Sunday, 10 June 2012

Simple DIY SMD part storage

I was thinking last week how to improve storage of my SMD parts. In my first SMD projects I used different parts in each of project. So I had one box for every project with the parts.
Last week I found that I have 4 packs of 100nF capacitors across all my boxes. This time I realized that the time has come and I have to put some effort to organize my parts.

In the same time, dangerousprototypes published a post with some ideas how to store you parts. There were some interesting ideas but none of them was perfect for me.

I don't have SMD parts on reels (yet) and I wanted to fit as much parts as possible to the small area. And here's my solution:

I wanted to create something like this organizer:

I have lot of transparent A4 paper organizers like in the above picture but not with shelves for SMD strips. I had to make them somehow. I looked over the internet and I haven't the right kind of wire to generate the heat to create the shelves.

So I took the 0,25W through hole 1 Ohm resistor, pumped some serious current through it and started to experiment. The 1,7 A seemed to do the right job. IF you burn too much, you create holes and the plastic organizer gets weaker. So the best solution is to make small dots and leave some space between them. To make nicer organizers I printed template with lines on A4 paper to help me guide the dots. I can fit 11 different SMD parts in cutted strips in one A4 organizer.

The best marking of shelves is done with coloured post-it stripes. You can easily relocate them to different place if you need to. If you leave the top of the post-it little bit outside over the edge, you can put SMD strips inside much more easilly.

The whole image gallery is here.

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Universal menu library for MCUs

I did a small cleaning in my menu routines and I was thinking, that it would be nice, if somone else could use it. Here it is! It's platform and lcd hardware independend. You have to define names of your own LCD routines in menu.h (lcdClear(), lcdString(str, x, y)).


  • Tested on AVRs ( incl. Arduino ) and ARMs
  • more after break...

microCommander update

MicroCommander is fully funcional, only the logger functionality is missing but SD routines works. You can get KiCAD files and source code on the microCommander project page

Right now I'm adding IR transmitter support, it already works with my Genius 5.1 speakers.

Monday, 30 January 2012

microCmd/LM3S5632 boards assembled

 Just a little update on my play-board. The three pieces of board are manufactured, one soldered. Now I'm bringing device's peripherals to life. More pictures inside the post. Of course there are few mistakes from my side:

Saturday, 31 December 2011

New pocket ARM LM3S battery device in development

You didn't miss anything. I was doing different sort of stuff last months instead of electronics.

Now I'm back in "business". Ordered few LM3S5632 chips and that forced me to create really small layout for this ARM MCU with interesting peripherals:

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

IR code soundcard software decoder

If you need to analyse IR signals of your infra red remotes and you don't have oscilloscope - try this windows application. You record the signal from your soundcard and the software shows you the waveform, decodes the signal. It supports RC5, SIRP, NEC, Panasonic. Code is open and the app is written in Delphi

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Store and show your schematics online with CircuitBee

This service allows you to upload (for now only) KiCAD schematics file with libraries and embed them in your site/blog with zooming a panning. The creator of this web said that in the future we would create schematics in his online tool. That's what I'm waiting for years! I would like to have my electronics suite package in the cloud, always latest version and finally with all public libraries shared and instantaneously prepared for use.