Vol. 25: Primer: Make and Use an Arduino

Build and program a microcontroller clone with no soldering.

By Dale Wheat

Photos by Dale Wheat

+ Downloads & Extras:

+ Li'l Larson LED Scanner - a fun and easy first project to try with your new Breadboard Arduino kit. Glen Larson is credited with producing several iconic American television shows, including Battlestar Galactica and Knight Rider, among others. Both shows featured mesmerizing "light scanners" that are easy to simulate and hard to reproduce exactly. Here's how to get started on building a your own "Li'l Larson LED Scanner." +

Maker Shed USB Adapter (USB mini 03)

USB adapter and power: plug adapter in symmetrically over central gutter, pins into rows 1-4 on either side.
Jumper J-2 to right-side ground rail, J-3 to right-side power rail (5V). Power LED from I-4 to I-5; resistor from J-5 to ground.
Chip and power: Plug microcontroller chip over gutter with Pin 1 in E-6.
For power, jumper A-12 to left-side power rail, A-13 to left-side ground rail, J-12 to right-side ground rail, J-14 to right-side power rail.
Chip to the USB adapter: Jumper A-2 to A-7 (RX) Receive and B-1 to B-8 (TX) Transmit.
Solder a wire to the 5th pinhole down on the right side of the adapter and connect to C-6 (RST) Reset.
With this USB Adapter, you want to connect the adapter and chip RX and TX pins together (RX to RX and TX to TX), rather than connecting RX to TX and TX to RX.
Quartz crystal: Plug between C-14 and A-15
Programmable LED: Resistor between J-15 and J-20, LED H-20 to H-21, jumper J-21 to right-side ground power rail.

Modern Device USB BUB

Install adapter sideways on breadboard with DTR, RX, TX, 5V, 3.3V, and GND pins in holes F-1 to F-6.

MAKE: AMENDS Errata for This Article


Correction for page 65
The second paragraph on page 65 should read: "To connect the chip to power and ground, jumper [...] J-7 to right ground, and J-9 to right power (Figure G)." The print version had power and ground reversed for pins J-7 and J-9. Figure G is correct.

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