I started looking at getting an Arduino MEGA just so I could hook it up and begin wiring the test harness for it and plugging it in, etc. I also started looking at the PIC again and seeing if it was viable to skip the Arduino MEGA and take the basics then put the PIC in place of the Atmega 2560… however, there has been a lot of work that has gone into the Arduino boards, why not just go with it? So, I’m still looking to make improvements with the cheaper PIC microcontrollers or even with what’s left of Javelins (http://parallax.com) while there is still some stock left – about 435 on the site today. For now, however, I would like to hook up virtualbreadboard to emulate the RAMPS system (the Arduino Mega is already a part of VirtualBreadboard).
I’m downloading some firmware bundles now to see what they have and what virtualbreadboard will do with them once I’ve uploaded the sketches.