FabLab Academy 2012

Manchester Lab

David Forgham-Bailey

Week  13: Output Devices

This week's assignment was to add an output device to a microcontroller board and program it to do something.

We were given a number of example boards with a variety of output devices - so I decided to make as many example boards in the time available. This would give me a feel for which devices could be incorporated into my final project. I was especially interested in the servo board since this could control two servos. My ventriloquist dummy will have moving eyes and mouth - so the servo could be the solution for controlling these movements.

The boards were milled using the Modela - in the usual way, then stuffed and soldered. I decided to solder the boards with them lying them flat on the workbench. This was much easier and quicker than holding the board in a clamp. I made 8 boards in total:

This Photo shows:


All these boards were programmed on the first attempt. A major step forward in board production.
However not all the boards worked first time.

The Array Board worked once a battery was connected - but two leds do not illuminate - further investigation needed:


The LCD worked once the connections were made and the battery connected - further work required to reprogram and change the displayed text:


The Stepper Board was programmed for half and for full, and worked each time:


The other boards have yet to be made to perform correctly. I suspect that the video board program will need rewriting to be able to work with a PAL system. The Speaker Board has been programme with the supplied routine, and also reprogrammed with the Simpsons theme, but as yet it has not made a sound - further investigation needed. The RGB board can be programmed but will not light - further investigation. The H-Bridge has not yet been tested with a motor.

The servo board can receive programming, but has yet to make the two HTX900 servos move. This needs to be resolved.