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Discussion in 'Homebrew and Kit Projects' started by VK4FFAB, Apr 13, 2017.

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  1. W6KCS

    W6KCS Ham Member QRZ Page

    The cheap PCBs, combined with the free "real" board layout software such as Diptrace and Eagle, and the incredible variety of parts available now like filters, oscillators, mixers, amplifiers, etc. make building things really easy. It seems too easy, sometimes. When I opened my first box from Itead, I looked at the boards for about ten minutes, confused, wondering how I ended up with ten PC Boards of my own design in less than two weeks for only $14 total. It seemed impossible. I guess I half expected them to take my money and have nothing show up.
     
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  2. W6KCS

    W6KCS Ham Member QRZ Page

    I've been thinking about something like that for our club, like a field strength meter or one of those DF antenna-switchers. Maybe even a DIY LED flashlight project for my daughters' girl scout troop. It could even have their troop number and all their names.
     
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  3. VK4FFAB

    VK4FFAB Ham Member QRZ Page

    LED torch for a scout group would be cool, you could fit 3 per board, and run them through the bandsaw at home to avoid the panelization cost. a couple of LEDs. a switch, a resistor and a pair of AAA cells all on the board, maybe even a 555 timer to have a flashing mode. Bring on JOTA the girls will love it :)

    I do not use the free software, but i do use a cheap layout program called Sprint Layout, its more like using a graphics layout program like Photoshop etc that I am very familiar with. I am however teaching myself Kicad for when i need to remove the training wheels :)
     
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  4. W6KCS

    W6KCS Ham Member QRZ Page

    Kicad looks really good as far as being open-source, feature-rich, etc. I just couldn't get used to the user interface, nothing seemed intuitive. Others might not have the trouble I did and it's worth trying.
     
  5. VK4FFAB

    VK4FFAB Ham Member QRZ Page

    Oh it has a very steep learning curve. There is website called Contextual Electronics, they have a course they offer that takes takes you through a lot of electronics projects and teaches you general electronics and how to use kicad. I have been thinking of throwing some money at the problem and seeing if i can overcome that deficiency. LOL
     
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