Thursday 18 November 2010

Breadboard PlugIn Modules

I am - as regular visitors will have noticed - a fan of "Solderless Breadboards", which I find very useful for prototyping. Their usefulness is much extended by the addition of simple "PlugIn Modules" - hardly a novel idea, but immensely practical.

Today I made a power supply module, to save me adding the same set of components almost every time I knock up a new circuit...

It implements a simple 5V supply, taking power either from a 2.1mm DC jack (e.g. from a WallWart) or from a 2-pin "Molex" header (e.g. from a Battery) and regulating with a 78L05...

In truth, I power stuff under development from bench PSUs (current limiting is such a good idea for the accident-prone) but I still find it simpler to have local voltage regulation on the board - saves messing around with knobs and voltage adjustments!

Notice the little LED to remind me when power is present.

Here's the finished board...

The power supply joins an increasing collection of such "PlugIn" modules I've made over the years - usually to interface a connector or switch to the breadboard without the use of flying leads (which always live up to their name and fly off in my experience).

Here's some of the family...

There's an FCC68 break-out (used to connect the Microchip ICD2 to a PIC project under development on the Breadboard - although I tend to use the PICKit 2 nowadays - not least because of simplicity in connection!) and two flavours of switch - one "upright" and one in a more laid back posture.

I'm going to add some more modules - perhaps my favourite QRP linear amp (as previously seen in the Radio Times amplifier) and some other RF building blocks.

...-.- de m0xpd

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