Good DIY electronics sites?

Discussion in 'General Off-Topic Chat' started by Switchy, Nov 4, 2007.

  1. Switchy
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    Switchy GBAtemp Fan

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    FIRST. I know Google. I've been there. All night.

    I'm interested in doing a couple of projects: an USB-powered snake light with multiple LEDs and (realistically flickering) LED tea lights (even preferably rechargeable, if possible).
    I'll admit, I'm a complete noob when it comes to putting electronics together.
    I've been putting together a couple of electrical guitar effect pedals but that's easy.
    All you need to know is how to solder, which I do.

    Is there anyone who can point me to good sites or even know how to make LEDS flicker or connect LEDs to an USB cable?
     
  2. nintendofreak

    nintendofreak Around. Shoot me a PM.

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    MEE!!!

    Alrighty then sooo i'd suggest picking up a Multimeter before you go any further. It'll be useful for measuring all sorts of crap and stuff. Some are inexpensive (i bought mine for $10 [​IMG] )

    USB ports run on 5.0 V DC. Find a LED that runs on 5 V and it should be fine. They also sell LED"s that flash (just plug them in and thats that!)
     
  3. Switchy
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    Switchy GBAtemp Fan

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    My dad already gave me a multimeter [​IMG] so I have one.


    Don't LEDs generally run at 2.2V? And if I do use 5V LEDs, can I just connect them in serial? (I already admitted to being a noob [​IMG])

    As for the flashing LEDs.. that's not really what I'm looking for.
    They should flicker quite smoothly (as to look like a candle).

    Thanks a lot for helping! [​IMG]
     
  4. nintendofreak

    nintendofreak Around. Shoot me a PM.

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    yess, LEDs tend to run at very low voltages.

    Ive come up with a simple equation to choose the right resistor



    Resistorneeded = (Vin - Vneeded)/Current needed in Amps.

    The voltage that the LED runs at and the current should be somewhere on the package.

    As for the flashing LED's, I havent learned about chips yet in college (next quarter [​IMG] ) BUT! I can point you to:
    http://www.instructables.com/id/41-LED-Fla...t-using-555-IC/

    You can use a "555" chip to make LED's flash. (circuits are on google [​IMG] ) Following the instructions and circuits is easy, but im sorry that I dont know enough (FOR NOW [​IMG] ) to just rig one up [​IMG]
     
  5. Mewgia

    Mewgia drifter

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    instructables.com

    that place has enough projects to fill up a lifetime. Or a hundred lifetimes, for that matter >_>;

    [EDIT] 900TH POST
     
  6. Switchy
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    Switchy GBAtemp Fan

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    I agree Instructables is good, but they don't seem to have anything to help me with my projects.
     
  7. IainDS

    IainDS GBAtemp Regular

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    The LED throwies on instructables are grrrreat.
     
  8. TLSpartan

    TLSpartan Kills threads

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    www.aaroncake.net

    Very basic site, but full of stuff

    I mean basic as in it looks basic, the stuff is not basic (its not all hook the red wire to the battery,etc)

    Have fun with elctronics(I do [​IMG] )
     
  9. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Whoo electronics. You say you have a meter so that is a start (sometimes you might want two though but one will be enough to start with).
    You might also consider a breadboard (normally white coloured plastic with loads of holes for wires and components) which can make building stuff a bit easier.

    MIT have an open course that does for high level stuff as well as the general capacitance, resistance, current, voltage.... equations. They even have video lectures in real format (grab a copy of real alternative from http://www.free-codecs.com/ if you do not have want real installed)
    http://ocw.mit.edu/OcwWeb/Electrical-Engin...ience/index.htm

    I also suggest learning the symbols and bsic terminology used: get a GCSE/high school physics/electronics book/revision site and go with that. What is e.m.f, p.d., ohms law, Kirchoff's laws, capacitance, resistance, resistivity (and the three components thereof) and detail the main equations these concepts are needed in.

    Something to bear in mind:
    Current direction: pick one and stick with it for a given problem (the US did and still often does assume current goes from positive terminals to ground/negative but in fact electron direction is negative to positive and most of the rest of the world uses this. Can pose a problem if you mix problems together

    I also perhaps may go as far as saying there are 4 main schools of electronics:

    digital
    Where the world is heading it seems, if you went to a university to do electronics this is what you would likely spend most of your time doing.
    This area is normally geared towards building things from from the other areas to perform some task: major areas include logic gates and stuff like shift registers and processor design.
    Overlaps somewhat with computing and thus is well explained in the art of assembly:
    http://webster.cs.ucr.edu/

    analog(ue)
    motors, solenoids, actuators, relays, circuit design, arrays of capacitors and the like. This is more your traditional electronics but is the bread and butter of the electronics world. Learn it and learn it well as everything stems from it and ultimately leads back to it.

    materials:
    Tends to focus on how to make electronics better in given environments
    Should I grow a layer of silicon on a substrate larger than it but make it thin it will be strained and in turn make a transistor change quicker.
    My last go at research was fuel cells and how to make them conduct better internally (which at a 1000 degrees C for several months with a nice presence of hydrogen and oxygen is easier said than done).

    real world: should someone call themselves an electrician this is likely what they do. It tends to involve wiring sockets, power supplies for buildings, generators and some stuff in cars.
     
  10. arctic_flame

    arctic_flame GBAtemp ATMEGA8 Fan

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