Protoboard Modification


This page is under construction. If you start to build the board before I've finished the writeup, be careful about where you mount that 5-pin strip. If you place it exactly where I have, you'll find +5 volts on the pin closest to the PIC socket. You'll either have to cut a trace (as I did), or move the strip.

Mount the strip one hole over toward the trimpot. That's unconnected board space.

Also - after working with the board a bit, I've found that 22 gauge wire is a bit tight in some pins. Perhaps 24 gauge solid wire would be better for working on this board. Unfortunately, I don't have any 24 gauge solid wire to try.


I bought both a PICAXE18X chip and Olimex protoboard from Peter Anderson to begin my PICAXE learning, test, and development. The board he sells is a great way to get started - plug the chip in, power it up, and program it. It works right away, right out of the box, with no scrounging parts or fiddling around.

That's great, as far as it goes. But with a little effort and very little money, you can convert his protoboard into a solderless experimenter's board that you can use to design, test, and construct PICAXE interface circuitry. You can use just one board, over and over, to perform your experiments for a long time to come.

The modifications shown below use a 28 pin machined-pin DIP socket, an inexpensive solderless breadboard socket, and just a few other parts. When you've finished, you have a board where you can quickly install, patch up, test, and modify a design, with some common components that will come in handy for your experimentation permanently installed.



This is the protoboard, before modification. I've soldered (and unsoldered)
components to the board in order to design and test a PICAXE application.


This is the board after the solderless breadboard modification. I've added
convenient test points for all PICAXE pins, and have installed some components
and connection points that will be used often in your experiments and tests - a
trimpot, a pushbutton switch, two LEDs with current limiting resistors, and a
bicolor LED that can be used as a poor man's logic probe.




A PICAXE18X experiment in progress
This experiment required a pot, two LEDs, and a switch. Gee, what a coincidence! :)


Here's another experiment.
I didn't need the trimpot for the one. Instead, I'm using five switches,
the two green LEDs, and the bipolar test LED.

It required only about ten minutes to switch the board from the first experiment to this one.



Copyright © 2006 Tom Lackamp
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