At Hackaday, we’re constantly impressed by the skill and technique that goes into soldering up some homebrew creations. We’re not just talking about hand-soldering 80-pin QFNs without a stencil, either: there are people building charlieplexed LED arrays out of bare copper wire, and using Kynar wire for mechanical stability. There are some very, very talented people out there, and they all work in the medium of wire, heat, and flux.
At this year’s DEF CON, we opened the floodgates to competitive soldering. Along with [Bunny] from Hardware Hacking Village and the many volunteers from the HHV and Soldering Skills Village, dozens competed to solder up a tiny kit full of LEDs and microscopic resistors.
The kit in question was an SMD Challenge Kit put together my MakersBox, and consisted of a small PCB, an SOIC-8 ATtiny, and a LED and resistor for 1206, 0805, 0603, 0402, and 0201 sizes. The contest is done in rounds. Six challengers compete at a time, and everyone is given 35 minutes to complete the kit.
From Cynthia Huang on the Tindie blog:
Tindie has been a favorite platform for creative makers for quite some time now. Hundreds of thousands of hardware craftsmen, hackers, and enthusiasts gather here, share their ideas and create a lot of amazing products.
Three years ago Tindie published an article that used the tools of data science to look at what makes a product successful. It’s been a very popular article, providing insight to the inventors who build their communities of customers through Tindie. With so many new products and sellers since the previous article, we were inspired to dig into the numbers once again to determine if the criteria for selling a successful product on Tindie has changed over the years.
A purple snowy owl with customizable name and short message from NWMaker on Tindie:
Look at it. This snowy owl is so cute. You can choose add custom text or not.
When you choose the option of custom text, you can customize the snowy owl as follows.
- Add a name or nick name (less than 16 letters) like “Mary” or “James”
- Add a short message (less than 18 letters) such as “Happy Birthday!” or “Merry Christmas!”
Owl is amazing. It has super eyesight at night. Its feather structure makes its flight silent. It can turn around its head backwards.
I’d like something to be associated with “snow” and “north”. That is why I think of the snowy owl.
From Bradley Ramsey on the Tindie blog:
When you take your first steps on the road to becoming a maker, one of the first skills you’ll need to master is soldering. It’s the backbone of just about every electronics project, but it’s not an easy skill to master. Don’t let the fear stop you, soldering opens up a lot of DIY projects for you.
With the I Can Solder Badge, you’ll not only learn the basics, but you’ll also have proof to show the world. This badge project is unique in that it also teaches you about circuits and includes a switch to save the battery power.
Included in the kit is a purple PCB manufactured in the USA by OSH Park, an RGB LED, a resistor, a switch, and a battery holder for the CR2032. Keep in mind that you’ll need to purchase the battery yourself as it cannot be mailed out with the kit due to USPS guidelines.
From Bradley Ramsey on Tindie blog:
The Robotics Module Challenge just wrapped up and last week we featured two of the twenty finalists who are also Tindie Sellers. Today let’s look at several other Tindie Sellers who got in the game with their own robotics module designs!
Tindie seller Citrus CNC Store is working on a low-cost automatic pick and place feeder and entered it into the robotics challenge. The pick and place machine is a valuable resource for building electronics.
The end goal here is to create a fully featured pick and place machine at a mid-range hobby 3D printer price point, with support for at least 20 automatic tape feeders and loop control of every motion related component. Check out this project on Hackaday.io.
Another Tindie seller who owns the proto-Phi Store is working on a modular design for a soft robotic gripper.
The design is for soft robotics fabrication and emphasizes the molds and subsequent actuators. The current method combines the softness of a silicone actuator and a 3D plastic exoskeleton.
Check out the project page for more details!
Supporting Our Tindie Sellers
These aren’t the only Tindie sellers participating in this year’s Hackaday Prize. Take a look at these other robotics projects from our talented makers:
- Morpheus 6DOF Robotic Arm – Adamjvr
- Nomadstep Modular Motor Controllers – Ulcek
- Compact Spectrometer – TleraCorp
- Airsoft Turret – ActualDragon
- Ares Modular PCB Robot – KitsForKids
- Xlidar Open Source LiDAR – JRodrigo
- Tote Robot Leg – Deshipu
Stay tuned for more updates on the finalists, and future modules in this year’s Hackaday Prize!
From MakersBox on Tindie:
Learn to solder, and learn a little bit about electronics as well
Soldering can seem a bit daunting,
but it is easier than it looks and it is a skill that opens a world of DIY projects to you. This project is the perfect way to not only learn how to solder, but to show off your new found skill to your friends and family.
Unlike other simple soldering project, this one will also teach you about circuits, and how they work. And it has a switch to save the battery. More power to you!
What you get:
- A perfect purple PCB made in the USA by OSH Park.
- An RGB LED that will open the all the mysteries of color mixing to you.
- A resistor, which in addition to being the easiest component to learn how to solder, will also save your battery life.
- A switch, which far more than the resistor, will save your battery and allow you to sleep at night not wondering how long that color changing LED will continue to light up the room.
- A battery holder for the CR2032, the best and most cost effective lithium coin cell on the planet*.
Bradley Ramsey writes on the Tindie blog about this robotics kit from The Maker’s Box:
The Open Source Turtle Robot (OSTR) was created as the basis for a two-day workshop where high school students could gain hands-on experience with engineering concepts. The finished robot even creates interesting pieces of art via pen plotting with Turtle graphics.
The project is Arduino compatible for ease of programming and powered by 4 AA batteries to make it cost effective. Stepper motors were chosen for accurate motion, and the parts were 3D printed for easy customization.