite the fact that Pololu gives away a great deal of their intellectual property, you certainly cannot expect them to do so in every case.

Finally, if you had asked, the Pololu engineers might have been willing to repair your Maestro for a reasonable price. Most manufacturers of consumer electronics do not allow members of the public to attempt repairs, and consider opening the case to be a violation of the warranty.

I repeat, I donā€™t claim warranty, please read my previous replies and please you do not insist more with that.

I open this TOPIC because I need Help and I believe that this forum is correct place for Pololu products and your tech support.

Jim.Thanks for so help from the your first reply ,but please do not help me more :exclamation:

I programed the PIC with a Bootloader supplied for Microchip Forum and now my PC recognizes the device USB but I try to reflash the firmware in Normal and Bootloader mode and ā€œPololu Maestro Control Centerā€ still do not recognized the device.

If there other person can help me? :unamused:

[quote=ā€œBrandonMā€]Hello, Juan.

the new PIC would need to have the bootloader, which we do not make available.


Hello, Juan.

I am sorry you damaged your Maestro. If we could easily get the Maestro firmware into your replacement PIC in some secure way, we would, but we do not know of a way to do that.

What you are asking for now has transitioned from technical support to a request for us to publicly reveal part of the product that we want to keep private. If you had damaged the board beyond repair, would you be demanding we send you all our design files along with the firmware so you, as an engineer, can make yourself a new one?

- Ben

You are right, but for my this means that mi maestro never will work and my money lost.

My intention is not to copy or make commercial use if thatā€™s what youā€™re saying. Is only for personal use.

You have to understand too my problem. Only I try to repair mi Maestro.
If you say that not supply the bootloader because is a secret ingredient of maestro, I will accept it but I will not buy their products anymore.


Are you offering me a commission?

I do take commissions for large programming tasks, but the Pololu engineers have done a very nice job with the Maestro, the PC GUI, the associated script language and communications protocol, and I would rather purchase their product than spend hundreds (if not thousands) of hours attempting to imitate it.

Cheers, Jim

Yes, the bootloader is a proprietary part of the Maestro design that we do not make public.

That is typically what happens when you break something.

By the way, the attitude you have shown in this thread is not helpful; if you think your tone here would make us more willing to do something special for you, you have miscalculated.

- Ben

My tone??
Thanks a lot to allā€¦ for so so so so help with my problem and treatment received from the first time in this forum, in special to Jim that not get commission but seems (in my country we have good expression for people like you).

I see that for pololu only important to sell and not good support for the clients(in Europe is usually just the opposite) . I do not will recommend your products to my friends and forums of my country. There are more alternatives less expensive.

Luck with your business

Cheers. Juan.