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Random projects and posts - page 8

28 MAY 2013

Blog upgrade issues

Following a recent update to the new BlogEngine 2.8 version it seems that some of the blog posts have vanished and didn’t transfer to the new system correctly. I have been able to recover some of the posts but...

18 MAY 2013

TECHNO SD 240 Manual operated stencil printer

After struggling for some time using homemade stencil holders and bits of tape to hold the stencils down we decided to buy a commercial stencil holder. Most seemed to be around the £2000 mark and only take large framed...

05 MAY 2013

Dangerous LED Outdoor Floodlights

A few weeks ago I ordered a pair of “20W 1600Lm LED Garden Outdoor FloodLight 85-265V Pure White Wall WashLights” at £35 each to replace the pair of 150W halogen outdoor lights in the back garden. The seller...

29 APRIL 2013

Kent Hand Morse Key Restoration

I had been looking for a Kent hand key from eBay for some time as I plan to try to learn CW (Morse) to use with my Yaesu FT817 on the HF bands. As the Kent keys are around £100 new I thought that a used one would be a good...

28 APRIL 2013

Apple ATI Radeon HD 5870 Fan Upgrade

The factory fan on my 2 year old Apple ATI Radeon HD 5870 1Gb Graphics Card finally failed last week after over 8 months of rattles and worsening noises before finally stopping and the graphics card getting a bit warm! As...

14 APRIL 2013

Android Tablet and Arduino DIY pick and place component selector

Following from the Arduino pick and place update blog post video and Automatic component feeders post we have now completed the first version of the Android tablet control software  which uses bluetooth to communincate...

01 APRIL 2013

Etching your own PCBs

Below is a photo overview of how we make our own PCB’s using a UV box and developing the boards. Disclaimer: Wear appropriate safety equipment when handling chemicals and when using UV boxes and lights. Don’t...

27 FEBRUARY 2013

Vacuum Pickup upgrade

The basic Chinese Vacuum Pickup pump we have been using on the DIY pick and place machine has been giving us problems with its lack of suction when handling larger SOIC components and didn’t hold them still when moving...

27 FEBRUARY 2013

Automatic component feeders DIY pick and place Part 2

Following from the Automatic component feeders DIY pick and place Part 1 post we have now redesigned the Y axis which pushes the activation arms on the Panasonic component feeders to use a new leadscrew from Reliance...

10 FEBRUARY 2013

Low Voltage Cut off using MAX8212

Since upgrading our solar charge controller to a MPPT model we lost the facility for the charge controller to shut down the inverter when the battery voltage dropped too low. This resulted in a few days when the battery voltage...

06 FEBRUARY 2013

Raspberry Pi model A vs Model B

The new Raspberry Pi model A arrived today after a mixup where Farnell sent us another model B yesterday. The new Model A on the left with a Com Pi board and Wifi dongle. Older Model B on the right. As the new Model...

23 JANUARY 2013

Yaesu FT 817 Cat Control Headaches

After treating myself to a new Yaesu FT 817 HF, 6m, 2m & 70cm transceiver, I also ordered a CAT to USB control cable from Radioarena (Yaesu USB Programming / CAT Cable for FT-100 / 817 / 857 / 897) which arrived 8 days...

05 JANUARY 2013

Small Space Workshops

After seeing other blog posts about people’s workshops, I thought I should add a post about our small home workshop which is in the loft of our terrace home. The loft space is 4.1m long, 3.2m wide at its widest point...

01 DECEMBER 2012

Automatic component feeders DIY pick and place Part 1

Following from the Panasonic component feeder mods and the build of our manual pick and place machine (pick and place part 1 & pick and place part 2) we have started to build an automatic stepper motor driven controller...

01 DECEMBER 2012

Magnetic PCB holders

While building pcbs on our manual pick and place machine we have been looking at various options to hold the PCB boards still while placing the components but without having to use complex clamps to hold the boards in place. To...

25 NOVEMBER 2012

Google Talk and Google Chrome Windows 8 Bug Fix

Since installing Windows 8 earlier this month I haven’t been able to use Google Chrome as the default browser for links when opening from Google Talk. Even when the Defaults control panel was showing Google Chrome...

20 NOVEMBER 2012

New Raspberry Pi Analogue to Digital converter

Following feedback and supply problems with the 16 bit ADC chip we had been using on our popular ADC Pi board which we sell on www.abelectronics.co.uk we have been working on a new version of the ADC board and we have now...

13 NOVEMBER 2012

Panasonic Pick and Place Feeder Hack

To replace the diy surface mount component feeder used on the pick and place part 1 & pick and place part 2 posts, I was able to source 11 x 8mm Panasonic Ratchet Type Component Feeders (part no 10488BD059, specification...

28 OCTOBER 2012

Diy Manual Pick and Place Machine part 2

Following from the previous pick and place part 1 post we have completed the initial build on our semi automatic pick and place machine. The air / vacuum supply nozzle was made on the lathe using a section of 10mm steel...

19 OCTOBER 2012

Diy Manual Pick and Place Machine part 1

After discovering the cost of buying a ready made manual Pick & Place Machine was over £5,000 and an automatic one well over £20,000 we decided to try to make our own manual pick and place system with a motorised...

02 OCTOBER 2012

T962 Infrared Reflow Oven Vent Hack

We purchased a T-962 desktop reflow oven from China on eBay a few weeks ago and found the results from the oven to be very poor compared to the specifications on the area which it could process. We found that it would only...


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