Category Archives: Electronics

Chinese LED bulbs fail

Some time ago I have replaced most of light bulbs with LED bulbs. Typically these imported directly from China were significanlty cheaper so that I gave them a try. LED diodes can work thousands of hours without an issue, right? … Continue reading

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Stinging Mac

For a long time I was ignoring that tingling feeling where my forearm was touching Macbook while typing on second laptop. Sensation that was sometimes closer to stinging, as if tiny hair was pulled of my skin. It happen at home, in the office, just … Continue reading

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Magic smoke out of fridge

When fridge got me popping sound and display turned black, I realized that 10 years old Whirlpool went out of service. My “damn it” comment was quickly followed by my wife: “You are going abroad next week! What we do now?”.  Considering subtle smell … Continue reading

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e-snowflake revisited

Four years ago I made microcontrolled snowflake decor using home made PCB based on toner-transfer process. I got back to this idea late in 2015 to make short batch for family and friends. Second version was about fixing design issues … Continue reading

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3D printed rain gauge

Water level monitoring on river basin under observation was completed mid 2015. From rainfall-rainoff modelling perspective rainfall capturing was missing. Low budget, 3d printer at home and some spare time pushed me to design my own rain gauge. Before autumn … Continue reading

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Outdoor device? Bundle up your PCB.

Winter is coming… actually it has already come bringing constructor’s nightmare. Sudden freezing cold caused unexpected and massive restarts of all field stations. All because of the same hardware reason. Reason impossible to happen. All that because circuit boards were not … Continue reading

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Bitten by dead FTDI chips

Counterfeit chips have always been on the market. Most of the time stories were told about fake high-end components like computer GPUs. I did not worry and over last couple years I bought hundreds genuine chips from China. They were … Continue reading

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Toner transferred PCBs

Thanks to Chinese providers printed circuit board fabrication has never been so cheap. With PCB comparison tool it is also darn easy to choose from. Sometimes though old’ye home made PCB is what you are looking for. So I made … Continue reading

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Kicad upgrade: push & shove and freerouting revisited

Kicad PCB toolset changed a lot over last two years. Great contribution from CERN is merged with stable release on one hand, new library format and projects migration necessity on the other. Meantime Freerouter cooperative tool disappeared and my reluctance to move … Continue reading

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EMI shielding

Close GSM antenna proximity to bare PCB was troublesome latching microSD. Using most resilient flash cards nearly solved the problem. Extra shielding would help to prepare for worst field conditions like area of weakest GSM signal leading to highest emission and … Continue reading

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