Electronics Beginner

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ostamo1
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Electronics Beginner

Post by ostamo1 » Thu Oct 25, 2007 1:42 pm

i have bought this kit years ago to teach myself electronics
i just got it back out
http://www.discoverthis.com/electronic- ... b-300.html

is there anything i need to know or have to learn electronics
i would also like to teach my son

any advice would be appreciated

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CeaSaR
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Post by CeaSaR » Thu Oct 25, 2007 2:13 pm

Just dig in and enjoy the learning experience. The only other advice I will
give on this is: keep fresh batteries nearby! :grin:

CeaSaR
Hey, what do I know?

SETEC_Astronomy
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Post by SETEC_Astronomy » Thu Oct 25, 2007 2:56 pm

My advice is to follow the instructions word for word until you get some experience under your belt. I destroyed several kits early on because I tried to go it alone and not read up on the projects first. Once you fail to read the instructions build a project and destroy the part(s) you will never succeed in building a project using those parts (of course). For me every circuit I built that didn't work was another disheartening step towards giving up electronics all together. It wasn't until later I realized that I had finally followed the instructions properly but my parts were bad from try after try improperly connected. Good luck with your future projects.

Robert Reed
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Post by Robert Reed » Thu Oct 25, 2007 3:02 pm

I don't know from your post if you have spent time on this unit or if you had purchased it and never used it. The list of projects and experiments that the manual shows is very impressive. If you can touch base on all these subjects, you have a great springboard for further and more intensive study on any given subject. Be aware thogh, that the more you learn on the subject of electronics - the more you will want to learn and can get quite time consuming. Not a bad life syyle though!

ostamo1
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Post by ostamo1 » Thu Oct 25, 2007 4:45 pm

i bought the kit and tried it a few times and put ti up
i found it and i started playing with it the other day then i found the updated kit but do not want to spend the money on it
but these books you can download
http://rsk.imageg.net/graphics/uc/rsk/S ... _PM_EN.pdf

http://rsk.imageg.net/graphics/uc/rsk/S ... _PM_EN.pdf

so i decided to look through those as well and saw the 555 IC so i went and bout one and did the first project in that kit as well.

my son saw me playing with the kit and he wants to learn as well
he is 8 years old

so i was just wanting to get pointers on how to teach and learn myself
as well as maybe get him interested in robotics

so any resources would help us on our way
and also ideas for first projects as well

i really appreciate your help

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GoingFastTurningLeft
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Post by GoingFastTurningLeft » Fri Oct 26, 2007 8:10 am

I had one of those after graduating from the 150.

Def go with it. I wish I had one of those first!

ostamo1
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Post by ostamo1 » Fri Oct 26, 2007 8:41 am

yeah i have always had an interest in electronics,started going to college for it
but alas i became a parent and had to quit college
now i want o get back into it
and maybe make some robots with my kid
but i do not have a lot of money
and very little to no experience with soldering

i just want to make learning this stuff fun for my kid

i mean i collect junk as it is
i have several old 3.5 floppy disk drives i can scrap for parts
and some old cdroms as well

so eventually i want to take thsi junk andmake a robot :D
i just got to learn the basics as well.


but i was looking on the net and found this
http://www.neufeld.newton.ks.us/electronics/?p=172

and i thought that was really cool and hope i can become interested in electronics to be able to utilize something like that btu it also ignited the i want to build something spark as well :D

smariotti
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Post by smariotti » Fri Oct 26, 2007 11:41 am

ostamo1 wrote: i mean i collect junk as it is
i have several old 3.5 floppy disk drives i can scrap for parts
and some old cdroms as well
Scrap parts are a great way of pursuing an electronics on the cheap. I pull parts out of a bunch of old salvaged crap all of the time, though doing it requires some soldering / de-soldering and that takes time to get good at.

I recommend getting a good (40 watt) soldering iron. I like the Wellers since they're well made and its easy to get more tips for them down the road.

You'll also want two other things when salvaging parts:

1. A solder popper (desoldering pump) and
2. Desoldering wick

With patience and practice you'll be up to your eyeballs in all sorts of useful basic parts in no time. Usually when I'm building something, I check my salvage boards before I rummage through my junk box. Going to the purchased stuff is a last resort, though over time my purchased collection of basic resistors, capacitors, diodes, transistors and LED's has grown.

Since you have old floppy drives and want a fun project to do with your 8 year old son, check out:

http://www.tvdsb.on.ca/banting/ICE3M/unit6/floppy/

I haven't built it, myself, but I remember reading about it. It doesn't have many parts and looks like a fun build.

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Post by Robert Reed » Fri Oct 26, 2007 10:12 pm

From what you decirbed on your first post, why buy anything other tha what you have. The sanple manual has everything you need to get you started, From tha point you will want to specialize in stand alone useful projects and this will open up a whole new category of parts and equipment needed. Just take it one step at a time,and you will also gain a more thorough understanding as youb go along.

chribec2
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Post by chribec2 » Mon Nov 12, 2007 12:49 am

ostamo1 -

What an incredible opportunity you have with your son! Just admit that you don't know it all, but you are willing to learn.
Together do the book! His attention span may be a little short at first but when he see's you hanging in there, he'll start
hanging around more and more. And don't worry about soldering right now - you can pick that up later. The lab is designed
to use solderless connections, so concentrate on the basic theory presented in the manual. Working with your son like this
will produce wonderful memories for the both of you that will last a lifetime. Towards the end of the manual, you'll probably
notice the possibilty of combining two or more projects together. This is called 'experimenting' and therefore, do we really
know our theory!? Sometimes, this is how we learn our theory!! So - when experimenting, WEAR SAFTY GOGGLES ! ! and keep a
notebook handy to record your set-ups - and results (you don't need to fail the same way twice - or more!) to keep your
interest going. Good Luck and have FUN!!!

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jaem
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Post by jaem » Mon Nov 12, 2007 4:14 am

smariotti wrote:You'll also want two other things when salvaging parts:

1. A solder popper (desoldering pump) and
2. Desoldering wick
I agree that the wick is essential, although I've had bad times with budget solder-suckers. I'd personally recommend a desoldering iron. You can get them in Canadian Radioshacks (e.g. "The Source By Circuit City" these days *laments the fall of RS*) for about $15-$20 (that's about $100 down in the US of A :P) They look like a soldering iron, but with a hole in a perpendicular tip, and a bulb. They work more or less like the professional ones... only not nearly as good. They will, however, keep you from launching small circuit boards across the room, unlike their spring-loaded cousins. That was always my problem with the standard solder-suckers...

Robert Reed
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Post by Robert Reed » Mon Nov 12, 2007 12:40 pm

"They look like a soldering iron, but with a hole in a perpendicular tip, and a bulb. They work more or less like the professional ones... only not nearly as good. They will, however, keep you from launching small circuit boards across the room, unlike their spring-loaded cousins. That was always my problem with the standard solder-suckers..."
I bought one of these(desoldering iron with the bulb) from Radio Shack years ago for an emergency job. Seven years later It's the only desoldering device I use and I have tried a variety of gimmicks over the years. Can you beleive it- something actually worth while and durable from Radio ShacK ? I will mention that there are times when soldering wick is actually indispensible.

ostamo1
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Post by ostamo1 » Mon Nov 12, 2007 8:27 pm

actually among my junk i happened to find this board
http://www.electronickits.com/kit/compl ... ck1102.htm

i also managed to solder it and get ti to work

i had fun creating it as well
now all i need to do is understand how it works
i bought most of the parts from radioshack so it was quite an investment
i was smart though i bout and ic socket for the 555 timer so i could re-use it

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Post by Robert Reed » Mon Nov 12, 2007 9:17 pm

I think that good solder is half the solution for good soldering technique . Once you have aquired some time at it, it almost becomes automatic as far as dwell time vs particular connection. For years I used top grade Kester solder and the flow was fast and beautiful. You knew you had a good joint with just a quick glance at it. Trouble is the stuff has become so expensive now I can hardly afford it for hobby use. The last roll I purchased (a generic brand) dosn't have near the flow properties as the Kester did. This takes longer to insure a good joint, more inspection time and seems to leave more solder spikes when the tip is withdrawn along with a stronger tendency to build solder bridges. I am not sure but it may be the new 'safer'type which is ROHS compliant, but it sure is less enjoyable to work with than the older stuff.

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haklesup
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Post by haklesup » Tue Nov 13, 2007 12:59 pm

This takes longer to insure a good joint, more inspection time and seems to leave more solder spikes when the tip is withdrawn along with a stronger tendency to build solder bridges.
These are the most common complaints about lead free solder. Using the right flux can reduce these problems but you will still need higher temp and longer dwell time.

There are many kinds of solder but you need only concern yourself with a few kinds. 60/40 Lead/Tin is the original and still great for everything but your plumbing. If you are not producing anything for export, Use mainly this kind. I prefer a water based flux core for easy cleanup in the sink but you can use rosin and clean with isopropyl or use no clean flux and let it be (I mainly use no clean for repairs).

Only use lead free solder for devices that are lead free onto PC boards with a lead free finish. Mixing lead and lead free materials can lead to cold solder joints. You can usually get away using lead on lead free devices (pins) but not with lead free substrates (PC boards). Hand soldering is very forgiving though and you can get away with a lot of things a high speed manufacturing line could not.

Lead free solders also use different flux. regardless, I like a liquid flux in a small bottle so I can flood the joint if it is being difficult and not flowing or wants to bridge. Paste works just as well but the flux in the core of solder is often not enough. FLuxing an area to be desoldered is also very helpful and helps preserve the traces, reduces solder peaking and allows a larger area to be reflowed

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