Let's Make Robots!


I did a brief video tutorial on Diptrace - this is part 2 on Laying out a PCB.  Part 1, covering schematics is here. \ Read more

PicAxe 20X2 mainboard

This is the second board I received from sparkfun / batchPCB. The other one, a motor driver, is tested and done.

Vary basic question about headers

This is a very simple question and I am only asking because it is fundamental to my first robot (and I don't have the money to get this bit wrong).

Custom Motor Driver Debugging

Hello LMR!

I built a motor driver, look: 


Cool isnt it? Of course it doesn't work as intended, but hopefully you guys can help me fix that. Lets take a look at the details first, and afterwards my problem.

I had a trip to Taiwan on May 31 and i'm coming back soon. During my trip i came across several electronic shops and man they sell electronics for a very cheap … Read more

My First BatchPCB, er batch

So I finally got my first home designed PCBs back from BatchPCB.  As a bonus, I got double the parts I ordered.


My L298 Motor shield:


My Q1114 sensor board (for line following/wheel encoders)  The mounting holes will need some rework.


Messing with the Picaxe editor help menu

When researching the exact connections on my 28x1 projectboard, I scowered my directory C:\Program Files\Programming Editor\datasheets\ and found user.txt.

And guess what? It lets you change the help menu in your editor.


That fourth option was not there before! All that was needed was one extra line in the textfile:
PCB hackers need to Read this F*****g Manual now!=c:\Program Files\Programming Editor\datasheets\axe001_pcb.pdf

Homemade PCB

I bought myself a new pc recently and as for most new pcs it was lacking either a parallel port or a serial port.  As i was using the parallel port to program my robot i had to find a usb programmer that i could use.  I use atmel chips and i found a circuit design for the USBasp programmer, which consists of another atmel chip that converts the usb data into data that can be used to program my robot.  I thought that this would be a good opportunity to try and build my own pcb.  I got some info from http://www.fullnet.com/~tomg/gooteepc

Gathering experience with homemade PCB

Oi, yesterday and today I have been trying to make a homemade PCB using Eagle for designing the PCB and printing with a laser printer onto some glossy advertisement paper from junk mail. After several attempts I still haven't gotten a good transfer of toner to the PCB (check images) and I'm wondering if I should just design my PCBs and then send the design files off to Olimex for production


PCB fabrication, a snapshot from the shoutbox

read bottom up:

jip: and of course we just used a marker pen to draw the tracks afterwards
jip: That was how we did it in public school :-)
jip: Oh well I used another method before... drilling holes prior to etching by laying paper layout on top and drilling through

Toner Transfer PCB

Yesterday, I made my first PCB since about 1978!  I used the toner transfer method, and it worked really well.  It's a little break-out board for an Atmel AVR, the ATmega8.  I've also allowed space on the board for a couple of extra chips (up to 18 pins) and four TO-220 driver transistors, for things like stepper motors.  Today, I'm drilling the holes in the board (1mm) and I expect I'll solder in the parts this evening.